Bryce Canyon National Park is a breathtaking place, complete with red-rock hoodoos, starry nights, and some of the most fabulous views in any park — it’s the perfect place to take a vacation!
Where should you stay while visiting Bryce Canyon? If you want to be able to walk out of your room and see the sunrise over the park, stay at the Lodge at Bryce Canyon. But if you don’t mind driving a few extra minutes, you’ll find good options in either Bryce Canyon City or Tropic.
My name is Ash, and I’m a former park ranger. I’m also from Utah, so I’ve spent a lot of time in the park! I’m excited to help you decide where to stay while visiting Bryce Canyon, so let’s talk about your options.
Bryce Canyon Map, Entrances, and Nearby Towns
First, let’s get the lay of the land around Bryce Canyon. This park only has one official entrance, so it’s easy to determine the best place to enter the park to see all the sights — you’ve only got one option!
You can stay inside of the park boundaries, which is a great option if you want to be close to everything. But in the case of this park, the towns of Bryce Canyon City and Tropic are only a short drive from the park entrance, making them great options too.
You’ll find the town of Panguitch a little further out from the park. This is the largest town in the area if you’re looking for more amenities.
Staying Inside of Bryce Canyon National Park
Bryce Canyon is a small national park, with one main road that travels to the most popular hikes and viewpoints. I recommend staying inside of the park if you want to be within minutes of the most popular hikes and viewpoints — in some cases, you don’t even have to get in your car.
The Lodge at Bryce Canyon
The Lodge at Bryce Canyon is the only hotel in the park, and its proximity to the spectacular amphitheater views is unparalleled. All it takes is a short walk from your door and you can be hiking the park’s most popular trails or sitting on a bench along the rim of the canyon. Experiencing the canyon before everyone gets there or after everyone has left is the very best thing about staying right in the park!
National park lodges typically aren’t known for their amenities or comforts…you’re usually paying for location and ambiance. The Lodge at Bryce Canyon is no different — you won’t find any televisions or air conditioners in these rooms. It’s all about the location, location, location for this option!
Bryce Canyon Campgrounds
Bryce Canyon has two campgrounds to choose from, and both are located near the lodge and the most popular sights in the park. To learn more about your camping options, read all about camping in Bryce Canyon.
Traffic and crowding in Bryce Canyon can be terrible.
Did you know that there is only one parking spot for every four cars that enter the park?
Are you hoping to see the best sights without getting stuck in traffic, circling parking lots, or being surrounded by people?
Stay ahead of the crowds with this Bryce Canyon Itinerary. You will see all of the can’t-miss spots, plus get lodging and dining guides, driving directions, and insider tips!
Staying Outside of Bryce Canyon National Park
Because Bryce Canyon only has one entrance into the park, it’s easy to be close to the park without actually being in the park. I recommend staying outside of Bryce Canyon if you want nicer amenities, cheaper prices, or more dining and activity options.
Bryce Canyon City
Just outside of the park entrance, you’ll find Bryce Canyon City. This town consists of a few hotels, restaurants, and camping options. During the summer, you can find activities such as an evening rodeo, dinner show, horseback riding, and ATVing.
The Bryce Canyon Shuttle makes stops in Bryce Canyon City, so you can leave your car in town and take the shuttle into the park if you don’t want to deal with trying to find parking. If you want to drive your own vehicle, it only takes 5 minutes to get to the park visitor center.
When you drive down the hill on Highway 12 from Bryce Canyon City, you’ll hit the little town of Tropic. If you stay here, you’ll be about 15 minutes from the main sights in the park, but you’ll be close to the Mossy Cave Trail and the Tropic Trail (a back way into the park’s main amphitheater).
Tropic has a few good restaurants, a small grocery store, and a small-town feel. It’s quieter, more relaxing, and not as touristy as Bryce Canyon City.
Panguitch is the nearest town with a decent-sized grocery store and more amenities, but it’s located about 30 minutes from Bryce Canyon. Hotels here are cheaper than the other towns closer to Bryce Canyon, so if you want to save money, Panguitch is a good choice for that. Otherwise, it’s much more convenient to be closer to the park.
Should I Stay in One Hotel to See Both Zion and Bryce Canyon?
I don’t recommend staying in one hotel to visit both Zion and Bryce Canyon National Parks. If you want to take advantage of your time in Bryce Canyon, I suggest staying near Bryce Canyon.
Some people day trip from Zion up to Bryce Canyon, and that’s fine if it’s the only way you can make time to see the park. It’s about a 1.5-2 hour drive from Zion each way, and that will cut in significantly to your sightseeing time in Bryce Canyon.
If you have the time, it makes more sense to book separate hotels for each park.
Have an amazing time in Bryce Canyon National Park — happy trails!
More Bryce Canyon Trip Planning Information
Bryce Canyon Itinerary — a detailed hour-by-hour sightseeing schedule.
How to Get to Bryce Canyon — the best airports and roads in the area.
How Many Days Should I Spend in Bryce Canyon? — itinerary ideas.
The Best Time to Visit — what to expect during each month of the year.
Weather, Hours, and Closures — important weather info and common closures.
All About Camping — learn about the park’s campgrounds and how to get a site.
The Best Things to Do In Bryce Canyon — activities for your whole group.
10 Things You Can’t Miss on Your First Visit to Bryce Canyon — the top 10 spots.
The Best Easy Hikes — the perfect trails for kids, wheelchairs, and beginners.
The Ultimate Bryce Canyon Trip-Planning Guide — everything you need to know.
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