One Day in Salt Lake City Itinerary – Top Things to do in Salt Lake City, Utah

Salt Lake City is a beautiful destination with something for everyone. Whether you’re looking for a weekend getaway or a long vacation, this city has plenty of activities and attractions to keep you entertained. From outdoor activities like skiing and hiking to indoor fun like shopping and dining, Salt Lake City has something for every traveller. In this blog post, we’ll take a look at some of the best things to do in Salt Lake City to help you plan your trip. Read on to discover the top attractions in this vibrant city!

One day in Salt Lake City Itinerary

Best Time to Visit Salt Lake City

The best time to visit Salt Lake City is in September and October.  Springtime is a good opportunity for bargains, but be aware that conditions might be soggy. Winter is the peak season with lots of skiers, while summer draws people who want to go hiking and enjoy activities at lakes.

Salt Lake City
Salt Lake City, Author: Garrett, Source: Flickr

A Few Facts About Salt Lake City

  • Salt Lake City is one of the easiest places in the world to reach for skiing.
  • Salt Lake City has one of the largest LGBT communities in the US.
  • SLC residents eat more jello than anywhere else in the world.
  • The lake is unable to drain the salt and other minerals which contributes to its high salinity and ranking as one of the saltiest water bodies in the world.

What to do In Salt Lake City in 24 Hours

Whether you are looking for an adventure, some relaxation, or a little bit of both, Salt Lake City has something for everyone! Read on to learn more about the best things to do on your one day in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Start Your Day at The Temple Square

After you check in to your hotel, one of the best things to do in Salt Lake City is to visit Temple Square. This iconic 10-acre complex, located in the heart of downtown, is the most visited attraction in the state.  There are several things to see in Temple Square. Start your exploration at the Brigham Young Monument! This stunning bronze sculpture serves to commemorate the fur traders and Indigenous Americans who arrived in the area prior to the pioneer settlers.

Temple Square, Salt Lake City
Temple Square, Author: Alex Butterfield, Source: Flickr

Continue to Salt Lake Temple. While unavailable to the general public, the grand edifice is enveloped by walls nine feet thick at their base and gradually narrowing to six feet. At the peak of the central tower stands a statue of Moroni, symbolizing faith in the church, rising 210 feet into the sky! Do not miss the chance to see the Salt Lake Tabernacle- one of the largest pipe organs in the world!

Salt Lake Tabernacle
Salt Lake Tabernacle, Author: vxla, Source: Flickr

Go to The Beehive And Lion House

While you’re at Temple Square visit the two iconic houses! The Beehive House was named after its crowning cupola, with a beehive on top. Built with stuccoed adobe, the two-story structure features an observatory. Brigham Young resided there, used it as an office, and welcomed guests as the President of the Church and the initial Governor of Utah. Constructed in 1855, Lion House was designed to suit the vast family of Young. Reports suggest he had more than 50 wives and over 40 children who lived to reach maturity. Young passed away in August 1877. The Church officially declared an end to polygamy in 1890. Stop for lunch at Siegfried’s Delicatessen –  try bratwurst, spaetzle, and fried potatoes.

The Beehive House, Salt Lake City
The Beehive House, Author: Alex Butterfield, Source: Flickr

See The Assembly Hall

Constructed with granite remnants of the Salt Lake Temple in 1880, the Assembly Hall stands in the awe-inspiring Gothic revival style. This massive edifice, 68 feet wide, 120 feet long, and with a 130-foot high tower, can accommodate up to 2000 visitors, including the 100-seat choir. Open to the public for worship, it is a remarkable testament to the city of Salt Lake. In the same area, you will find The Pioneer Log home a small log cabin that was transported to the location adjacent to the Church History Museum, where it still stands today. The Pioneer Log home served as the home of Osmyn and Mary Deuel, some of the most affluent pioneers of that time! 

Assembly Hall
Assembly Hall, Author: Leandro Neumann Ciuffo, Source: Flickr

Check Out The Utah State Capitol Building

Put the Utah State Capitol building at the top of your Salt Lake City list of must-sees! Just a short journey from Temple Square, you will discover Memory Grove Park and its nearby City Creek Nature area. Built in a neoclassical revival, Corinthian style, the historic building is undeniably picturesque. Dating back to 1912 and added to the National Register of Historic Places, it has also seen a few renovations in the last century. In the vicinity of the Capitol, there is also the Pioneer Memorial Museum, the Vietnam/Cambodia/Laos Veterans Memorial, and a host of other attractions to explore on your one-day in Salt Lake City itinerary.

Utah State Capitol, Salt Lake City
Utah State Capitol, Salt Lake City

Visit The Natural History Museum of Utah

The Natural History Museum of Utah, located within the University of Utah campus in Salt Lake City, is an outstanding destination for a family outing, or simply to explore solo. In 2011, the museum was transferred to the Rio Tinto Center, a picturesque site that truly showcases the natural history of the Intermountain West and Utah. At this amazing destination, you’ll discover more than 1.6 million artifacts, representing the cultural, biological, and geological history of the area, as well as its people. If you’re looking to add a captivating experience to your 24 hours in Salt Lake City itinerary, this is an unmissable spot!

Enjoy The View From The Living Room Lookout Trail

Escape the hustle and bustle of the city and experience the great outdoors of the Utah capital at the Living Room Lookout Trailhead, located near the Natural History Museum of Utah and the University of Utah. This 2.3-mile out-and-back hike is an intermediate level, offering the perfect opportunity to take in the beautiful views near Red Butte Gardens, home to a spectacular botanical garden and an outdoor amphitheater.

Red Butte Garden
Red Butte Garden, Author: Brian Lauer, Source: Flickr

Huntsman Way is the best place to park if you’re heading out on the popular and narrow trail, which lacks much-needed shade. You’ll be rewarded for your journey with stunning panoramic views of the Salt Lake Valley that will leave you with a newfound appreciation for the city!

Living Room Lookout Trail
Living Room Lookout Trail, Author: Jeff Robinson, Source: Flickr

Have Dinner and Party The Night Away

If you are in the downtown area try Pretty Bird Chicken! If you feel like exploring have dinner at Finca – it’s cozy, has a great menu, and offers reservations. It’s neither overly formal nor does it seem to try too hard! For the most upscale club experience, Club Echo is the place to be, but it can get quite pricey and be very busy! Lake Effect, Gracie’s, London Belle, and Twist have DJs on weekends and are a little less “club-ey”, although there are likely to be seating requirements, as well as lines and cover charges. If you are looking for something a bit more low-key, Johnny’s on Second offers an affordable dive-like atmosphere with a DJ and a dance floor.

Where to Stay In Salt Lake City

Kimpton Hotel Monaco Salt Lake City, an IHG Hotel

Kimpton Hotel Monaco Salt Lake City, an IHG Hotel

15 West 200 South, Salt Lake City, UT 84101

Kimpton Hotel Monaco in Salt Lake City provides in-room spa amenities and an onsite restaurant and is only a 10-minute stroll from Temple Square. A flat-screen TV is available in every guest room. The hotel’s Bambara Restaurant offers steak and seafood selections for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Cocktails are served at The Vault in a classy setting. The hotel lobby serves coffee and tea. The workout centre is available to guests around the clock and you can use the on-site ski storage. This is a favourite hotel for mid-budget travellers!


Grand America Hotel

Grand America Hotel

555 South Main Street, Salt Lake City, UT 84111

If you are on a high budget, enjoy the luxurious experience of the Grand America Hotel! The marble bathrooms and bathrobes in the Grand America Hotel are standard amenities. The accommodations also include a balcony and 24-hour room service. The Garden Café at Grand America offers American cuisine for dining, a business centre, and a tour desk. The hotel also features a gym, an indoor pool, and an outdoor pool. Grand America Hotel is 5 minute drive from Salt Lake International Airport. The Joseph Smith Memorial Building is 2 kilometres away from the hotel.


evo Hotel

evo Hotel

660 S 400 W STE 200 Salt Lake City, UT 84101, Salt Lake City, UT 84101

The Salt Lake City-based evo Hotel offers a fitness centre, a patio, a bar and a ski storage space and is 2.8 kilometres from The Tabernacle and 2.2 km from Salt Palace. There are family rooms in the hotel.  Skiing is one of the things that guests of the evo Hotel may take advantage of in and around Salt Lake City. The hotel’s staff is on hand to offer assistance at the front desk, which is open around the clock. If you are in Salt Lake City for skiing – this is the best place to stay!


Day Trips From Salt Lake City

Park City, Utah

Just a 40-min drive from Salt Lake City, Park City is the ideal day trip! From its origins as a modest mining town, Park City has expanded and flourished into a world-famous destination. In addition to being a celebrated snowboarding and skiing spot, the area is home to the prestigious Sundance Film Festival. Moreover, its abundant lodging options attract holiday-makers throughout the winter season. You can see what you can do in Park City here!

Bryce Canyon, Utah

The stunning geology of Bryce Canyon National Park in Southern Utah is unparalleled. The park is renowned for the abundance of its hoodoos; pillars of limestone carved by rain and ice. Exploring the trails and viewpoints, visitors get a breathtaking view of the bright orange formations which decorate the terrain. The compact size of the park means its major attractions can be seen in just one day. Check out our one-day itinerary for Bryce Canyon here!

Moab, Utah

If the hustle and bustle of the city are no longer to your liking, Moab, Utah should be at the top of your list. From its breathtaking mountainous landscape to its plethora of activities, there’s something to satisfy everyone, regardless of the time you have available. Look no further if you need tips and ideas on what to do and see – this itinerary will have you prepared for the best one-day experience Moab has to offer!

Extra Tips for Visiting Salt Lake City

  • Salt Lake City has a really cool library ever – The Salt Lake City Public Library – if you have time check it out!
  • In Salt Lake City, you can just pick a direction and walk. The grid system makes the exploration easy. Just try to avoid the west of the west temple when exploring!
  • If you have time – check out the numerous breweries that also serve food.
Salt Lake City Skyline
Salt Lake City Skyline, Author: Garrett, Source: Flickr

Make sure you have everything you need

What to pack for your next trip?

Make your next trip as simple and as enjoyable as possible by packing smart. It’s amazing how much stress top travel items can save you, so choose carefully.
Things like lightweight travel backpacks, for example, are ideal for short trips and allow you to move around with ease, and a passport holder will make sure you keep your documents safe at all times.
Check our travel checklist guide for 2021 to make sure you haven’t missed anything, and travel to your next destination in style and with maximum comfort.

Romi R
Romi R.
Content Writer at Romi Writer | Website

Romi is a llama coach from Split, Croatia. This sounds made up but it’s true. ​She lived in Toronto, Canada for about ten years, give or take, but she wasn’t working with llamas. She was working in PR, restaurants, daycares, one yoga clothing store. She doesn't know how she got that job as she has never done yoga at that point. She taught English in Colombia and Vietnam. Traveled the world for two years. Then she got into writing. Actually, she was always writing, but then someone paid her to write. Then more people paid because they saw she was making them money. Then it became a thing she does for a living. And here we are now. Specializing in travel, real estate, and digital nomad guides, familiar with SEO, and always ready to learn something new so she can branch out and take over the world.

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