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One day in Salt Lake City

Salt Lake City skyline

On my last trip through Utah, I only had one day in Salt Lake City, so I knew that eventually I would want to go back and spend a little more time there. It’s such an interesting mix of communities, backed by stunning mountain scenery. So when the time came to plan our moving road trip, I added it to the itinerary!

Salt Lake City, Utah
November, 2018


We drove to Salt Lake City from Park City, which only took about 40 minutes. We happened to do it late in the day when the sun was finally emerging after a day of clouds and fog. The mountains turned gold and it couldn’t have been prettier!


We stayed at the Sheraton Salt Lake City Hotel, which was everything we needed it to be: clean, cheap (in points), conveniently located and flush with parking spots. We didn’t spend much time there, as we got back from dinner late and set out to explore the city pretty early in the morning, but it got good marks from me and I would definitely stay there again. 

Sheraton Hotel Salt Lake City hallway
Sheraton Hotel SLC bed
Sheraton Hotel Salt Lake City lobby


For dinner, we tried Meditrina, a Mediterranean small plates restaurants that focuses on using local ingredients. Our favorite dining experience from our one day in Salt Lake City actually came the next morning, though, with brunch at Avenues Proper, the home of Proper Brewing Co. Jake and I both had chilaquiles and agreed that they were stellar. On the way out, I realized I had actually been there on my last trip to SLC, and if I’d known that I probably would have chosen somewhere else to go. But I’m so glad I didn’t, as it gave me a chance to try a totally different menu of theirs!

Tables at Meditrina
Huevos Rancheros at Avenues Proper


We tried two coffee places in Salt Lake City this time around: Blue Copper Coffee and Publik Coffee Roasters. Publik was definitely my favorite; it’s a large, airy space that’s perfect for getting some work done or meeting friends. 

Exterior of Publik Coffee Roasters
Interior of Publik Coffee Roasters


We arrived close to sunset, so we beelined directly for my favorite place in Salt Lake City: the state Capitol. I’m not necessarily big on Capitols, but I LOVE the scenery up near Utah’s; the building is just gorgeous. And it was an easy sell to convince Jake, who IS big on them. After that, we drove up to Ensign Peak, which offers the best views of the city skyline from just behind the Capitol. (Quick tip: Google maps took us all the way up, but we found that the best view was actually a couple minutes before we reached the top. Stop wherever you see pretty scenery you’d like to enjoy!)

Utah state capitol building
Monument at the Utah state capitol building
Utah state capitol building
Utah state capitol from behind
Carly sitting on Ensign Peak

After that, we made a quick trip to Temple Square before the sun set. It’s a huge area with lots to see and learn, and you can delve in as deep as you want to. I had spent some time there on my previous trip, so we just did a quick walk through to see the beautiful buildings at dusk, but here’s more info on tours if you’re interested in learning more!

We continued with some shopping and exploring downtown, which at the time was all lit up for the holidays.

Temple Square spires
Fountain with lights


I would love to see the Great Salt Lake at sunrise, but it’s a little ways away from the city itself, so it didn’t happen this time. I would also love to see a Utah Jazz home game, and I mayyy or may not already be plotting how to get back for one!


Hotels in Salt Lake City are SO CHEAP, but in my attempt to cover our entire moving road trip for free, I decided to redeem points for the stay. This is DEFINITELY not something I would have done under normal circumstances!

Like I did in Santa Fe, I went the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal route on the Sheraton booking since the portal ties the price of the room in points to the price in dollars. That means a cheap rate will yield a small points charge, which is sometimes different than what you’ll find when booking with the hotel’s own currency. I decided to hold on to my Marriott points since they’re more difficult for me to earn and instead redeemed 7,012 Ultimate Rewards points (worth $105.18) for our stay. I successfully added my Marriott number and reaped my Platinum Elite rewards (upgrade, breakfast) upon arrival, but because we used the portal to book instead of booking direct, I didn’t earn points on the stay. 

For more on earning and using points and miles to travel for free, visit the 52 Cities free resource library or register to join me on my next live masterclass. For more on Salt Lake City, check out this list of things to know before you go. And finally, for more on my cross-country moving road trip, head to this post, which links to roundups from each stop on the journey!

Utah state capitol from afar

What would you do with one day in Salt Lake City? Let me know in the comments! >>

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One day in Salt Lake City
One day in Salt Lake City
One day in Salt Lake City