Destination List > Canyonlands National Park

Canyonlands National Park

Photo by Jeff Hollett

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The history...

Canyonlands National Park is located in southeastern Utah near the town of Moab. The park preserves a colorful landscape eroded into numerous canyons, mesas, and buttes by the Colorado River, the Green River, and their respective tributaries. Legislation creating the park was signed into law by President Lyndon Johnson on September 12, 1964.

The park is divided into four districts: the Island in the Sky, the Needles, the Maze, and the combined rivers—the Green and Colorado—which carved two large canyons into the Colorado Plateau. While these areas share a primitive desert atmosphere, each retains its own character. Author Edward Abbey, a frequent visitor, described the Canyonlands as "the most weird, wonderful, magical place on earth—there is nothing else like it anywhere."


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Make the short walk to Grand View Point for a stunning view of the canyon.


Hike the 0.5-mile trail to see Mesa Arch, a large arch set on a cliff that extends down to Buck Canyon below.


Get a grand view of the canyon carved by the Green River at the Green River Overlook.


Enjoy a 2-mile round trip hike along the Grand View Point Trail where you'll get 360 degree views of the canyon.


Adventure along the 1.6-mile round trip trail out to the unique and colorful scenery of the Upheaval Dome.


Enjoy a stunning sunset view from the nearby Dead Horse Point State Park.


Cross the road from the Visitors Center to take in the great views from the nearby overlook.


Peer down into the canyon at the switchback road heading off into the distance at the Schaffer Canyon Trail Overlook.


Explore the Cave Spring Trail with its fun caves, historic cowboy camp, and prehistoric rock paintings.


Take the 2WD Elephant Hill road out to see the Needles rock formations.

Did you know?



Canyonlands became a national park on September 12, 1964.

338 k


The park protects about 338,000 acres of canyons, mesas, and buttes surrounding the area where the Colorado and Green Rivers connect.

730 k


About 730,000 visitors come to the park each year to explore it colorful and vast terrain.

Utah, let's explore...


Salt Lake City


January 4, 1896