The quaint frontier town of Kanab lies just five miles south of Cave Lakes Canyon on Highway 89. Surrounded by rugged mountain views, narrow slot canyons, and the colorful cliffs of the Grand Staircase, Kanab's unmatched beauty is highlighted by 250 sunny days a year. Kanab's vibrant scenery is also accented by its colorful history, which helped transform this remote pioneer town into "Little Hollywood" and a modern-day central tourist destination.
Kanab, named for the Paiute word for willow
Twas settled by Mormon pioneers in 1864 but Indian attacks forced the townspeople to leave two years later. Kanab was resettled in the 1870s under the guidance of Brigham Young. Today, Kanab's frontier history comes alive in its historic downtown, where visitors can see original architecture dating back to the 1890s and the famed Parry Lodge where many celebrities stayed. Among Kanab's notable early residents are Jacob Hamblin, Levi Stewart and western novelist Zane Gray, who lived in Kanab while he wrote his famed novel Riders of the Purple Sage in 1912. During the twentieth century Hollywood filmmakers, drawn by Kanab's Old West heritage and rugged landscape, shot more than 100 western films and TV shows in Kanab and the surrounding areas. From classics like The Lone Ranger and Gunsmoke to modern remakes of The Flintstones and Planet of the Apes, the Kanab area has served as the backdrop to some of the most memorable films in history. Film buffs will enjoy a visit to Kanab's legendary Frontier Movie Town and Little Hollywood Movie Museum, which houses a collection of movie sets and explores how Kanab defined the Old West to become the backdrop for dozens of westerns. Remnants of movie sets in Kanab Canyon, Johnson Canyon, and Paria can be reached via scenic drives conveniently located around Kanab.
From a 9-hole golf course and a theater to gift shops and restaurants for every taste, this full-service town has everything you need right at your fingertips. The Kane County Office of Tourism and the Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument Visitor Center located right in town can provide tourist information, and local outfitters can arrange ATV and adventure tours. Tours can also be arranged to the nearby Best Friends Animal Sanctuary, which is the largest no-kill shelter in the United States. Moqui Cave, a natural history museum featuring Native American artifacts and the largest collection of dinosaur tracks in southern Utah, is just five miles north of Kanab, near the turnoff for Cave Lakes Canyon.
Located at the heart of the Grand Circle
Kanab is the gateway to Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument and central to major outdoor attractions such as Zion National Park (40 miles west), Bryce Canyon National Park (70 miles north), the Grand Canyon North Rim (80 miles south), and Lake Powell/Glen Canyon National Recreation Area (60 miles east). Cedar Breaks National Monument, Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park, Kodachrome Basin State Park, Grosvenor Arch, Cottonwood Canyon, Bull Valley Gorge, Buckskin Gulch, and Pipe Springs National Monument in Arizona are also easy day trips within reach of Kanab and Cave Lakes Canyon.
What To Do In Kanab: