For the second year in a row, some of Mitch and I’s friends from college, all gathered from across the country to spend New Year’s together. This time we all made our way to Park City! In this guide I’ll share everything you should know when planning your own winter vacay to Park City, Utah.
For many of us, this was our first time in Utah. We were all so impressed with not only the beautiful scenery of the town, but all the fun stuff there was to do there (and not just skiing)! After all, Park City is home to several ski resorts, including the largest in North America, Park City Mountain.
Getting to Park City
Getting to Park City is much easier than many popular ski resort areas as it is only ~45 minutes from an international airport, Salt Lake City (SLC). From the airport you can take an Uber to Park City. If you have ski gear, you can even request an “Uber Ski” to ensure you get a vehicle that can accommodate skis.
Where to Stay
We were fortunate to stay with one of our friend’s parents who live just 5 minutes from downtown Park City. I would definitely recommend staying downtown Park City or right outside of it as that’s where lots of the restaurants and things to do are. Ubers are pretty cheap though, so it wouldn’t be a big deal to stay a little outside of the downtown area if you can find cheaper accommodations.
Where to Ski
For skiing right in Park City there are two options: Park City Mountain and Deer Valley.
Park City Mountain is by far the largest since it combined with The Canyons in 2015. Park City Mountain is owned by Vail resorts, which means the Epic Pass can be used here.
If you’ll be skiing multiple days or planning multiple ski trips in a year definitely check out the Epic Pass. If you are not familiar with the epic pass, it is a season (or multiple day) pass that includes dozens of ski resorts around the world owned by Vail Resorts.
Deer Valley is another resort option, but only for skiers. Snowboarding is not allowed on these runs that are known for being perfectly groomed. From what I’ve heard Deer Valley has a more expensive reputation. Although when I looked at lift tickets, I didn’t notice a material difference in price.
Our group chose to ski at Park City Mountain!
Park City Mountain
I started skiing 2 years ago and have gone skiing maybe 4 or 5 times a year, but on the small hills around Minneapolis. This was my first time skiing out west in the mountains!
First Time is Park City Mountain’s version of a bunny hill. It is perfect for first-time skiers and great for beginners, like me, who want to make sure they feel comfortable in their skis before heading down the long green runs.
After going down First Time once, I had the courage to try the green runs. Claim Jumper and Home Run were my favorite runs!
Most of my friends and I are what I think most would consider beginner skiers, so we stayed on the green runs all day. My husband, Mitch, ventured off to a few of the blue runs for awhile though and had a blast!
Park City Mountain is huge and there are TONS of runs, especially blues and black diamonds. We only got to cover a small fraction of the mountain in the full day we were there. If you are a more advanced skier this place would be absolutely amazing for you. While there aren’t tons of green runs, the runs are long which is really nice. They also run into several of the casual chalets such as The Yurt and Summit House. Both are great places to grab a bite to eat or enjoy some hot chocolate.
What else is there to do in Park City besides ski?
Relax at the Spa
There are so many spas to choose from in Park City. One that came highly recommended to a few of our friends, who were looking for something to do while the rest of us went skiing, was the spa at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel.
Waldorf Astoria Spa
My friends enjoyed massages and facials, and took advantage of the sauna and hot tub available complimentary with any spa services.
If you’re looking for a luxurious, relaxing day this is the place! I was very jealous of their day at the spa. The next time I come to Park City I will definitely spend a day here.
Explore Main Street
Main Street is the hub of downtown Park City. Here you’ll find lots of shops, bars, and restaurants with building exteriors that exude the historic old mining town feel.
Places to Eat & Drink on (or around) Main Street:
- Harvest – cute and tiny brunch spot
- Flying Sumo – amazing sushi & sake (reservations likely needed for dinner)
- High West Saloon – well known for their whiskey, but also great American food
- No Name Saloon – super fun spot for going out at night. The bar is covered in Christmas lights and has a nice rooftop patio
Another way to explore the beauty of Park City while also getting some exercise is going for a hike. And this options is free!
Tubing is a fun group activity and it is really nice for the people in your group that don’t want to ski to also get the chance to get outside and do something in the snow too!
We went tubing at Woodward, a new sports complex that also includes an indoor trampoline and parkour park. I will mention that I thought the tubing was a bit overpriced ($60 for 2 hours). Operations were inefficient which led to really long lines, but maybe this isn’t always the case. We still had a blast, so I would recommend!
Park City was an incredible spot for a winter vacay and holiday! I definitely want to go back. Have you ever been? Hopefully this guide is helpful in planning your own trip to Park City.
Planning other trips around the US? Be sure to check out my other travel guides!