Travel Guide For Visiting Utah in May

We’ve put together a guide of what it’s like to visit Utah in May. You’ll find many places to visit in Utah in the month of May to add to your bucket list.

This guide includes where to go, things to do, what to pack, and where to stay for a Utah vacation in May.

visiting Utah in May

May weather and temperatures will vary between Northern and Southern Utah. The higher elevations will be cooler than the lower elevations by 10 to 20 degrees.

The month of May is one of the best times to visit Utah to enjoy the outdoor activities at the National and State Parks around the state!

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A Photo Tour of Utah National Parks

Take a visual tour through all five Utah National Parks to see the stunning landscapes you’ll see when you visit!

Northern and Southern Utah in May

Utah is divided into two regions: Northern Utah and Southern Utah.

Northern Utah in May:

Salt Lake City, Park City, and Provo are the three main cities in Northern Utah. You’ll find main streets with shopping, restaurants, nightlife, festivals, historic buildings and performing arts. 

In May, the higher elevations in the mountains may still have snow so you might be able to snowshoe, snow ski, or snowmobile. The lower elevations might get a rain or even snow storm in May. The snow runoff may make some hiking trails wet and muddy.

Southern Utah in May:

If you plan to drive from Northern to Southern Utah, most of the way you’ll be passing through rural areas with small towns, limited services, and spotty cell service.

Check to see where the Utah vacation spots are located around the state because a drive from Salt Lake City to any of the National Parks in the south can take 4 to 5 hours.

All 5 Utah National Parks are located in Central and Southern Utah. May is a popular time of year so be prepared for crowds and take note if permits are required to enter or participate in the activities you want to do!

Before heading out to explore any National or Utah State Park, check with the visitor center at each destination for the most current information.

Utah Weather in May

Average May temperature in Northern Utah (Salt Lake City): highs 73 / lows 50 degrees F. The average May precipitation in the Northern part of Utah:

  • Salt Lake City – 9 days / 1.8 inches
  • Logan – 11 days / 2.4 inches
  • Provo – 9 days / 2 inches
  • Alta – 11 days / 3.5 inches
  • Park City – 10 days / 2.1 inches

Average May temperature in Southern Utah (St. George): highs 85 / lows 56 degrees F. The average May precipitation in the Southern part of Utah:

  • Moab (Arches/Canyonlands) – 5 days / 0.8 inches
  • Bryce Canyon – 6 days / 0.9 inches
  • Capitol Reef – 5 days / 0.7 inches
  • Cedar City – 6 days / 1 inch
  • Zion – 5 days / 0.8 inches
  • St. George – 3 days / 0.3 inches

It’s good to be prepared for the expected weather forecast and temperatures for the parks you’ll visit in May so we’ve written detailed guides for each National Park in Utah:

As the temperatures start to rise in Utah in May, it’s important to stay hydrated and use sun protection for any outdoor activities:

Is May a Good Time to Visit Utah?

Trying to decide the best times to visit Utah? It really depends on the things you want to do!

In May you can enjoy outdoor activities like hiking, boating, stargazing, off-roading, or camping in the mountains, forests, lakes, reservoirs, red rock canyons, and deserts.

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

Things to Do in Utah in May

If you’re planning a trip in May, here’s a fun list of things to do and places to visit in Utah.

Utah National Parks in May

All of the Utah National Parks are open year-round, and every single day in May. Be sure to check the NPS website for the most updated information for the Visitor Center hours and services available at each park in May.

Some of the National Parks in Utah now have permits to enter or do certain activities, so be sure to check about reservations required when determining the best time to visit Utah National Parks.

We’ve written specific guides about visiting Utah National Parks in May:

Dead Horse Point State Park

Utah State Parks in May

Here’s a list of Utah State Parks where you can enjoy hiking, biking, climbing, photography, and stargazing in the month of May!

Hiking Trail at Bryce Canyon
Hiking Trail at Bryce Canyon

Hiking in Utah in May

Hiking in Utah is one of the best ways to experience this beautiful state. In May the temperatures are just right for hiking.

There are plenty of trails that offer a variety of different terrains all around the state at National parks, State parks, National forests, and Wilderness areas.

Check out these fun Utah hiking ideas:

Red Canyon Tunnel along Highway 12
Red Canyon Tunnel along Highway 12

Utah Scenic Drives in May

Utah has more than 400,000 miles of roads to explore. Here’s a list of scenic drives you can enjoy in May!

Eph Hanks Tower at Capitol Reef National Park
Eph Hanks Tower at Capitol Reef National Park

Utah Photography in May

Utah’s stunning landscape features deserts, sandstone cliffs, forested mountains, deep canyons, and red rock monoliths. It’s truly a photographer’s dream!

Here’s a list of our favorite photo spots in Utah.

Arches and Moab Photography

Bryce Canyon Photography

Canyonlands Photography

Capitol Reef Photography

Zion and Kanab Photography

Check out this Utah National Parks Photography Guides bundle to take jaw-dropping photos at all 5 parks!

Balanced Rock with the milky way at Arches
Balanced Rock with the milky way at Arches

Utah Stargazing in May

Stargazing is a must-do activity in Utah. The state has the highest concentration of certified International Dark Sky Parks in the world. We definitely recommend you take time to view the Utah night skies during your vacation.

In May you can see and photograph the milky way from 11pm to sunrise!

Northern Utah Stargazing Locations:

Southern Utah Stargazing Locations:

Utah Travel Guides & Maps

Utah guides and maps

Utah Vacation Ideas

Places to Stay in Utah

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