Coming to Zion? You’ll need food. Don’t want to eat out all the time? You’ll need groceries. But sometimes groceries can be hard to find, so we’re here to help with the Ultimate Grocery Guide for Zion Goers. It’s not the sexiest topic, but it looks better the hungrier you get!
Let’s start local. If you don’t want to bother stopping on the way to Zion, the local Sol Foods Market has you covered. Sol Foods has TWO locations in Springdale, the Downtown Supermarket and the Park Market and Restaurant near the Park entrance.The Downtown Supermarket is a full-service grocery store, complete with produce, deli, frozen foods, beer, and even DVD rentals. The Park Market caters more to hikers and campground residents; it has less conventional grocery selection, and more in the way of snacks, to-go beverages, and camping supplies. Park Market also features a self-serve restaurant (here’s the menu) with beautiful patio seating.
Though Sol Foods has the local grocery market cornered, they are not your typical small-town lazy grocer. Sol Foods is really great about accommodating modern, health-aware diets with organic, gourmet, gluten-free, and other healthy options. In fact, Sol Foods has better health food options than some (but not all) of the big grocery stores in Hurricane and St. George.
Expect to pay higher prices at Sol Foods than the big box stores elsewhere however, as high rents, seasonal traffic, and increased delivery rates raise overhead for any small-town grocer. You might feel like you’re being gouged as a tourist without choices, but consider the convenience of saving a 30+ minute drive… the fuel cost alone makes up the difference, let alone the time and hassle.
The next-closest grocer is the Farmer’s Market, “down the hill” in La Verkin. The Farmer’s Market has most products you expect from a conventional grocery store, but carries limited organic and free trade items and is somewhat expensive. Farmer’s Market has the closest pharmacy and RedBox (automated video rental) to Springdale/Zion. Of note, Famer’s Market is CLOSED on Sunday. They usually have some weekly coupons to check out.
8 more driving minutes from Farmer’s Market is Lin’s Market in Hurricane. Lin’s is a good bet for getting everything you need without spending too much money. It is 30 minutes from Zion, offers good sales and discounts, and offers great selection, including local and organic goods. Lin’s posts all their weekly coupons online.
Dixie Nutrition, also in Hurricane, carries all sorts of natural products, like soaps, oils, medicines, and specialty foods (i.e. gluten-free, raw, organic, bulk, etc.). If you are looking for a specialty health grocer, Dixie is the place.
Just outside Hurricane is a SUPER Walmart, which has all the things you expect to find at Walmarts across the country, plus sweatshirts with the word “Zions” printed across the front. What more could you want in a shopping experience?
For groceries, St. George has it all. Of the conventional supermarkets, I recommend Harmon’s, a really nice store with consistently reliable produce and a superior deli department. You can find another Dixie Nutrition in St. George, as well as Natural Grocer, and the grocery behemoth, CostCo.
Driving to St. George from Zion takes 50 – 60 minutes, and a trip to “the George” tends to be most worthwhile when combined with a visit to the Snow Canyon State Park, the Deseret Industries thrift store, Ah’sya Vietnamese restaurant, the skate park, the movie theatre, or whatever else you can find for entertainment. Anyone coming up to Zion from Vegas will pass through St. George, so it is a convenient place to stock up if you zipped out of Vegas.
Cedar City offers up a number of large-scale grocers, including Albertson’s, Smiths, Walmart, and Lin’s. Personally, I like Lin’s best, although I find their Hurricane location more appealing. If going into downtown Cedar City (which is very nice) is too far off the highway for you, you might find Albertson’s easier to reach.
It’s not too difficult to find a grocery store in the enormous metropolis of Las Vegas, but for those wishing to stock up on specialty foods or ingredients, Las Vegas might be the last chance until the return flight home. If you are one of those folks looking for specialty or health food items, you might check out Trader Joe’s (fairly close to the airport, just north of Sahara & Decatur), Whole Foods (really close to the airport, just south of the main Strip), or the interesting and original International Market (just south of Tropicana and Decatur). International Market is worth a visit, if only to browse the huge variety of foods they carry from around the world.
If YOU have a favorite place to do your grocery shopping en route to Zion, or if you have a particularly striking experience at one of the above stores, I’d love to hear about it. Leave a comment!