Zion National Park Vacation itinerary
Day 1 - Grab an ice chest and fill it with drinks and food. Take the time to eat a good breakfast since you will be on the Zion National Park trails and scenic drives, for the rest of the day.
Enjoy the towering monoliths, whimsical hoodoos and patterned slickrock along the Zion-Mt. Carmel Highway. Immediately after entering the park, from the east side, there is a scenic pull-out where the geological wonder, Checkerboard Mesa, is viewed. There are several more pull-outs along the road through Zion to stop and enjoy. When you get to the south side of Zion, park your vehicle at the visitor center and get on the Zion Canyon Shuttle. The shuttle runs March - November. The rest of the year you may drive your private vehicle into Zion Canyon.
Parking is usually available at the Zion Canyon Visitor Center. The shuttle picks up visitors there and takes them on a six-mile scenic drive into Zion Canyon. Many of the classic trails in Zion National Park are located along this short section of road. All roads in Zion National Park are open year-round, either by shuttle or your private vehicle. Oversized Vehicles.
Weeping Rock - .5 mile round-trip. The trail is steep, but it's an easy hike to a charming, "weeping" alcove.
Riverside Walk - 2 miles round -trip. Graded dirt path along the Virgin River. An easy stroll along a riparian environment.
Emerald Pools - 2.4 miles round-trip. A moderate hike to 3 different and unique emerald colored pools.
Get on the shuttle and return to your private vehicle. Take some time to go into the Zion Human History Museum which offers an outstanding movie (no charge) and some interesting displays about Zion National Park's history.
Canyon Overlook - 1 mile round trip. Head back toward the Zion-Mt. Carmel Tunnel, past the Switchbacks, the Great Arch and the Beehives. Park on the east side of the tunnel. This is the trailhead for the Canyon Overlook Trail. You will not want to miss the trail. The hike ends in a spectacular view of the Zion Switchbacks and Pine Creek. Allow one hour for this hike.
Head back towards the east entrance of Zion National Park. Stopping at the pull-outs along the highway. As you look at the mountains imagine the days when these were piles of sand, now hardened into unique carvings of Navajo Sandstone.
Lodging - Drive back to the east side of Zion National Park for lodging. Return to the east side of the park and prepare for day 2 of the spectacular "Canyon Country " Vacation in Bryce Canyon National Park.