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Zion National Park is a hiker’s paradise. Here are 7 fun and easy hikes in Zion National Park where you are guaranteed to see breathtaking scenery.

These easy hikes in Zion are mostly flat with very little elevation change. There are no long steep hills or endless sharp inclines to climb on these hikes. They are perfect for the entire family. Some of them might be a little longer, however, you can shorten them to make sure they are enjoyable for everyone.

Looking for more challenging hikes? Check out my post 13 Great Hikes in Zion National Park You Need to Explore.

There are other things to do besides hiking the ZionTrails! For a break from the hiking trails, make sure to put Zion Canyon Scenic Drive on your Zion itinerary. This scenic drive will take you to some of the best viewpoints in Zion National Park.

The Watchman in Zion / Easy Hikes in Zion

Zion National Park At-A-Glance

Before diving in, here are a few Zion National Park highlights to help you plan your trip:

  • Best Time to Visit Zion National Park

Zion National Park is a great destination to visit at any time of the year. And, it is open 24 hours a day, every day of the year. I have visited Zion so many times at different times of the year and I have to honestly say that it is an awesome place to see no matter what month you visit!

Needless to say, April and May, and then September and October, are my favorite months to visit Zion National Park. The temperatures are mild with daytime temps in the 60s and 70s F. You will see fewer crowds as well and have some serene experiences on trails and at viewpoints.

Summer is the high season. Expect a lot of companionships on the trails and everywhere throughout the park. The temperatures skyrocket as well ranging from the high 80s to 100s F.

Winter is a good time to visit Zion National Park. Above all, you will be able to find some solitude. Snow seldom reaches the canyon floor and that being the case, the scenic drive and some hiking can be enjoyed during that time. Temperatures can range from the low 50s to sometimes low 70s F. However, make sure to check the weather and local snow conditions. Make sure that the trails you are planning to hike are clear and safe.

  • Where to Stay When Visiting Zion National Park

Hands down, nothing beats staying inside the park! However, accommodations inside the park are very limited and you will need to make reservations at least a year in advance. Zion Lodge is the only hotel inside the park. It is open year-round and has several different types of accommodations like cabins, hotel rooms, and suites.

Zion National Park has three campgrounds. South and Watchman Campgrounds are inside Zion Canyon, Lava Point Campground is about 1-hour drive from Zion Canyon on Kolob Terrace Road. Reservations are required at South and Watchman Campgrounds.

Springdale, UT is conveniently right at the entrance to Zion and it is the perfect getaway to Zion National Park. I stayed in Springdale several times and my two top choices are Hampton Inn & Suites Springdale/Zion National Park, and SpringHill Suites by Marriott Springdale Zion National Park. Both places are clean and comfortable, and the location is perfect.

  • How to Get to Zion National Park

The closest International Airports to Zion National Park that you can fly into are located in Las Vegas (LAS), Nevada, and Salt Lake City (SLC), Utah. There are smaller Regional Airports in St. George (SGU), Utah, and Cedar City (CDC), Utah. I use Skyscanner to browse flights and find the best price.

  • How to Get Around in Zion National Park

If you are visiting Zion National Park between the months of March through November, then you will have to use the shuttle. No private vehicles are allowed inside the park. The cost of the shuttle is included in your recreational use pass. You can hop on and hop off at any of the shuttles stops.

There are two shuttle routes: Zion Canyon Shuttle, which runs along the Zion Scenic Drive and makes 9 stops at viewpoints and trailheads, and Springdale Shuttle which stops at 9 locations in the town of Springdale and picks up and drops off visitors at the park’s pedestrian/bike entrance.

  • How Much Does It Cost to Vist Zion National Park

In order to visit Zion National Park, you need to purchase a recreational day-use pass, which costs $35 per vehicle and is good for 7 consecutive days. You can purchase the pass right at the entrance to the park. If you are visiting several national parks then make sure to get America the Beautiful National Park Pass. This $80 pass is valid for 12 months and gets you into all 400+ national park sites!

  • Check Zion National Park Website for Trail Closures and Changes to Shuttle Operations

It is important that you check Zion National Park Website for any trail or road closures (usually due to rock slides) prior to going to the park. You can check for updates HERE.

Also, get the latest updates on shuttle route changes before heading out. You can check for the most recent information HERE.

What to Pack for Hiking in Zion National Park

I have seen many visitors to Zion National Park hiking in their flip-flops, without any sun protection, and above all with no water. Following is a simple list of what to pack for your visit to Zion:

  • Appropriate footwear

Trail shoes are great; hiking boots are even better since they offer more support. You’ll want sturdy, comfortable hiking boots with solid traction. Don’t forget to break in your shoes before bringing them to Zion National Park. Also, do not forget merino wool socks. They will keep your feet dry, and protect you from blisters.

  • Plenty of water

Without enough water, your body’s muscles and organs simply cannot perform as well. Consuming too little water will not only make you thirsty but susceptible to hypothermia and altitude sickness. I have been using Yeti Rumbler 26 oz insulated, stainless steel bottle, and I am highly recommending it!

  • Food

Food will help keep up energy and morale. I like RXBAR. It is a high-protein bar, gluten-free, and it is super yummy! Make sure to get a variety pack to keep it interesting.

  • Rain gear and extra clothing

The weatherman is not always right. Be prepared for unannounced rain or a cold spell. Dress in layers. It will allow you to adjust to changing weather and activity levels. Two rules: avoid cotton (it keeps moisture close to your skin) and always carry a hat. I have had my North Face Jacket for years, and I love it. Also, I am highly recommending these Patagonia moisture-wicking hiking shirts and Patagonia warm fleece pullovers.

  • First aid kit

Prepackaged first-aid kits for hikers are available at any outfitter.

  • Knife

A knife or even better, a multi-purpose tool is always good to have. These enable you to cut strips of cloth into bandages, remove splinters, etc.

  • Protect Yourself from the Sun

If you are hiking in the summer, keep in mind that many trails are unshaded, so it’s important to protect yourself from the sun. Sunscreen is essential, however, a lightweight long sleeve shirt is a must! My favorite are sun shirts by Columbia. Also, it is a good idea to wear lightweight long pants to protect yourself from the sun and bugs!

Wear sunglasses with UV protection. Sunglasses are an important part of your sun-protective wardrobe. When purchasing sunglasses, always look for lenses that offer UV protection.

A wide-brimmed hat is a simple and effective way to cover up your face and neck. When selecting a hat, choose one that has a wide brim, which will protect your ears, as well as your head and neck. Avoid baseball hats or straw hats with holes, as these are not as effective in protecting you outdoors.

  • Apply an effective insect repellent

Insect repellent is an important step against mosquitoes and ticks that can spread diseases like West Nile and Lyme.  When selecting an effective insect repellent, do not look at the brand names, but rather, look at the concentration of the active ingredients. Concentrations of DEET at 25 to 30% are the best to keep you protected.

  • Daypack/backpack

You need something you can carry comfortably and has features designed to keep you hiking smartly. Don’t forget the rain cover; some packs come with one built-in. I have Osprey Daylite Daypack and it is perfect for day hiking.

  • Camera!!!

Zion National Park is a photographer’s dream! If you are like me, you will be taking hundreds, if not thousands, of photos. The scenery is just breathtaking and constantly changing. I have a Nikon COOLPIX P1000 Super Telephoto Camera that I bought a couple of years ago and I really like it.

  • A spare battery for the camera

Make sure to have a spare battery for your camera. I think there is nothing more frustrating than knowing that you still have half a day ahead of you, yet your camera’s battery is gone.

  • Tripod

If you are taking photos during the golden hour (shortly after sunrise or before sunset) when the light is softer, a tripod is essential for long exposure shots. Also, I like a tripod since it gives me more stability when taking close-ups of wildlife. I have Manfrotto Befree Live Carbon Fiber Tripod with Fluid Head. It is only 3.0 pounds and it fits nicely in my backpack.

  • Binoculars!

If your camera does not have a good zoom, then binoculars are a must. I know that luck will be on your side and you will see some wildlife, and what to treat to see them up close.

  • Trash Bag

This will make sure that the trail will stay beautiful for generations to come. A zip-lock bag is a great option as well for keeping the trash you pick up along the trail separate from the rest of your gear.

Map of Zion Canyon with Shuttle Stops

Scenic Drive in Zion National Park

Map of Zion Canyon / Easy Hikes in Zion

To Print Zion Canyon Map

Click: HERE

7 Fun and Easy Hikes in Zion National Park with Stunning Views


Lower Emerald Pools Trail

  • Distance: 1.2 miles round trip
  • Time: 30-40 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Trailhead: Shuttle Stop # 5 Zion Lodge. Across the road from the shuttle stop.

Lower Emerald Pools Trail is an absolute delight to hike. The trail meanders along a small stream that eventually takes you into a large alcove with beautiful waterfalls cascading over its edge and forming several pools.

The waterfalls are the most abundant during spring and fall, or after monsoon rains, however, they are reduced to a mere trickle during the summer months.

The pools are fragile and an essential water source for wildlife. Do not go wade or swim in the pools.

Lower Emerald Pools Trail connects to Middle and Upper Emerald Pools Trail.

If you are up to it then continue to the Middle and Upper sections of Emerald Pools. Once you pass the alcove, the trail goes up at an incline and takes you to the top of the alcove that you have just walked under. It is called Middle Emerald Pools. There are no pools here, but rather you will find a stream that later on becomes the waterfall.

The final stretch leading to the Upper Emerald Pool is the most strenuous, but it is short.

To get back, you can simply retrace your steps. And, as you are leaving, take the last look back. You will be rewarded with the most stunning view! If you would like to see some different scenery on the way back, then you can take Kayenta Trail. Kayenta Trail is slightly longer. It will end at the Grotto Shuttle Stop #6.

Lower Emerald Pools in Zion

Lower Emerald Pools Trail / Easy Hikes in Zion

Easy Hikes in Zion 

Easy Hikes in Zion

Lower Emerald Pools Trail / Easy Hikes in Zion

Lower Emerald Pools in Zion

Lower Emerald Pools Trail / Easy Hikes in Zion

Middle Emerald Pools in Zion

Middle Emerald Pools Trail / Easy Hikes in Zion

Easy Hikes in Zion 


Pa'rus Trail

  • Distance: 3.5 miles round trip
  • Time: 2 hours
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Trailhead: Shuttle Stop #1 Zion Canyon Visitor Center (trail ends at Shuttle Stop #3 Canyon Junction)

Pa’rus Trail is one of the best easy family-friendly hikes in Zion! First of all, the trail is paved, which is ideal for strollers and wheelchairs. Second, bikes are allowed on this trail as well.

Oak Creek and Pine Creek cross this relaxing trail as it winds along the Virgin River.

Did you know that the trail name, Pa’rus, is from a Paiute word that means “bubbling, tumbling water”?

The views on this trail are especially captivating at sunset. If you happen to be on the trail at sunset time, you will capture great photos of the stunning red rock, the Watchman.

Pa'rus Trail in Zion

Pa’rus Trail / Easy Hikes in Zion

Easy Hikes in Zion 

Pa'rus Trail in Zion

Pa’rus Trail / Easy Hikes in Zion

Pa'rus Trail in Zion

Pa’rus Trail / Easy Hikes in Zion


The Grotto Trail

  • Distance: 1-mile round trip
  • Time: 30-40 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Trailhead: Shuttle Stop #5 Zion Lodge, or Shuttle Stop #6 The Grotto

The Grotto Trail is one of the best easy hikes in Zion! It is definitely a family-friendly trail. The views along the trail are spectacular. So, my recommendation is to just take your time and enjoy the scenery.

The trail connects the Zion Lodge to the Grotto and is near the road most of the way. This trail is a great place to view wildlife.

Hikes in Zion

The views along the trail are spectacular. So, my recommendation is to just take your time and enjoy the scenery.

Great Hikes in Zion 


Weeping Rock Trail

  • Distance: 0.4 round trip
  • Time: 30 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Trailhead: Shuttle Stop # 7 Weeping Rock

Weeping Rock Trail is one of my favorite hikes in Zion. It is a short hike that takes you to a large bowl-shaped alcove with water flowing over its recess.

Along the way, you will pass by so-called ‘weeping walls’ with water flowing down the rocks. And, make sure to look up and catch the view of the lush ‘hanging gardens’.

By the way, if you happen to be visiting in the summertime, be on the lookout for the Hanging Columbine. Interestingly enough, the Hanging Columbine is endemic to Zion. Actually, there are two species of Columbine in the park – the golden one, which has yellow flowers, and the western one, which has red and yellow flowers.

In addition, Weeping Rock Trail has a nice shade and stays cool even during the hottest summer days. The water flowing down from the Weeping Rocks provides invigorating refreshment in the dry heat. So, be prepared to get a little bit wet. Likewise, use caution when walking since the path might be slightly slippery. If you are visiting the park in the wintertime, be prepared for the trail closure due to icy conditions.

Weeping Rock Trail in Zion

Weeping Rock Trail / Easy Hikes in Zion 

Easy Hikes in Zion 

Weeping Rock Trail in Zion

Weeping Rock Trail / Easy Hikes in Zion

Great Hikes in Zion

Weeping Rock Trail / Easy Hikes in Zion


Riverside Walk Trail

  • Distance: 2.2 miles round trip
  • Time: 1.5 hours
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Trailhead: Shuttle Stop #9 Temple of Sinawava

Riverside Walk Trail is an easy, paved trail with little elevation change. It is perfect for the entire family. The trail follows the Virgin River as it rumbles along the bottom of a narrow canyon and the views along the way are awesome.

Originally, Riverside Walk Trail was called Gateway to the Narrows since it provides access to the bottom-up Narrows route.

Riverside Walk in Zion

Riverside Walk / Easy Hikes in Zion 

Easy Hikes in Zion 

Riverside Walk Trail in Zion

Riverside Walk Trail / Easy Hikes in Zion 

Great Hikes in Zion

Riverside Walk Trail / Easy Hikes in Zion 


Canyon Overlook Trail

  • Distance: 1-mile round trip
  • Time: 30-40 minutes
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Trailhead: Zion-Mt. Carmel Drive

Canyon Overlook Trailhead is a moderate trail, however, I decided to add it to this list because of the awesome views of the Zion Canyon. It is up to you if you want to give it a try. The trail is rocky and uneven with a few steep inclines, but, I have seen entire families on this trail, though. Also, there are a few long drop-offs at the overlook, but they are all fenced off.

The trail is ocated on Highway 9, just east of Mount Carmel Tunnel. By the way, there is no shuttle in this area and you will need to use your own vehicle to get there. Parking is extremely limited, so be prepared to try multiple times.

The view of the Zion Canyon with the switchbacks below the west end of the Mount Carmel TunnelWest Temple, the Towers of the Virgins, the Streaked Wall, and the Beehives is off the charts!

Observation Point Trail in Zion

Observation Point Trail / Easy Hikes in Zion 

Easy Hikes in Zion

Observation Point Trail / Easy Hikes in Zion 

Observation Point Trail in Zion

Observation Point Trail / Easy Hikes in Zion 

Easy Hikes in Zion 


The Watchman Trail

  • Distance: 3.3 miles round trip
  • Time: 2 hours
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Trailhead: Shuttle Stop #1 Zion Canyon Visitor Center

The Watchman Trail initially follows the Virgin River and then takes you through the foothills beneath massive Bridge Mountain. Eventually, it ends at the base of the Watchman spire.

Many Zion National Park landmarks are visible along this hike including Beehives, Towers of the Virgin, West Temple, and the Altar of Sacrifice.

Watchman Trail in Zion

Watchman Trail / Easy Hikes in Zion 

Easy Hikes in Zion 

Intrepid Scout's Tips for Easy Hikes in Zion National Park

  • Stock up on snacks and water, and fill up the gas tank. Get all your groceries (water, snacks, lunch) and fill up the gas tank before entering the park. You will save some money by packing your own lunch. There is a restaurant and a small store at Zion Lodge, however, be prepared to pay extra for food and water.
  • Be prepared for crowds. Zion National Park is the most visited national park in the United States. 4.5 million people visited Zion National Park in 2019. With that being the case, be prepared for crowds everywhere.
  • Park your vehicle in Springdale, UT, and then take the shuttle. Parking is very limited inside Zion National Park and private vehicles are not allowed past the Canyon Junction if the shuttle is operating. Park your vehicle in Springdale and then take the shuttle. There are nine shuttle stops in Springdale.
  • Arrive early. The shuttle starts operating at 6 am. Be the first one in the line to board the shuttle. You will be able to experience some solitude on the trails and not wait in line to take a picture.
  • A trip to Zion is perfect when paired with a side trip to Bryce Canyon National Park, Grand-Staircase Escalante National Monument, or Canyonlands, Capitol Reef National Parks.

Check out my post: Zion to Bryce Canyon: 3-Day Adventure (with Maps and Photos)

Did you know that Utah has five national parks known as ‘The Mighty 5‘. Have you visited any of them? Which is your favorite Utah National Park? Let me know in the comments below which one you think is one of the best Utah national parks. Get inspired with this Epic 7-Day Road Trip Through Utah National Parks.

Read All the Posts About National Parks in Utah: 

Utah Travel Guide


Read All the Posts About the United States of America in: 

United States Travel Guide

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