Los Angeles to Zion National Park Road Trip

This 455 mile driving itinerary starts in Los Angeles, California and makes its way through Las Vegas on the way to Zion National Park.
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Angel's Landing in Zion

Start: Los Angeles

City of Angels, Hollywood, Beverly Hills, Disneyland and highways. One of those highways, I-15 to be exact, can transport you from the teeming multitudes of L.A., via the wide-open spaces of the Mohave Desert, to Las Vegas, Nevada.


Beyond San Bernadino's historic Arrowhead Springs Hotel and Spa lies Victorville, where the first two drafts of "Citizen Kane" were written. Movie buffs may recognize scenes around town from "Lethal Weapon," "Face/Off" and "Kill Bill, Vol. II."


Just up the road is Barstow, home of the Casa Del Desierto (an old Harvey House hotel) which now houses the Route 66 Mother Road Museum. The local Chamber sponsors an annual sandcastle contest in the dry riverbed across from the Harvey House.


Just east of Barstow is the old silver mining town of Calico. About a third of Calico's original buildings still stand; the remaining structures have been carefully reconstructed to capture the Old West spirit.

Mojave National Preserve

Beyond the Cady and Bristol mountains lies the Mojave National Preserve, featuring sand dunes, volcanic cinder cones, Joshua tree forests, and carpets of wildflowers. At 1.6 million acres, it is the third-largest administrative unit in the National Park Service, with opportunities to hike, backpack, camp, horseback ride and four-wheel.

Six miles southwest of Baker, Calif. on I-15, you can visit Zzyzx, home to the California State University Desert Studies Center. Three of the four major North American deserts are found at Mojave National Preserve: the Mojave, Great Basin and Sonoran.

Las Vegas

Next stop is Las Vegas, billed as "The Entertainment Capital of the World," known for gambling, shopping and fine dining. The most famous hotel casinos are located on Las Vegas Boulevard, otherwise known as "The Las Vegas Strip."

Las Vegas has a bunch of museums, including two dedicated to "the Mob" gangsters that launched gambling in the city. There are also museums dedicated to the fine arts, automobiles, magic, the Air Force Thunderbirds, erotica, natural history, mining, African-Americans, neon signs, aviation, archeology, jewelry, Liberace, the Anasazi, Guinness Book of Records, outdoor sculpture, Native American artists, Hoover Dam, the atom bomb, and that doesn't even count the galleries and antique shops. Whew!

Springs Preserve in Las Vegas

Cactus Alley in Springs Preserve

Check out the Springs Preserve, where you'll learn about desert ecology and wildlife, flash floods and the history of Las Vegas in this living museum. Now you can venture into Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area or Valley of Fire State Park -- spectacular rock formations and many miles of trails to explore. You're within striking distance of such attractions as Death Valley National Park, the Grand Canyon, Hoover Dam and Lake Mead National Recreation Area.

Just before you leave Nevada while east-bound on I-15, is the resort of Mesquite, offering championship golf, mountain biking, hiking and ATV fun.

St. George

Cutting across the northwest corner of Arizona, I-15 brings travelers to St. George, Utah's "Dixie" known for a mild climate and 10 golf courses. From here it is a short drive to Springdale and the southern entrance to Zion National Park and the spectacular Zion Valley.

Finish: Zion National Park

Waterfalls at Zion National Park's Emerald Pools

Some of the top things to do in Zion are to wade the Virgin River through the Narrows, see the Emerald Pools, and, if you aren't afraid of heights, hike up to Angel's Landing.


Hiking in the Narrows, a river canyon in Zion National Park

Salt Lake City to Zion National Park Road Trip

Driving itinerary and map starting in Salt Lake City, Utah and making its way through Fishlake National Forest, Southwest Utah, and St. George, Utah.

Bryce Canyon Amphitheater from Inspiration Point

Denver, Colorado to Utah National Parks Road Trip

Drive thru Colorado to Utah's Arches, Bryce Canyon, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, and Zion national parks. On the way visit Monument Valley and Lake Powell.

Watching the sunrise at Mesa Arch in Canyonlands National Park.

Phoenix to Grand Canyon and Utah National Parks Road Trip

The Grand Canyon, Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument and Meteor Crater are all within easy driving distance of this road trip itinerary.

Hiker beside the Virgin River with a view of the Watchman in Zion National Park

5 Utah National Parks Plus Grand Canyon Road Trip

Hit every Utah national park, Zion, Bryce, Capitol Reef, Arches, and Canyonlands, plus Nevada's Great Basin and the Grand Canyon, on this 1,453 mile trip.

Under Canvas dining and lounge tents at the Grand Canyon

The Best Southwest Glamping Road Trip

See seven national park sites on the breathtaking scenic road trip from the Grand Canyon to Arches to Zion.

Kolob Canyons in Zion National Park

2 Kolob Canyon Scenic Drives in Zion National Park

Stop by the Visitor Center before climbing 1,000 feet in the 5-miles to the Kolob Canyon Viewpoint. Or drive from Virgin, Utah all the way to the reservoir.

Hiking in the Grand Canyon with Wildland Trekking

Enter to Win the Grand 6 Road Trip to 6 National Parks

This trip takes you to all 5 of Utah's national parks plus the Grand Canyon for a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Enter through Feb 23, 2021.

A tunnel on the Mount Carmel Highway road in Zion National Park

Will You Fit Through the Mt. Carmel Tunnel in Zion National Park?

A 1.1 mile-long tunnel is credited with converting Zion from an isolated and rarely visited park, to one of the most popular national parks

Petroglyph in Zion along a branch of Clear Creek near Mt Carmel Road

Petroglyphs in Zion National Park

Zion has many petroglyph panels inside the park, to the north near Cedar City, and to the south.