Best Hikes in bryce canyon national park

Exploring the Best Hikes in Bryce Canyon | Easy hikes to challenging treks

Bryce Canyon National Park is a breathtaking destination that attracts visitors from all over the world. As one of the most breathtaking national parks in the United States, Bryce Canyon is a destination that should be on every hiker’s bucket list.

This natural wonder boasts a unique landscape featuring hoodoos and spires of red, orange, and white rock formations. So much to explore it can be overwhelming to plan your hiking itinerary.

This blog will guide you through the best hikes in Bryce Canyon, providing all the essential information you need to know before hitting the trail. From easy hikes for beginners to challenging treks for experienced hikers, there is something for everyone in Bryce Canyon.

Merino wool t-shirt can be a valuable asset for hiking in Bryce Canyon, especially for Day hikes or multi-day hikes in warmer weather.

Let’s get started talking about the best hikes Bryce Canyon.

Understanding Bryce Canyon National Park

Located in the picturesque southwest area of Utah, Bryce Canyon National Park is an awe-inspiring spot that enchants tourists with its gorgeous geological structures and stunning scenery.

Despite its name, the park is not a typical canyon but a collection of enormous natural amphitheaters on the Paunsaugunt Plateau’s eastern part.

With its distinctive hoodoos formed by frost weathering and stream erosion, Bryce Canyon provides a unique and unparalleled adventure for admirers of the great outdoors.

The Geological Beauty of Bryce Canyon

One of the primary attractions at Bryce Canyon National Park is its distinctive geological structures known as hoodoos. A fascinating frost-weathering process occurs here, and then the eruption of streams produces these mesmerizing formations.

Over time, the forces of nature have sculpted the river and lake bed sedimentary rocks, giving rise to the enchanting hoodoos. Undoubtedly, the rocks are adorned with vibrant shades of red, orange, and white, creating a visually stunning spectacle that mesmerizes visitors to the park.

The interplay of light and shadow on the hoodoos during different times of the day offers a magical experience for photographers and nature enthusiasts alike.

Location and Visitor Information.

There is no question that Bryce Canyon National Park is one of the most popular destinations among travelers in Utah, United States, because of its convenient location.

There is a large area of the park, which covers 35,835 acres (145.02 km2), providing ample opportunities for exploration and adventure to be had.

Visitors can reach the park by car or opt for organized tours that offer guided experiences and in-depth knowledge about the park’s geological wonders.

It is worth noting that the park operates 24 hours a day, allowing visitors to immerse themselves in its beauty at any time. Those interested in getting additional information about the park and contacting the park administration can do so by calling 435-834-5322.

Park History and Establishment

Bryce Canyon National Park was founded on February 25, 1928, with the noble purpose of preserving and educating visitors about the beauty of nature.

With its rich history and conservation initiatives, the park is an excellent choice for those who desire to experience stunning landscapes while fostering environmental consciousness.

In short, Bryce Canyon National Park is a geological marvel that enthralls visitors with its awe-inspiring hoodoos, vibrant rock colors, and breathtaking landscapes.

Which Are the Best Hikes in Bryce Canyon?

In southern Utah, Bryce Canyon National Park is an incredibly beautiful destination. Known for its unique geological formations, including hoodoos and natural amphitheaters, Bryce Canyon offers a variety of hiking trails for visitors to explore.

No matter their experience level, every hiker will find a trail they enjoy. This section will look at some of the best day hikes Bryce Canyon.

1. Exploring the Fairyland Loop in Bryce Canyon

Bryce Canyon National Park is renowned for its unique geological formations and breathtaking landscapes. While the park offers shorter and easier trails, those seeking solitude and a more challenging adventure should consider hiking the Fairyland Loop.

Fairyland Loop Trailhead in bryce canyon national park

This section examines the Fairyland Loop, from the trailhead at Fairyland Point to the stunning views and additional hiking options.

Trail Details:

  • Distance: Prepare for an 8.0-mile expedition, immersing yourself in the mesmerizing landscapes that unfold along the way.
  • Elevation: Be ready to conquer a total elevation gain of 1,716 feet, showcasing the rugged beauty of the canyon’s diverse terrain.
  • Difficulty Level: This trail is classified as strenuous, catering to experienced hikers seeking a more challenging adventure.
  • Estimated Hiking Time: Allocate approximately 4 to 5 hours to complete the Fairyland Loop, considering breaks, photography opportunities, and time to absorb the awe-inspiring surroundings.
  • Trailhead: Begin your journey at Fairyland Point, located in the northern part of Bryce Canyon National Park.

Spending Time Alone:

The Fairyland Loop in Bryce Canyon provides a chance to escape the crowds often found on the park’s shorter trails and immerse yourself in the serene beauty of the natural wonders.

Though this trail presents more difficulty, it rewards with a sense of peace and a profound appreciation for the stunning vistas that reveal themselves throughout the journey.

Exploring the Natural Beauty:

The Fairyland Loop takes you below the rim, immersing you in enchantment as you weave through hoodoos and ancient Bristlecone Pine trees. With each step, nature’s masterpieces are revealed in a new way as you are given a new perspective on their intricacy and artistry.

Following the Path:

From Fairyland Point onward, the trail takes you on a scenic journey that takes you in a clockwise direction throughout the journey. As you proceed, you’ll be surrounded by the stunning Boat Mesa and enjoy the grandeur of the Chinese Wall.

Moreover, you may observe that certain parts of this trail coincide with other well-known hikes in the park, including a segment of the Rim Trail, adding to the richness of your experience and showcasing the diversity of Bryce Canyon.

Optional Side Trip:

You can diver briefly to Tower Bridge to enhance your expedition. This extra trek will expose you to another splendid attraction, providing you with unique perspectives and a more profound affinity to the geological marvels of Bryce Canyon.

In short, The Fairyland Loop in Bryce Canyon National Park offers an extraordinary and immersive hiking experience.

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2. Exploring the Bryce Canyon Rim Trail

Explore the beautiful Bryce Canyon National Park aboard the breathtaking Rim Trail and discover the unparalleled beauty of the unrivaled park.

Bryce Canyon Rim Trail

One of the park’s best hikes, this trail offers panoramic vistas of the iconic hoodoos from above and is regarded as one of the best hikes in the park its panoramic views. The Rim Trail is an adventure you won’t want to miss, thanks to its moderate difficulty level and picturesque views.

Trail Details:

  • Distance: Prepare for a 5.5-mile journey, winding along the rim of the Bryce Canyon Amphitheater, the enchanting valley adorned with hoodoos.
  • Elevation: Explore the captivating landscape as you navigate an elevation gain of 1,754 feet.
  • Difficulty Level: The Rim Trail is classified as moderate, making it accessible to hikers of varying experience levels.
  • Estimated Hiking Time: Allow 3 to 4 hours to explore the must-see spots along the trail and immerse yourself in the vistas.
  • Trailhead: Choose between Fairyland Point or Bryce Point as your starting point, offering convenient Rim Trail access.

A Beautiful Way:

The hiking trail blends paved sections and dirt paths, offering diverse terrain for hiking enthusiasts. A new panorama reveals itself with every step, making each panorama even more mesmerizing.

If you wish to experience the true beauty of this trail, you should attempt to hike it at sunrise when the hoodoos are illuminated in a spectacular display of oranges and pinks.

Furthermore, several benches are strategically placed along the trail, providing a perfect opportunity to sit down, relax, and enjoy the beautiful scenery before heading out for your day in Bryce Canyon.

A view of the stunning hoodoos that line the valley is available from the Rim Trail that circles the Bryce Canyon Amphitheater. During this path, you’ll experience unparalleled views and a chance to appreciate the world’s geological wonders.

A One-Way Adventure:

There are two points of interest along the Rim Trail, Fairyland Point and Bryce Point. The trail is a one-way journey. There is a free shuttle service available at Bryce Canyon Park from April to mid-October for your convenience, which will conveniently transport you back to your starting point should you wish to avoid retracing your steps.

Must-See Highlights:

The Rim Trail offers great views all along the length of the canyon. Visit some must-see spots along the route to maximize your time in Bryce Canyon. Several iconic viewpoints in the park showcase its breathtaking views.

Including Bryce Point, Inspiration Point, Sunset Point, Sunrise Point, and Fairyland Point. It is also possible to experience these panoramic viewpoints through the experience of a scenic drive, which is an additional way of enhancing your exploration of Bryce Canyon.

In short, Embarking on the Bryce Canyon Rim Trail promises an unforgettable adventure, with its moderate difficulty level, and the Bryce Canyon Rim Trail invites you to witness the splendor of nature, leaving you with memories that will last a lifetime.

3. Exploring Sunset Point to Sunrise Point: Easy Hike at Bryce Canyon

Explore the Sunset Point to Sunrise Point trail for a fascinating tour through Bryce Canyon. This easy and accessible section of the Rim Trail offers a delightful experience for visitors with limited time or mobility constraints. Immerse yourself in the awe-inspiring beauty of the Bryce Canyon Amphitheater, where the mesmerizing hoodoos await your exploration.

Sunset Point to Sunrise Point in Bryce Canyon

Trail Details:

  • Distance: Embark on a leisurely 1.0-mile stroll along this scenic section of the Rim Trail, allowing you to savor the breathtaking vistas of Bryce Canyon.
  • Elevation: Prepare for a slight elevation change of 34 feet, making this trail accessible for individuals of all fitness levels.
  • Difficulty Level: Considered an easy trail, the Sunset Point to Sunrise Point path ensures a tranquil and enjoyable hiking experience for visitors of any age or ability.
  • Estimated Hiking Time: Allocate approximately 30 minutes to fully embrace the picturesque beauty and soak in the panoramic views.
  • Trailhead: Commence your adventure at the conveniently located Sunset Point Parking Lot, where the enchanting journey begins.

A Natural Beauty:

As you start your adventure on the Rim Trail, get ready to be spellbound by the stunning splendor that unravels before you. This brief stretch of the trail provides you with entry to some of the most picturesque parts of the Bryce Canyon Amphitheater, giving you a complete experience amidst the grand hoodoos and extensive panoramas.

Easy Accessibility:

Its highly accessible nature makes it an excellent option for visitors of different abilities looking for a trail that will take them from Sunset Point to Sunrise Point.

The trail is paved, resulting in a smooth and level surface that enables those with mobility issues and wheelchair users to navigate the path easily. During your stay at Bryce Canyon, you can fully enjoy and take in all of its natural beauty without having to worry about any restrictions.

Sunrise Splendor:

This trail provides a great vantage point to watch the sunrise from Sunset Point to Sunrise Point if you’re looking for a magical sunrise experience. Enjoy the brilliant display of colors cast across the landscape by the warm glow of the morning sun as it illuminates the intricate hoodoos. Start your day in awe as you soak in the ethereal beauty surrounding you.

In short, while time may be limited during your visit to Bryce Canyon, the Sunset Point to Sunrise Point trail offers a tranquil and rewarding experience, showcasing the park’s scenic wonders and best easy hikes in Bryce Canyon.

Whether you’re seeking a brief stroll to witness a captivating sunrise or to immerse yourself in the breathtaking vistas without venturing too far, this trail provides an accessible and enjoyable option.

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4. Exploring the Navajo Trail in Bryce Canyon

Immerse yourself in the captivating beauty of Bryce Canyon as you embark on the Navajo Trail. This moderate hike offers a thrilling adventure that takes you below the rim of the Bryce Canyon Amphitheater.

Navajo Trail in Bryce Canyon

Traverse photogenic switchbacks, meander through towering walls, and witness the beautiful slot canyons. Although the Wall Street section is closed during the winter, the Navajo Trail remains a must-visit destination that promises a memorable experience amidst the iconic hoodoos. Navajo Trail best hikes bryce canyon winter.

Trail Details:

  • Distance: Embark on a 1.3-mile journey along the Navajo Trail, allowing you to venture into the depths of the Bryce Canyon Amphitheater.
  • Elevation: Expect a 550-foot elevation change as you descend into the canyon, making it suitable for hikers of varying skill levels.
  • Difficulty Level: With its moderate terrain, the Navajo Trail presents a slightly more challenging option than the Queen’s Garden Trail while offering unparalleled scenic vistas that make an effort worthwhile.
  • Estimated Hiking Time: Allocate approximately one hour to fully immerse yourself in the captivating surroundings and traverse the remarkable features of the trail.
  • Trailhead: Begin your expedition at Sunset Point, where the Navajo Trail unfolds before you, inviting you to embark on a memorable adventure into the heart of Bryce Canyon.


Popular and Crowded:

The Navajo Trail is undeniably one of the most popular sections of trail in Bryce Canyon. The Navajo Trail undoubtedly stands out as a beloved segment of the Bryce Canyon trail, drawing hordes of visitors from across the globe.

As a result, be prepared to cross paths with crowds during your hike. To savor a more serene experience, consider starting your trek just after sunrise, allowing you to relish the mesmerizing surroundings in a tranquil atmosphere.

Hoodoo Exploration:

If you’re interested in delving deeper into the famed hoodoos of Bryce Canyon, the Navajo Trail is an ideal option. This route will take you past some of the park’s most iconic formations, such as Thor’s Hammer, which offers plenty of remarkable photo opportunities and allow you to get up close and personal with these awe-inspiring geological wonders.

In short, The Navajo Trail in Bryce Canyon offers a thrilling adventure for hiking enthusiasts eager to explore the depths of the Bryce Canyon Amphitheater. Delight in the captivating switchbacks, towering walls, and beautiful slot canyons that define this great trail.

5. Discover the beauty of Mossy Cave Trail.

Nestled just outside the boundaries of Bryce Canyon National Park, the Mossy Cave Trail presents a delightful and accessible hiking experience that showcases a striking contrast to the iconic landscapes within the park.

Mossy Cave Trail

Starting outside the park’s entry station, this easy trail unveils a scenic journey along a charming stream, culminating in discovering a mossy cave that transforms with the changing seasons.

Trail Details:

  • Distance: Embark on a leisurely 0.8-mile hike along the Mossy Cave Trail, providing a manageable journey suitable for hikers of all ages and skill levels.
  • Elevation: Experience a gentle elevation gain of 200 feet, allowing you to savor the captivating surroundings without strenuous exertion.
  • Difficulty Level: With its easy terrain, the Mossy Cave Trail offers a relaxed hiking experience, perfect for families or those seeking a shorter adventure.
  • Estimated Hiking Time: Allocate approximately 30 minutes to immerse yourself in the scenic beauty and tranquility of the trail.
  • Trailhead: Begin your expedition at the trailhead along Highway 12, approximately 4 miles east of the park entry station, providing convenient access to this hidden gem.

A Contrast of Scenery.

The Mossy Cave Trail offers a delightful contrast to the Bryce Canyon Amphitheater’s striking orange hoodoos. The trail provides a captivating experience with breathtaking views, distinct from the rest of the park.

The trail’s charm is in its winding path that runs alongside a small stream, leading you to the captivating destination of a mossy cave. Visitors can relish the refreshing change of scenery on this trail.

The Mossy Cave’s Transformation:

The trail’s main attraction is the mossy cave, which lives up to its name by providing a stunning display that changes with the passing seasons. The cave is embellished in the summertime with lush green moss drooping from the walls, releasing a serene ambiance as it trickles water.

In wintertime, the moss converts into shimmering icicles, imparting a mesmerizing effect to the cave’s charm. Irrespective of the season, the mossy cave guarantees an extraordinary and enthralling experience unlike anything else within Bryce Canyon.

In short, Discover the hidden beauty of the Mossy Cave Trail, a gem nestled just outside Bryce Canyon National Park. This easy and accessible hike offers a scenic journey alongside a tranquil stream, leading you to a beautiful mossy cave that transforms with the seasons.

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6. Sheep Creek / Swamp Canyon Trail

A peaceful hike that transports you to a serene sanctuary, the Sheep Creek / Swamp Canyon trail provides an intermediate hiking adventure that will take you out of the crowds and reveals the captivating wonder of Bryce Canyon’s hinterland.

Sheep Creek _ Swamp Canyon Trail

Beginning at Swamp Canyon Overlook, this trail features a mesmerizing loop interweaving with the Under-the-Rim backpacking trail.

Trail Details:

  • Distance: Traverse, a picturesque 4.0-mile trail, perfectly balances exploration and manageable effort.
  • Elevation: 647 feet of elevation gain provides panoramic views while keeping the hike within a comfortable range.
  • Difficulty Level: This moderate trail appeals to hikers looking for a slightly more challenging adventure but is still accessible to most outdoor enthusiasts.
  • Estimated Hiking Time: Dedicate approximately 3 hours to fully savor the scenic beauty and immerse yourself in the tranquil atmosphere.
  • Trailhead: Commence your journey at Swamp Canyon Overlook, where the magic of this beautiful trail begins to unfold.

Getting Away from the Crowds:

A peaceful ambiance awaits you on the Sheep Creek / Swamp Canyon trail. As you venture along this lesser-known path, you’ll discover a sense of tranquility and serenity often elusive in more popular park areas.

A Captivating Loop:

The Sheep Creek/Swamp Canyon route creates a continuous loop and seamlessly links with the Under-the-Rim backpacking trail. To embark on your journey, start clockwise from Swamp Canyon Overlook, where you can gradually witness the trail’s stunning scenery unfold before your eyes.

Throughout the trail, you’ll experience steep ascents well worth it for the remarkable panoramic views and moments of peacefulness that allow for a more profound appreciation of the natural surroundings.

In short, Escape the bustling crowds and embark on the Sheep Creek / Swamp Canyon trail, an enchanting journey into the lesser-explored corners of Bryce Canyon. This moderate hike offers a captivating loop that intertwines with the Under-the-Rim backpacking trail, immersing you in solitude and serenity.

Equipment and Gear You Need to Bring

Hiking in Bryce Canyon can be an amazing experience, but it’s important to make sure you have the right equipment and gear to ensure your safety and comfort. This part covers the essential items you should bring on your hike through Bryce Canyon.

1. Hiking boots or shoes: Good hiking shoes or Merino Shoes are the most important equipment for any hiker. The trails in Bryce Canyon can be rocky and uneven, so you need to protect your feet and ankles from sprains and injuries.

Choose shoes or boots that fit well and provide enough support for your feet. You must wear them before you go on your trip so that you will not experience blisters or chafing.

2. Backpack: A good backpack is essential for carrying all of your gear on your hike. Ensure that your backpack has plenty of compartments and comfortable straps to distribute your gear evenly.

3. Water bottle: Staying hydrated is crucial when hiking, especially in the desert. Bring a reusable water bottle and refill it at the water stations throughout the park. Bringing at least 2 liters of water per person per day is recommended.

4. Sun protection: If you plan on spending time at Bryce Canyon, you should pack sunscreen, a hat, and sunglasses to protect your skin and eyes from the harmful UV rays that are present there.

5. Map and compass: Knowing where you’re going when hiking in Bryce Canyon is important. Bryce Canyon has a variety of hiking trails to choose from, so it’s important to have a map and navigation tools on hand to help you stay on track. A GPS device or smartphone app can be helpful, but bringing a physical map and compass as a backup is also good.

6. First aid kit: Accidents can happen on the trail, so bringing a basic first aid kit with you is essential. Ensure you have bandages, antiseptic wipes, and pain relievers on hand if you treat the child. You should also bring any needed medications and allergy remedies with you on your trip.

7. Food and snacks: Make sure you are prepared with plenty of high-energy meals and snacks to keep you going on your hike. These options make preparing snacks such as granola bars, trail mix, and fruit easy and quick.

8. Layers of Clothing: One crucial aspect to consider when planning your adventurous trip to Bryce Canyon is the clothing you pack. Among the various options, merino wool is the ideal choice.

Its exceptional qualities make it perfect for tackling the diverse climate and rugged terrain of Bryce Canyon. If you’re wondering where to find high-quality merino wool, look no further than Merinoprotect.

This trusted brand offers a wide range of Merino wool products, ensuring you stay comfortable and protected throughout your journey. Whether it’s merino wool base layers, socks, or outerwear, Merinoprotect covers you.

Merino Base layer by Merino Protect

The weather in Bryce Canyon can be unpredictable, so it’s important to dress in layers. Start with a moisture-wicking base layer, add a warm mid-layer, and top it off with a waterproof and wind-resistant outer layer. Don’t forget to bring a hat, gloves, sun hat, and sunscreen for sunny days.

In Bryce Canyon, wearing merino wool will keep you dry, warm, and fresh amidst the breathtaking scenery, thanks to its natural moisture-wicking, insulating, and odor-resistant properties.

9. Headlamp or flashlight: If you plan on hiking at dawn or dusk, bring a headlamp or flashlight to illuminate the trails and help you see any obstacles in your path.

10. Camera: Bryce Canyon is one of the most beautiful places in the world, so make sure you bring a camera to capture the stunning scenery and memories of your hike.

11. Emergency Supplies: Having a few extra supplies is important in an emergency. Consider packing a whistle to signal for help, a headlamp or flashlight in case you’re out after dark, and a space blanket or emergency shelter to keep you warm if you get stranded.

12. Leave No Trace Supplies: Finally, leaving the park as pristine as you found it is essential. Pack out all your trash, and consider bringing a lightweight trowel. It’s also a good idea to bring a small container of hand sanitizer to keep your hands clean and germ-free.

Ultimately, packing for a hike in Bryce Canyon requires careful planning and preparation. Be sure to bring appropriate footwear, layers of clothing, water and snacks, maps and navigation tools, a first aid kit, emergency supplies, and leave no trace supplies. With these essentials in your pack, you’ll be well-prepared for a safe and enjoyable hike in one of America’s most stunning natural wonders.


Bryce Canyon National Park offers some of the most breathtaking Bryce Canyon hiking trails in the United States. With its unique geological formations and stunning vistas, hikers of all levels can find a trail that suits their abilities and interests. Whether you’re looking for a stroll or a challenging adventure, Bryce Canyon offers something.


What is the Most Famous Hike in Bryce Canyon?

The most famous hike in Bryce Canyon is the Navajo Loop Trail, which takes hikers through the canyon’s iconic hoodoos and offers stunning views of the surrounding landscape.

What is the Most Challenging Hike in Bryce Canyon?

The most challenging hike in Bryce Canyon is the Fairyland Loop Trail, which is approximately 8 miles long and has an elevation of 1,716 feet. The trail is steep and rocky, requiring good physical fitness and endurance for hikers. However, the stunning views of the hoodoos and other rock formations make the challenging hike worth it.

Is Bryce Canyon Good for Hiking?

Yes, Bryce Canyon is an excellent destination for hiking. With its unique geological formations, stunning vistas, and diverse trail system, Bryce Canyon offers something for hikers of all levels. Whether you’re looking for a stroll or a challenging backcountry adventure, the park has a trail that will suit your needs.