Looking for a great spot to camp, boat, and enjoy the great outdoors? Look no further than Great Salt Lake State Park!
When looking at a list of Utah State Parks, don’t overlook the Great Salt Lake.
Situated along the banks of the largest salt lake in the world, it’s a great stop if you’re passing through – and can be considered a Utah vacation spot all on its own.
Keep reading to see how you can have a blast and make some memories at Great Salt Lake State Park in Utah.
Recommended gear: Utah Packing Lists
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.
Why Visit Great Salt Lake State Park?
You’ll find this park along the southern banks of the Great Salt Lake. This outdoor recreation spot is an easy drive from nearby Salt Lake City, making it an excellent choice for both residents and visitors to the area.
It’s also an excellent place to take a quick break on your Southwest USA road trip – either for a night of camping or a quick stroll before resuming your journey.
Since the salt lake doesn’t freeze when the temperatures drop, it’s a great spot to experience year-round, whether it’s the peak of the summer season or a quiet winter day.
But the best reason to visit Great Salt Lake State Park is all of the things you can see and do while you’re there. Whether you’re a nature-lover, bird-watcher, boater, photographer, camper, or some combination, you’ll find plenty to enjoy at this state park.
Things To Do at Great Salt Lake State Park
Unlike many state parks, there isn’t any hiking to be found at Great Salt Lake State Park. But if you think that means there isn’t anything to see or do here, get ready to be surprised – there’s still a lot to experience in the area.
Whether you’re looking for a simple spot to camp for a night, a place to spend the weekend outdoors, or a quick stop to stretch your legs on your Utah road trip, you can’t go wrong when you make Great Salt Lake State Park your destination.
Here are just a few of the different ways you can enjoy this beautiful destination:
Camping at Great Salt Lake State Park
While Great Salt Lake State Park might lack the hiking trails you’ve come to expect at state parks, you can easily get your fill of the great outdoors by camping here. Unlike many spots, the campgrounds here are open all year, so it’s a perfect spot to pitch a tent – or park your RV – regardless of the time of year or temperature.
You’ll find a variety of options here for camping. There are spots suitable for a 40’ RV, complete with water and electricity hookups, modern restrooms, and an RV dump station. Along the beach, you’ll find a handful of primitive campsites – no vehicles allowed, so you’ll need to park elsewhere and haul your gear down to this more serene section of the campground.
While reservations aren’t required, they are strongly recommended. Thanks to this park’s close proximity to Salt Lake City, it’s a popular spot for folks looking to escape the hustle and bustle and reconnect with nature for a night or two.
Birdwatching at Great Salt Lake State Park
Do you love to birdwatch? Then you probably already know about Great Salt Lake State Park, which is widely considered one of the best spots to glimpse a variety of feathered friends in the entire southwest U.S.
The lake has long been a stopping point for birds as they migrate each year. Birdwatching enthusiasts plan trips to spot Snowy Plovers, American Pelicans, and other species that commonly pass through.
The best thing about birdwatching? It’s easy to do! Grab a pair of binoculars and a comfortable chair, sit still, and keep your eyes open – and before long, you’re sure to spot something.
Looking for an affordable lens for wildlife? Check out our review and why we LOVE the Nikon 500mm f5.6 lens for nature photography!
Photography at Great Salt Lake State Park
Our state and national parks are excellent spots to practice your photography skills, and Great Salt Lake State Park is no exception. The area is home to some beautiful landscapes and geological features and offers opportunities for photographers of all skill levels to hone their craft – and capture some stunning shots.
From gorgeous wildflowers to intriguing rock formations, there are a lot of interesting features here to explore. And you can’t ignore the lake itself, with a surface like glass that reflects its surroundings.
Sunset and sunrise are magical times to shoot, with optimal lighting, but there’s truly no bad time to take photographs here. Regardless of the season, you’re guaranteed to find some beauty at Great Salt Lake State Park.
Boating at Great Salt Lake State Park
When you visit Great Salt Lake State Park, one of the best things you can do is spend some time on the water and enjoy the park’s namesake lake. Water recreation of all kinds is permitted here, so if you’ve got a motorboat or sailboat, bring it out and enjoy a day on the lake. You can easily spend a day on the water, sailing between the lake’s various islands and soaking up the sun.
Prefer to kayak or paddleboard? You can do that, too! There are few places more perfect than the Great Salt Lake State Park to enjoy a leisurely paddle across the water. Just don’t forget to wear your sunscreen!
Grab Lunch at Great Salt Lake State Park
If all that boating, bird-watching, and photography gets your appetite going, grab some lunch while you’re there! Great Salt Lake State Park is a great place to enjoy a quick bite to eat. Pack a picnic and enjoy your meal along the lake, or stop by the Sunset Galley for a little grub. This casual restaurant serves up breakfast, lunch, and cold local beers for thirsty visitors. It’s only open Wednesday through Sunday, so plan accordingly, and it shuts down around 5PM every evening, so plan ahead if you’re hoping to grab dinner in the area.