Things to Do With Kids in Salt Lake City

Fun Things to Do With Kids in Salt Lake City

Salt Lake is a kid-friendly town and offers dozens of fun activities to keep children active and engaged. Here are some of the best.

  • 01 of 18
    Hogle zoo Bald Eagle
    ••• Sam Scholes / Getty Images

    Utah's Hogle Zoo dates from 1931 and is located at the mouth of Emigration Canyon at 2600 E. Sunnyside Avenue. The Zoo is one of the most visited attractions in Utah and the top paid-for tourist attraction in Salt Lake City. It covers 42 acres and includes more than 800 animals.

    Hogle Zoo's top exhibits include Rocky Shores, Asian Highlands and Elephant Encounter. Little ones will enjoy the classic Zoo Train and new Conservation Carousel. Don't miss the World of Flight Bird Show during the spring, summer, and fall. From Thanksgiving to New Year's Eve, Hogle Zoo is transformed into a winter wonderland with the popular Zoolights display.

  • 02 of 18
    Utah Museum of Natural History
    ••• Daderot / Wikimedia Commons / Public Domain

    The Natural History Museum of Utah, near the University of Utah and Red Butte Garden, is an important part of Utah's scientific community but also a great place to visit with kids. Permanent exhibits cover archaeology, geology, paleontology, mineralogy, and zoology.​​

    UMNH offers kids' discovery activities every Saturday and a free science movie night every month. The museum offers a few free days each year.

  • 03 of 18
    This Is the Place Heritage Park
    ••• Ken Lund / Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0

    This is the Place Monument in Emigration Canyon marks the spot where Brigham Young and the Mormon pioneers first entered the Salt Lake Valley on July 24, 1847. One hundred years later, a bronze sculpture of Young and two of his colleagues was placed atop a 60-foot pedestal to commemorate their arrival.

    This is the Place Heritage Park includes a restored pioneer village with live demonstrations of pioneer life and a restored Brigham Young farmhouse.

    This is the Place Heritage park is directly across from Hogle Zoo at 2601 Sunnyside Ave. Open 9 a.m.-6 p.m. April through October and 9 a.m.-5 p.m. November through March. Programs and hours are limited in winter and on Sundays.

  • 04 of 18
    Red Butte Garden
    ••• The Four Seasons Garden at Red Butte Garden, with Red Butte peak in the background. Premium UIG / Getty Images

    Red Butte Garden is a Botanical Garden and Arboretum near the University of Utah. The Garden offers walking paths through 11 themed gardens and nearly four miles of hiking trails. In addition to the botanical garden and arboretum, Red Butte Garden offers children's activities, seasonal family events, and summer camps.

    Continue to 5 of 18 below.
  • 05 of 18
    Tracy Aviary
    ••• Burrowing Owl sleeping on branch at Tracy Aviary. SimplyMui / Getty Images

    Liberty Park is Salt Lake City's second largest public park and includes trails, playgrounds, a pond, paddle boat rentals, tennis courts, picnic facilities, amusement rides and a water play area. Liberty Park includes the Chase Home Museum of Folk Arts and the eight-acre Tracy Aviary, one of two free-standing aviaries in the United States.

  • 06 of 18
    Leonardo SLC
    ••• erocsid / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

    Located in the heart of Salt Lake City, Utah, The Leonardo is a first-of-a-kind museum where you can explore the unexpected places and ways that science, technology, art, and creativity connect. It's a hybrid museum that's a blast to visit, with cool interactive exhibits.

  • 07 of 18
    SLC Gateway
    ••• Courtesy of Visit Salt Lake

    The Gateway in west downtown SLC has plenty of shopping, dining and entertainment options for everyone, but kids will especially enjoy the Clark Planetarium and Discovery Gateway children's museum. The Olympic Snowflake Fountain in the Olympic Plaza is great for water play in hot weather.

  • 08 of 18
    The Living Planet Aquarium Salt Lake City
    ••• Courtesy of The Living Planet Aquarium

    The Living Planet Aquarium in Draper features four main exhibits: Discover Utah, Ocean Explorer, Journey to South America and Penguin Encounter. The aquarium is the ninth biggest in the United States and includes a 4D movie theater and space for traveling exhibits.

    Continue to 9 of 18 below.
  • 09 of 18
    thanksgiving point water tower
    ••• Richard Cummins / Getty Images

    Thanksgiving Point is a huge recreation area near the Point of the Mountain that includes spectacular themed gardens, a farm and agriculture center, movie theaters, an IMAX, shops, restaurants, a golf course, party and reception facilities, the Museum of Natural Curiosity, and the world's largest indoor dinosaur museum. There's so much to see and do at Thanksgiving Point that it's difficult to describe, but Thanksgiving Point definitely offers an escape from the everyday.

    Thanksgiving Point is located about halfway between Salt Lake City and Provo just off Interstate 15 at the Point of the Mountain. For detailed driving instructions from your location, call 801-768-2300.

  • 10 of 18
    Lagoon Utah
    ••• Courtesy of Lagoon Amusement Park

    Lagoon is a large amusement park about 15 miles north of Salt Lake City near the town of Farmington. Lagoon has been in operation since 1896. Its mix of old and new elements makes it unique. The park's carousel has been in operation since 1906, and the wooden roller coaster has been running since 1921. Park owners put up a new big ride just about every year to keep locals coming back.

    Lagoon is fun for all ages and includes kiddie rides and big thrill rides. The replica Pioneer Village is fun for all ages, and so are the musical performances in the pavilions and Lagoon Opera House. Lagoon includes a water park called Lagoon-A-Beach.​

    Look for Lagoon discount coupons on Coca-Cola cans or at banks, credit unions, supermarkets, and Costco.

  • 11 of 18
    Boy swimming
    ••• Jessica Peterson / Getty Images

    Salt Lake City area swimming pools, water parks and splash pads are your ticket to cool summer fun. Many are free or low cost.

  • 12 of 18
    Get Air Sportsplex
    ••• Courtesy of Get Air

    Trampoline parks and bounce play areas are a great place for kids of all ages to get some exercise and experience active play regardless of the weather. Most offer kid birthday parties, and trampoline parks often offer fitness classes for adults.

    Continue to 13 of 18 below.
  • 13 of 18
    Fat Cats
    ••• Courtesy of Fat Cats

    Fat Cats combines a bowling alley with an arcade, pizza place and Mexican restaurant. It's not an original idea, but Fat Cats beats out the competition with consistently decent food and a clean, high-energy atmosphere. It's a great place for a birthday party, reunion or family outing.

    3739 S. 900 E.
    Other locations in Provo, Ogden and Westminster, Colorado

  • 14 of 18
    Antelope Island
    ••• Antelope Island on the Great Salt Lake. Federica Grassi / Getty Images

    Check out this list of dozens of free things to do in Salt Lake City, including free museums, parks, libraries, community events and more.

  • 15 of 18
    Bonneville Shoreline Trail
    ••• Bonneville Shoreline Trail. Mike Tittel / Getty Images

    Here's a list of great family hikes in the Salt Lake City area, any of which can make for a memorable and affordable family outing.

  • 16 of 18
    Double Key Treasure Hunts
    ••• Courtesy of Double Key Treasure Hunts

    The Double Key Treasure Hunts kit for Salt Lake City lets you solve a mystery and explore SLC at the same time. At the end, you'll find a real treasure. It's a unique and memorable activity for family and friend groups.

    Continue to 17 of 18 below.
  • 17 of 18

    Kids Sports Training Programs

    Momentum climbing gym
    ••• Courtesy of Momentum Climbing Gym

    Participation in sports can help kids stay physically and mentally fit, and give them work habits and social skills that last for a lifetime. Dozens of public and private organizations in the Salt Lake area offer sports leagues and sports training for kids - here are a few of the best.


  • 18 of 18
    Wheeler Historic Farm
    ••• Courtesy of Wheeler Historic Farm

    Wheeler Historic Farm is a Salt Lake County Parks and Recreation facility, open to the public 365 days a year. It is a working farm and the cows, horses, chickens, pigs, sheep, turkeys, goats, and rabbits serve an agricultural purpose. The Farm features vendors, entertainment, blacksmith demonstrations, wool spinning, and sheep shearing on a daily basis as well as special Halloween and Easter events, a Farmer's Market, and summer camps.

    There is no admission to enter the grounds, which are open dawn until dusk. There are fees for activities such as wagon rides, milking the cow and special events.