Photo: Moab, Utah

My wife leaps with excitement upon finding Delicate Arch deserted but for the two of us. Moab UT

Photograph by Bret Edge, My Shot

Pop. 5,121
GPS: 38°34'N 109°32'W

Sandwiched between Arches and Canyonlands national parks, Moab thrives in a red rock playground. Hike to Delicate Arch, gaze at Native American rock art, raft the Colorado River, and bike the 10-mile (16-kilometer) Slickrock Trail on a heavily eroded sandstone plateau.

Your Turn: Tell us about your favorite Moab adventures, restaurants, and hotels in the comments section below.

PLAY

Believe the hype: Most mountain bikers jump at the chance to ride the White Rim Trail in Canyonlands National Park. The 100-mile (161-kilometer) loop can be tackled in a few days, with trailside camping along the way. Moab Adventure Center offers canyoneering into Ephedra's Grotto, a massive stone chasm that requires two long rappels ($99; 866-904-1163).

EAT

The funky Eklecticafe on Main St. has organic and vegetarian-friendly options and an outdoor patio. Wake up to the homemade maple nut granola or try the Indonesian Satay with tofu for lunch (435-259-6896).

SLEEP

Outside of town, the rustic Red Cliffs Adventure Lodge has rooms along the Colorado River and is surrounded by, yes, massive red Utah cliffs. The lodge can also set up horseback trail rides, Jeep tours, and rafting excursions that leave right from the front door (doubles from $219; redcliffslodge.com).

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