Spending time in the outdoors with the little ones can be a joy. But it helps to remember that they don’t have the same stamina that you do—not to mention little legs. Davis County, Utah, just north of Salt Lake City, is home to plenty of summer options that will bring smiles to their young faces, and yours. Here are 7 of the best outdoor options for outdoor enthusiasts with young ones looking to explore Davis County.
1. Hit the Beach
Anyone looking for a beach experience in Utah should look no further than Bridger Bay Beach on the northern edge of Antelope Island State Park. The huge, white-sand beach, stretching for two miles along the Great Salt Lake is Utah’s best place to spread out a towel, make a sand castle, set up a volleyball net, skip flat rocks, or take a swim in the briny water. The lake boasts a higher salt level than the ocean so you’ll float and bob in the buoyant water. The lake rarely has waves and there’s no drop-off, making it perfect for kids to wade in the shallows. The beach also offers forever views across the calm water and is simply the best spot in Davis County to enjoy the sunset.
2. Take a Tour of the Shorelands
The 4,400-acre Great Salt Lake Shorelands Preserve is one of Utah’s most unique ecosystems, a blending of salt and freshwater marshes, ponds, pools, sloughs, and mudflats. Located between the Great Salt Lake and Farmington Bay, it’s a great place to explore. You’ll likely see many of the tens of thousands of migrating birds that stop here each year. First stop at the visitor center, where you can start the boardwalk trail over the wetlands that runs through the bird habitat. There’s also a 30-foot observation tower to help you get a better view.
3. Find Thrills at Lagoon Park
OK, maybe this one’s a cheat—but your kid is still going to be spending time outside while having a blast. The Lagoon amusement park in Farmington features more than 50 rides and attractions that appeal to all members of the family. When the weather’s warm, cool off at the Lagoon A Beach Waterpark.
4. Fishing at Bountiful Lake
You have lots of choices when it comes to fishing in Davis County, but perhaps none as pleasant as Bountiful Lake. The optimistically named body of water isn’t huge (50 acres), but you have the chance to catch a wide variety of fish—including bluegill, bullhead catfish, largemouth bass, rainbow trout, and walleye—in a tranquil setting. Bring along a picnic lunch and enjoy the peace and quiet.
5. Farmington Pond
Farmington Pond is another prime fishing spot that also includes access to some very scenic trails. The pond has a nice pier for fishing, as well as plenty of spots to easily drop a line from along the shore. You’ll have the chance to catch rainbow trout, channel catfish, bluegill, and largemouth bass. Be aware that there is a two-fish limit per day. You’ll find spots for a picnic and plenty of shade, which can be especially welcome in the summer. If you want to explore further, the pond is connected to the Lagoon Trail to the south and the Bonneville Shoreline Trail to the north, both of which offer scenic hiking options.
6. Get Wet at Cherry Hill
Why make things complicated—every kid loves the pool. The Cherry Hill Resort and Waterpark in Kaysville is a pool plus lots more. They won’t be able to contain their excitement at this collection of water slides, kiddie pools, lazy rivers, and all other manner of getting wet. Enjoy hero status for at least a couple of hours as the little ones splash with glee.
7. Visit the USU Botanical Garden
Utah State University’s Botanical Garden in Kaysville, Utah, is a lovely place to explore and learn more about nature. You’ll find educational opportunities there for both children and adults, in addition to an urban fishery, hiking and biking trails, and wetlands areas that support wildlife. Spend a few hours touring the volunteer-tended gardens, or stop by and take advantage of the seasonal farmers market.
Written by Jeff Banowetz for RootsRated in partnership with Utah Office of Tourism.