10 Of The Best Arches In Arches National Park, Utah

Best Arches in Arches National Park

Arches National Park is home to over 2000 documented arches and unique geological formations. Picking a few of the best arches In Arches National Park to see on your visit can be a hard task!

Most of the main park arches are located along the Arches National Park Road which travels through the park. These arches can be reached via designated paths and short hiking trails that lead directly to them.

I’ve had the pleasure of visiting Arches National Park several times over the years and it’s always a remarkable experience!

In this post, I share 10 of the best arches to explore in Arches National Park and other tips to help you plan your visit.

Some of the links used in this blog may be affiliate links. At no extra cost to you, I earn a small commission when you book through these links for which I am very thankful!

Best Arches In Arches National Park:

1. Delicate Arch

Delicate Arch sits at the edge of a cliff with the La Sal Mountains as its backdrop

If there is one arch that you MUST visit at Arches National Park, it’s the Delicate Arch! This is the most recognizable of all the geological formations at this park.

Delicate Arch consists of a towering, freestanding arch that has been sculpted by rain and wind for millions of years. This iconic arch can be reached via moderate 3 miles long out-and-back trail.

The trail leading to Delicate Arch

The hike starts at the Delicate Arch Trailhead, passes the historic Wolfe Ranch, and climbs up a sloping slickrock until it ends at a close-up view of the stunning arch.

A few things to note about the Delicate Arch Trail:

  • There is very little to no shade so bring plenty of water for the hike.
  • Sections of this hike pass on slick rock surfaces so good hiking shoes with grip are recommended.
  • Some parts of the trail cross narrow sections with exposure to steep drop-offs below. This is not ideal for people who have fear of heights (I was pretty terrified the first time I did this hike but had no issues on my latest visit).
  • Once you reach the arch you will need to walk along a bowl-shaped surface that slopes inwards. Be careful of where you step especially on rainy or snowy days as falling into the bowl can lead to injuries or fatalities.  

Once you reach the massive arch, most people snap a few photos standing under it before turning around and heading back.

This is a very popular trail so you might need to wait around a bit for the crowds to clear to take a photo. There is some space to take a break if you want to bring some snacks to sit around and enjoy the views.

Hike Summary:

2. Double Arch

The Double Arch is one of the most popular rock formations at Arches National Park. It can easily be visited from The Windows Road via a quick 0.25-mile-long sandy trail. At any given time it’s guaranteed to have crowds so it’s best to see it early in the morning before it gets too packed.

The Double Arch is a natural formation that eroded away due to water seeping through the cliff face. Eventually, the roof of the rock broke off and now looks like a couple of arches that connect together on one end.

The largest opening is 144 feet long and 112 feet high making it the highest arch within Arches National Park. This is also the third-largest arch in the park.

Hike Summary:

  • Length: .5 miles out and back
  • Elevation: 30 feet
  • Difficulty Level: Easy
  • Starting Point: Double Arch Trailhead

3. North Window & South Window Arches

South Window Arch

The North Window and South Window are some of the park’s largest arches that are located very close to each other. These are two magnificent arches that have giant openings at the center of them.

Both arches are made of Entrada Sandstone rock that has been shaped for over 150 million years.

The short and popular Windows Trail takes you up close to the arches base where you can roam around and check out the views of the surrounding landscape from the other side of them. As an alternative route, you can take the more challenging Primitive Trail back to the parking lot.

Hike Summary:

  • Length: .8 miles to the Window Arches & back
  • Elevation: 100 feet
  • Difficulty Level: Easy
  • Starting Point: Windows Trailhead

4. Turret Arch

The trail to Turret Arch

Turret Arch is located near the North & South Window Arches so you can combine all three arches into a longer loop and see them on the same visit.

The trail to Turret Arch follows leveled rock steps and is one of the shortest hikes within the park. The Windows Trail is a great family-friendly hike where you can visit many of the park’s major features!

The Turret Arch consists of two openings. One of the arches is large & tall and the second opening is small & round. You can climb up on rocks to explore the arch up close.

Hike Summary:

  • Length: .6 miles to the Turret Arch & back
  • Elevation: 100 feet
  • Difficulty Level: Easy
  • Starting Point: Windows Trailhead

5. Sand Dune Arch

The Sand Dune Arch is tucked away amongst sandstone fins

The Sand Dune Arch is a stunning hidden gem and one of my favorite arches at this park. This arch is located behind towering red rock formations called ‘sandstone fins‘ and can be reached via a short, sandy trail.

The surrounding rock walls offer plenty of shade along this trail so it can be done any time of the day. This is a great place for kids to explore as you’ll come across mini slot canyons and many nooks and crevices.

There is a lot to explore along the Sand Dune Arch Trail

Keep in mind that it is not allowed to climb on top of the arches as they are very sensitive and can break easily.

Hike Summary:

6. Broken Arch

Broken Arch is a scenic landmark with a fracture at the center of it

The Broken Arch is located near the Sand Dune Arch so you can combine them both together on the same hike. You can also reach it coming from the north via the Broken Arch Trailhead.

The hike to Broken Arch follows a field full of desert plants, bushes, and grasslands. This route provides visitors with a unique backcountry experience that leads through red and orange Mars-like landscapes.

The trail leading from Sand Dune Arch to Broken Arch

Although this sandstone arch is still intact, it does have a crack at the center of it earning its name as the Broken Arch. This is one of the least visited arches within the park so it’s a great option if you want to escape the crowds.

Hike Summary:

  • Length: 1.4 miles round trip
  • Elevation: 60 feet
  • Difficulty Level: Easy
  • Starting Point: Broken Arch Trailhead

7. Pine Tree Arch

There are so many great arches to visit at this National Park and each one of them is slightly different than the last!

As you may expect, the Pine Tree Arch earns its name from the pine trees that grow around its base. This arch sits level with the ground so visitors can easily walk through it without doing any scrambling.

The Pine Tree Arch has an interesting shape, especially when looking at it from the side. This arch is narrow at its base and gets wider towards the top.

Interesting rock wall next to the Pine Tree Arch

To the left of the arch, there is a rock formation that looks like a sloped wave. All in all, this is a pretty fascinating area to check out along the Devil’s Garden Trail.

Hike Summary:

8. Tunnel Arch

Tunnel Arch is located high up on a rock wall and can only be observed from afar. This arch looks like a round, perfectly shaped opening at the center of the sandstone slab.

There is a designated viewing area with wooden beams indicating where the best views of the Tunnel Arch are located. Around every turn of the Devil’s Garden Trail, there is something interesting to discover!

Hike Summary:

9. Landscape Arch

This is another easily accessible arch that is part of the Devil’s Garden Trail. The Landscape Arch is located about a mile from the trailhead, and you have the option to add another 0.5 miles to see the Pine Tree & Tunnel arches along the way.

The Landscape Arch is one of the longest natural stone arches in the world spanning 306 feet from base to base. From the Landscape Arch, you can also keep going on a more difficult trail to see the Double O Arch as well.

Hike Summary:

10. Skyline Arch

Similar to the Tunnel Arch, the Skyline Arch is perched high up on a sandstone wall. Visitors can view this arch from afar or go on a short walk up to its base for a closer look.

Typically, the arches take shape slowly over millions of years but the Skyline Arch formed after a large boulder fell out of the cliff face in 1940. The arch is around 71 feet wide and 33 feet tall.

Hike Summary:

Tips For Visiting Arches National Park

Here are a few tips for a safe trip to Arches National Park:

  • There is very little to no cell service once you enter the park. Be sure to look up the main attractions and download an offline hiking map like AllTrails or Maps.Me ahead of time.
  • There is no water or food at Arches National Park so come prepared with plenty of water, food & snacks for the day.
  • There are no gas stations within the park boundaries. I recommend filling up on gas before leaving Moab.
  • Avoid hiking during the hottest parts of the day, especially in the summer. From June to August heat picks up in the desert and the temperatures can spike past 100 degrees. This can be very dangerous for hiking since there is very little to no shade along the trails. If you plan to visit Arches NP in the summer months bring a hiking hat and plenty of sunscreen to battle the harsh desert sun.
Shaded picnic area for resting at Arches National Park

Here are a few rules and advisories to keep in mind for your visit:

  • Dogs are not allowed on any of the trails and are limited to staying on paved roads and campgrounds.
  • Droning is not allowed in National Parks. Flying a drone in National Parks can lead to a hefty fine. It’s best to leave it at home or in the hotel.
  • It is illegal to climb on top of the arches or any prominent rock features at this park.
  • Vandalizing, graffiti, or removing anything from National Parks is prohibited.  
  • Please follow the ‘Leave No Trace’ principles when visiting the outdoors and leave places better than you found them.

Arches National Park Hours & Reservations

In recent years, Arches National Park has started to implement a reservation system to help battle overcrowding and traffic.

This reservation system requires all visitors to purchase timed entry tickets from April to October.

These tickets cost $2 and can be reserved online for entry times between 6 am to 5 pm. Some of the tickets go on sale 3 months in advance and the remainder of tickets are released at 6 pm the night before.

If you can, try to reserve the tickets well ahead of time to ensure the best entry time. We planned our latest trip to Utah last minute so we got entrance tickets for whatever time we could get the night before.

The best entry windows like 9 am & 10 am go first but we were able to secure tickets for 11 am entry. Keep in mind that if you plan to return the following day, you will need to get ANOTHER timed pass for that day as well.

Book Arches National Park Timed Entry Tickets on Recreation.gov here!

Timed entrances ensure that the park doesn’t get overcrowded during peak times

Along with the timed entry tickets, you will need to pay a fee to enter Arches National Park. A one-time Arches National Park vehicle fee is $30 and is good for 7 consecutive days. 

If you plan to visit several National Parks or return at a later date, I suggest getting America the Beautiful Pass which grants you unlimited entries into any US National Park for a year. This is the pass that I get every year and it pays itself off within a few trips.

Other Things To Do Near Arches National Park

Looking for more fun things to do in the area? Here are a few popular tours and excursions near Arches National Park.

Arches National Park 4×4 Adventure From Moab

Photo by Navtec Expeditions

Arches National Park is home to thousands of arches, but many of the arches are located in remote corners and can’t be accessed from the main road. If you’re looking to get away from the crowds and explore different sections of the park, consider signing up for this 4×4 Arches National Park tour.

With knowledgeable guides, you’ll get to enjoy an unforgettable experience driving to isolated places within the Arches National Park backcountry. You will even get to see fossilized dinosaur footprints!

Book the Arches National Park 4×4 Adventure Tour here!

Rafting Day Trip From Moab

Photo by Navtec Expeditions

Going on a thrilling rafting trip is a great way to take in the scenery of the vast desert landscape and see parts of Utah that are otherwise off-limits. This half-day rafting trip will take you down moderate Class II and Class III rapids in Fisher Towers, just a short drive outside of Moab.

During the rafting expedition, you’ll get to float through the meandering Colorado River that has carved its way through the steep red sandstone canyons in Utah. This is a fun activity for the entire family that you will cherish long after the trip.

Book Fisher Towers Half-Day Rafting Day Trip from Moab here!

Moab Rappelling Adventure

Photo by Paddle Moab

Rappelling down a steep canyon wall is one of the most adrenaline-filled activities that you can do in Utah! Paddle Moab arranges small group tours to Medieval Chamber Slot Canyon for those who want to try out this exciting activity near Moab.  

During this tour, you will head out on a short hike to rappel down two canyons, one of which is 120 feet tall. Even if you have a fear of heights, the guides will walk you through the process so you can have a safe and enjoyable experience. During this trip, you’ll also get to enjoy stunning views of the Grandstaff Canyon and the windy Colorado River.  

Book the Moab Rappelling Adventure here!

Places To Stay Near Arches National Park

Before we dive into the details of which arches to visit, here are some of the top places to stay in Moab for a comfortable and relaxing trip to Arches National Park:

Hyatt Place In Moab

There’s a lot to love about staying at the Hyatt Place in Moab from the stunning outdoor pool and hot tub to a delicious complimentary breakfast and great amenities.

Hyatt Place Moab Hotel is nestled in between towering red rock formations with beautiful mountain views all around. The hotel offers a fabulous bar for guests to relax after traveling completed with contemporary, hip furniture. Arches National Park can easily be reached within a short drive.

Book Hyatt Place Moab Hotel here!

Hoodoo Moab, Curio Collection by Hilton

Photo by Hoodoo Moab

With its prime location, sophisticated suites & rooms, and a full-service spa, Hoodoo Moab is a highly-rated hotel suitable for families or couples.

All rooms are air-conditioned and furnished in a modern and chic style, with balconies overlooking the central area and a swimming pool. There is a bar within the Hoodoo Moab and a restaurant that serves an amazing breakfast.

Book Hoodoo Moab Hotel here!

Moab Springs Ranch

Photo by Moab Springs Ranch

Moab Springs Ranch is a beautifully appointed hotel popular for its bungalow-style cabins. The rooms feature kitchen space, a dedicated seating area, and tall vaulted ceilings.

A restaurant, barbecue area, and free parking add to the appeal of this charming & pleasant hotel. All the main local parks and attractions are located within a few miles of the hotel.

Book Moab Springs Ranch Cabins here!

Read More: 12 Best Places To Stay In Moab For An Incredible Trip To Utah

We hope this guide has helped you prepare for a wonderful visit to Arches National Park! Looking for more Utah travel inspiration? Be sure to check out some of our other popular Utah travel posts below:

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