15 Insanely Cool Things to Do in Moab Outdoors
Looking for things to do in Moab? You’ve come to the right place! The Moab area has something for everyone, from hiking and biking trails to thrilling river adventures. So, whether you’re a seasoned outdoors person or a beginner just looking to get out and enjoy nature, read on for some of the best outdoor activities Moab has to offer. You won’t be disappointed!
We used to live close to Moab (in Grand Junction) and want to share all the best things to do to help you plan an awesome trip!
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Why Plan a Trip to Moab, Utah
People from all over the world come to see Moab’s natural wonders making it the perfect retreat for a vacation or holiday. Seriously epic outdoor adventures of all kinds are available, including sightseeing national parks, hiking red rock trails, desert camping, stargazing, mountain biking on slick rock, whitewater rafting, skydiving, and exploring off-road 4×4 adventures. The list goes on!
So get pumped. You’re in for a treat!
Sitting in a valley surrounded by the La Sal Mountains, red rock, and canyon country, this intermountain high desert town is packed full of outdoor adventures. Since public lands and national parks surround Moab, it offers outdoor recreation galore.
15 Things to Do in Moab for Epic Outdoor Adventures
1. Arches National Park
Visiting Arches National Park makes for a great day trip. Be sure to stop at all the pull-offs and parking areas to hike and see all of the arches.
If you’d like to hike to Delicate Arch, it takes about 2.5 hours and is 3 miles round-trip. Check out our guide for how to spend the perfect day exploring the park, here.
Read more about hikes in Arches National Park to plan your day trip.
Don’t forget to purchase the annual National Park Pass. It will save you money!
2. Canyonlands National Park
Canyonlands National Park is a must-see natural wonder of the world. Spend an afternoon driving the main paved park road through the Island in the Sky District. Below is the map we use to hike all the best trails.
Find more hikes, here, on the national park website.
3. Hiking Near Moab
Moab is surrounded by public lands and national parks, making it a paradise for hiking.
List of Our Favorite Hikes in the Moab Area
Canyonlands National Park:
- Druid Arch
- Horseshoe Canyon Hike to the Great Gallery
- Cave Spring
- Mesa Arch
- White Rim Overlook
Arches National Park:
- Delicate Arch
- Landscape Arch
☀️ Please practice Leave No Trace and stay on designated trails.
4. Dead Horse Point State Park
Dead Horse Point State Park is an excellent place to camp and explore. Pair Dead Horse Point with a Canyonlands day trip (Island in the Sky).
Since you access Dead Horse Point State Park and the popular tourist area of Canyonlands National Park off UT-313, pairing these two parks makes for a great day trip adventure.
Be sure to get photos of the Colorado River at the famous Dead Horse Point! It is said to be one of the most photographed places in the world.
5. Mountain Biking
Are you interested in mountain biking on Moab’s famous slick rock?
Rent mountain bikes and set up a guided tour. Or bring your own bike for some of the best mountain biking in the world. There are trails for every level of rider.
One of my personal favorite trails to mountain bike is the Klondike Bluff’s Trail. There is slick rock, but most important, dinosaur footprints!
Klondike Bluffs Trail is an intermediate mountain biking trail.
6. Camping in the Moab Area
One of the best parts about camping in the high desert is that it cools off at night.
Below are great camping options to check out while you are exploring the Moab area:
- Arches National Park – Devil’s Garden Campground
- Canyonlands National Park – Willow Flat
- Deadhorse Point State Park
- Lazy Lizard Hostel
- Camping along the Colorado River off of UT-128
One of our favorite areas to camp is along the Colorado River off UT-128. You’ll find camping and picnic areas along the Colorado River.
You might also enjoy learning how to camp for free on BLM Land!
In addition, Moab and the surrounding area have incredible stargazing.
Since Moab is a smaller town, there are no other extensive areas or populations causing light pollution, making this area prime for watching the stars at night. Don’t miss out. How many shooting stars can you count?
8. Stand-up Paddle Boarding the Colorado River
Another one of our personal favorite things to do along the Colorado River near Moab is stand-up paddle boarding (SUP).
You can float the section along UT-128 and ‘take out’ at the boat launch ramp just after Sorel River Ranch.
Be sure always to wear a personal floatation device. It is required for sections with rapids (whitewater).
Bring your own SUP and gear or rent gear. There are a few guiding outfits to choose from with a Google search.
Check out this article by Hala on safety tips for whitewater SUP.
We have Badfish SUPs along with Werner paddles (gear below).
Shop SUP Gear!
9. Whitewater Rafting
Moab has many rafting guiding outfits to take you whitewater rafting down Cataract Canyon. Definitely put whitewater rafting high on your life bucket list!
There is nothing better than rafting through Utah canyon country.
Seriously. You have to do this!
10. Off-Highway Vehicles (OHV) and Jeeping
Moab is famous for off-highway vehicle (OHV) adventures and Jeeping due to the surrounding area’s public lands. Moab hosts world-class 4×4 conventions. You can rent Jeeps and 4×4 rigs or use your own! Just be sure to OHV responsibly.
If you feeling super adventurous…
Moab has a small airport and has a reasonably large skydiving scene.
If you’re up for it, check out this extreme sport idea. We have never actually been, but lots of people put skydiving on their adventure bucket lists!
Please tell us if you are going to do this! We want to hear about it.
12. Rock Climbing
To say nothing of Moab’s rock climbing scene would be a sin! Moab has a huge rock climbing scene and is known for its world-class routes.
Take a drive down Potash road to see the canyon walls full of rock climbers enjoying the day soaking up the desert sun. There are also guiding outfits if you’d like to go rock climbing. Definitely, a fun outdoor thing to do in Moab!
13. Base Jumping
Alright… And for the super hardcore adventure sports athletes, there is base jumping!
Base Jump Moab is a guiding outfit offering this activity of hardcore adventure sport things to do in Moab! Coupled with a jump, they offer a video as well as a hoodie.
OK, please write and tell us if you go base jumping! We want to hear about this.
14. La Sal Loop Scenic Drive
Take a drive through the La Sal National Forest outside of Moab. The scenic drive begins eight miles south of Moab off of US-191. The 60-mile scenic drive will cruise you through the La Sal Mountains and then down the mountains to the majestic Castle Valley towers. The route connects to SR 128, which will take you along the Colorado River. There are places to hike and camp along the Colorado River, so be sure to enjoy!
15. Mill Canyon Dinosaur Tracksite
Have you ever wanted to see Dinosaur fossils in the wilderness? Well, you literally can up Mill Canyon.
Environmental Stewardship Recreating Outdoors
Be sure to read more about environmental stewardship in the backcountry, including protecting precious biological soil crust while adventuring in the desert. Please stay on designated roads and trails to protect the crust.
- Arches National Park
- Canyonlands National Park
- Hiking Near Moab
- Dead Horse Point State Park
- Mountain Biking
- Camping in the Moab Area
- Stand-up Paddle Boarding (SUP) the Colorado River
- Whitewater Rafting
- Off-Highway Vehicles (OHV) and Jeeping
- Rock Climbing
- Base Jumping
- La Sal Loop Scenic Drive
- Mill Canyon Dinosaur Tracksite
Closing Thoughts on Things to Do in Moab
Get Travel Insurance. Whenever we do cross country road trips, we also always buy travel insurance. We select coverage that covers us for our outdoor adventures, emergencies, and if we need to cancel any pre-paid accommodations. We have been using Travel Insurance Master because you can select the exact coverage needed.
Book Accommodations and Guided Tours in Advance. Moab can get really busy during peak season. It can actually be hard to find camping during peak season in certain areas or book rafting trips.
Enjoy the Area for a Few Days. There are lots of national parks and monuments in the area. You might enjoy heading over to Capitol Reef National Park, Lake Powell, or the Colorado National Monument. Things are spread out, the area is quite rural, and cell phone reception can be limited so it just takes a little planning.
Moab is the perfect destination for desert adventures. With plenty of activities to choose from and stunning scenery, it’s hard not to have a good time in this small town. If visiting during the summer or big festivals, be prepared for crowds during the peak season!
Thanks for reading. We hope you have an amazing time here.
Ashlee & Pablo
Get More Utah Outdoor Adventure Info
- Moab: 5-Day Itinerary to Plan the Best Summer Road Trip to Moab
- Zion National Park: Things to Do in Zion: 2 Day Adventure Guide
- Zion National Park: Canyoneering Orderville Canyon (A great alternative to The Subway)
- Capitol Reef National Park: Best Guide to Visiting Capitol Reef National Park
- Glen Canyon National Recreation Area: Best Shoreline Camping Spots at Lake Powell
- Utah: 20 Adventurous Outdoor Things to See in Utah
- Bryce Canyon National Park: How to Visit Bryce Canyon in a Day
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We would love to hear from you!
Have you been to this amazing corner of Utah? What was your favorite activity?