The time it takes to drive through the Island in the Sky in Canyonlands will depend on how many stops you take. There’s a Scenic Drive that runs from one end of the mesa to the other, about 25 miles, so you can drive to the end and all the way back in a little over two hours. However, we’d recommend taking your time and stopping at a bunch of the overlooks and trails along the way. The Island in the Sky has tons of easy trails and destinations as well as some of the most beautiful vistas in the park, so there’s no reason not to stop at plenty of them.
If you only want to make a few stops, make sure one of them is Grand View Point. There’s a short hiking path leading from the road to the overlook, which has the most spectacular view of the whole park. We recommend trying to make it in the evening so you can watch the sun go down over the canyons. We also suggest taking time to hike out to the Mesa Arch while you’re at Canyonlands. It’s only about a 10-minute hike from the road and you’ll be rewarded with the park’s most impressive arch, located right on the edge of a 1,200-foot cliff. Finally, don’t leave the Island in the Sky without checking out the Upheaval Dome, an enormous crater left behind (they think) by a meteorite impact. There are two overlooks at the dome, but the views from the second one are significantly better. It’ll take about an hour to hike to both overlooks and back, but it’s well worth the trip.
To make sure you’re seeing all the best spots in the Island in the Sky, check out our Canyonlands National Park Self-Guided Driving Tour, available through our app on both iOS and Android devices.