Travel

Utah Activities

Establishment neighborhood
Deer Valley
Nestled in the Wasatch Mountain range, Deer Valley Resort consistently tops lists for its customer service. In skiing parlance, that translates to on-site ski valets to help you unload your gear, immaculately groomed slopes, and well-appointed lodges. (Stop for lunch at Royal Street Café at Silver Lake Lodge—it's far cry from the cafeteria-style dining you're used to mid-mountain.) What's nice about Deer Valley is there's a little something for everyone, making it a great mountain for families—there are easy cruisers like Bluebell and Lucky Jack, plus some solid steeps like Daly Bowl and Lady Morgan. Deer Valley is one of the last skiers-only holdouts, so like neighboring Alta, no snowboarders are permitted. Photos courtesy of Deer Valley Resort
Park City
The big news in Park City this year is that the town's namesake resort was purchased by Vail, which could be good or bad news depending on who you talk to. Vail already owned the formerly-named Canyons, Park City's northern sister, and the acquisition gave them the opportunity to install a brand-new, eight-person gondola connecting the two resorts from peak to peak and expanding the ski-able terrain to an (astonishing) combined 7,300 acres. Über-convenient for people staying near Main Street, you can actually access Park City from right downtown, making the entire town virtually ski-in, ski-out. A mountain this huge is guaranteed to have a wide range of terrain, but considering the unbelievable number of groomed runs, the sweet spot here is for intermediate skiers. Needless to say, it's also great for littles who've graduated from the magic carpet. Tip: If you're planning on multiple ski trips this year, consider investing in the Epic Pass, Vail Resorts' multi-mountain pass, which gives you unlimited access to Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge, Whistler-Blackcomb, and plenty more for a fixed price.
Snowmobiling at the Deer Valley Resort
2250 Deer Valley Dr. S., Deer Valley
Sure, snowmobiling is kind of an athletic cop-out—but if you’re going to do it while you’re in Park City, this is the place. Summit Meadows Adventures offers guided tours (for groups, or just you) in Browns Canyon where you can explore 7,000 acres with spectacular views of the the Wasatch Mountains. They also offer complimentary transportation from Park City (it’s just ten minutes from Main Street), plus helmets. Photos courtesy of Deer Valley Resort
Kimball Arts Festival
1401 Kearns Blvd, Park City
Every August, Utah’s longest continually operating festival heads to town, taking over blocks-long Main Street and checking the requisite food, art, and music boxes along with it. Over the course of three days, some 225 jury-selected artists across categories like drawing, photography, and woodworking head to town to show off their wares. For the artists, it’s the opportunity to go home with a “Best in Show” award, and for the visitors, it marks the chance to discover and take home works from up-and-coming artists from across the country. (Proceeds from the festival allow the Kimball Arts Center to provide free year-round exhibitions, tours, and gallery talks for its patrons.) Local food trucks like Bruges Waffle Bus and Black’s Sliders decamp throughout the festival blocks, and there’s a rotating roster of live music acts.
The Après Lounge
9100 Marsac Ave., Park City
Tucked between the base of Ruby and Empire Express lifts at the edge of the Montage, the bright yellow façade makes it awfully hard to miss this spot. Ski shop Gorsuch outfitted the interiors of the Veuve-stocked yurt with faux fur throws, antler chandeliers, and buffalo-plaid overstuffed chairs. They’re only open for a few hours mid-day, making it the perfect stop if you’re calling it a day early or looking for a spot to hang out before après is in full swing.
Park City Institute
1750 Kearns Boulevard, Park City
Located in the heart of Park City on Main Street, this cultural hub brings big-name acts to the alpine village. In the summer, the Big Stars, Bright Nights series, held in Deer Valley’s Snow Park Outdoor Amphitheater at the base of the resort, is a huge crowd-pleaser. (Past seasons included Willie Nelson, Esperanza Spalding, and Mike Posner.) Throughout the year, the performing arts center hosts a varied roster from the likes of Alan Cumming, the Alvin Ailey Dance Company, and New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd, for a series of performances and intimate-yet-engaging talks.
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