Wedding Vendors, Venues, and more serving Utah, Arizona, Nevada, California wedding vendors

Planning your wedding in Zion, Sedona, Grand Canyon, Arches, Canyonlands?

Get Featured

Top 10 Interesting Facts You Didn’t Know About Zion National Park

Top 10 Interesting Facts You Didn’t Know About Zion National Park
zion national park facts julia goldberg photography zion brides the knot wedding wire southern utah weddings elopements

Here are 10 Facts about Zion National Park that you probably didn’t know! These cool facts are great to learn or brush up on before going into the park! Also, looking for some cool hikes? Then check out our post on the Top 5 Hikes in Zion.  Whether you're coming out for fun, bridals, a proposal, or even just wanted to learn more about this incredible park, here are the Top 10 interesting facts about Zion National Park.

10 interesting facts popular hikes in zion

#1. Zion comes from Hebrew

The name Zion is used anciently to mean “sanctuary”. It seems fitting once you see it– although it wasn’t its original name (that takes us to fact number two…).

#2. It wasn't originally called "Zion"...

When Mormon settlers found their way into the area in 1869 following their expedition to the Grand Canyon, they learned that Southern Paiute Indians called this place Mukuntuweap, meaning "straight canyon". It wasn’t until it became a national park that it was renamed Zion National Park (as it was easier to pronounce).

#3. It officially became a National Park in 1919

While it was protected by President Taft in 1909 as Mukuntuweap National Monument, those in charge felt it needed a name that was easier to pronounce (therefore more likely to attract visitors).
Bonus Trivia: Go to number #10 to see how to properly pronounce Zion to avoid looking like a tourist.

hikes in zion national park best hikes for adventure couple families zion brides

#4. Yes, the wildlife really does steal your food.

Rock Squirrels will, in fact, sneak into your bag and steal your food if you’re not watching. Signs are posted to not feed the wildlife, so mind your snacks.

#5. It’s home to one of the tallest, most dangerous hikes in the world

Angels Landing is almost 1,500 feet high and a full 2.2 miles to hike (much of it uphill and on switchbacks– as well as chains and drops offs on either side of the trail).  You may have even heard rumors of people falling, including adults and (unfortunately) children.  That is, in fact, accurate.  So tread carefully.

how to get a permit angels landing zion national park tips destination3

Angels Landing is only recommended for those with good hiking shoes and experience. If you brave the trail, however, you won’t find any views more spectacular than the top of Angels Landing. You can literally see 360 degrees around the whole peak.

It does require a permit.  Here's how you get it.

#6. More than 4 million visitors come every year

Back in 1920, fewer than 4,000 visitors frequented the park. Today, the amount of visitors has grown so widely that often it can be difficult to move through the park (Zion is mostly traveled through one highway). To help alleviate traffic and obstruction, in the year 2000 Zion began a shuttle service to the West canyon.

This canyon is where several trailheads begin: Temple of Sinawava, Angels Landing, Temple of the Patriarchs, Emerald Pools, the Narrows, West Rim Trail, Subway, and Mystery Canyon. To get to those hikes, you DO need to take the shuttle (and in some cases get a permit).

Other beautiful hikes like Canyon Overlook will be the East canyon drive which you can do with your own vehicle (and will take you through an amazing tunnel carved right into the mountainside).

forevermore films weddings utah legacy motorcycle vegas zion red rock oasis wedding planner Utah Wedding Photography Zion Brides St George Elopement01

#7. It used to be home to the Anasazi

The Anasazi once inhabited the area and created many dwellings and rock art somewhere between 800 and 1,500 years ago– many of which are still able to be seen today.

#8. The Virgin River Not Only Formed Zion, It’s STILL Forming It

Thanks to rainfall and flash flooding that occasionally hit the park, the Virgin River redeposits tons and tons of sediment annually. This means the canyon is deepening and widening all the time (though not fast enough to really notice).

rules to get married in Zion National Park PLANNER SOUTHERN UTAH ZION BRIDES elopement st george utah04 the knot wedding wire elopements

Photo by ShutterFreek

#9. The road from Zion to Bryce Canyon National Park is only 72 miles apart

Wanting to hit two parks in one visit? Wondering how far it is from Bryce Canyon National Park to Zion National Park? Luckily it’s only about an hour and a half drive, though both parks will take longer than that to explore properly. We definitely recommend taking your time in Zion– it’s just fun to know you don’t have to travel far to see another amazing park full of incredible hikes.

#10. Locals can tell you’re a tourist by the way you pronounce Zion

Yes, there is a right way to pronounce Zion… at least according to locals in the area. Shopkeepers and friendly locals can tell you’re ‘not from around here‘ with or without full hiking gear and a camera. Why? Because visitors often pronounce the park’s name as “zi-ON” (with ON being emphasized), whereas locals say it more like “Zion” (rhyming with “lion”). If you want to blend in a little (or be able to tell locals from tourists), remember Zion rhymes with lion.

ZionWeddingPlanner_1789 what zion looks like in the snow sammie photo zion brides wedding wire the knot utah

Photo by Sammie Photo

zion brides logo top wedding vendors utah moab sedona grand canyon the knot wedding wire
The Top Resource for Adventure Couples & Destination Brides
Zion Brides feature wedding wire knot
ZB Team Since 2018
The Top Resource for Adventure Couples & Destination Brides
Zion Brides Publication Badge 2024
ZB Team Since 2018

Follow Us

Zion Brides Spring 2024 Adventure Wedding and Elopement Magazine cover



We don’t spam! Read our privacy policy for more info.

Search Zion Brides

zions brides mag fall 2023 top bride faqs wedding dress cover1

Get The Latest from Zion Brides

The perfect digital guide for adventure couples bringing their wedding/elopement
to epic places in the Southwest


Welcome to ZION BRIDES

Our online inspo publication, started in 2018, has helped countless couples find everything from how to build their dream wedding to the vendors that can make it all possible. 

We've achieved our mission of becoming the top site for destination weddings in the Southwest and want you to see why!  Our staff has years of experience in the industry and shares top tips, inspo, vendors, and more!  Let Zion Brides be your guide...

Zion Brides is honored to serve couples looking to have their destination wedding or elopement in and around places like Zion National Park, Moab, Grand Canyon, Sedona, Big Sur, and more. 


Need some ideas?  Looking for planners or venues?  Start here...