Utah has some of the best hiking trails in the United States. There are so many amazing hikes in Utah that you can easily find some suitable for any ages. It’s hard to choose just a few. In fact we had so much trouble keeping the list to 10 hikes, that we threw in a few extras for your reading pleasure. We chose the following family friendly hikes because they are easily accessible and because we found them suitable for children ages 7 and above. While on these hikes, we met several families that took children younger than age 7 and seemed to enjoy themselves. Ultimately the parents will have the best idea of what their children are capable of doing. As with any hike, do adequate research in advance to make sure that it is something that your whole family can do and enjoy. If you are taking small children or older adults, we would recommend starting out with some of the easier, flat hikes and build from there. Click on the links below for more details on each hike. And don’t forget to download our free hike packing list. Enjoy your time in the great outdoors!
Located up Provo Canyon above Sundance Ski Resort, Stewart Falls is a popular hike in Utah County. The hike is 3.6 miles round trip with a little over 300 feet of elevation gain. This hike takes you up through pine forests and aspen groves on a well-maintained trail to the bottom of the falls. The mist from the falls and ankle deep stream coming from Stewart Falls is a great way to cool off. For more details on Stewart Falls and how to get there, click here.
Cecret Lake and Lisa Falls
These are two short hikes up in Little Cottonwood Canyon that families can visit on the same trip. Each trail is short and rewarding. Cecret Lake is a very popular 1.9 miles roundtrip hike. Some people complain about the spelling of Cecret Lake, but everyone enjoys the view. Lisa Falls is under 0.5 miles roundtrip. Here are directions and more information on Cecret Lake and Lisa Falls.
Donut Falls & Hidden Falls
Donut Falls is a very popular hike that is up Big Cottonwood Canyon. We recommend combining this hike with with Hidden Falls. The hike to Donut Falls is 1.4 miles roundtrip from the trailhead, but you need to get there early to find a parking space. If you have to park along the access road, it will add time and distance to your hike.
Hidden Falls is less than 0.25 miles roundtrip from the road. These two hikes can be done in a couple of hours. If you are taking your family, we recommend Donut Falls first and Hidden Falls on the way out of the canyon. Click here for more info on Donut Falls and Hidden Falls.
This hike is probably the most challenging family friendly hike on this list. However, every time I’ve done Adam’s Canyon there are always families on the trail. Adam’s Canyon, located in Layton, is 3.8 miles roundtrip. Since this hike is involves more elevation gain then the other hikes on this list, we recommend waiting to do this until after you have a couple of the other hikes under your belt. Click here for a complete hike details on Adam’s Canyon.
Goblin Valley and Little Wild Horse Canyon
These two hikes are separated by just a few miles, but are worlds apart with their different formations. Children always love exploring among the “goblins” on the valley floor. Little Wild Horse Canyon is an excellent introduction to slot canyons for families. The best parts of Little Wild Horse Canyon are only 2.2 miles into the canyon, making it a 4.4 mile roundtrip hike. There is a campground nearby with facilities as well as dozens of camping spots near Little Wild Horse Canyon. Here are more details for Goblin Valley and Little Wild Horse Canyon.
This is one of our favorite places. It is a great hike located in Kanarraville, Utah, just south of Cedar City. This hike starts at the east edge of Kanarraville. It is a fun water hike, which will require hikers to walk through the creek for half of the hike as it takes you to picturesque waterfalls. Click here for addition information on Kanarra Creek.
Now for the bonus hikes!
Lower Calf Creek Falls
This one is the farthest from Salt Lake City. It is located down near Escalante, Utah, which about 5 hours from Salt Lake City. It is a 6.0 mile roundtrip hike. There is campground located at the trailhead. This a great place to do an overnight campout and then hike to a beautiful waterfall. It’s a place that your family won’t soon forget! Click here for the Lower Calf Creek trip report.
Looking for even more family friendly hikes? Here are some local favorites that your family is guaranteed to love! Click on the links for more information.
What should you bring?
For these hikes, I recommend wearing lightweight shoes with good traction and water drainage. My wife wears her Keen Newport H2 Sandals on this hike. For more information on what hiking shoes are best for you visit our post on Hiking Shoes I Recommend.
Some of my favorite hiking gear:
Disclaimer: The information that we give on any hiking trail is for informational purposes only. The trail description is given to give the reader a better understanding of what to expect while visiting the hiking trail. This information is not intended to give specific advice on any trail. The writer and/or publisher of this website is not responsible for any accidents, injuries, rescues, inconvenience, or loss of life by anyone attempting any of the hikes on this website
Although every attempt has been made to verify the accuracy of any trail information, it is the responsibility of the reader to use common sense and good judgment by interpreting and using the information to safely enjoy any outdoor activities. Hiking can be dangerous and has many potential hazards. It is up to each individual to know their limits and level of expertise before attempting any outdoor activity.