38.5737° N, 110.7071° W
EXPLORE EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THIS ALIEN-LIKE LANDSCAPE IN OUR IN-DEPTH GOBLIN VALLEY STATE PARK TRAVEL GUIDE, INCLUDING THE BEST TIME TO VISIT, CAMPING IN THE PARK AND THE TOP HIKES AND ADVENTURES.
Goblin Valley State Park might just be one of the most unique places on the planet. In fact, it seems so otherworldly that it was actually used as the set for the sci-fi movie Galaxy Quest (which came out in the late 90s).
What really makes the state park's landscape so unique is its famous array of hoodoos, which are formations of mushroom-shaped rock pinnacles that can be several meters tall. The hoodoos, which are locally called "goblins," are formed from an erosion-resistant layer of rock atop somewhat softer sandstone. Goblin Valley State Park and its neighbor Bryce Canyon National Park actually contain some of the highest concentrations of hoodoos in the world.
Goblin Valley became a state park in 1964, though it has been protected by the state of Utah since 1956 (it was a state reserve before becoming a state park). The park was created in hopes of deterring any vandalism against the rock structures - which for the most part has succeeded.
Today, Goblin Valley State Park is one of the most visited state parks in the whole state of Utah (the park saw nearly half a million people in 2021). This is mostly thanks to the unique landscape, but also because it is a great destination for people with kids, people looking to explore the nearby San Rafael Swell, or people just looking for a chill place to camp out under the stars (Goblin Valley State Park is a designated International Dark Sky Park). Plus, unlike its neighbors Arches National Park, Canyonlands National Park and Capitol Reef National Park, Goblin Valley is very dog friendly.
Our Goblin Valley State Park Travel Guide below covers everything you need to know about the park; including, directions to the park, the best time to visit, camping information (including where to camp for free nearby!), the best adventures and even a couple of park travel itineraries.
📌 DIRECTIONS TO GOBLIN VALLEY STATE PARK 🏕 CAMPING IN GOBLIN VALLEY STATE PARK
☼ WEATHER IN GOBLIN VALLEY STATE PARK 🥾TOP ADVENTURES IN GOBLIN VALLEY STATE PARK
\\ How to Get to Goblin Valley State Park
Goblin Valley State Park is pretty darn remote, therefore it takes a bit of time and effort to reach. But with that being said, it is also well located within Utah to easily be added to other southern Utah adventures; including on visits to national parks like Arches National Park, Canyonlands National Park and Capitol Reef National Park.
One important thing to note about this desert state park is that it doesn’t offer very many services. Therefore you must stock up on things like food, drinks and gasoline before visiting the state park. The best place to do this are in the towns of Green River (they have multiple gas stations), Grand Junction, Colorado (they have gas, large supermarkets and stores right off of the interstate) and Moab, Utah.
Once stocked up, start making your way towards Goblin Valley State Park. Below are directions from all of the major points within the state of Utah as well as a few popular places out of state.
❔ GOOD TO KNOW: if you are thinking of flying into the area and renting a car to explore Goblin Valley State Park (and the surrounding parks) then your best bet would be to fly into Salt Lake City, Utah. You can book a flight to and from SLC here.
SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH | 3.5 hours // 223 miles
The closest major city (with an international airport) is Salt Lake City, Utah. To reach Goblin Valley State Park from Salt Lake City (SLC) you will need to head down Interstate 15 until you reach Highway 6. Take Hwy 6 all the way to Interstate 70 and then go west for a couple of miles until you reach the exit for Highway 24. Once on Highway 24, it is 36 miles until you see the turn off for the state park. From the highway, it is approximately 12 miles to the park entrance.
GREEN RIVER, UTAH | 50 minutes // 49 miles
To reach Goblin Valley State Park from Green River, the closest city with any form of services, you will head west on Interstate 70 until you see the exit for Highway 24 (there will be a sign for the state park). Once on Highway 24, head south for 36 miles until you see the turn off for the state park on the right. From the highway, it is 12 miles to the park entrance booth/visitor center.
💬 INSIDER TIP: looking for a delicious meal on your drive to Goblin Valley State Park? Then consider heading off the interstate and stopping in at Tacos La Pasadita, a small taco truck with ample seating and delicious food (and a wonderful salsa bar). We recommend the huevos rancheros and burritos.
MOAB, UTAH | 1 hour & 35 minutes // 101 miles
The popular adventure town of Moab, Utah (and its neighbors Arches National Park & Canyonlands National Park) are only around 100 miles from Goblin Valley State Park, which definitely makes it possible to visit the state park simply on a day trip from Moab.
To reach the state park from town, first head north on Highway 191 until you reach Interstate 70. From the interstate, go west towards Green River. Eventually, you will see the turn off for the state park and Highway 24. From the ex