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Entertainment in Salt Lake City

Salt Lake City is a great place to live and is the cultural center of Utah. To that end, there are always things going on, somewhere to go and something to occupy your time. If you’re planning to spend time here on vacation or working, we have put together this quick list of the top things to try while you’re here. It’s only a tiny part of what we have to offer, but these are the must-see or must-do entertainments in Salt Lake City.

Temple Square

Temple Square is probably our most popular visitor attraction. The square features a two-story temple, gardens, fountains, visitor center, assembly halls, two churches, Beehive house, Lion House, the LDS Conference Center and Joseph Smith Memorial Building. Well worth a day of your time if you want to get an idea of what Salt Lake City is all about.

City Creek Center

City Creek Center is a shopping, eating and business hub. Spread over 20 acres, City Creek Center has more than 90 stores, restaurants, bars and coffee shops. Everything from big name brands to one-off boutiques and everything in-between. Make sure to visit the fountain show while you’re there.

Capitol Hill

Like most Capitol Hills in most cities, ours is where our government buildings are. Our capitol has guided tours Monday through Friday as well as gardens, the Daughters of the Utah Pioneers Museum and the White Chapel. It’s a great few hours if you’re historically inclined.

West Downtown and Gateway

West Downtown and Gateway is where the best shopping in Salt Lake City can be found. This outdoor mall has hundreds of stores, a movie theater, restaurants, bars, coffee shops and everything else you can think of. It also has two good museums, The Clark Planetarium and Discovery Gateway Children’s Museum. Both are worth a visit if you have the time.

Hogle Zoo

Hogle Zoo is our top attraction for paying guests and one of the best zoos of its kind in Utah. It plays host to over 800 animals spread over 42 acres and has exhibits, displays, shows and ample opportunities to watch animals play. It’s a great day out for all the family and well worth the trip.

This is the Place Heritage Park

This is the Place Heritage Park is where Salt Lake City’s founder, Brigham Young said “this is the place” and began the settlement. The park has a statue, a restored pioneer village and live reenactments of life as it was in 1847. It’s an interesting place to visit if you’re interested in how our home came to be.

Liberty Park and Tracy Aviary

Liberty Park and Tracy Aviary is a thing of beauty. It’s our second largest park and has walking trails, children’s playgrounds, a pond with boat rentals, the Chase Home Museum of Folk Arts and Tracy Aviary. The aviary is home to many species of birds and is a great place to see color, variety and majesty in our feathered friends.

Those are just some of the highlights you can expect to visit when you’re in Salt Lake City. The list is far from exhaustive, but it should give you a good idea of what we have to offer!

About Salt Lake City

Salt Lake City, or SLC to locals is our home and the most populous city in Utah. Located in the north of Utah in the Salt Lake Valley, the city has a colorful and unique history that offers a fresh perspective on life. It is the national center of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, otherwise known as the Mormon church.

History of Salt Lake City

The city began in 1847 when Brigham Young walked to where the This is the Place Heritage Park is now to say those immortal words, “this is the place.” Young had been looking for a likely site for his new settlement after religious tension forced them to move from the east. They found the Salt Lake Valley uninhabited and built their settlement here.

Only four days after deciding on the site, Young began work on the Salt Lake Temple, which would take over 40 years to complete. The city grew steadily as more Mormon settlers arrived in the new home of their faith. The gold rush brought even more incomers, swelling the population hugely at such an early stage.

The Utah War was a dark point in our history, were national government disagreed with the polygamy that was popular within The Church of Latter-day Saints. This was quickly settled as the US Army came to town as every civilian had fled before they got there. Many were sought out and imprisoned and the church had to abandon polygamy as a way of life.

When the Transcontinental Railroad arrived in 1870, so did more immigrants. The city’s population swelled once more, including Chinese who helped build the railroad. Mining became big business and the future of the city was secure. From then on, the economy of Salt Lake City diversified into steel, railroad operations, oil refining and service industries. Those industries are still major employers in the modern city.

The Climate

Salt Lake City has a Continental Mediterranean climate, meaning it’s warm with rainfall throughout the year. We have four separate seasons, with snow in the winter and long, hot sunny days in the summer. We get a lot of storms from the Pacific, which is where most of our wind and rain comes from.

Getting Around Salt Lake City

Salt Lake City International Airport is our main air terminal and is on the west of the city. It’s a busy airport with many major carriers stopping here. There is also a smaller airport for private planes at ProTrans Transportation near West Jordan.

Trains are well served too by Amtrak and FrontRunner. The Amtrak California Zephyr stops in Salt Lake City on its run between Chicago and San Francisco, linking us to the rest of the route with daily services. FrontRunner is a commuter train serving the city and surrounding areas.

Buses in Salt Lake City are plentiful with Greyhound running national services, TUFESA running state services and into Mexico and the UTA (Utah Transit Authority) running an extensive array of local bus routes throughout the city.

Getting around by car is easy enough. I-80 brings you in east to west and the I-215 is our loop. Inner city traffic can get busy at rush hour, but is fairly okay the rest of the time. For a city this big, getting around by car is actually quite manageable.

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 Salt Lake City, UT