The 8 Can't-Miss Experiences During Any Ski Trip to Park City

The 8 Can't-Miss Experiences During Any Ski Trip to Park City

Published by RootsRated

You came for Utah’s world-class powder skiing, but that’s not all there is to do in this silver-mining settlement turned ski town. Just 35 minutes from the Salt Lake International Airport, Park City feels a world apart from the state’s metropolitan capital city. From its charming, historic Main Street and friendly, welcoming residents to its incredible cuisine and award-winning distillery, there are plenty of ways to fill your days—and nights. Whether you visit for a week or a weekend, here are the musts for your Park City bucket list.

1. Skiing Park City's Steepest Slopes

Person skiing in good powder
Park City is one of the easiest ski destinations to reach. It’s only 35 minutes from the Salt Lake City International Airport. Dan Campbell Photography/Park City Chamber/Bureau (opens in new window)

Park City’s close proximity to the airport makes it one of few U.S. ski towns where you can reach the slopes the same day you fly in. (However, if you're coming from sea level, it’s not a bad idea to spend a day adjusting to the altitude before skiing.) Warm up on easier terrain then venture to the town’s best steep and deep slopes.

At Park City Mountain, some of the steepest terrain is on Jupiter Peak. Take the Jupiter Lift up, traverse along the ridgeline, and drop in on a steep chute just past the patrol shack called 6 Bells. Or boot pack all the way to the top of Jupiter Peak to earn your turns down the East Face’s steep bowl.

If you love skiing the trees, take Deer Valley’s Lady Morgan Express Lift to reach Centennial Trees—the resort’s longest, steepest tree run—a challenging mix of evergreen and aspen terrain.

2. Strolling Historic Main Street

View of a street in Park City
A former mining town, Park City is now one of the country’s best ski towns, filled with historic charm - Park City Chamber/Bureau.

If you were a silver miner here in the 1800s, a walk on Main Street would take you by bustling brothels and rowdy saloons, but a lot’s changed since the mines went bust. Today Park City’s historic buildings are preserved and reinvented as independent boutiques, art galleries, and gourmet restaurants. Learn about the town’s intriguing past at the city museum housed in the old town jail, or pop by the galleries to see sculptures, paintings, and outdoor photography. Warm up with a pour over coffee at Pink Elephant Coffee Roasters, an upstairs shop tucked above Prospect Boutique, or settle in with a good book, tea latte, and breakfast burrito at Atticus Coffee and Teahouse.

When happy hour calls your name, stop by No Name Saloon (opens in new window)—Park City’s oldest and most famous bar—for a Utah craft beer and buffalo burger, or to local favorite Flanagan’s for an authentically poured Guinness. Once you tire of being on your feet, hop on the free trolley that runs along the length of Main.

3. Sipping Whiskey at High West Saloon

High West Distillery and Saloon's front window
After a cold day on the mountain, warm up with drinks from High West Distillery - Park City Chamber/Bureau.

For whiskey enthusiasts, no trip to Park City is complete without a visit to High West Distillery and Saloon (opens in new window). Ski down Park City Mountain’s Quittin’ Time run and step inside this historic livery stable turned saloon to taste their award-winning bourbons, ryes, and a fusion of both—bourye. After a cold day on the mountain, warm up with a hot toddy served with fresh lemon or a spiked coffee topped with whipped cream. Stay for Western Mountain-themed cheese and charcuterie boards or pretzels dipped in whiskey beer cheese.

4. Eating All the Things

Craving flow-in fresh sushi? Wood-fired pizza? Fancy avocado toast? You’ll find it all in Park City, where the booming culinary scene affords a variety of options throughout the historic district. Try longstanding favorites like The Eating Establishment and Riverhorse On Main, or dine on fresh, flavorful eats from newcomers like Versante Hearth + Bar, Firewood on Main, and Harvest Cafe. For a uniquely Utah winter experience, take a sleigh ride to dinner at Park City Mountain’s Viking Yurt (opens in new window) where a five-course feast and steins of hot glogg await. Or be transported to the Swiss Alps with fire-roasted meats and raclette cheese at Deer Valley’s popular Fireside Dining.

5. Reliving the Olympic Games

Bobsled going down the track
Take a bobsled ride down a winding, icy course with a professional driver - Park City Chamber/Bureau/Lauren Wester.

Experience Olympic thrills with a bobsled ride down a winding, icy course with a professional driver at the Utah Olympic Park (opens in new window), or watch ski jumpers hone their craft on the massive ramps used in the 2002 Winter Olympic Games. For tamer fun, head indoors and learn about Utah’s games at the free Alf Engen Ski Museum.

6. Trying the Other Winter Sports

While the skiing in Park City is top notch, it’s not the only winter activity you should try. When you’re ready to explore the winter landscapes without a lift ticket, strap on a pair of snowshoes or cross-country skis and take to the trails. Park City is widely known for its groomed classic and skate cross-country trails that stretch through and beyond town—many of which are completely free to use. Find 25 kilometers of free trails at Basin Recreation that connect to the popular Utah Olympic Park, or challenge yourself on Round Valley’s rolling terrain.

Need a snowshoe guide or gear? Head to White Pine Nordic Center, near Historic Main Street, to find both both—along with winding, groomed trails that showcase the mountains and Park City’s iconic white barn.

7. Tubing at Gorgoza Park

Scenic view of Gorgoza Park
Enjoy the sunshine while tubing at Gorgoza Park -Park City Chamber/Bureau.

Have kids or just love acting like one? Don’t miss the slip sliding fun of lift-served tubing at Gorgoza Park. Seven lanes with varying difficulty let everyone choose their own adventure, and you’ll never feel winded from hiking back up the hill. Slide while the sun’s shining, or wait until dark for twilight tubing under the lights.

8. Spectating at Winter Events

Cheer for pro athletes skiing, flipping, and racing to glory at incredible annual events hosted in Park City. January brings the FIS Freestyle World Cup to Deer Valley where the world’s best freestyle skiers race down moguls and spin through the sky for aerial competitions in a quest for the podium. And November boasts the Bobsled and Skeleton World Cup, showcasing athletes from 20 countries racing at the Utah Olympic Park. These world-class events are like seeing the Olympics, but with no price tag.

Written by Jenny Willden for RootsRated Media in partnership with Visit Park City. Featured image Park City Chamber/Bureau/Dan Campbell Photography.

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