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Salt Lake City - City Guide

Relaxing & Unwinding Salt Lake City

©2006 The Salt Lake Convention & Visitors Bureau/Eric Schramm Red Butte Garden is a peaceful place, full of trees and walking paths.

There are few places that are better for relaxing and unwinding than Salt Lake City. Get into the mountains, exhale, take a deep breath of sage and pine, and feel your worries flow away. When confronted with a landscape of massive stone cliffs, towering hundreds of feet into the air, it's easy to put life's worries into perspective, unwind, and slow down.

Salt Lake offers outdoor enthusiasts plenty of ways to unwind, strolling through public gardens, people-watching in public parks, skiing some of the world's most famous slopes, or absorbing the serene muted scenery of the Great Salt Lake. For those who enjoy the great indoors, there are spas and yoga studios scattered throughout the community.

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Insider's Guide: The Best of Relaxing & Unwinding in Salt Lake City

Even if you don't have a car, it's easy to get into Salt Lake's close mountain canyons. City Creek Canyon runs into downtown through Memory Grove, just east and north of Temple Square. Six miles of paved road wind up this gentle canyon, where you may spot porcupines, deer, and eagles. Joggers, picnic goers, hikers, and bikers are serenaded by chirping birds and pass the swift flowing creek that tumbles down the canyon.

Sugarhouse Park (1300 East and 2100 South) and Liberty Park (700 East and 900 South) are excellent places to relax, exercise, or just people-watch. Liberty is home to several attractions, including the Chase Home Museum, and Tracy Aviary, but the park is also full of trees, tennis courts, fountains, playgrounds, and jogging paths. Sugarhouse is more open, with a meandering creek, rolling grassy hills, soccer fields, and a pond full of waterfowl.

Golf enthusiasts will enjoy Salt Lake's abundant public courses, most with striking scenery. Bonneville Golf Course (954 Connor St), which opened in 1929, is one of the most mature and is famous for its hilly terrain and mountain views.

The Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge (located at the northern tip of the Great Salt Lake) is one of the West's best spots for bird-watching. A new wildlife education center opened in April 2006 with interactive displays that talk about western birds and their habitats. The refuge includes some 74,000 acres, but a 10-mile driving loop is easily accessible to the public.

The Hogle Zoological Garden (2600 E Sunnyside Ave) is a great place for a stroll as you admire wildlife exhibits. The newest exhibit features an Amur tiger, snow leopards, and a lynx in natural environments that surround a replicated Asian village. The tiger enclosure includes a waterfall pond exhibit where patrons can watch the huge feline catch fish underwater.

The Red Butte Garden (300 Wakara Way) features more than 9,000 trees on 150 acres. You can spend hours strolling on a self-guided tour and admiring the natural beauty.

If you want to explore Salt Lake City on a guided tour rather than on your own, the next section offers information on how to do so.

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