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  • Tail Travelers

Dog Friendly Utah: Exploring Zion National Park Area

There is an unspoken bond you create with friends you travel with. These two best friends and three pups hit the road and headed down from Salt Lake City to southern Utah to explore around Zion National Park. It was a weekend filled with starry night conversations, breathtaking landscapes, constant moments of joyful laughter and an abundance of puppy snuggles. It was the perfect Desert Doggy Adventure and we are sharing our travels with you.


We called Under Canvas Zion home for the weekend. This pet friendly resort is enchanting and truly special. The peacefulness, tranquility and awe-inspiring landscapes were just what we were looking for.

Under Canvas Zion was paws down one of the best pet friendly accommodations we have stayed at. We did not know what to expect, but were blown away by the accommodations, the service and location. You can learn about our stay at Under Canvas here.


Zion National Park

You are very limited on what you can do with your dog's when visiting Zion National Park, but don't let that stop you. Leashed pets are allowed along the public road, parking areas, campgrounds, picnic areas and on the grounds of Zion Lodge.

Taking a drive is a great way to explore the park. There are areas where you can pull off to take pictures and also embrace the breathtaking views.

Pa’rus Trail is a paved trail along the river and is pet friendly. This trail is 3.4 miles round trip and is popular for bikers and other walkers. In the summer months, this trail can get very hot. I recommend enjoying this trail in the morning. You can also take a little dip in the river next to trail to cool off.

If you have other accommodations for your pups, I recommend the following hikes:

  • Angels Landing

  • Emerald Pools

  • Zion Narrows "Bottom Up" Day Hike


Are the pups itching to run free for a bit? Take them to Marj Bonner Dog Park located at George Barker River Park in Springdale, UT. Dogs can run off leash on the trail that runs along the Virgin River. This park also a great spot to have a picnic lunch.


This Doggy Dude Ranch is the perfect place for your dogs to enjoy while you are off adventuring. They can play with their friends for the day or have a staycation. The staff is so wonderful and will take such excellent care of your pups.


Hit the road for a scenic 58-mile drive to Best Friends Animal Sanctuary in Kanab.

As we mentioned in a previous post, the sanctuary is home to around 1,600 animals. You can take a free guided tour, volunteer with the animals, adopt your next beloved companion or just explore the canyon. Dogs are welcome in the visitor center and in the canyon.

During this visit we were able to participate in Strutt Your Mutt. There is an extra sparkle of magic walking in the beautiful Angel Canyon and being surrounded by so many wonderful animal lovers, doggies and precious animals that call the sanctuary home.


Step back in time and explore the Grafton Ghost Town. Located 9 miles from Zion National Park in the town of Rockville. You will find this abandoned ghost town surrounded by farmland, ranches and beautiful cliffs. The road is not well marked, but after turning on 250 S from UT-9 you will follow the road for 3.5 miles (last 2 miles unpaved). The town has a few buildings that remain. Make sure you visit the Grafton Cemetery when you enter the town. The graves range from 1860 – 1910 and will tell you a bit of history of those that were laid to rest here.


The night sky in this area is perfect to stargazing. Just sit and stare up in the sky filled with so much light and wonder.


There is no shortage of activities to enjoy during your stay at Under Canvas Zion.

  • Yoga - Enjoy sunrise or sunset yoga surround by the beautiful landscape.

  • Board Game - Play a game on the patio under the twinkle lights.

  • Live Music - Pour yourself a glass of wine and enjoy live music under a starry lit sky.

  • Campfire – Relax around the campfire and share your memories of the day. Don't forget to enjoy some complimentary s'mores.

  • Volleyball - There is a sand volleyball court onsite.

  • Nature Walk - Enjoy a nature walk right from the property.


Embers is located at Under Canvas Zion and has a great menu selection for breakfast and dinner. You can dine in the tent or on the outdoor patio. For those staying at the resort, you can order boxed lunches as well. Orders must be placed the night before.

Parkhouse Café is a great place to fuel up for a day of exploring. They have a great breakfast and lunch menu and are in Springdale, UT. They have a wonderful patio that the whole family can enjoy, including your pup.

Rosita’s Santa Fe Kitchen is located 2 miles south of Springdale that offers delicious Santa Fe cuisine. The food, drink selection, location and dog friendly outdoor dining make this a perfect stop after a day of exploring. Fun fact: Rosita’s, is named after the owner's dachshund Rosie, so of course we would find a dog friendly restaurant where the name was inspired by their furry companion.

River Rock Roasting Company is a great stop no matter what time of day. Enjoy a tasty cappuccino and cinnamon role in the morning and end the day with a pizza and beer on their outdoor pet friendly patio. The River Rock Roasting Company is in La Verkin, UT.

Zion National Park and the surrounding area is a wonderful location to get outdoors and explore with your best furiend.

Waggin Tails, Happy Travels!

Krista and The Pup

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