From Slopes to City—A Salt Lake Based Ski Trip

By Jessica Chindgren Feb 16, 2024
Looking for a ski trip with a Broadway play & James Beard Awarded cuisine? Cue Salt Lake City. Here are 2 sample itineraries to make the most of your ski trip.
From Slopes to City—A Salt Lake Based Ski Trip

It’s no surprise that Utah is known for its stunning natural beauty, from The Greatest Snow on Earth® to the Mighty Five National Parks. Although, what many people might not know is all of this exists with a thriving urban hub at its center, Salt Lake City. You may be surprised to find just how close Utah’s ski resorts are to the Salt Lake City International Airport. You don’t have to drive hours to reach the ski resorts here, in fact, there are four resorts approximately thirty minutes from Salt Lake—Alta Ski Area, Brighton, Snowbird, and Solitude Mountain Resort and 10 within ONE hour! 

Another shock to many visitors is how close Park City is to Salt Lake. Again, only about thirty minutes from Salt Lake, you’ll reach Park City where you can ski three more resorts—Park City Mountain, Deer Valley Resort and Woodward Park City. There’s no shortage of options in Utah for skiing! 

However, if you’re looking for a unique ski trip, one that includes not just skiing, but Broadway plays and James Beard Awarded cuisine, look no further than Salt Lake. From the slopes to the city, we’ve put together two sample itineraries to help get your trip planning juices flowing: 

For the early riser

8 am—first things first, coffee. Even if you’re an early riser, coffee is always a must have. On your way to the ski resort, stop by Cupla Coffee. Don’t let the strip mall appearance fool you, this local coffee shop has some fantastic brews. This single-batch roastery serves all ethically sourced, organic beans from around the world. They even have an in-house bakery specializing in healthy options and have a selection for everyone—gluten free, vegan, paleo, and keto. 

9 am—now for our favorite part, skiing. For this itinerary, we’re suggesting heading up Little Cottonwood Canyon to hit either Alta Ski Area or Snowbird. Alta is a ski-only resort, so for our snowboarders, be sure to go to Snowbird instead. Also, be sure to check out resort parking reservation requirements here.

3 pm—although the resorts stay open until 4pm, we recommend leaving a little early to beat any traffic on the way down the canyon and so you have plenty of energy and time to freshen up for your evening in the city.

5 pm—head over to Takashi for an early dinner. This popular sushi house doesn’t take reservations and always has a line out the door before its evening opening at 5pm. Pro tip, if you don’t want to sit on the waitlist, get in line right at 5pm or a little before and make sure you’re one of the first people seated. 

7 pm—Broadway anyone? You probably didn’t expect to hit a Broadway play after a day on the slopes did you? Well, that is one thing that makes our destination so special. The Eccles Theater located on Main Street in the heart of downtown Salt Lake, is a performing arts center designed by world-renowned architect Cesar Pelli. You can catch shows like Hamilton, Six, and The Lion King—just to name a few. Check the schedule for current shows and to buy tickets

For the night owl

10 am—first things first for the night owl, brunch. Of course, you are here to ski, but again what is so incredible about our destination is the proximity to the resorts and all you can fit into one day. We recommend checking out Beaumont Bakery. This spot has an adorable indoor seating area with delicious options from their savory Truffle Bun to their sweet Strawberry Cruffin. Another great thing this bakery offers, a drive-through. Although it’s far from fast food, the drive-through is a great option if you’re running behind schedule or antsy to get up to the slopes.

Noon —it’s finally ski time! You’ll find you can get tons of skiing in just three to four hours and you’ll be full from an incredible brunch. For this itinerary, we’re suggesting heading up Big Cottonwood Canyon to Brighton or Solitude Mountain Resort. Both resorts require parking reservations, but the best part is no reservations are required at either resort after 1pm. If you’d like to head up earlier, be sure to check the parking reservation requirements.

4 pm—Solitude is closed for the day, now head to Brighton’s Molly Greens or Solitude’s Thirsty Squirrel and have a little après ski appetizer or beverage. We recommend doing so and waiting out the canyon traffic a bit before heading back down to Salt Lake. If you're inclined to keep skiing, Brighton spins lifts for night skiing! 

7 pm—cue Cardi B’s “okurrrrrr”, and no, we’re not talking the slang of okay, we’re talking about the renowned restaurant, Oquirrh (pronounced like the slang). This restaurant is named after Salt Lake’s west-facing mountain range, The Oquirrhs, and offers locally sourced American Fare. From creator and head chef, Andrew Fuller, a James Beard Award semi-finalist for best chef, this fine dining experience will have you eating works of art. So hang your ski gear to dry and enter a culinary journey in this quaint, cozy restaurant. 

10 pm—head on over to Salt Lake’s newest hotspot, the Granary District. From famous bars like The Water Witch, to new beloved spots like The Pearl and Scion Cider Bar, this neighborhood is a perfect way to cap off your night in a lively yet low-key manner.