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What State Parks and National Parks Are Near Las Vegas?

February 9, 2024


Las Vegas may be known for its vibrant nightlife, world-class restaurants, and memorable shows and concerts, but venture just outside the city, and you’ll find national and state parks that are equally stunning. 

The landscape surrounding Las Vegas offers a unique experience. Whether you are an outdoor enthusiast or prefer the glitz of the Strip, nearby national and state parks offer something for everyone. Want to enjoy the stunning views all year long from the comfort of your own home? You can when you choose from the Las Vegas apartments with Ovation. Read on to discover a selection of popular destinations you won’t want to miss. 

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What State Parks Are Located Near Las Vegas?

State parks have lots to offer, and the well-hidden locations often deliver the most memorable charm. Let’s look at some of the best state parks worth a day trip from the Las Vegas Strip.

Old Las Vegas Mormon Fort State Historic Park

Old Las Vegas Mormon Fort Park was a Mormon settlement founded in 1855, and is one of the first sites of its kind in the greater Las Vegas area. Once here, you’ll find a unique landscape, complete with a reconstructed version of the original fort. There’s also an on-site visitor center and a museum that displays historical artifacts, photographs, and exhibits. Located in the heart of downtown Las Vegas, Nevada, you don’t have to go far to visit one of the most popular and historic state parks Nevada has to offer. Plus, it’s one of the best things to do near Las Vegas if you’re looking to have a laid-back day.

Valley of Fire State Park

Conveniently located about 56 miles from the Las Vegas Strip, this historic and one-of-a-kind state park is aptly named for its bright red Aztec sandstone outcrops that stand out amongst the gray and tan limestone. There are over 40,000 acres of this unique topography, making it a go-to destination for outdoor enthusiasts and travelers alike. 

Discover some of the best hiking trails the West has to offer and explore historical sites, petrified ancient trees, artifacts, fossils, petroglyphs, and so much more. If you love to climb, specific park areas are designed for rock climbing and can be a great way to reach new heights while connecting with the outdoors. 

Gunlock State Park

While some may tell you not to go chasing waterfalls, at Gunlock State Park, that’s exactly what you’re supposed to do. This scenic location is tucked away in Gunlock, Utah, but it offers a unique atmosphere. Located about two hours away from the Vegas Strip, a day trip is easily doable. Popular attractions you can enjoy here include boating, fishing, swimming, and so much more. 

Quail Creek State Park

Looking for a calming and low-key place to enjoy the serenity of the desert? Quail Creek State Park can be a great place to go. This state park was established in 1986 and is home to a 600-acre reservoir with two dams. You’ll find lookout spots where you can enjoy the serenity of the environment, as well as outdoor amenities that guarantee a fun time. Boat, swim, or fish during the summer months, or enjoy the Slalom ski course in the winter. There are plenty of ways to enjoy all that this state park offers. 

What National Parks Are Located Near Las Vegas?

You don’t have to venture far to find the best national parks. Below are some of our top favorite national parks near Las Vegas.

Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area

Red Rock Canyon stands out with its unique red sandstone formations. Exploring the canyon is a great way to plan an outdoor day trip, and you’ll find plenty of hikes and biking trails to explore. Whether you bike or drive, the famous 13-mile scenic drive offers stunning views of this one-of-a-kind backdrop. If you’re feeling extra adventurous, this national park offers overnight camping for unforgettable evenings under the starry skies. Entry to the park is about a 20-minute drive, making it an easy day trip.

Grand Canyon National Park

Honored with the title of one of the greatest national treasures, one of the Seven Wonders of the World, and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, there is so much to appreciate with the Grand Canyon. 

Spanning four states — Nevada, Arizona, Colorado, and Utah — and attracting over 4.7 million visitors a year, you must experience this world wonder firsthand. There are three main entrances, but if you are staying in Vegas, the closest is the West Rim in Peach Springs, AZ, just 125 miles away from Las Vegas. Enjoy sightseeing, kayaking, hiking, Desert View Drive, and so much more. Be forewarned; the beauty here will make you want to move to Las Vegas or the nearby area! 

Zion National Park

The stunning views, seeping canyons, and marvels of hidden caves and pools make Zion National Park one of the most sought-after travel destinations in the U.S. Hiking, camping, and RV parking; this national park has it all. Notable attractions throughout the park include:

  • The Narrows — a narrow canyon hike alongside the Virgin River
  • Weeping Rock — a natural spring waterfall
  • Emerald pools tucked among the cliffs
  • Scenic drives, including Zion-Mt. Carmel Highway and the 54-mile Zion Canyon scenic drive

Lake Mead National Recreation Area (NRA)

For a day of fun in the sun, a trip out to Lake Mead National Recreation Area is guaranteed to be a blast. Plus, it’s only 25 miles outside of the Vegas Strip. Lake Mead is notable for its scenic backdrops and water activities, including boating, canoeing, rafting, and fishing. There are also plenty of hiking trails, such as the historic Railroad Trail, and several slot canyons, caves, coves, and hot springs worth exploring. If you’re a bird lover, Overton Arm is the best place to sightsee Bald Eagles. 

What Are the Most Scenic Things To See Near Las Vegas?

Red Rock Canyon near Las Vegas

There are plenty of ways to enjoy the serenity of the outdoors near the Strip. If you are planning a trip to one of the national or state parks, some of the best scenic things to see near Las Vegas include: 

  • Exploring hiking and biking trails
  • Planning a scenic drive
  • Discovering the beauty of the topography with a hot air balloon ride
  • Taking a helicopter ride over the Grand Canyon

The Best of Las Vegas With Ovation

Proudly offering luxury apartments for rent in Las Vegas for locals and transplants who want to soak in the beauty surrounding the city full hand, Ovation Vegas is proud to connect you with the best residential properties available.

Find your next luxury apartment in Las Vegas with Ovation Vegas.