Things to Do at Arches National Park

If you love the outdoors, you’ll find a ton of things to do at Arches National Park.

We’ve created an Arches National Park travel guide to help you plan your vacation.

Use our list below to learn more about the hiking trails, scenic drives, photography spots and more!

Some of the links on this site are affiliate links, meaning if you book or buy something through one of these links, we may earn a small commission – at no extra cost to you! Read the full Disclosure Policy.

Things to Do at Arches National Park

The best tip we can give anyone visiting Arches, especially during the busy season, is to ARRIVE EARLY, like before 8 am!

When the parking lots at the main attractions fill up, the park will close for a short time. As people leave and more spots open, the park will resume allowing people in.

We also find the late afternoon to be another good time to avoid the lines.

There are so many fun ways to explore Arches: hiking trails, scenic drive, rock climbing, off road driving and photography to name a few.

Use our guides below to help you plan the perfect itinerary when visiting Arches National Park:

What to Expect at Arches National Park by Season

When is the best time to visit Arches National Park? There are important things to know about visiting Arches during each season. Check out these lists of what it’s like to visit Arches during the spring, summer, fall and winter.

Arches National Park by Month

Check out these articles to know all about planning a trip to Arches during a specific month so you know in advance what to expect. You’ll find general travel information, list of activities, packing checklist, travel tips and weather information for each month at Arches National Park!

Turret Arch at Arches National Park

Timed Entry at Arches National Park

PLEASE NOTE: Arches will be doing a TIMED ENTRY pilot program April through October, 2022.

Timed entry tickets will be required to enter the park from 6 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily and will allow visitors to enter the park during a one-hour specified window of availability. After entering, visitors may stay in the park as long as they wish for the remainder of the day. Reservation holders may exit and re-enter the park on the same day with a correctly validated ticket.

Visitors can book reservations first-come, first-served on Recreation.gov. The park will release reservations three months in advance in monthly blocks.

RESOURCES TO PLAN A TRIP TO ARCHES

More Places to Visit Near Arches

WHAT TO PACK FOR ARCHES NATIONAL PARK

To get the most out of visiting this park, you must be prepared with the right clothing and gear.

DOWNLOAD our Arches National Park Packing List for summer and winter.

Hiking Shoes – Injuries from improper footwear is a common problem that casual visitors and hikers encounter. To make your trip as safe and enjoyable as possible, avoid smooth-soled shoes and only wear sturdy shoes with ample tread. We always recommend Merrell Moab hiking shoes of course!

Hydration and Food – Due to the high desert and altitude in Southeastern Utah, you should drink at least one gallon of water per day, and always carry water with you during all hiking activities (water is also available at the Arches National Park Visitor Center and at the Devils Garden trailhead and Campground). Accordingly, be sure to eat plenty of healthy snacks and food. We use Camelbak hydration packs or carry Hydroflask bottles in our packs.

Lip Balm and Lotion – Utah’s high elevation and dry air can be hard on your skin. You’ll want to carry lip balm with sunscreen and hydrating lotion to apply as needed when you’re out exploring the trails.

Clothing – Summers in the park mean soaring temperatures, unrelenting sunlight, and low humidity. To keep cool, wear light colored, loose fitting UV clothing that does not absorb sunlight. Also avoid sun burn by wearing a wide brimmed hat and by generously applying sunscreen to any parts of your body that are exposed to the sun.

For the winter months, wear winter clothing to stay dry and warm. Take note that snow and ice can accumulate and make popular trails quite slippery. That’s why trekking poles and traction devices for your shoes are essential. It’s also just as easy to become dehydrated in the cold as it is in the heat. It’s important to carry plenty of water during the winter, and not just during the summer.

During spring and fall, it’s all about layers! The mornings and evenings will be cool so have a fleece jacket handy!

National Parks Pass – Before you visit Arches National Park be sure to pack your The America the Beautiful Annual Pass.

Other items we recommend – US national parks packing list

national park packing lists

Similar Posts

2 Comments

    1. Yes, it can be frustrating for sure! We added this to the article so people know in advance about the lines/closure: “The best tip we can give anyone visiting Arches, especially during the busy season, is to ARRIVE EARLY, like before 8 am! When the parking lots at the main attractions fill up, the park will close for a short time. As people leave and more spots open, the park will resume allowing people in. We also find the late afternoon to be another good time to avoid the lines.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *