There are plenty of Utah summer activities that can be enjoyed by families. With five national parks in the state, the outdoorsman in you can spend plenty of time in the sun hiking, camping, and in some areas, kayak. However, not everyone is ready to drive hours to a park or spend the night communing with nature. There are those who simply desire to catch the ride and enjoy a less blistering exploration of what Utah has to offer.
From the moment the Golden Spike was driven into the ground on May 10, 1869, Utah has tied itself to the great and majestic railroad that bridges the coasts of the United States. Trains and railroads are not as big today as they were, but many have come to love trains and you can enjoy its legacy in these three places for the ultimate Utah summer activities
Golden Spike National Historic Park
The first of these Utah summer activities has to be where it all began- Golden Spike. A quick history lesson: when the government commissioned the building of the transcontinental railroad, this was the spot where the two companies that worked to build them met. It connected the economy of the whole country with the new territories and states that were being settled in the West.
The park has a visitor center where you can learn all about the people that worked on the tracks and offers an overview of the geography of the area. The biggest attraction is the re-enactment of the driving of the final spike that signaled the completion of the railroad. And of course, there is a steam train demonstration of the Jupiter and No. 119 locomotives on the tracks.
When you are done sightseeing, you can head on over to Ogden for some food and more train-related Utah summer activities.
Utah State Railroad Museum
When Mormon Pioneers settled Utah, Brigham Young wanted to take advantage of the economic opportunities that the railroad could provide. However, he did not want what some historians called “riff-raff” to make their way to Salt Lake. Instead, Ogden was chosen to be the location of what is now known as the Union Station.
The historic Union Station hosts four museums and two art galleries that tell the story of the great junction. The whole family will enjoy the museums dedicated to Western and cowboy life, classic cars, and of course, the train as part of their Utah summer activities.
There is also quite a vibrant night life in Ogden perfect for those cold summer nights. For the last of these Utah summer activities, families will definitely enjoy it, but it also provides a great romantic escape.
Heber Valley Historic Railroad
On select Friday nights, couple can buy tickets for the Chocolate Lovers Train as part of the Heber Valley Railroad. Definitely a couples getaway, the two-hour train ride wraps around the valley while you and your lover enjoy live music, a comfy snuggle, and the best of all, chocolate.
Of course, there are things that you can do with your family from the comforts of the train. You can see Heber Valley and all its majesty while dressed up as magicians, princesses, even as participants in a good old train robbery that many kids love. Check them all out here.
Faster Than a Speeding Bullet
Many places offer other great summer activities that have some of the most amazing views of the area, but if you are not the outdoorsy type, these train adventures are a perfect way to educate your family about history and in a more comfortable environment. Utah is more than just an outdoor paradise, for train lovers, it is a junction point for love an adventure.
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