Best Photo Spots For Sunset at Arches National Park

There are many photo spots to capture sunset at Arches National Park. The best sunset photography at Arches happens when the stone structures glow from the golden hour light.

Use our Arches National Park travel guide and the tips below to plan your vacation.

sunset photo spots at Arches National Park

We share the camera gear to pack, best places for Arches National Park sunset photography, and where to stay!

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Camera Gear for Arches National Park Photography

We have a printed Camera Gear Checklist to help us pack all the equipment we need – that way we don’t forget anything!

  • Cameras for Landscape Photography
  • Lightweight Travel Tripods
  • Camera Bag: Protecting your camera from the sand and dust in Arches is essential. Using a camera backpack is so nice for hiking too.  
  • Graduated neutral density filter: There can be extreme differences in light around the various rock structures. To compensate for this variance of light you’ll need to use a GND filter. 
  • Camera cleaning kit: You’ll want to remove dust that WILL get on your lens – this is NOT for cleaning the sensor.  
  • Memory cards
  • External hard drive: Don’t forget to copy the photos to a portable external hard drive ‘just in case’.  
  • Headlamp with a red lightFor the best sunrise, sunset or night sky shots, you’ll be navigating in the dark. Use a headlamp to light your way from the parking lot to your spot. Wearing a headlamp allows you to set up your equipment without having to hold a flashlight. Remember to use the red light setting and keep the beam pointed on the ground in front of you to avoid disrupting other photographers in the area taking long exposure shots.

Camera Gear at Amazon | Camera Gear at B&H Photo

camera accessories

Arches National Park Photo Spots Map

Here’s our list of the best Arches National Park photo apots. Reference the map to know where each spot is located in the park!

Arches Photo Spots Map

Tips for Taking Arches Sunset Photos

Here are a few sunset photography tips to help you capture amazing images at Arches:

  1. Take advantage of the compositions provided by moving to different viewpoints of the formations.  
  2. Use a sturdy tripod to maximize clarity and sharpness, and to expand creative possibilities.

Settings:

  1. Using a tripod: ISO 100, Aperture F/11 – F/13, adjust shutter speed to accommodate changing light conditions. 
  2. Handheld: set shutter speed to twice the value of your lens focal length (ex. Lens focal length of 24mm = 1/50 shutter speed). Aperture F/11 – F/13, adjust ISO to accommodate shutter speed.
  3. Expose for the bright sunlit areas.

Check out these awesome SUNRISE AND SUNSET PRESETS at ETSY!

sunrise and sunset presets at Etsy

Sunset Spots in Arches National Park

Check out our Arches & Canyonlands Itinerary and Photography Guide with tips and best times to take pictures at each viewpoint!

And here’s a list of where to photograph sunrise at Arches National Park too!

Delicate Arch Sunset

Delicate Arch is THE best sunset spot in Arches National Park to capture the red-orange glow on the arch and surrounding landscape.

The trail to see the arch up close is 3 miles roundtrip and climbs 480 feet in elevation. The hike is mostly uphill and takes 1 to 1 ½ hours if you are reasonably fit. Be sure to take a headlamp for the hike down after sunset.

Delicate Arch at sunset

If you’re not up for the hike, you can still see this iconic landmark from the Lower Delicate Arch Viewpoint. There is an Upper Viewpoint that takes you a little closer and requires walking ½ mile with some stairs.

Delicate Arch from the viewpoint for those who can't hike the trail to see the arch up close.

Delicate Arch is a main attraction at Arches for tourists and photographers who want photos of arches in Utah.

photographer at Delicate Arch

Be sure to practice patience and courtesy while you wait your turn to get your picture taken under the arch.

Walk around the area and try a variety of basic photography techniques to photograph the arch.

Balanced Rock Sunset

Balanced Rock is a popular feature in the park. We suggest you explore the easy .3 mile round trip trail that makes a full loop around this landmark.

Balanced Rock at sunset

FUN FACT: the balanced, upper portion of the rock is as large as three school buses!

Sunset at Balanced Rock Arches National Park

It’s fun to photograph the various perspectives as you walk around the structure! There will be a lot of people hiking around the area so it might be hard to get a photo without people in the shot!

Fiery Furnace at Sunset

The Fiery Furnace area is made up of narrow canyons and maze-like fins. At golden hour these rock structures glow to produce amazing photos!

Fiery Furnace at sunset with snow

If you’re lucky enough to visit Arches National Park in the winter when there’s snow, the contrast of white against the red rocks is stunning!

sunset at Fiery Furnace at Arches National Park

We like use the pullouts along the scenic drive between Fiery Furnace and Skyline Arch to photograph the reflected light on the fins in this area of the park!

take jaw-dropping photos at Arches & Canyonlands

Skyline Arch Sunset

As you make your way along the Arches National Park scenic drive, you’ll come to Skyline Arch. The rock structure here reflects the late afternoon and sunset light to get that orange/red glow.

skyline arch at sunset

You can see the arch from the pullout, but we recommend you hike along the short and easy trail to get closer.

sunset at Skyline Arch at Arches National Park

You’ll find interesting elements in the landscape to include in your foreground, midground and background.

Turret Arch at Sunset

Turret Arch can seen through the North Window at Arches National Park, but it does require a bit of precarious scrambling.

Turret Arch at sunset

It’s one of the best spots for sunset AND sunrise at Arches National Park. At sunrise you have the golden glow on Turret Arch through the window. At sunset you can capture the setting sun on the horizon.

sunset at Turret Arch at Arches National Park

It’s a tough location any time of day to get a photo without people hiking in the window opening. (That’s when Photoshop comes in handy!) But the people in the picture also tell the story of the location.

BUY AT AMAZON: Arches and Canyonlands Guides and Maps:

Arches Canyonlands guides and maps

Visiting Arches National Park:

Where to Stay Near Arches National Park:

There are no hotels in Arches so most people stay in the nearby town of Moab. There are all types of lodging in and near Moab from budget-friendly hotels to higher-prices resorts. You’ll also find vacation rentals, a hostel, campgrounds and RV parks.

Here are a few of our favorite places to stay near Arches:

  • Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites Moab – we enjoyed our stay and highly recommend this hotel due to its location close to Arches.
  • 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!
  • Vacation Rentals – we really like rentals with a kitchen, washer and dryer and amenities like a swimming pool and hot tub.
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