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Are Tours in Moab, Utah Worth The Money?

As we mentioned in last week's video on Things to Do in Moab, Utah, we learned during our 2-week visit to Moab that this town is about a lot more than just Arches National Park, Canyonlands National Park and Dead Horse Point State Park.

But is Moab a great place to participate in guided tours? What types of tours are available in Moab? And are those tours actually worth the money? We decided to find out for ourselves.

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We Took 5 Different Moab Tours From 5 Different Tour Companies

We explored Moab 5 x 5 x 5... we took 5 guided tours from 5 different companies in Moab and experienced the area in 5 different ways: by Hummer, by paddle board, by boat, by foot and on horseback.

When we decided that we wanted to review the guided tours of Moab, we chose to buy tours from 5 different companies so that we could get a realistic feel of the overall outdoor adventures offered by tour experiences in the town of Moab. (As we mention in the video, we actually started with 4 guided tours, but we were enjoying them so much, we added a fifth to our schedule.

It's important for you to know that we paid full price for each of these tours. We did not request or receive any discounts or special pricing.

We Explored Moab by Hummer

Moab UT is the home of countless off-road tours! Off-road adventures and scenic drives are two of the things that attract the most tourists to this region. It makes sense that there would be a lot of outfitters offering all types of off-road adventures. In Moab, you'll find everything from ATV / UTV / CanAm and Jeep Wrangler rentals to off-road private Jeep adventure tours. Since we only have one vehicle and are not experienced off-road drivers, we selected a Moab Hummer Tour driven by an experienced guide.

This was the most EXCITING tour we took. We loved being able to explore the red rock fins and impossible-looking off-road formations with all of the adrenaline and none of the stress that would come with driving ourselves.

There are multiple Hummer tours available in Moab. We chose the Sunset Tour on the Hell's Revenge trail so that we could enjoy not only an amazing 4x4 off-road adventure, but also an amazing sunset from atop the slickrock.

Bonus: We stopped to see authentic dinosaur footprints and the mighty Colorado River from the top of the cliffs 2,000 feet above the water!

Tour: Moab Hummer Tour - Sunset Safari

Tour Company: Moab Adventure Center

Price: $125 per person

Length of Tour: 3 Hours

Custom Moab Hummer
Custom Moab Hummer

We Recommend This Tour For: Anyone looking for adventure and excitement without worry. However, this is an off-road adventure and the ride is very rough at times.

Tips for the Hummer Tour: The Moab Adventure Center headquarters was easy to find, located right in the middle of Downtown Moab, on Main Street. Parking is available on site. It is a very nice, professional building with a gift shop inside. They offer a wide variety of tours and rentals. Check the Moab Adventure Center website for a full list of tours, schedules and current pricing.

We Explored Moab by Paddleboard

We had never paddleboarded before, but why not learn something new when you're in a place like Moab that embraces all kinds of outdoor activities and adventures? We chose Paddle Moab for our first paddleboarding experience for a couple of reasons: 1) They have "Paddle" in the name, so they should know what they are talking about, and 2) They offered a slow, relaxed float on a calm section of the Colorado River. Most of our other paddleboard excursion choices mentioned whitewater adventures.

This was the second and most TRANQUIL tour that we took during our Moab adventures.

As we mention in the video, we were a bit worried in the beginning. The headquarters is dimly lit on the inside, not bright, shiny and impressive like we experienced on the Hummer tour. We were driven to the river by our guide in an old car owned by someone who works for the company (we picked up another employee on the way who could take the car back to the office) and we were dropped off in an area with some fairly tall grass. We were wondering what we had gotten ourselves into.

But, once we were at the river, everything turned around. Our guide was GREAT! She was a very good teacher, patient and relaxed. We had plenty of time to float around and become familiar with the paddleboards before beginning our float down the Colorado. During our time on the river, we learned about the rock formations, some history of the area and the river itself.

Paddleboarding the Colorado River
Paddleboarding the Colorado River

This was the smallest of all of the tours we took. It was only us and our guide. At times, it was so quiet, calm and peaceful on the river that it felt like the three of us were a world away from everyone else. It was a completely different experience, floating down the river with the high red cliffs on either side.

Bonus: We even saw a base jumper launch from one of the cliffs. I doubt there are many other ways we would have been in the right place to see that!

Tour: Flatwater Fun

Tour Company: Paddle Moab

Price: $75 per person

Length of Tour: 3.5 Hours

We Recommend This Tour For: Anyone looking to try something new. All equipment including the paddleboard, paddle and personal flotation device are provided. All transportation is also included. You don't need to have any experience with paddleboarding, but you need to be comfortable with getting a bit muddy getting to the river and during the break and potentially falling into the water. I (Stacie) don't have great balance, but I never fell into the water and was able to stand up comfortably on the board as we floated.

Tips for the Paddleboarding Tour: Paddle Moab is located just off of Main Street across from the colorful Moab mural. They have a parking lot at their location. They focus on water tours such as paddleboarding, rafting and kayaking, but some combo packages also include mountain biking, hiking and canyoneering. Visit the Paddle Moab website for a full list of available tours and current pricing.

We Explored Moab by Boat

After exploring Moab via paddleboard, we decided to get a different view from the Colorado River... from a boat at night! The Sound and Light Show from Canyonlands by Night and Day came highly recommended. Our expectations were high, so we thought there was a real chance that we might be at least a little bit disappointed in this one. Luckily, we were wrong!

We opted to include dinner in our package (the price difference was only an additional $10 per person to add dinner). The food was good and we met a group of really nice, interesting folks during dinner. After dinner, we boarded the flat-bottom boat for our trip up the Colorado River.

We paid an additional $10 for Premium Tickets which ensured us a front row seat on the boat. Though the view from any seat on the boat would be good, the unobstructed view from the front seats was spectacular. We believe the Premium Seats were worth the upcharge.

During our trip up river (the same section of river that we traveled on paddleboard), our tour guide shared stories about the history of the area, pointed out rock formations and details, and answered questions. Once darkness fell, the truly unusual aspect of this trip began. A specially equipped truck lit up the rocks and cliff faces while the boat speakers played a recorded story.

This was the most UNIQUE tour we took. We've never seen anything else like it.

Evening Boat Ride
Evening Boat Ride

Bonus: The boat holds 144 people, so getting this reservation might be easier than some other tours. This is the most accessible of the tours, but you do have to get down some stairs to the floating dock in order to board the boat. Check with the tour company if you need assistance getting down to the dock.

Tour: Sound and Light Show Jet Boat Tour with Dinner and Premium Seating

Tour Company: Canyonlands by Night and Day

Price: $117 per person

Length of Tour: 3 Hours

We Recommend This Tour For: Anyone looking for an unusual experience... something that you can't do anywhere else. Don't let the name of this tour fool you. This is not what we would call a "Jet Boat" experience. This is a calm, relaxing boat ride on the river in a very stable boat with a wide, flat-bottom structure.

Tips for the Sound and Sight Boat Tour: Canyonlands by Night and Day has been offering this tour since 1963. There is a large parking lot at their facility which sits on the Colorado River between the town of Moab and Arches National Park. They have restrooms and a gift shop onsite. Like Moab Adventure Center, Canyonlands by Night and Day offers a big variety of tours for exploring Moab and the surrounding area. Visit the Canyonlands by Night and Day website for a full list of available tours, schedules and current pricing.

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We Explored Moab by Foot

No Moab itinerary is complete without spending time in the amazing national parks. Arches National Park has SO MANY great hiking opportunities, whether you are looking for a short hike or something more challenging, there are a ton of great options in Arches. But, for one of the best hikes in the park, you'll need a permit.

The incredible Fiery Furnace gets its name from the colors put off by the natural sandstone arches, fins and red rocks as the sun hits them during sunset. They say the area takes on the look of a fiery furnace.

Because of the delicate ecosystems in this section of the national park, as well as it's confusing maze layout of rock formations, you must have a permit to enter the Fiery Furnace. There are not a lot of marked trails in the Fiery Furnace and it's easy to get lost if you are not experienced with hiking here.

Arches National Park offers two options for Fiery Furnace hiking permits: 1) a Ranger Guided Hiking Tour Permit allows you to enter the Fiery Furnace as part of a group with a park ranger as your trail guide, 2) a Self-Guided Fiery Furnace Exploration Permit allows you to explore the Fiery Furnace in your own small group or individually after undergoing training by a park ranger.

Since we've never hiked in the Fiery Furnace, we opted for the Ranger Guided Tour. The plus of being with a park ranger is that we didn't have to focus on where we were going and could enjoy taking in the views all around us. This was an incredible hike and, because we were with a park ranger, we were able to enjoy areas that we probably would not have discovered on our own.

Bucket List Hike
Bucket List Hike in the Fiery Furnace

This was the most BUDGET FRIENDLY and also the most PHYSICALLY DEMANDING tour of the five.

Bonus: Since this tour is inside Arches National Park, we enjoyed a scenic drive to the Fiery Furnace parking lot. We were able to obtain permits for an early morning hike. It was a great way to start a full day of adventures inside the national park. If you don't have a full day to spend in Arches, an early Fiery Furnace hike would be a great half-day tour for taking in the uniquely beautiful scenery of this park. You do not need a park reservation to enter Arches National Park if you have a permit to hike in the Fiery Furnace.

Tour: Ranger-Led Fiery Furnace Tour

Tour Company: Arches National Park

Price: $16 per person + park entry fee or National Parks Annual Pass

Length of Tour: 2.5 Hours

We Recommend This Tour For: Anyone who enjoys hiking. While all of the hikes we completed in Arches National Park were awesome (we're looking at you Delicate Arch hike!), the Fiery Furnace is the most unique hike we've ever taken. This is truly a special place.

Tips for Hiking in the Fiery Furnace: You need to be somewhat physically fit to participate in the Fiery Furnace hike. It's not incredibly difficult, but it is challenging. This hike involves some rock scrambling and squeezing through some tight spaces. The park has age restrictions for children who can participate in this hike. Make sure that you have a way to easily carry plenty of water and wear your best hiking boots. Public restrooms are available in the Fiery Furnace parking lot which is located at the trail head. Permits need to be purchased online in advance. They can be tough to get, as the Fiery Furnace hike is a very popular iconic hike in Arches. It took us trying consistently for several days to finally obtain a permit, but it was well worth the time!

Visit the Arches National Park Fiery Furnace Hikes page for more information on obtaining a permit.

We Explored Moab on Horseback

Completing our Moab tours, we took a beautiful scenic drive along the Colorado River on Scenic Highway 128 to the Red Cliffs Ranch (also known as Red Cliffs Lodge). This working ranch offers guest rooms, a restaurant, bar and FREE movie museum. Take a look at our Things to Do in Moab UT post for more information about the movie museum.

Red Cliffs Ranch offers a number of guided tours and experiences: everything from yoga to, you guessed it... horseback riding! Our horseback guided tour took us through completely different landscapes than we saw just about anywhere else in the Moab area.

The staff did a great job of matching horses with riders, helping us to feel comfortable on the horses before we left the corral. The ride took us along a trail up hills, through the trees and along a creek. We even rode under a bridge for the main road. We could see a working movie set in the distance.

The slow pace of this ride gave us time to gain confidence in riding the horses while taking in the amazing views of this beautiful landscape. Since we were at the front of the ride, Tom was able to visit with the local guide who was leading the tour to ask questions and hear additional stories about the ranch and the area.

Although everything in the Moab area is scenic, this tour was the MOST SCENIC tour that we took. The views all around us were constantly changing and simply amazing.

Getting to Know Our Horses
Tom Getting to Know His Horse

Bonus: Much of this tour wandered through shade, making it a nice option on warm days. If you are nervous about riding horses, but would like to give it a try, the Red Cliffs Lodge has a very experienced, patient staff.

Tour: Horseback Afternoon Trail Ride

Tour Company: Red Cliffs Lodge

Price: $130 per person

Length of Tour: 1.5 Hours

We Recommend This Tour For: Anyone who wants to see a different side of Moab at a slower pace. The horseback riding tour is a great adventure away from the hustle and bustle of downtown Moab.

Tips for the Horseback Riding Tour: Plan to arrive at the Red Cliffs Lodge early enough to explore the grounds and take in the free movie museum. Long pants are required to be able to ride, so be sure you dress appropriately. Parking is available at the main lodge building, and check-in is just inside. Be sure to check-in for the tour before you walk over to the corrals. The main building also includes restrooms, a restaurant and bar. Visit the Red Cliffs Lodge website for a full list of current tours, pricing and schedules.

Are Guided Tours a Good Way to Explore the Moab Area?

After taking 5 very different tours from 5 different tour outfitters, we can confidently say that in our opinion, YES! Guided Tours are a GREAT WAY to explore Moab.

Each of these tours gave us unique views, perspectives and stories of Moab and the surrounding area. Even the tours that included the same areas (like the paddleboarding and boat tours on the Colorado River) felt like completely different experiences.

The combination of the adventures that we had via these five guided tours added so much to our overall Moab experience. We 100% believe that they are worth the extra cost.

There is no best way to explore Moab. We encourage you to spend some time researching the best things for you to do during your Moab visit. And we strongly recommend working at least one tour into your Moab itinerary. Each tour had a great guide that provided a lot of local information and history.

Other Types of Tours that You Find in Moab

As we mentioned in the video, there are A LOT of options for tour outfitters and off-road vehicle rentals in Moab. Some other tours that are available here include: rock climbing and canyoneering tours, mountain bike tours, Jeep rental tours, hot air balloon tours, helicopter tours, electric motorcycle tours, and national park bus tours.

In Moab, you can find different experiences for different interests and any skill level. You can join a large tour group or request a private tour. The choice is yours. But whatever you choose, we bet you'll have an amazing time.

There is just about something for everyone here, so be sure to plan plenty of time in Moab during your next road trip.

Get More Information On Tours in Moab

Visit the Moab Visitor Center website or on Main Street in Downtown Moab for information on all of the local tours and other fun things to do.

What's Next?

Next week: join us for another visit to one of our iconic national parks: we'll take you along as we explore the original reason we came to Moab in the first place: incredible Arches National Park!

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Some More Photos From Our Moab Tours

Sunset from the Slickrock
Sunset from the Slickrock
The Colorado River from Above
The Colorado River from Above
We Loved Our First Paddleboard Experience
We Loved Our First Paddleboard Experience
Amazing Views and Calm Water
Amazing Views and Calm Water
View from the Front Row of the Boat
View from the Front Row of the Boat
The Cliffs Lit Up At Night
The Cliffs Lit Up at Night
Heading into the Fiery Furnace
Heading Into the Fiery Furnace
The Fiery Furnace Is Like Another World
The Fiery Furnace Is Like Another World
Meandering Along the Creek
Meandering Along the Creek
Friendly Horses
The Friendly Horses Are Awesome!

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Tom and Stacie

Tom and Stacie Langland
"RV America Y'all"

Hey y'all! We are Native Texans and (since 2018) Full-Time RVers sharing the adventures, challenges, and joys of RV life as we travel. We love camping and hiking in State and National Parks, discovering history, visiting interesting and quirky places, and exploring small towns. We're on a mission to experience life, not just live it with our dog, Star, and our cat, Astro. You can also find us on our original RV travel website, Thanks for joining us as we RV America Y'all!

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