Are you thinking about visiting Arches National Park, Utah? We recently visited this must see family travel vacation destination and loved it! Below is a little about our first hand experience in the park and a few tips for visiting this national park.
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As many of you know we are crockin’ the nation in our camper kitchen anytime we get the chance and sharing that experience on our travel vlog over on YouTube. Community members (otherwise known as the Crock Posse) have asked us to start sharing a bit more about our travels to help them plan their own family vacations, so I am going to try to start writing down some notes and memories about each place to share with you guys and see how that goes.
Please note that these family travel posts will in no way be exhaustive but just a little behind the scenes of our planning process, our memories and what we would do again and what we’d do differently. I am simply sharing our experience and answering many of the questions I had while visiting the park.
Visiting Arches National Park, Utah
We visited Arches National Park in late October of 2018 and had an absolute amazing time. The weather was beautiful and the crowd level was relatively low. However, we later learned that we had just missed one of the busiest times of the year by just two days. When planning a fall vacation to Arches National Park, you will want to check when their local school fall breaks are scheduled and avoid them if possible. Many signs indicated that the park actually reached capacity and they turned people away during that time.
Family Travel Tips for Visiting Arches National Park, Utah
- If you are visiting during a crowded time of year, go early in the day or late afternoon.
- Much of the park can be seen from the car, however, if you are able, walk to at least one of the arches. They are breathtaking! The windows are probably some of the easiest arches to visit up close for the non-hiker.
- Pack a lunch and have a picnic in the park. Also pack PLENTY of water. You need to stay hydrated even in cooler weather.
- Wear good shoes. Most of the main attractions have decent paths, however they can be uneven. Close-toed shoes with good traction come in very handy, especially if you become a little adventuresome and decide to climb a little.
Junior Ranger Program at Arches National Park
Miss Add (our eleven year old) very much enjoyed the Junior Ranger Program at Arches National Park. The booklet was relatively easy to complete and was the perfect way for her to experience the park. It wasn’t as tedious as some Junior Ranger programs can be, but we did struggle to get back to the visitor center before it closed. We ended up bringing her back to the park another day to get her badge. However, when we were visiting nearby Canyonlands National Park we learned that Arches and Canyonlands work together on the Junior Ranger Program. You can bring your completed booklets to whichever park you are visiting that day to become a Junior Ranger for either park!
Can You Bring Dogs to Arches National Park?
Like most national parks, Arches National Park allows you to bring dogs into the park but greatly limits where dogs can go. If you bring your dog, you will need to plan on either viewing the park mostly from your car or taking turns watching the dog from parking lots. We sometimes bring Octavius in these situations and other times decide to leave him with a pet sitter. This time we chose to leave Octavius back at camp so that we could get out and explore the arches and we were very glad we did.
RV Campsites Near Arches National Park
There are TONS of RV parks and even a state park right in Moab. However, we chose to stay about an hour north of Arches so that we would be centrally located to see several state and national parks. We absolutely loved Green River State Park. They had nice sites that weren’t cramped together with electric and water (and dump station nearby). Our Verizon signal was very strong at Green River State Park which allowed us to work with ease. There is a little town in Green River where you can get the essential groceries, a bite to eat and gas, however you are an hour away from most larger stores like Walmart (and RV supply/repair). We loved driving Utah’s landscape so our travel to and from destinations and errands and did not mind the added time.
From Green River State Park we were able to visit:
- Goblin Valley State Park (see video below)
- Arches National Park
- Cayonlands National Park, Island In the Sky
- Canyonlands National Park, Needles (* Note this one was a bit of a drive)
- Capitol Reef National Park
And, we very easily could have seen Dead Horse Point State Park if we had more time.
Will we visit Arches National Park again?
Absolutely. We would like to return to the area and plan several days to explore the park further. We would like to come back and take some longer hikes to see some of lesser visited arches.
I hope that gives you a little more information about our family trip. Please feel free to ask me any questions you might have about visiting Arches National Park, Utah. We are far from experts but more than willing to share our family’s experience!