“Why are you going to Salt Lake City? What is there to do there?” We heard these questions from family and friends more than once as we prepared for a two-week trip out west.
To be honest, we weren’t exactly sure what there was to do there, if anything, but it seemed like a good place to fly into. The intent was to spend a week in the Salt Lake City/Park City area, hopefully doing some sightseeing if there was any to do, and then drive a rental car up to Yellowstone for a week.
Boy, were we in for a surprise! We found Salt Lake City to be a very fascinating and clean large city and Park City a most charming area known for excellent skiing and winter sports.
We stayed at the Miners’ Club in Park City, which was our first experience with a Raintree timeshare. Located in the Canyon area of Park City, the Waldorf Astoria was right next door. We had a 4-bedroom unit, which was absolutely gorgeous! (I think we used 28k Wyndham points to book it). There were 2 bottom bedrooms and 2 full baths (one with a jacuzzi), and the upstairs loft had 2 bedrooms, 2 baths (another Jacuzzi!) and a sitting area with TV and internet access. We had a washer and dryer on the lower level.
The kitchen was state-of-the-art. There was a living area complete wth dining room furniture and a gas fireplace. If we had to find something wrong, it would be that the living room in our unit was kind of small and crowded, especially since there was a maximum occupancy of 10. Since there were just the 2 of us, we didn’t really care. The balcony off the master bedroom offered a wonderful view of a mountain and the ski lifts, which were within walking distance of the resort. There was also a gas fireplace in the master bedroom!
The resort had an outdoor heated pool and hot tub. There was a fitness room on the lower level, as well as a small restaurant/bar area. There were no organized resort activities, except for a $10 Barbecue Night in the restaurant. We checked it out, but no one else was there, so we didn’t stay.
As for what to do in the area, one of the neatest things was a visit to the Olympic Park, site of the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympic events. Specifically, the bobsled, luge, and ski events were held here, and all the runs are still used for training by our athletes, and foreign teams as well. There is a large training pool for jumps and moguls.
The museum area features Olympic memorabilia, including some of the animal figures used in the opening and closing ceremonies. For around $8 per person, we took a 45 minute bus tour of the park, hosted by a former TV announcer and luge participant. Very educational and informative, and not-to-be-missed if you visit.
The stores in Park City tend to be souvenir-oriented, but there are also many shops that feature beautiful art for sale. The restaurants tend to be on the expensive side, and there are many of them downtown. One day, we drove out to Sundance, the Robert Redford-owned resort. The scenery and views were magnificent around this simplistic, yet elegant place.
Staying in Park City was wonderful, but since it wasn’t ski season (and we don’t ski, anyway) we needed something else to do. Luckily, Salt Lake City is only 35 minutes away, and so on 3 separate days, we headed there to see what we could find. Stay tuned for Part 2!