When you think of Salt Lake City, you might imagine mountains, skiing, and of course, a big lake. It’s true that these things exist in Salt Lake, but there is actually a lot more to know, and that is why is a really interesting place to stay while taking English lessons!
This city is home to gorgeous views and amazing snow, but it is also home to a wide variety of fun and interesting activities, festivals, destinations, restaurants, and a unique culture and history. Here are 21 facts you didn’t know about Salt Lake City:
Salt Lake City’s Best Activities and Destinations
- Shopping at City Creek Mall – Located in downtown Salt Lake City, City Creek Mall boasts 100+ stores to fill all your shopping needs. Here you can find clothing stores for men’s and women’s fashion, bath and body, perfume and cologne, and much more. If you find yourself hungry, you can visit the food court which offers a great selection of cuisine to choose from.
- A visit to Antelope Island – This island is found in the Great Salt Lake. For those looking for a quick day trip outside the city, this place is perfect. Here you will be able to look for wildlife, take scenic hikes, and get up close to the lake. You can even take a swim if you’d like!
- Take a weekend trip to a national park – Utah hosts 5 of the US’s national parks. While you will need to plan to spend at least the weekend at one of these parks, every moment spent in them will be worth it. Experience the range of beauty that Utah has to offer.
- Catch a show at Capitol Theater – Step into Utah’s history by catching a show at this 109 year old theater. Here you will be able to attend plays, musicals, and ballets, as well as catch dinner afterwards in Salt Lake’s downtown district.
- Lagoon – For those who want more of a thrill, then a day trip to Lagoon is the right place to go. Lagoon is an amusement park that is open June through October. In the summer, take a dip in their Lagoon-a-Beach, or if you prefer cooler weather then you can visit during Frightmares in the fall and experience a taste of Halloween!
Salt Lake City’s Best Festivals
- Pioneer Day – Every year, on July 25th, Utahns celebrate Pioneer day. This holiday is dedicated to the Mormon pioneers who made their way from New York to the valley Salt Lake City resides in today. To celebrate this holiday, people attend the Pioneer Day Parade, set off fireworks, and eat pie.
- Utah Arts Festival – Every June, Salt Lake City hosts the Utah Arts Festival. Here you can get acquainted with local artists and businesses, purchase unique artwork, and participate in a masquerade party.
- Sundance Film Festival – This festival takes place in Park City every winter. This world famous festival showcases films, directors, actors, actresses, and writers from across the globe. If you decide to brave the cold and visit this festival, you may just run into somebody famous! If you don’t feel like heading to Park City, you can always view the films at the Grand Theater in Salt Lake City.
- Nihon Matsuri – Salt Lake City is a home to many different kinds of people from all over the world. Every year, the city hosts many different kinds of cultural festivals , and Nihon Matsuri is one of them. This festival celebrates Utah’s Japanese population. Here you can buy food, toys, and clothes that come from Japan. You can also watch presentations on tea and see incredible performances with Japanese drums.
- Hispanic Heritage Parade and Festival – This parade offers a glimpse into Utah’s Hispanic community. Here, you can find traditional dances, food, and dress from all across Middle and South America. You can also support local Hispanic artists and businesses. This festival takes place every September in downtown Salt Lake City.
- The Shakespeare Festival – Through June to September, Cedar City, Utah hosts the Shakespeare Festival. This well known festival is perfect for those interested in the arts. You can also visit the Dixie National Forest while in Cedar City.
Salt Lake City’s Best Restaurants
- Red Iguana – This restaurant is one of the best places to get Mexican food in the Salt Lake valley. Not only has Red Iguana received glowing reviews, but has even appeared on the hit TV show Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives! Built in 1985, Red Iguana has been a long standing staple in Salt Lake City, and still maintains its popularity today.
- Lucky 13 – Get a taste of American pub food at this lively bar and restaurant. Here, you can get a typical American burger, or you can branch out and try something unique like the famous peanut butter burger. It may surprise you that it’s actually delicious!
- Caputo’s – This neighborhood deli is great for a quick and tasty lunch. While you wait for your sandwich to be made, you can peruse the luxury coffees, chocolates, and breads, as well as staples like local honey and oils.
- Osteria Amore – If you’re in the mood for something Italian, Osteria Amore is the first place you should go. Along with all the typical Italian dishes, you can try the delicious pistachio pasta.
- The Pie Pizzeria – This pizza joint has remained one of Salt Lake’s favorite places to get a slice. Try a wide variety of toppings on your pizza, or give their savory wings a try, there is something here to make everyone happy.
Tips You Need to Know About Living in Salt Lake City
- It gets cold here in the winter months! It can snow from October through March, so you better bring some warm clothes, a good coat, and waterproof boots!
- Plan for a fun time earlier in the evening. Stores and restaurants tend to close pretty early in Salt Lake City, so you will struggle to find a restaurant or store open past 10 PM. Also, many stores do not open on Sundays!
- Drink lots of water! Salt Lake City is technically in a desert. This means the air is very dry, and many newcomers find that they get dehydrated easily. Make sure to keep some water on you so that you never get dehydrated.
- If you are coming from a place with lower altitude, it can take some time to get used to life at a higher altitude. Many visitors to Salt Lake talk about having headaches for a few days after arriving, so make sure you are able to rest and get used to life at 4,000 feet above sea level!
- Find your local supermarket. Every neighborhood offers a few different options to shop at for all of your needs. From fresh and affordable produce at Rancho Markets, to high quality breads and cheeses at Harmon’s, you can find whatever you need at reasonable prices. A few other stores of note are Smith’s, Trader Joe’s, Sprout’s, and Whole Foods.
Now you know 21 things about Salt Lake City that you might not have known before. Whether you are looking to experience Utah’s gorgeous nature, or take a trip to one of Salt Lake’s many restaurants, there will always be something for you to do in your downtime.