top of page

Salt Lake City Utah: A Ski Vacation

Updated: May 26, 2023

I have long desired to create a blog post about how to take a ski trip to Utah on a budget. This trip started as my husband and I wanted to explore some of the mountains in Utah on the IKON pass. There are six ski mountains on the pass in Utah; however, because my husband is a snowboarder, two of those resorts were cut out of our trip. Our budget for the trip is around $1,000 for everything.

We wanted to spend five nights, ski four days (one day at each ski mountain), and drive home on our sixth day. There will be a blog for each resort we visited coming soon! We live about eight hours away from Salt Lake City, so we drove a distance from our home to the city. This means that for travel costs, all we had to pay for was gas in our tank, and we had to fill up four times which came to $291.80. This included all the driving to and from the location and around Utah to the slopes and out to the Salt Flats.

Review picture



For lodging, I've searched high and low for the best possible overall pricing for somewhere to stay. I went back and forth on bringing our pets along for the trip instead of leaving them at home with someone checking on them.

I looked at all hotels, whether the choice hotels, Wyndham hotels, Hilton, etc. I also looked into all the Airbnbs in the area and wanted to spend at most $450 on somewhere to stay.

We ended up choosing a double-bed deluxe room at La Quinta. They also had free breakfast included, which cut down immensely on the costs of eating. I won't tell you more about this hotel because it was so horrible, we only stayed one night and changed plans. While spending one night here, we searched for Airbnb we could switch to.

The AirBnb we found was a little more than we initially wanted to spend but completely worth the switch. They had a kitchen and living room and a very comfortable bed. The change of where to stay truly made the difference from our awful trip to an amazing one.

For Airbnb, we paid: $497.87

Looking out of a cabin



We wanted to explore Salt lake and the foods that go along with it. We either at the mountains or found places online for our lunches, and for dinner, we primarily used OpenTable.

Soda has to be the most underrated thing about Utah. We tried two different soda shops, which don't exist on the east coast. Swig was hands down my favorite soda shop, and the best drink I tried was the Raspberry Dream.

Total for all sodas bought with tips: $43.71

Bohemian Brewery: The first thing

  • Garlic Blub Toast: if you are a garlic lover, this is for you. A whole bulb of oven-roasted seasoned garlic squeezed onto your toast.

  • BLT: This sandwich hit the spot after a long day on the slopes. Not to mention, it came with a side of garlic fries.

  • Pierogi: a must try if you've never had it

  • Spatzle: an incredible pasta

Total with tip: 61.74

Lake Effect: If you are looking for a unique moody restaurant with an insane amount of custom cocktails, this is your place. They shine with innovation. The lights were very low, which could lead to some people having difficulty reading the menu, and the music was extremely loud. There may be better places for a first date, but would work rather well with a group of friends.

  • Let's go, Barbie: This was a sweet girly drink.

  • Cashmere: a chocolatey drink with some heat

  • Fried Avacado Tacos: This one wins if you want a dream vegan taco! It has the flavor and the crunch, and I highly recommend it.

  • Ahi burrito: a delicious and well balanced burrito with tons of flavor

Total with tip: $91.55

lake effect drinks

The Pie Pizzeria: Finding great pizza is hard, especially when you need vegan cheese. Dairy allergies are very hard to deal with when eating out. This pizzeria made my life dreams about pizza come true with their copious options!

  • Vegan Pull-A-Parts: I had to jump on the opportunity to try this. There was no disappointment here! They were delicious and reheated very well. Dipping into the marinara on the side was surely the chef's kiss.

  • 16" Super Large Vegan Cheese with Pepperoni (they do have vegan pepperoni, but we didn't get that): Their pizza was the best I have had while in the west thus far. The brand of dairy-free cheese they used melted like real cheese, and they even had a vegan ranch to dip the pizza in. It was more than I could have asked for.

  • 16" Super Large Buffalo Chicken Ranch: the buffalo chicken was shredded and marinated in buffalo sauce. Very good if you like buffalo.

We had leftovers for three days. So if you are just a couple, get some smaller pizzas. Leftover, everything tasted as good as it did the first time!

Total with tip: 70.20

dairy free pizza

Prohibition: This place gave me higher expectations than delivered in person. The concept is a prohibition-style speakeasy that has a secret entrance. It was made out that it was an experience when we booked through open table; however, they only do a show at certain times. The show truly makes the experience. The staff was all dressed up in 1920's themed outfits, which was quite entertaining. I did enjoy the aesthetic of the restaurant.

Total with tip: $85.90



There are plenty of sights to see in Salt Lake City. We only got to see three things we wanted, and on the plus side, two were free!

Homestead Resort: I wanted to find unique things to do around the area. I looked up hot springs and stumbled across this amazing place called the Homestead Crater. It is around 70ft deep, ~94 degrees hot, and full of natural minerals. There are a few options for exploring this natural crater. They offer snorkeling, scuba diving ( it is the only warm scuba diving destination in the continental US), and swimming. Additionally, they offer paddle board yoga classes for those who want to test their balance!

It came to $32.32 for both of us to swim for an hour. Make reservations in advance.

Homestead Crater

Salt Lake: Let's be honest, did you go to salt lake city if you didn't visit the actual Salt lake? Salt lake is saltier than the ocean, and there are no fish.

Bonneville Salt Flats: About an hour and a half west of Salt Lake is the Bonneville Salt Flats. This is where some of the fastest land speed records have been set. We drove onto the salt flats, which was exhilarating! If you drive out there, take the local's advice and get a car wash afterward. That salt is not kind to the paint of your car.

Car on salt flats


Gas in the car: $291.80

Hotel: $580.87

Food: $353.10

Activities: $32.32

Grand Total: $1258.09

Overall we spent over our budget. Had we stayed at the first hotel, we could have stayed within the means. It is worth my feeling of safety to be over budget on a place to stay. We did not go above and beyond, but we explored all the mountains we wanted to, ate where we wanted to, and got to see everything we wanted. This means we had a very successful trip.


bottom of page