Canyonlands National Park Tours

Located in southeast Utah, Arches National Park is one of the most beautiful places in the world. With experienced guides on Canyonlands National Park tours, you can explore all the amazing sights the park has to offer and make sure you don’t miss anything.

Use this Canyonlands National Park guide to help you plan the tours and activities you want to do while visiting!

Tours at Canyonlands National Park

Whether you’re looking for a half-day or full-day excursion, there are plenty of Canyonlands National Park tours available to fit your needs: guided hikes, canyoneering, photography, and off-road experiences!

Canyonlands should be at the top of your list of places to visit in Utah if you enjoy outdoor activities.

Here are some done-for-you Canyonlands National Park itineraries based on the time you have to spend in the park:

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A Photo Tour of Canyonlands National Park

Take a visual tour through Canyonlands National Park (and Dead Horse Point) to see the stunning landscape in the parks!

Tips for Visiting Canyonlands National Park

Known for its diverse and dynamic desert landscape, anyone visiting Canyonlands National Park will enjoy a fantastic assortment of hiking, backpacking, river rafting, and photography tours to enjoy the natural beauty of this amazing national park.

Canyonlands is subdivided into districts – Island in the Sky is the most accessible and offers fantastic, panoramic views of the park along the scenic drive. Take a short side trip to visit Dead Horse Point State Park near the entrance to Island in the Sky. It is a must-see location!

In contrast, when you visit The Needles Canyonlands, you’ll experience a remote, backcountry experience with an assortment of natural geologic formations that can only be reached by using one of the many Canyonlands hiking trails or four-wheel driving trails.

Here’s a good article we wrote detailing Canyonlands Island in the Sky vs Needles!

Best Time of Year For Canyonlands Tours

It’s important to know what to expect during the various seasons of the year so you can decide the best time to visit Canyonlands National Park  for what you want to see, do and photograph.

The Canyonlands National Park weather varies drastically from spring, summer, fall and winter. 

Spring Weather at Canyonlands: temperatures vary quite a bit from month to month in the spring: March Highs 59 | Lows 30 – April Highs 67 | Lows 37 – May Highs 78 | Lows 46 degrees F.

Summer Weather at Canyonlands: temperatures will be HOT! Since the temperatures are brutal this time of year, plan your outdoor activities for the cooler mornings and evenings! June Highs 93 | Lows 60 degrees – July Highs 100 | Lows 67 degrees – August Highs 97 | Lows 66 degrees F

With the hot summer temperatures, you’ll want to protect yourself from the sun by wearing a sunhatsunscreen and sunglasses. It’s important to stay hydrated and carry a hydration pack or a refillable water bottle in your backpack.

Fall Weather at Canyonlands: it starts to cool down making it a great time to explore the park because it will be cooler in the mornings and evenings, and the daytime temperatures aren’t too hot compared to the summer. September Highs 84 | Lows 51 degrees – October Highs 74 | Lows 42 degrees – November Highs 56 | Lows 30 degrees F 

Winter Weather at Canyonlands: there are some drawbacks to keep in mind when visiting in the winter: visitor services are reduced and you’ll need to be more self-reliant in the winter. December Highs 45 | Lows 23 degrees – January Highs 44 | Lows 22 degrees – February Highs 52 | Lows 28 degrees F

During the winter it is especially important to dress in layers. We recommend an insulted winter jacketfleece jacketwarm hat and gloves if you’ll be doing any outside activities. Here’s the full list of the outdoor winter clothing we use!

Canyonlands National Park Tours

There are so many fun things to do at Canyonlands National Park: hiking trails, scenic drive, rock climbing, off road driving and photography to name a few.

Booking a tour to explore Canyonlands is a great way to learn more about the area and its history.

Canyonlands Green River Overlook
Canyonlands Green River Overlook

Canyonlands GyPSy Guide Scenic Drive App Tour

Download the GyPSy Guide app to hear fun behind-the scenes stories and local tips that play automatically as you drive, based on your GPS location.

Exploring the Island in the Sky scenic drive is a must-do activity! Stop at all 10 overlooks to enjoy and photograph the never-ending views!

You’ll see different views at Needles Canyonlands as you drive through the park. Stop at all pullouts to enjoy the diverse beauty of the stone spires in this part of the park, and see why it’s called Needles.

Be sure to also drive the Potash-Lower Colorado River Scenic Byway just north of Moab! We recommend late afternoon when the sun’s glow on the rocks is reflected in the Colorado River!

There are two amazing scenic drives near Needles Canyonlands that are also best in the late afternoon: Needles Overlook and Anticline Overlook.

Aztec Butte granaries at Canyonlands Island in the Sky
Aztec Butte Trail

Canyonlands National Park Hiking Tours + Backpacking Tours

The beautiful and unique landscape in Canyonlands provides a great opportunity for hikers to explore. Book an unforgettable hiking tour of Canyonlands to experience its beauty up close!

All-Day Hiking Tour at Canyonlands National Park

Discover Canyonlands National Park with this small-group evening guided tour, which will orient you and help you figure out where you want to explore and how to tackle it the next day. Your guide will tell you about the park, its mysterious geology, the delicate botany of the desert, and Moab’s history.

3-Day Backpacking Tour in Canyonlands National Park

During this tour, you will explore Canyonlands National Park’s vast landscape, get your canyon climbing fill, and discover its remoteness. Besides scrambling along sandstone walls, you will also squeeze through cracks in the rock and explore new pocket caves for three days.

Mesa Arch at sunrise
Mesa Arch at sunrise

Canyonlands National Park Photography Tours

From capturing the perfect sunset to finding a unique angle for your shots, guided photography tours at Canyonlands National Park will help you take your photography skills to the next level.

Arches & Canyonlands 3-Day Photography Guide and Itinerary

You CAN explore and photograph the area on your own with our 3-Day Arches & Canyonlands National Parks Itinerary and Photography Guide! It includes 1, 2 and 3-day itineraries that detail exactly when to visit the must-see attractions in the park to avoid the crowds! Plus a detailed list of the ideal photo locations and best times of day for each spot so you can capture images in the most ideal light!

Sunrise Photography: Canyonlands and Dead Horse Point

Hone your photography skills as you explore Dead Horse Point State Park and Canyonlands National Park. A professional guide will be with you on this sunrise photography tour so you can learn about composition and how to set up your camera.

Day Photography in Arches, Canyonlands, & Moab

On this small-group tour, explore Canyonlands and Arches National Parks with a local photographer and hone your photography skills. There are some fantastic spots for photography in the area, which your guide has scouted out for you. Besides composition, the focus can teach you how to make your camera’s settings work better. For this tour, the group size is capped at six people so your guide can give you more attention. Water and snacks will be provided.

Arches and Canyonlands photography guide

Canyoneering & Rock Climbing Tours Near Canyonlands

In the greater Moab, Utah area outside Canyonlands National Park you’ll find guided tours for rock climbing and canyoneering. Climb alongside a private guide, learning tips and techniques to conquer the rocks. No matter what your skill level is, there’s something for everyone to experience.

Private Half-Day Canyoneering Tour Near Canyonlands

Get a private canyoneering experience in Moab with a professional guide, suitable for beginners and experts alike. Learn canyoneering basics and do a 15-foot rappel (with an optional 90-foot rappel if ready).

Full-Day Rock Climbing in Moab

This full-day rock climbing tour takes you on another adventure near Canyonlands in Moab. Explore Moab’s red-hued rocks and canyons while tackling several daily climbs. You will learn tips and techniques to conquer the rocks while climbing with a guide.

Full-Day Private Slot Canyoneering Tour Near Canyonlands

Enjoy a customized a canyoneering experience near Canyonlands. Your guide will design the tour to suit the interests, experience, and fitness level of your group of two or more participants. No experience is required and all equipment will be provided.

two mountain bikes at Canyonlands
Mountain biking at Canyonlands

Canyonlands Mountain Biking Tours

Embark on an adventure of a lifetime with a mountain biking tour through the stunning Canyonlands National Park. Experience the thrill of riding your bike along trails that wind through beautiful canyons and red rock formations

Mountain Bike Tour in Canyonlands National Park

This 4-day adventure lets you bike the White Rim Mountain Bike Trail with a private guide and is complete with permits, transport, and food. Coordination of access to the remote route can be tricky, but pre-booking a guided experience gives you on-the-ground support. As you pedal a high plateau between the Green and Colorado Rivers, you can see the iconic route through Canyonlands National Park.

You’ll find more mountain biking tours in the greater Moab area!

Jeeping at Needles Canyonlands
Jeep at Needles Canyonlands

Canyonlands Jeep Tours + ATV Tours

If you’re looking for an exciting and adventurous way to explore the beautiful Moab region, then jeep tours are the perfect option. With a knowledgeable guide at the wheel, you’ll get to experience the rugged beauty of this area in a unique and thrilling way.

Half-Day Canyonlands 4WD Tour

Discover Canyonlands National Park’s rugged, red stone interior on this half-day 4WD tour from Moab and discover the Island in the Sky district and Gooseneck Overlook. A professional guide will guide you down the switchbacks of White Rim Road that highlight the canyon walls. An ultimate Utah adventure awaits you with stunning views of the Colorado River. 

Backcountry 4×4 Tour to Canyonlands National Park 

Explore Canyonlands National Park’s rugged beauty and ancient legends on a 4WD tour from Moab. Drive an off-road Jeep to the Island in the Sky district, where the Colorado River slices through steep ravines and ancient Pueblo rock art decorates the cliffs. Get iconic perspective shots of the red-rock canyons as your driver and guide navigate Shafer Trail’s switchbacks.

Canyonlands National Park Backcountry Tour 

In 4 hours, you will explore the backcountry of Canyonlands National Park (Island in the Sky District) on this private tour. Embark on a backcountry adventure in a 4X4 vehicle equipped with heat and air conditioning for optimal comfort all year round. Get a better understanding of Moab’s unique geology and its history on this half-day tour. On your way, your guide will highlight arch formations and other towering landscapes. Additionally, you can request to stop for photos at any part of this tour. Complimentary water and snacks are available.

4X4 Tour in Needles Canyonlands National Park 

Cedar Mesa Sandstone dominates the area, so the Needles got its name from its colorful spires. It is a remote district in the southern portion of Canyonlands National Park. Near Moab, Needles stretches outward in a tapestry of oranges and reds in the rugged wilderness and is home to a vast network of trails. Overall, this tour lets you witness the most dramatic desert scenery of Canyonlands National Park with a minimum of 3 people per tour.

Rafting the Colorado River
Rafting the Colorado River

Canyonlands Rafting Tours

Rafting the rivers through Canyonlands will take you through some of the most beautiful landscapes in the world, giving you an unforgettable experience. You’ll be able to see natural wonders while learning about the history and culture of the area.

Canyonlands Cataract Canyon Rafting Tour

Enjoy a full-day rafting tour splashing down Class V rapids through Cataract Canyon! You’ll ride a motorized raft on this 100-mile journey through the stunning red rock landscape in the Rivers District of Canyonlands National Park. Includes all meals on the river, lifejackets and river gear, and transportation to the river.

You’ll also find more river rafting tour options that explore the Colorado River in the greater Moab area!

Where to Stay Near Canyonlands

There are no lodging facilities in the park, but there are campgrounds:

  •  Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites Moab – we enjoyed our stay and highly recommend this hotel due to its location close to Canyonlands.
  •  Purple Sage – our all-time favorite place to stay in Moab – walking distance to shopping, full kitchen, and only 8 units so you don’t feel lost in a large hotel.
  •  Red Cliffs Lodge – rooms up to 6 people – located 17 miles from Moab, this lodge is known for its beautiful location, winery and activities like horseback riding, fishing and more!
  • Townhomes south of Moab – we really like the townhomes in Spanish Valley with kitchen, washer and dryer in the unit and a swimming pool/hot tub (just a 5 minute drive south of Moab).
Arches Canyonlands guides and maps

BUY AT AMAZON: Arches and Canyonlands Guides and Maps

Packing List for Canyonlands

Be sure to use a Canyonlands packing list so you have the right clothing and gear to enjoy all the outdoor activities any time of year! Grab your free printable packing list by clicking the image below!

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