Dinosaur National Monument borders Utah and Colorado

Dinosaur attracts few visitors but offers so much

I don’t use the word “surprised” very often, unless I’m truly taken aback, flabbergasted or stunned. But that’s the word I use when describing our visit to Dinosaur National Monument on the border of Utah and Colorado.

I hope you enjoy this photo story. The dinosaur wonderland draws only 304,000 visitors a year, mainly because of its remote location. Compare that to the 11.3 million tourists in Great Smoky Mountains National Park and you can imagine why we’re planning to return soon.

The park’s main attraction is its world-renowned Jurassic fossil beds and the most impressive visitor center we’ve experienced, built over a cliff embedded with hundreds of dinosaur remains. But we’re glad we planned three days here because we loved hiking, studying rock pictographs and scenic driving at dusk. We arrived in mid-September, during the antelope, elk and mule deer mating season, which treated us to exceptional wildlife viewing and experiences.

Try including this destination with a trip to Arches and Canyonlands national parks. And plan to take a few selfies with an allosaurus, stegosaurus or your favorite saurus.

Dinosaur fossil
Dinosaur fossil
Dinosaur National Monument best visitor center
We don't usually call out a visitor center, but the one at Dinosaur National Monument is the best we have seen.
Split Mountain Dinosaur National Monument
Split Mountain at Dinosaur National Monument.
Stunning scenery Dinosaur
More of the stunning scenery within Dinosaur.
Mule deer Dinosaur National Monument
Mule deer.
Pronghorn Dinosaur National Monument
Pronghorn
Prairie Dog Dinosaur National Monument
Prairie dog