• Spires of Cedar Mesa sandstone in Chesler Park (Needles District)

    Canyonlands

    National Park Utah

Plan Your Visit

photo: Hikers on the Grand View Point Trail
Hikers on the Grand View Point Trail
NPS Photo by Neal Herbert
 

The park is divided into four districts by the Green and Colorado Rivers:

  • The Island in the Sky is the most accessible district, offering expansive views from many overlooks along the paved scenic drive, several hikes of varying length and a popular four-wheel-drive road.
  • The Needles district offers more of a backcountry experience, requiring some hiking or four-wheel driving to see the area’s attractions.
  • The Maze is a remote district requiring considerably more time and self-reliance to visit. Northwest of the Maze, the Horseshoe Canyon Unit is a day-use area with stunning Native American rock art panels.
  • River trips offer another way to experience the park and usually involve two or more days of boating.

There are no roads within the park that directly link the four districts. Though they may appear close on a map, traveling between them requires two to six hours by car as there are few places to cross the Colorado and Green Rivers. Most people find it impractical to visit more than one or two districts in a single trip.

Did You Know?