How to Live Like a Tourist in Ogden
Craving some mountain air? Just a quick 20-minute drive from downtown, North Fork Park offers breathtaking mountain and valley views, accessible trails for all ages and experience, several camping areas as well as a network of groomed snowshoeing and fat-biking trails in winter. The park has also been officially designated a Dark Sky Park, where stargazing is an unforgettable experience year-round.
Arguably offering the best views of Ogden and beyond, the Bonneville Shoreline Trail is about as accessible as a trail can get. Hop on at various trailhead locations around the city and enjoy this easy-to-maneuver trail that follows the shoreline of the ancient Lake Bonneville and winds for more than 100 miles along the Wasatch mountains from Brigham City to Payson.
The Ogden River Parkway is a picturesque, 4.5 mile paved trail that follows the Ogden River from the mouth of Ogden Canyon to the 21st Street Pond. The parkway offers ample fishing access to the Ogden River, which is inhabited by smallmouth bass and a variety of trout and was named a Blue Ribbon Fishery in 2012. Offering access to downtown shops and restaurants, the trail is dotted with playgrounds, art murals, botanical gardens and picnic areas. Whether you walk, jog or bike the Ogden River Parkway is an iconic way to experience Ogden any time of year.
Adventure with the Family
The Ogden Ice Sheet on the Weber State University campus offers a year round skating rink for all ages and experience levels. Or experience some edge-of-your-seat, ice-shredding action from September-March during the Ogden Mustangs hockey season.
Nestled into a tree-lined oasis at the mouth of Ogden Canyon, Ogden-Eccles Dinosaur Park is not only a step back into ancient history, but entertainment for every age. The 8.5 acre park offers hundreds of realistic dinosaur replicas in a beautiful park-like atmosphere. Inside the museum, experience ancient-life reincarnate with some state-of-the-art animatronics as well as an impressive showcase of fossils and artifacts from ancient life. Kids can uncover dinosaur bones and mine for precious gems while adults watch scientists in a working fossil lab
Step Back in Time
To discover what truly made Ogden, Ogden’s Union Station is a must see. Erected in 1924 after the previous structure was destroyed by fire, the striking Spanish Colonial building once served as the hub of railway activity in the west. Walk through the grand lobby, crowned with cathedral ceilings and admire the murals of immigrant railroad workers painted in 1935 by famed Depression-era painter Edward Laning. Step onto the platform and imagine the footsteps of hundreds of WWII soldiers stepping off the train for a hot meal and a place to sleep in Ogden.
The Union Station building also houses four impressive museums. The Utah State Railroad Museum provides an intimate look at how the Union Pacific and Central Pacific railroads shaped the city of Ogden and influenced the western United States. Watch a model train speed through a diorama of the great American west, and get up-close and personal with restored locomotives and railcars dating back to 1800, true giants of the past.
The John M. Browning Firearms Museum hosts a collection of over 1600 original-model firearms invented by John M. Browning, an early Ogden influencer known as “America’s Gunmaker.” The Browning-Kimball Classic Car Museum and the Utah State Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum are also fascinating glimpses into distant history that will paint a vivid picture of Ogden’s beginnings.
For a quick jaunt through some of Ogden’s most historic places as well as a passage through time, you can also check out the free downloadable audio walking tours provided by the Weber County Heritage Foundation.
Get your Shop On
Looking for a souvenir, the perfect gift or just want to treat yourself? Downtown Ogden offers an impressive variety of shopping options. Indulge your retro sense of fashion at Endless Indulgence, browse through an eclectic variety of antique guns and western-themed ware at the rustic Gift House or create a custom-made candle at Art Box Ogden, in the recently renovated The Monarch.
For a special gift or keepsake, the nearby Local Artisan Collective offers handmade jewelry, clothing and décor crafted by local makers as well as books by local authors. If you’re in search of Ogden-themed clothing, check out the Ogden Tee Room. Gear 30 on Washington Boulevard is sure to fulfill all your outdoor adventure needs.
For a truly unique shopping experience in a serene setting, Rainbow Gardens is a 20,000 square- foot gift shop in a 1928 building at the mouth of Ogden Canyon—once home to both a bowling alley and an indoor swimming pool. Rainbow Gardens has been deemed the “largest gift shop in Utah” and offers a little bit of everything – from toys, sweatshirts and baseball caps, fancy soaps and lotions, a garden center with live plants, to a year-round Christmas shop overlooking the Ogden River.
Indulge Your Appetite
If all the O-Town exploration, adventure and discovery has left you with a healthy traveler’s appetite, you’re in the right city. Ogden offers a variety of food, drink and treats to suit every taste. Check out this Visit Ogden Dining Guide, or try these local favorites.
For some savory, locally inspired dishes paired with a nod to Ogden’s past, Roosters Brewing on 25th street is a local favorite. Rooster’s was one of the first breweries to open in Utah and helped spark the revitalization of businesses on Historic 25th street. Sample an aptly named beer like O-Town Nut Brown or try the lighter Honey Wheat Pale Ale. Pair your beverage with an appetizer like Naughty Fries with gorgonzola, pepper jack and Louisiana hot sauces for dipping. For lunch try the Blackened Salmon Sandwich, and at dinner you can’t go wrong with one of Rooster’s specialty pastas or the famous Pepper Jack Turkey Enchiladas. Roosters is great for date night, a girl’s night out or a relaxing Sunday aternoon brunch.
A near overnight sensation, Lucky Slice Pizza opened in 2006 and quickly became an Ogden go-to. Lucky Slice offers thin and fresh pizza by-the-slice with a variety of standard and unique topping options. Try a gourmet slice like the Fire Island, with garlic sauce, mozzarella, Capicola pork, pineapple, Jalepeno and caramelized onions. Stop for a quick lunch or a late-night dinner, top off your meal with a fresh salad or a side of wings and count yourself fed like a local.
Farr Better Ice Cream is a perfect way to indulge your sweet tooth as well as your nostalgia. Scooping locally-made ice cream since 1920, the Farr family still operates one of America’s oldest ice cream shops right here in the heart of Ogden. Serving up favorites like vanilla, chocolate, and burnt almond fudge as well as some unique flavors like wild huckleberry and coconut almond, a stop at Farr’s is a treat in any season.
The Adventure Continues
It doesn’t take a long to realize that adventures in Ogden are infinite. With mountains and trails just steps from downtown, an eclectic variety of shops and restaurants for every taste and budget, and a rich rebellious history to delve into, O-town will keep your wanderers heart full.
To explore even more of the pretty river city with the rebellious soul, check out this all-inclusive guide at Visit Ogden.