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Tribune Choice Awards: Destinations

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First runner-up

Tracy Aviary » In Liberty Park since 1938, the aviary has undergone major renovations in recent years. Its smaller size makes it ideal for children and it usually has a relaxed, quiet atmosphere with plenty of shade.

At a glance

Utah at its best

You voted, and the results are in.

Allow us to introduce winners of The Salt Lake Tribune Choice Awards — your picks for the best Utah has to offer in dining, nightlife, arts and culture, recreation and destinations. Tribune editors weighed in as well, with their own selections in each category.

Did fellow readers get it right? Did we?

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Second runner-up

Utah dinosaur destinations » Families can choose to visit Dinosaur National Monument in the Vernal area, the Dinosaur Museum in Blanding, the Johnson Farm in Washington, Thanksgiving Point’s Museum of Ancient Life, the Natural History Museum of Utah, the USU Eastern Prehistoric Museum in Price, the Cleveland-Lloyd Dinosaur Quarry in Emery County, the Eccles Dinosaur Park in Ogden or the Museum of the San Rafael in Price to learn about their favorite prehistoric creatures.

Scenic drives

People’s Choice


Zion National Park » As scenic drives go, the 12-mile Zion-Mt. Carmel Highway is relatively short. But it certainly packs in plenty of scenery and adventure. The even shorter drive up the main Zion Canyon requires boarding a shuttle much of the year unless you have reservations to stay at the lodge. The Zion-Mt. Carmel Highway that connects the eastern and southern entrances to the national park offers viewpoints of Checkerboard Mesa, a ride through tunnels carved out of sandstone and an exciting trip down switchbacks. Stopping on the east side of the tunnels to take the short hike to the Canyon Overlook is memorable. The main Zion Canyon Road, where the shuttles operate except in winter, provides views of classic formations such as The Great White Throne, The Sentinel, the Altar of Sacrifice, Angels Landing and the Court of the Patriarchs.

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First runner-up

Alpine Loop » This narrow 24-mile road gains 3,000 feet in elevation as it connects American Fork and Provo canyons.

Second runner-up

Highway 12 » (See Editors’ Choice.)

Editors’ Choice


Highway 12 » Few paved roads in the world can match this 122-mile southern Utah gem that has earned the honor of being designated an "All-American Road." The drive connects U.S. 89 just south of Panguitch with Utah Highway 24 in Torrey. In its wandering, it passes through Red Canyon, Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Bryce Canyon National Park, Anasazi State Park, Escalante Petrified Forest State Park, the Boulder Mountain and the tiny towns of Bryce Canyon, Tropic, Cannonville, Henrieville, Escalante and Grover. What’s most impressive, though, is the variety of scenery that can be viewed in the recommended four-hour drive. Travelers can camp, bike, hike and learn about history while traveling through the fluorescent beauty of Bryce and Red Canyon, the slickrock of the Escalante Canyons and the alpine splendor of the Boulder Mountain.

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