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Two Weeks Driving The Circle National Parks

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I was lucky enough to spend two weeks driving from Colorado to Las Vegas and back in a circular route taking in some of America’s most impressive national parks (covering 2500 miles in the process). Not only was the scenery scarcely believable (it was like being in a different country every day), but the people were incredibly friendly and generous everywhere I went and the food – despite stereotypes to the contrary – was superb, and healthy too.

The general route follows (usually a couple of days exploring in each place) and I’d highly recommend you give it a go – we could have easily spent 2 weeks in each park!

  • Flew to Denver airport
  • Drove to the Rocky Mountain National Park
  • A long drive (via some scenic stops) to Canyonlands National Park
  • An amazingly scenic drive to Bryce Canyon (what a place!)
  • A few days in Vegas (which I wouldn’t recommend to be honest)
  • Next up, the meteor crater near Flagstaff (wanted to go since I was a kid)
  • The relatively short hop to the Grand Canyon (yes, it’s as stunning as everyone says)
  • Then onto the south of Lake Powell and the famous Horsehoe Bend
  • Heading east to Mesa Verde National Park
  • Through Rio Grande National Forest towards…
  • Great Sand Dunes National Park – completely unexpected sand dunes!
  • Finally back to Denver and off home!

My favourite US state is definitely Utah as it has some incredible roads, scenery and every day was jaw dropping! I had a drone that I flew for some aerial shots when I could (they’re banned in National Parks). Anyway, some random photos of the trip follow – enjoy!

 

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Creator of John's Background Switcher. Scotsman, footballer, photographer, dog owner, risk taker, heart breaker, nice guy. Some of those are lies.

13 Comments Join the Conversation

  1. Dear John,

    Whow, fantastic pictures.

    I have been there twice.

    All the pictures you showed, I have seen them too.

    It’s the most fantastic place on earth !!

    Thank you for sharing,

    Regards,

    Stefaan,

    Belgium

    Reply

  2. These are fantastic photos; it must have been a grand adventure. Good planning huh? thanks for sharing.

    Reply

  3. My wife and I did much the same trip after flying into Las Vegas and driving starting at Zion. You are right. Utah is a great place. We also saw Natural Bridges and Valley of the Gods. Would love to do it again.

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  4. So glad you enjoyed our country! I-would2 love to see yours. I am still enjoying your picture ap.

    Reply

    • Yeah the UK is lovely, but we definitely don’t have such incredible and spectacular scenery, not to mention space! What a country you have there! 🙂

      Reply

      • I loved the UK, it has been quit a few years since I was there but enjoyed it immensely and would love to go back.

        Reply

  5. Wonderful photos, I have been to Bryce & The Grand Canyons (drove thru Zion to elsewhere). Bryce is beautiful, was afraid The Grand Canyon was going to be a disappointment – it WASN’T. Yes the roads were straight and empty of other cars a good part of the time. Again wonderful photos!

    Reply

  6. I am sorry to see that you stayed at a trump hotel… 😦

    Reply

  7. Glad you have a great trip, I live in Grand Junction CO, just before you leave Colorado and enter Utah to go to Canyon Lands. I also lived in South West Colorado near Durango and Mesa Verde. I am so use to the mountains and natural formations I forget them sometimes. When Google+ first came out and they would give you “content near you” and people would take pictures of the mountains and say how different they are, I realized that not everyone sees this stuff all the time. Recently I have had more traveling for work to Texas and the South USA, they only have flat land and trees, it caused me some worry because I am use to navigating using geological features to know what way I am traveling. I also say skip Vegas, it’s just a dirty money hole in the desert.

    Reply

    • Haha, I guess you’re used to the scenery but I still can’t quite believe how spectacular it is! Photos from the trip keep showing up on my desktop and Chromecast and I saw “wow” a lot!

      Reply

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