Fun things to do in southern Utah

Southern Utah

Southern Utah Road Trip

Southern Utah has been a mystery to me, even though I’ve been in the state for almost four years now. For a late Valentine’s day trip, my husband thought it would be fun to take a little road trip down to Saint George, Utah. It was much warmer there than up here in Provo!

We started our trip with very few destinations in mind, but ended up finding a few hidden gems that I wanted to write about. Our first destination was stumbled upon by accident. We wanted to grab some snacks for the road and came across a gas station that doubled as a…

Petting Zoo!

I thought the petting zoo was pretty hilarious, not only because it was at a gas station, but because it had some pretty exotic animals for the middle of nowhere! There were peacocks, emus, zebras, a camel, and a mini horse.

The Crescent Moon Inn

After our little pit stop, we went on our way to the hotel. The hotel was absolutely amazing. It’s called The Crescent Moon Inn. There are only six rooms in this inn, and each room has its own name. We stayed in The Nest, which was great because it was a non-smoking room that doesn’t allow animals (thank goodness, because my husband is allergic!).

One of the best things about the inn was that the architecture matched the landscape perfectly. The red rock was breathtaking and the mountains were surrounding the art village where the inn is located. From our window, we could see a large hill that led up to a man-made pond right at the base of the mountain.

The Labyrinth

Later that night, we had the opportunity to explore the art village. There we found pottery shops, art galleries, a restaurant, and the Desert Rose Labyrinth. The labyrinth was one of the destinations that we had actually planned out before starting our trip, so we were really excited to see it!

At the beginning of the short trail, we saw a statue that explained the history of the labyrinth and the significance of it. Walking through the labyrinth is meant to be a spiritual journey that helps one “purge” themselves of stress, worries, and concerns to focus on eternal life, wisdom, and knowledge. Before going through the labyrinth, I was under the impression that it would be a maze and we would need to find our way to the center. It turns out that you simply follow the path laid out for you and you don’t need to make any decisions as you walk through. One other observation was that people left different stones or material possessions on the large rock in the middle, perhaps to signify that they had left their cares in the middle of the labyrinth.

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The next day, we visited the Saint George Temple, which is one of the most gorgeous buildings I’ve ever seen. It is a radiant white, which stands out against the landscape. In addition to the temple, there is a visitor center and an annex that explains the history of the building and giver some background to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. My favorite part of this experience was visiting the annex. We met a senior missionary who explained the amount of time and energy it took for the early Utah pioneers to construct the foundation and the building.

IMG_20170222_142001St. George

In addition to visiting the temple, we were also able to go to the Crepery in St. George. This was actually a very unique experience. The atmosphere was different than anything I’d previously encountered. There were origami birds and egg chairs hanging from the ceiling, and local art on the walls. I had never had a crepe before, and I was not disappointed by the custard strawberry crepe I had! Saint George seemed like a college town to me, with Dixie State University being so close. Plus, the Crepery was crawling with college students (which meant we fit in pretty darn well).

 

Cedar City

After checking out the temple and grabbing some grub, we started to head back to Provo (and the snow). On our way back we stopped in Cedar City, Utah where another temple was under construction. There was also a random lighthouse right off the freeway… Not sure what that was about!

Ultimately, we has a really fun trip and were able to see some cool things that are less known around Utah. Also, everything except the hotel and the Crepery was free! We were able to spend a lot of time outside too, because the weather was beautiful.

What’s the best road trip you’ve been on? Do you plan your trips down to the minute, or are you more spontaneous with your plans? Let me know in the comments below!

makayla

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4 Comments

  1. Fun trip! Love our temples. We plan to head down that way in June to Tuachan to see a couple plays. One of my favorite road trips was along the Oregon coast. When we plan any trip, there’s usually a few big things we plan, but inbetween we wing it.

    1. You definitely should, it’s beautiful! One thing I didn’t mention in the post about the labyrinth is all of the art pieced around it. I’m not sure if they would be considered modern art pieces, but that’s what they seemed like to me.

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