In a last ditch effort to use our companion pass one more time before it expires at the end of this year, my husband and I flew to Salt Lake City this past weekend. One of our best friends just moved there so we ended up doing a mix of local and tourist attractions.
How to Get There
We flew there on a quick ~2-hour flight from LA. The Salt Lake City airport was super convenient to downtown and our hotel even had a free shuttle. It seemed to be a common thing among all the hotels I looked at even though in most cities you only see that at the airport hotels.
What to Eat
We had a few great meals in Salt Lake. I was presently surprised by the food scene and multitude of restaurants with over a thousand great yelp reviews. My stand out favorite was Sweet Lake for brunch – they have biscuits that are out of this world delicious. Seriously, I’d fly back to Salt Lake City just to have one of those biscuits and then head home.
I also loved Whiskey Street – known for its huge selection of whiskey of course, but we also loved the food. My favorite dish we ordered was the Short Rib Polenta Poutine – instead of typical fries, the polenta was shaped like fries and then topped with delicious short ribs, gravy, cheese curds, and a fried soft boiled egg.
What to Drink
The local brewery scene is really up and coming. One of the spots we checked out had been open for 2 years (Fisher) and the other (T.F. Brewing) just a few weeks. Both had delicious beers on tap, a great atmosphere, good prices, knowledgeable staff and food trucks outside. Needless to say, I was impressed. We also went to a bar in downtown called the Beerhive, mad props for the great name. They had a huge selection, the beer menu was four full pages.
Something to note about drinking beer in Utah: Bars and Breweries in Utah can only serve beer that is up to 4% abv on tap. Any brews with a higher-alcohol content can be served in bottles.
What to Do
Salt Lake City was very walkable and we spent our first day walking all over downtown. It is very easy to navigate the city because the streets are all numbered by their direction in relation to or distance from the Temple. More on that here if you are interested. Temple Square was cool to see and walk around, we also loved seeing it at night in the wintertime because it was so beautifully decorated. The flowerbeds have heaters under them so there are still flowers peaking out even when there is snow on the ground.
Day Trips from SLC
On our second day, we decided to rent a car to see a little more of the state. At first, we decided to go to Park City (a ~40-minute drive) to see the home of the Sundance Film Festival but at the last minute, we decided to have a nature day instead and go to the natural hot springs in Diamond Fork. There are tons of easy day trip options from SLC and we’d love to go back to see more.
The hot springs were a 2-3mile (depending on road closures) one-way hike into the mountains. There was a decent amount of ice/snow on the ground so it was fairly slow going for us on the way in. The natural hot springs were beautiful bright blue and green and the water felt hotter than a hot tub. It smelled terrible (because of the sulfur) but we got used to it and greatly enjoyed our time there.
Next time we go, we’ll be sure to bring some of those delicious local beers to enjoy once we get to the hot springs!
Has anyone else had great adventures in Utah? Laura went earlier this year and also loved it. We both want to plan return trips so give us your suggestions for where to go next in the comments!