In true road trip fashion, for our winter vacation we drove to Park City from San Diego with a stop in Las Vegas to break the drive. The transition from coast to canyons is spectacular - for this journey, I gazed out the window more than at my phone. Driving to a destination will always be my first choice. There's nothing like packing your car, filling your tank, and hitting the road. Park City, is a great winter destination that appeals to everyone. Historic Main Street is lined with art galleries, shops, and restaurants to explore when you find yourself off the slopes. The locals are super friendly, further adding to the draw of this colorful town. Below are some places to check out while you're in town. You can also read about our past visit to this popular ski spot here which offers additional recommendations on what to do on your next visit.
Where to Stay: Waldorf Astoria Park City
Ski in/out of The Canyons from this five-star resort designed with luxurious lodge decor. In fact, it is the only luxury hotel in the area that provides direct access to the lifts. The suites are spacious with multiple bathrooms and a large kitchen, and they even have full-sized laundry and drying machines in the room. Make sure to be available at 5:00 pm for the decadent hot chocolate bar and set time aside for S'mores fun at one of the multiple fire pits dispersed throughout the property.
A thirty-minute moonlit horse-drawn sleigh ride through the snow magically celebrates winter. The company has two meeting spots, we chose Stein Eriksen Lodge to enjoy apres ski amidst the festive holiday decor at the Troll Hallen Lounge and dipped into their white cheddar and stout fondue before our coachman beckoned us.
Did you know that Park City Ski Resort is the largest in the USA? For world-class skiing, look no further. Offering 348 trails to both skiers and snowboarders of all levels, this mountain doesn't disappoint.
A ride up the funicular at the St. Regis is a must when in the area. Enjoy the striking views as you climb up to the hotel's main building and enjoy a bite at Rime (we particularly loved the lobster rolls).
Small plates made for sharing along with the implementation of only seasonal ingredients throughout each dish make this an excellent dinner destination. The food is fresh, creative, and delicious. They do a great job with their craft cocktails too. This is my favorite restaurant in Park City.
pros: seasonal American cuisine at its best
cons: reservations are difficult during peak season so plan in advance
must order: the oysters, sweet chili gaze cauliflower, the octopus with salsa verde and grilled shishitos
Our visit to Twisted Fern in 2021 was a more memorable one than our recent reservation. This well-reviewed restaurant missed the mark upon our second visit although the pan-seared Utah Elk was a big hit.
pros: locally sourced seasonal ingredients with a well-balanced menu that appeals to most diets
cons: the blue corn crepe stuffed with mushrooms and potato filling was served cold and the Nashville hot maitake sandwich was overly fried
must order: the pan-seared Utah Elk
This whimsical shop is a Park City landmark serving breakfast all day long along with ice cream, candy, and quirky novelty items.
Coffee and empanadas are the draws of this adorable cafe located right off Main Street. You'll have plenty of space to sprawl as you sip on your creamy latte.
Located in the Waldorf Astoria, this fine dining, yet unpretentious, restaurant makes spectacular handcrafted cocktails and solid dishes in a beautifully lit environment.
pros: attractive ambiance, separate vegetarian menu
must order: the mezcal old fashioned with notes of chocolate, the 72-hour wagyu short rib, and the butternut squash bisque with spiced creme fraiche and roasted hazelnuts
I truly love the freedom that comes with driving - go where you wish, at your own pace, stop when you'd like, or just keep on cruising... all the while looking out your window and getting lost in the beauty of the landscapes that comprise our spectacular country. So far we've racked up 800 glorious stretches of miles and are ready to earn some more. Off we go to our next stop...Jackson, WY!