Striated sandstone lines Kanarra Creek in Cedar City, Utah.
A theater-in-the-round minutes from red rock canyons and mountain passes? That’s what happens when you build a culture-minded college town on the outskirts of Zion National Park. Good food, Utah friendliness, and views forever. Area code is 435 unless noted.
- The annual Utah Shakespeare Festival attracts bard-worthy talent from around the country. The 2013 schedule, which runs through October, includes The Tempest, Richard II, Cole Porter’s Anything Goes, and the regional premiere of the hit Peter and the Starcatcher. 586-7878, bard.org.
- The slot canyon on Kanarra Creek is just as fun and photogenic as Zion’s famed Narrows but without the crowds. Wade for 4.4 calf-chilling miles past a pair of waterfalls. Or just wet your feet. (800) 354-4849, scenicsouthernutah.com.
- The festival pasta—penne with chicken and sun-dried tomatoes in a cream sauce—helps make the homey Garden House a favorite spot for a preplay meal. 586-6110.
- Cedar Breaks National Monument wows visitors with its four drive-up viewpoints above a deep amphitheater full of colorful hoodoos. At more than 10,000 feet in elevation, the scene is literally breathtaking. nps.gov/cebr.
- Frontier Homestead State Park features horse-drawn contraptions and conveyances from carts to coaches. And kids get to pan for gold. 586-9290, frontierhomestead.org.
Photography by Lee Foster
This article was first published in July 2013. Some facts may have aged gracelessly. Please call ahead to verify information.