Some say that the little town of Kanab is in the middle of nowhere. Depending on how you look at it, that could be considered correct. Situated just seven miles north of the Arizona border, Kanab was once almost completely cut off from the rest of the world. To the east, the Colorado River kept travelers at bay. Rough, dirt roads provided the only access from other directions, and short 20-mile trips could take several days. Luckily, US-89 was built, and visitors quickly saw what the residents of Kanab already knew – this place is surrounded on all sides by pure beauty. Take a look at what Kanab has to offer.
Downtown Kanab is set against the stunning red rock beauty of Utah's desert landscape.
It was settled in 1864 and is currently home to about 4,400 people.
Kanab has several beautiful, historic buildings.
The Rider-Pugh house, shown here, was built in 1892.
Visit the Little Hollywood Museum to learn about Kanab's history as THE place to film Westerns.
Pretty much every famous Western movie was filmed in or near Kanab, it seems. The museum is located at 297 W. Center Street. It's open every day from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m..
Celebrate Jacob Hamlin Days.
This annual festival, held every June, celebrates Kanab's western heritage.
You'll find several adorable restaurants offering up some tasty food.
Kanab has quite a few restaurants for a town its size, and you can get a pretty diverse range of food from pizza to burgers to finer dining. Pictured is Rocking V Cafe, 97 W. Center Street.
Kanab is also home to roughly 1,600 homeless animals.
Visit Best Friends Animal Society, a sanctuary for homeless dogs, cats, horses, rabbits, llamas...pretty much any animal you can imagine. The no-kill sanctuary helps finds homes for these gorgeous animals and is committed to ending the killing of unwanted pets in shelters around the country. Stop by to find your new best friend, or just to say hello. This is truly a special place.
The town itself is pretty cool, but it's also surrounded by tons of amazing parks.
Kanab is smack-dab in the center of some incredible national and state parks, national monuments, lakes and more. It's the perfect home base for all your exploration.
Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park is tons of fun.
Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park is a favorite recreation spot for ATV enthusiasts, but it's also a beautiful location for hiking and enjoying nature. It's just a short half-hour drive west of Kanab.
The North Rim of the Grand Canyon is just across the border.
Visit the north rim of the Grand Canyon, just about 1.5 hours south of Kanab, across the Arizona border.
Bryce Canyon National Park is nearby.
Drive north about 1.5 hours to witness the majestic view and incredible hoodoos and spires of Bryce Canyon National Park.
It's a short, scenic drive to Johnson Canyon.
It's about 37 minutes to get to Johnson Canyon where you'll enjoy some incredible scenery and can also see the film set from Gunsmoke.
Head to Lake Powell for some boating fun.
Lake Powell is about an hour from Kanab along UT-89. Rent a houseboat, jump on some jet skis and explore this Utah/Arizona treasure.
Zion National Park is just an hour from Kanab.
Utah's most popular national park is gorgeous year-round. Visit during fall and winter months for fewer tourists.
Explore Kodachrome Basin State Park
It's about a two-hour drive to Kodachrome Basin State Park where you'll witness the rich, vibrant colors of Utah's red rock country.
Cedar Breaks National Monument is gorgeous.
The amphitheater of Cedar Breaks National Monument sits over 10,000 feet above sea level and rises 2,000 feet above the valley floor.
Stop for a tasty meal and some "ho-made" pie in Mt. Carmel.
Less than 20 minutes from Kanab, Mt. Carmel is home to the Thunderbird Restaurant, which has been operating here for decades. The pie? Really is amazing!
I’m willing to bet that if you’ve done much traveling in Utah, you’ve visited Kanab at least once. What do you love about this little town?
We love Utah’s small towns! Check out more of the Beehive State’s charming little towns
here and here.