Zion is becoming one of the most visited parks in the United States
In 2018, Zion was ranked among the top 3 most visited parks in the United States and had a staggering 4.32 million visitors. The next year, it hit 4.49 million visitors. Not only is Zion one of the most popular national parks, and it’s getting more and more popular all the time! In fact in June 2021, Zion National Park broke the all time record for visitors at 670,000! So, when should you visit Zion? What season is best to visit the park? What time of year do we recommend?
Well, there’s not really a “non-busy” time anymore. Just a few years ago during the winter months, you could walk the streets of Springdale and occasionally wave at a passerby. Going through the park was fairly easy and required little to no wait time. With the rise in visitors, it’s become less likely you’ll be walking the trail without waiting at corners. However, there are a few months that can certainly help you get the most out of your visit.
As you may have guessed, Summer is the busy season
Yes, summers in Zion National Park are PACKED. You can bet that with school out and families taking time to travel that May thru August is obviously the most popular time in the park, but there’s a catch. Zion in summer is also HOT; the temperatures are often over 100 degrees, so if you want to avoid the heat and the crowds, consider visiting during the off season when the temperatures are lower and the crowds not quite as large.
So when is the best time to go?
You’ll have a much easier time navigating the park in shoulder months like March and November. December, January, February are noticeably easier to get around to your favorite hikes (and find a parking spot and hotel room), but March and November are both a comfortable temperature and are ideal hiking conditions (if you can get the time off).
- March- 66
- April- 75
- October- 79
- November- 64
April and October still sees many guests, but not quite as many as in mid-summer. You also won’t be waiting as long for a shuttle. The average highs are still awesome in the off season, and you won’t have to wait for hours to hike Dilbert’s favorite hike, Angel’s Landing!
Truth be told, with a jacket, there’s really not a bad time to visit Zion. In fact, when we made Dilbert Visits Zion, we actually hiked it in February. It was slightly cool and much less wait time going through the chains. So if you’re wondering when is the best time to visit Zion National Park in Southern Utah, we highly recommend trying out the months above.