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Foothill Cultural District is a remarkable community of artistic, cultural, historic and zoological attractions – all forming jewels in the geographical necklace encircling the nearby foothills east of the Salt Lake Valley.

Rich in diversity and alluring in the promise of excitement, the eight members of Foothill Cultural District comprise the very best features of Utah’s face to the world.  Within the two square mile area families will delight, for example, at Hogle Zoo, one of the West’s most inclusive and liveliest homes for its rare and extraordinary animals. Just beyond the zoo stands This Is The Place Heritage Park, a paean to the foresight and sacrifice of the early Utah pioneers as they struggled to make their unforgiving climate and remote geography a welcoming community for all who traveled west.

From This Is The Place, a visitor can hike the Bonneville Shore Line Trail across the base of the foothills, reaching the stunning new Natural History Museum of Utah. Here kids and adults alike will revel in Utah’s natural and cultural gems, whether the native American art of the Five Nations, Utah’s indigenous peoples; the authentic dinosaur reconstructions, many excavated from Utah’s distant fields, and other wonders of nature. Back on the trail, it’s only a quick hop and a skip to the state’s arboretum, Red Butte Botanical Garden. Laid out in a panoply of textures, colors and designs, the Garden, open year-round, seven days a week, is a living testament to the cycle of life.

Fort Douglas Military Museum, with its historic buildings and park-like grounds lies to the northwest of Red Butte Garden. The custodian of Utah’s military heritage, Fort Douglas preserves and exhibits military ephemera from Abraham Lincoln’s founding of the Fort during the Civil War to the present. 

It’s a quick transition from the prehistoric Bonneville Shore Line Trail to today’s high-tech TRAX train for a quick ride down the hill from Fort Douglas to the Utah Museum of Fine Arts (temporarily closed for remodeling and reinstallation until August 26, 2017). Connect with the timeless art from Europe, Egypt, Japan, the Pacific Islands to finally arrive at the galleries of the museum’s highly vaunted collection of western and contemporary art.  The next leg of the TRAX ride lands the visitor at the Olympic Cauldron Park at Rice Eccles Stadium where the Cauldron and the Hoberman Arch are the only remaining reminders of the successful 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Games. 

And lastly – the University Guest House Hotel is the final jewel in the necklace, and an enticing one it is. The Guest House offers a welcome respite from the day’s explorations -- and a perfect place to relax and enjoy the vistas of the Salt Lake Valley. Be assured that after a good night’s rest there’s still much to see and do in the Foothill Cultural District.

To help make your visit easy and enjoyable, Foothill Cultural District offers discount coupons to all of its attractions. Just go to and download as many as you can use! Foothill Annual Report

Link to the latest ZAP Blog.