Looking for places to see dinosaurs in Utah? These 14 Utah Dinosaur Sites Are a Must See for The Whole Family.
Probably one of the biggest perks of living in a landlocked state surrounded in the mountain west, is the abundance of history, prehistoric history to be exact. And when you get right down to it, who doesn’t love finding out everything they can about one of history’s greatest and most well-known creatures?
Well, you’re in luck, because Utah is a land of great discovery, it is one of the most prominent places to discover complete dinosaur fossils. In fact, the Allosaurus has been unearthed here so often, that Utah has been named the Allosaurus state. This and an impressive number of other discoveries, like the legendary T-rex, makes Utah one of the best places to get your fix for dinosaurs and all things dinosaur related.
But, with so many places to go, where do you take your family or friends, or even date to see some of these impressive spectacles? In this article, we will map out 14 places where you can see the bones, tracks and traces of these massive animals. It is difficult to slim it down to only 14 places mind you, with there being a multitude of locations where you could spend all day completely emersed in Dino history, but we’re going to do our best.
14 Utah Dinosaur Sites That Are a Must See for The Whole Family
The Natural History Museum of Utah
First on our list is The Natural History Museum of Utah How can this institution not be the first on the list? This institution is a must see on your Dino list and when you enter the doors, you’ll be quick to find out why.
The Natural History Museum of Utah is such a hot spot for visitors that it is recommended you book a ticket just to make sure you get entry, and don’t worry ticket prices range from $13-$15 dollars, so you won’t have to break the bank for this day trip.
It doesn’t get any better than this for Dino interaction, it is a place of scientific wonder to the max, with over 5,000 artifacts, items from dinosaur fossils to preserved items from pre-historic peoples, geographical minerals and other fascinating finds, this is your absolute must, first stop on your Dino journey
George S Eccles Dinosaur Park
Next up on the list, is the George S. Eccles Dinosaur Park. If you want to feel like you’re walking into the age of Dinosaurs, then this is the place for you. This location is an outdoor Dino wonderland that takes you back 65 million years! It’s a park like no other, with 26 life sized Dinosaurs surrounding you and your family on an eight-acre land.
This park has been thoughtfully maintained with the help of business owners, private investors and like-minded individuals, and you can tell that this place is a much loved, staple of the scientific and local community.
After exploring the vast outside of the park, head into the main building for one of the coolest exhibits they have. You can take a viewing into a working paleontology lab, filled with research volunteers hard at work, that park guests can view and look in on.
And if that’s not enough? The second floor now has robotic Dinosaur scene that, if this place hasn’t already, sends you roaring into the past with real Dinosaur sounds. With play areas and activities for the kids and Dino lovers of all ages to take part in, George S Eccles Dinosaur Park is an absolute must.
Utah Field House of Natural History State Park Museum
I for one am always a sucker for getting an in-depth update on subjects I once learned about, and if you’re like me then this next stop is the place for you. Utah Field House is a site that is a re-telling of earth’s history in exposed rock, in real time.
Here you are surrounded by not only Dinosaur fossils but geologic samples that come with tales and bits of information that takes the guest back into the time where these items were fresh and alive.
And when you’re done being mesmerized by ancient rocks and plants, take a stroll outside the museum and look up in awe at the life-sized Dino replicas barring their terrifying fangs at you and your family. This spot is education and fun all rolled into one but on a Dino sized scale.
Moab Giants Dinosaur Park and Museum
Put on your hiking boots and get ready for a walk back into time! Moab Giants Dinosaur Park and Museum is your ultimate outdoor Dino adventure!
This place is off the charts, once outside on the trail you are completely surrounded by desert sand, exposed rock cliffs and Dinosaurs! With their overbearing figures looming over you, their mouths agape in frozen but still terrifying stilled roars, not to mention teeth, teeth and more teeth, it’s hard to remember that these towering beauties aren’t still roaming the earth.
This trail is a serious must for anyone who loves Dinosaurs, young and old, or anyone who is looking for something unique and fun to do outdoors. While outside taking in all this prehistoric excitement, you might hear your stomach rumbling louder than a running T-rex.
But don’t worry, head on inside to the café to cool out and grab something delicious to eat. The museum inside is informational yes but doesn’t hold as much intrigue as say a National Museum but that’s ok, because you are still going to have a great time. Take my advice and head to Moab if you are ready to have one of the best Dino sized adventures of your life.
BYU Museum of Paleontology
This quaint museum is perfect for you and the kiddos for a great day out of the heat and into the prehistoric realm. BYU Museum of Paleontology is a smaller museum that still packs a punch of Dino history and education for the whole family.
It isn’t as big or has the same flare as other museums, but it still has plenty of child friendly activates and looming Dino skeletons to marvel over. Again, this place is small and can be walked through in about an hour or so, but on top of getting your Dino fix in a short afternoon, it’s also free admission, and you can’t beat that.
Dinosaur Museum of Blanding
How can one get tired of looking up into the ferocious eyes of dinosaurs as they roar in your face? If you’re still with me, this deep into the article, then that means that you can’t. So, the Dinosaur Museum of Blanding is the next stop on your Dino adventure in the desert.
Another smaller museum for all the dinosaur lovers out there, which means admission is relatively cheap, $5 for adults and only $3 for the kiddos, here you’re going to get your full of Dino information, towering skeletons, and kid activities that are spread out, but you can keep an eye out on everyone in your group as they venture out to do their own thing.
Though I should mention that this place is open during select times of the year. If you want to visit, you’ll want to plan your trip anywhere between April 15th-October-15th. That being said, don’t snooze on this charming Dino spot, you’ll be glad you didn’t.
Dinosaur Discovery Site at Johnson Farm
Take a walk on the prehistoric side on this next stop, this next place is going to have you imagining stomping around millions of years ago with your favorite Dinosaurs. Dinosaur Discovery Site at Johnson Farm is very specific Dino attraction that focuses on the early Jurassic period. That being said, this farm is your place to be if you ever centered your interest on Dinosaur feet and tracks.
You’re not going to be left in wonder after visiting here, Dinosaur Discovery is an educational attraction that gives its guests an extensive look into not only Dinosaur history, but nature and overall geographical history of the area.
Guests have said that while here, they learned how the local area around them was a frequent high traffic area of the ancient Dinosaurs that are standing around them. To walk around in the very footprints of such incredible creatures is truly something to be experienced. I love finding out about fascinating knowledge like this, and if you do too, then you need to head to the Johnson Farm as soon as you can.
Museum of Ancient Life at Thanksgiving Point
Well, you certainly can’t forget a name like this one, even though half of the name here is an actual place. Museum of Ancient Life at Thanksgiving Point is up next, and you are in for a treat with this one. This place is a sensory overload of awesome information, activities, sights, sounds, everything not only for the kids but for everyone who enjoys an extraordinary outing. Here you will experience so many different sights for the eye to enjoy.
And that means Dinosaur skeletons diving down from the ceiling, jumping up from the floors as if they are about to attack you, and perched from rocks in decorated exhibits. They don’t call this place the ‘World’s Largest Display for Mounted Dinosaurs’ for nothing. And speaking of mounted, there’s even a huge, mounted Great White Shark head, bursting out from the wall, mouth agape.
And honestly how can you not want to take a photo of that? That is worth the price of a ticket right there. But, back to the subject of dinosaurs, this location does not disappoint pulling you in and peaking your Dino interest.
Dinosaur National Monument
We’re going outdoors with this next stop, and honestly you won’t believe our eyes. Dinosaur National Monument allows you to take a scenic drive through, you guessed it, a national park where you can drive your car to see the vast splendor of nature, and trust me, it is worth it.
The drive, named ‘The Tour of the Tilted Rocks’ has views that look like beautiful, detailed paintings worthy to hang in the Louvre. No one would question you for spending all day taking in everything nature has to offer you in a place like this. You can also take a hike on woodsy, winding trails, which for some are just as good or belter then the drive.
But, if you had your fill of gazing lovingly at mountains and trees, head back to the visitor’s center to then take a tram to the quarry where you’ll get to see 1500 authentic fossils that were found right here in Utah. A lot of these impressive items are still imbedded in the hard rock and will take your breath away with how preserved and life like they are. You will have to reserve a ticket to go to the quarry, but this just makes sure that everyone gets a chance to go and have the experience.
To enter the park will cost you about $25, really nothing when compared to everything you’re going to get once inside. Dinosaur National Monument is truly a wonder of locations for nature buffs and lovers of Dinosaur history alike.
Mill Canyon Dinosaur Bone Trail
This next place isn’t a museum but that’s ok, who doesn’t like spending a little extra time in the great outdoors? Mill Canyon Dinosaur Bone Trail is a historic trial that you can stretch your legs out on or hike to see fossils of Dinosaurs in their final yet animated resting places.
You might have some trouble driving through here if you don’t have four-wheel drive, but this place is perfect for the hikers and nature walk lovers. And don’t think you’re only getting fossils; on these trails you’ll get to see the very tracks left by these amazing animals. Now some of these fossils and even the tracks may be difficult to see, remember they are very old, but it is still worth your time.
At this point it’s fair to assume that you can’t get enough of being surrounded by the evidence left by creatures that were so massive and powerful that their very footprints left behind are still so detailed on the very ground that have lasted literally millions of years.
Copper Ridge Dinosaur Trackways
Now, don’t get me wrong, the last place was a great spot to see dinosaur tracks, but our next stop? I mean, the name says it all. Up next is Copper Ridge Dinosaur Trackways, and you’re going to want to put those boots back on for this spot.
The trails are a bit windy, but some are wide for multiple people to walk on at a time. Still, it is always good to use caution while walking these areas, as the Utah sun can be unforgiving and with all the rocks and small uneven little cliffs, one can hurt themselves if they don’t pay attention.
You are going to get incredible wide-open views here too, if walking along Dinosaur tracks wasn’t enough of a wonder for you, this isn’t an all-day attraction, it will probably only take you about an hour or so to walk through it all, but it’s still a fun spot to check out.
Dino Cliffs Trailhead
To be completely surrounded by tall, red, enriched cliffs that make you feel like you’re on another planet is where this next spot is going to take you. Dino Cliffs Trailhead is where we’re headed next, and it is a location that lives up to its name.
You can drive your car here but be cautious of the sandy trails that might make traction a little difficult. A better way to take in the sprawling desert sights without much worry, you can hit the trials with your boots or mountain bike, which might be a much more desired option.
This way you can take in all the sights at a slower pace, stopping for a second to put your shoe next to one of the many tracks to get a sense at just how big the very animal that made it was. It can mesmerize just about any guest. This can be another short trip, one that doesn’t require you to stay all day, but it is moderately well kept, and is fun trip for the whole family.
Red Fleet Dinosaur Track Site Trailhead
Here we have another trailhead and another great spot to walk in the tracks of the dinosaurs who lived millions of years ago. Red Fleet Dinosaur Track Site Trailhead is another great stop for tracks and amazing desert, natural views.
There is enough nature that is all around you can take it all in and have a full experience. In fact, take a stroll over by the huge body of water for some of the best sunsets you’ll ever see. Once again, it is worth mentioning that you’re going to want to be aware of the difficulty of the trails. While this place is fit for the whole family, take your time walking up and down the trails, especially with little children.
Also, like most places here in Utah, it can get very hot and dry in the summertime, so plan your trip accordingly to give you the best experience possible. Even though the trails are marked, you’ll have to do some investigating to find some of the tracks. Which adds onto the experience, as you’ll have to put in effort to find them, just like the paleontologist before you did.
Willow Springs Dinosaur Tracks
Last on our Dino journey takes us to one more track attraction, and this one is suited for you four-wheel riders out there. Willow Springs Dinosaur Tracks is a perfect location to take a 4×4 vehicle or take the family car out for a good dusting to take in the incredible sites and Dinosaur tracks all at the same time. You don’t need to worry about making any reservations or purchasing tickets as this spot is free to the public.
The trails here are marked with information not only about the location but about which Dinos stomped through here and what you’ll be seeing. Once you arrive be ready to be amazed because there are plenty of tracks to view. And have no fear, you’ll be able to spot them, though with time there is some deterioration, and some might be harder to see than others. There are still so many different tracks here that most visitors are suspired by the amount that they find.
Which just goes to show how mind blowing it is to know just how many Dinosaurs lived and traveled through this area. Take your time to enjoy this unique stop and take in that you are standing in the same point where animals the size of buses and bigger once roamed.
This is a jam-packed list with places that are amazing, budget conscious, and can give you memories that will last for a lifetime. Some are hidden gems while others are well known staples in Utah, there are a multitude of locations that can give you information on top of everything you ever wanted to know about Dinosaurs. And yes, this list is specific, there are so many other great attractions and locations to fulfill your love for everything prehistoric.
To be lucky enough to live in a state that has such a rich history of animals that are some of, if not the, most legendary in our planet’s history is something to brag about. One final takeaway from all of this is that these places are for everyone, not just for family or little kids, everyone can take part in the fun and that’s what makes these places so incredible. They are full of wonder for people of all ages.
So please, take your time and make sure to head out and visit as many of these amazing places as you can, you will not regret it.