Antelope Island is one of the many unique state parks in Utah. It’s located about 45 mins from Salt Lake City, and offers the perfect escape from the everyday hustle and bustle. Right in the middle of the Great Salt Lake, this beautiful island has views that just can’t be beat. The island also boasts a wide host of wildlife, including the iconic bison!
We have visited Antelope Island numerous times including on an overnight camping trip, a back country hiking adventure, as well as just to drive around and enjoy the scenic views.
If you’re planning a trip to Antelope Island, here are some of our favorite things to do:
- Drive Around the Island. Seriously – it doesn’t take long, and if you’re short on time, or not a huge hiker, this is the perfect way to spend a lazy Sunday afternoon.
- Walk along the beach. The sandy beaches on the island are perfect for taking a stroll – they aren’t usually very packed, and it’s fun to explore and find all the little artifacts that washed up on shore! (Plus, it’s one of the bison’s favorite places to sun bathe!)
- Visit the Fielding Garr Ranch! Okay, we actually haven’t done this one – hence why there’s no picture – I didn’t know it existed until just recently. Tons of people rave about how cool it is, and the state’s website even suggests it, so we’ll have to check it out and I’ll update this!
- Go for a Hike! Antelope island hosts numerous hikes of all skill levels. They have easy (but still very scenic) hikes like the Ladyfinger Hike (less than a mile there and back, no elevation gain) or more strenuous hikes like those located in the Back Country. Take your pick!
- Pitch a Tent! Camping on Antelope Island is pretty cool. We went for one night in July, and it wasn’t too shabby. It wasn’t crowded at all! Both campgrounds were near the beaches and sported amazing views of the Great Salt Lake. Be warned though – there are tons of mosquitos and gnats on the island, especially around dusk!
And finally, here are some general things you ought to know before visiting:
- The island itself has quite the interesting history – if you’re planning on visiting, I highly suggest reading up on it on the Utah State Park Website.
- Antelope Island is beaming with various types of wildlife. During your trip you’ll most likely see a couple bison, pronghorn antelope, and mule deer. The island is also home to several types of birds (water fowl, hawks, etc.), (tons) of insects, coyotes, mountain lions, bighorn sheep, and tons more! Keep your eyes peeled and your ears open!
- Please exercise caution when you encounter any kind of wild life on the island. Do not approach or try to entice the bison. These majestic creatures can be extremely dangerous if startled.
- BRING BUG SPRAY if you’re planning on spending any amount of time outside on the island. We’ve gone in May, June, and July and we always get eaten alive by mosquitos. (Okay, truth be told, only I do. They just love my pale skin!)
- BRING SUNSCREEN. The island has almost no shade, so sunscreen is a must.
Have you been to Antelope Island? What did you love most about it?