Driving from Las Vegas to Arches National Park

••• Double Arch at Arches National Park. Photo by Zeke Quezada

When you fly into Las Vegas you get a bird’s eye view of the American Southwest. You look across the desert and you can imagine yourself out there, lost, looking for direction. Take it easy, that rental car of yours probably has a GPS system and the highways are pretty easy to find. So if you feel like you want to see America, Las Vegas is the perfect place to base your adventurous journey.

Check into your posh hotel and then embark on a few days of exploring across an expansive landscape of red rocks, sage brush, sand dunes and mesas that will promptly allow you to see just how big this country is.

Grab a map, some energy bars and plenty of water because with so many National Parks to see you will find it hard to pick just one.


Arches National Park from Las Vegas
471 miles – 7.5 hours of driving or 523 miles – 8 hours
Driving directions via Google maps

Arches National Park is one of those natural wonders that make you stand, staring with your mouth wide open. The arches set upon the blue skies and the wide open spaces are simply mesmerizing. You feel like you could walk forever or climb forever. Some of the best arches are literally 5 minutes from your car while others are 5 miles, it's that type of place where you can really get a feel for the geology of the American Southwest.

Get more details about Arches National Park from About.com's Guide to National and State Parks,

The hikes are numerous and spending some time in Moab, Utah is also worth the 8 hours in the car.  Main street in Moab also offers plenty of opportunities to book an off road adventure, rent a bike for some exploring or even find a spot on a raft to test your skill at navigating boulders on a river.

Late spring is beautiful.  The summer temperatures dominate the afternoon hours once June and July get going and you will contend with a lot more tourists during that season. The trails are accessible year round but checking local road reports will help to make sure that you can get to any trailhead in the park no matter the time of the year.

How is the drive from Las Vegas to Arches National Park? 
Personally, I like the route that takes me through Capitol Reef National Park and along Escalante Canyon. It is a little longer but you’ll see so much sandstone that you’ll be able to identify the stratigraphic columns of the Kaibab formation…wait, let’s not get technical. You’ll see some amazing rock structures that will fill the memory on your digital camera and leave you seeking long trails and color changing sunsets. Keep in mind that most of the rock that you see here is what you see way up high on the Grand Canyon so if you visit both parks you'll see some similarities in the sedimentary structures.

Things To See Driving from Las Vegas to Arches National Park
Capitol Reef National Park 
Zion National Park
Grand Staircase - Escalante Monument
Moab, Utah
CanyonLands National Park

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