Dog-Friendly Bryce Canyon: Visiting with a Dog

One of the most spectacular national parks in Southern Utah is Bryce Canyon National Park. Thanks to its unique rock formations, also known as hoodoos, it’s a great destination to visit in the USA, including with your dog.

Yes, dogs are allowed to visit Bryce Canyon National Park, although there are restrictions on where dogs are allowed. Find out what you can and can’t do when visiting Bryce Canyon with a dog, plus more tips for your visit.

Dog-Friendly Bryce Canyon

Dog-Friendly Trails at Bryce Canyon

The main limitation when visiting Bryce Canyon National Park with a dog is that dogs are not allowed on most hiking trails. However, there is one must-do trail where dogs are permitted to join you: the paved section of the Rim Trail between Sunset Point and Sunrise Point.

This dog-friendly section of the Rim Trail is half a mile long in each direction and provides wonderful vistas of the hoodoos of Bryce Canyon. We parked at Sunset Point and walked to Sunrise Point and then back, a total distance of one mile. It’s an flat, easy hike but allow plenty of time for taking photos!

Rim Trail with Dog Bryce Canyon
Enjoying the views along the dog-friendly section of the Rim Trail
Sunset Point Bryce Canyon
The spectacular view at Sunset Point

Leashed pets are also allowed to join you on the paved shared-use path between the park entrance and Inspiration Point, a popular cycling route. From the park shuttle station to Inspiration Point the path is 5 miles long, passing by the Visitor Center, Sunrise Point and Sunset Point. The shared-used path also extends for another 13 miles back to Red Canyon.

Dog-Friendly Viewpoints at Bryce Canyon

The top other dog-friendly thing to do at Bryce Canyon is visit the many beautiful viewpoints. Dogs are also allowed to join you at nearly all the viewpoints in Bryce Canyon National Park, as they are paved. The one exception is the unpaved Piracy Point viewpoint.

I recommend driving from the Bryce Canyon Amphitheater area of the park south to Rainbow Point and stopping at all the viewpoints along the way. It’s a 17 mile drive in each direction. Allow at least a couple of hours for the scenic drive plus stopping at the viewpoints.

Swamp Canyon Overlook Bryce Canyon
The dog-friendly Swamp Canyon Viewpoint

Along the way, stop at these dog-friendly viewpoint areas, from north to south:

  • Inspiration Point
  • Bryce Point
  • Paria View
  • Swamp Canyon Viewpoint
  • Fairview Point (but not nearby Piracy Point)
  • Bryce Natural Bridge
  • Black Birch Canyon
  • Aqua Canyon Viewpoint
  • Ponderosa Canyon
  • Yovimpa Point
  • Rainbow Point

Out of these viewpoints, my two favourites viewpoints were Bryce Point and Bryce Natural Bridge. The Natural Bridge is different to anything else along the drive, so don’t miss it! I just wished that we arrived earlier in the day when it was less in shadow.

Bryce Point
Don’t miss the turn-off to Bryce Point
Bryce Natural Bridge
The spectacular Bryce Natural Arch

Naturally, Sunset Point and Sunrise Point are also both dog-friendly, at either end of the section of the Rim Trail that pet dogs are allowed upon.

Another viewpoint that you can visit with your dog is Fairyland Point. The turn-off for this point is just after the park entrance, but we ran out of time to visit it before driving to our accommodation.

Are Pets Allowed on the Shuttle at Bryce Canyon?

Unfortunately, if you want to make use of the park shuttle to the Bryce Canyon Amphitheatre Area, pets are not allowed on the shuttle bus, even if they are carried. Only service animals are permitted on the shuttle.

This shuttle runs during the busiest period at Bryce Canyon, from April to mid-October, starting from the larger parking areas at the Shuttle Station in Bryce Canyon City, just outside the park, and at the Bryce Canyon Visitor Center.

Sunrise Point Sign Bryce Canyon
Dogs aren’t allowed on the shuttle to Sunrise Point

If the smaller parking lots at the Bryce Canyon Amphitheatre Area, near Sunrise Point and Sunset Point, are full, the only alternative for pet owners is to walk along the shared-use path. It’s 0.8 miles from the Visitor Center to the Sunrise Point General Store, plus an additional 2.4 miles from the Park Shuttle Station to the Visitor Center.

We visited Bryce Canyon in November, after the end of the peak season but before any snow had fallen – one of the best times of the year to visit with a pet. We had no problems parking in the Bryce Canyon Amphitheatre Area or at any of the viewpoints. The park is open year round, with roads plowed after snowstorms.

Are Pets Allowed on the Navajo Loop Trail?

One of the most iconic trails at Bryce Canyon is the Navajo Loop Trail, which descends from Sunset Point and passes by the park’s most famous hoodoo, Thor’s hammer.

However, like other unpaved trails in the park, this trail is strictly off limits to pet dogs. Other trails where pets are not permitted (even if they are carried) include the unpaved sections of the Rim Trail, the Queen’s Garden Trail and Peekaboo Loop.

No Dogs Trail at Bryce Canyon
Dogs are not allowed on most trails at Bryce Canyon
Queens Garden Trail Bryce Canyon
Hoodoos on the Queen’s Garden Trail

Other Park Rules for Pets at Bryce Canyon

When visiting Bryce Canyon with your pet, keep in mind the other standard rules that apply for pets at all national parks in the US.

Pets must be kept on a leash at all times, no longer than six feet long. Pets must not be left unattended, including in vehicles while you hike. Be careful if you spot any wild animals and keep your distance. And naturally, you should also pick up after your dog.

The B.A.R.K. Ranger program operates at Bryce Canyon – stop off at the Visitor Center to sign up and get a treat for your pet, with tags and patches also available for sale.

Are There Any Kennels at Bryce Canyon?

If you’re wanting to more extensively explore the hoodoos at Bryce Canyon and go hiking on unpaved trails, an alternative is to book your dog into a kennel.

Unfortunately, there are no kennels at Bryce Canyon National Park, or just outside the park. According to the national park website, the closest kennels are at Panguitch, 30 miles away. There are also kennels further away at Kanab, Cedar City and Richfield.

Dog-Friendly Alternatives to Bryce Canyon

If you’re wanting to visit a more dog-friendly alternative to Bryce Canyon, the top recommendation is nearby Red Canyon, part of the Dixie National Forest.

Red Canyon
The hoodoos at Red Canyon

You’ll likely pass by the Red Canyon Visitor Center when driving to Bryce Canyon, 13 miles before the entrance to the national park. It’s just before the impressive Red Canyon Arch!

Red Canyon Arch
Driving under Red Canyon Arch

The Dixie National Forest is home to hundreds of miles of trails, including some in the Red Canyon area. Dogs are welcome to join you, but must be kept leashed at all campgrounds, picnic areas and trailheads.

Dog-Friendly Accommodation at Bryce Canyon

Note: This post contains affiliate links, which means I may receive commission if you make a purchase using the links. See my full disclaimer.

Bryce Canyon National Park is home to two basic campgrounds, North Campground and Sunset Campground. Pets are welcome at both campgrounds, but naturally need to be kept leashed.

North Campground is open year round, with reservations taken during the peak period, while Sunset Campground is closed over the winter months. There are limited facilities at both campgrounds, with only toilets, no showers, plus no electrical or water hook-ups.

Dog at Bryce Canyon
Dogs are allowed in the campgrounds at Bryce Canyon

If you don’t have an RV or tent, you’ll have to stay outside of the park, as pets are not allowed in the Bryce Canyon Lodge, only service animals.

Some of the pet-friendly accommodation just outside of the park include Bryce View Lodge, Best Western PLUS Ruby’s Inn and Bryce Canyon Resort. Note though that rates tend to be expensive, plus check directly for their full pet policy, including weight limits and fees.

For a more affordable pet-friendly option we instead stayed at Hidden Valley Cabins, about 41 miles away in the quiet surrounds of Alton, on the way to our next destination of Zion National park. There are four cabins listed on Airbnb, all allowing pets. We stayed in Hidden Valley Cabin #6.

You May Also Like

About the Author

Photo of Shandos & Schnitzel

Shandos Cleaver is the founder of Travelnuity: Dog-Friendly Travel. She has travelled extensively with her Miniature Dachshund, Schnitzel, including to 33 countries across Europe, every state and territory of Australia except Tasmania, and 10 of the United States. She’s passionate about providing inspiration and information to others wanting to travel with their dogs, whether close to home or internationally.

Inspired? Pin this to your Pinterest board!

Bryce Canyon NP Dog-Friendly Guide Pin

Leave a Comment