Although many Utahns leave the state for vacations during the summer, many choose to stay home for financial reasons, work obligation or simply not wanting the hassle of planning a trip. But staying home doesn’t necessarily mean summer will be boring, especially in Salt Lake City.
Whenever she gets a chance, Salt Lake City resident Kami Averett takes her husband and children on a staycation, or a vacation in her own city.
“I think Salt Lake City is like, the perfect place for a staycation because there are several different kinds of places to go and you can mix it up," Averett said. "I mean, there are things that are nowhere else in the world.”
Averett’s excitement about staycationing in Salt Lake is understandable. A recent WalletHub study says it’s the fourth best city in the country for a staycation, right after Orlando, Fort Lauderdale and Tampa in Florida.
WalletHub compared 150 U.S. cities across 28 key metrics, such as the number of hiking trails and cost of movie theaters, to find that result. Jill Gonzalez, an analyst for the company, said Salt Lake City stuck out primarily because of its many opportunities for recreation.
"First of all, it tied with many other Florida cities in terms of the number of public golf courses per capita. So, if golfing is your idea of a good vacation, you’re certainly in the right spot already," Gonzalez said. "It also is third in the number of hiking trails per capita. So in terms of recreation, really a lots of things to do. A lot of them are either no or low cost, especially looking at the hiking or park going.”
Utah also has other attractions in addition to the outdoors. Averett said she and her family love to see historical sights, eat local food and visit museums.
“With my family, we’ll do things like a staycation where we just do the museums," Averett said. "Like the Natural History Museum and the Leonardo and the art museum at the U. There’s so many that it takes a few days and it’s totally worth it.”
Gonzalez said Salt Lake City also has the second lowest movie costs of all 150 cities they analyzed, a good number of zoos and aquariums and many affordable 4.5 star restaurants.