A Guide to Salt Lake’s Neighborhoods

There are many interesting neighborhoods around Salt Lake City worth visiting. Here are the districts you need to include in your tour around Salt Lake City.

   1. Southwest Valley

Gardner village - Salt lake magazine

Resting beneath the southern portion of the Oquirrh Mountains, Southwest Valley is a springboard to the outdoor activities available nearby, including biking, hiking, golfing, boating and fishing.

Eat & Drink:

  • The Wild Rose
  • The Break to catch the game, a drink and some food after a day out in Southwest Valley.
  • Tsunami offers a tasty happy-hour menu, delicious rolls and a full bar.


  • SoDa Row in Daybreak has many other shops, like Painter’s Palette or Nest Boutique
  • The District offers many shops including Target, Hobby Lobby, and Charming Charlies.
  • Gardner Village is a lovely spot for window shopping, with 22 locally owned specialty shops.

2. Sugarhouse


Sugar House is a center for eclectic shops, small galleries, parks and craft restaurants and bars. With diverse, progressive residents—including students from top-rated Westminster College—this neighborhood is walkable and friendly. The heart of the neighborhood is the vibrant hub around 2100 South and Highland Drive, and the Sugar House Streetcar makes it all easily accessible.

Eat & Drink:

    • Wasatch Brew Pub and The Annex serve award-winning craft brews alongside menus that feature dishes like chilaquiles and chicken and waffles.
    • The DoDo for a hearty plating of comfort food.
    • Sugar House BBQ  for a visit to the long-time staple.


  • Unhinged Boutique offers one-of-a-kind goods from local artists and vintage finds.
  • Nordstrom rack find all your favorite brands for a great deal.
  • Pib’s Exchange wins with funky consignment.

3. University/Foothill

A beautiful neighborhood crowned by large trees and many historic homes, the area around the University of Utah (go Utes!) and Foothill Drive provides beautiful nighttime views of the city, museums, gardens and quick access to the Wasatch Mountains and its canyons.

Eat & Drink:

  • The Pie Pizzeria, for the college experience, go underground to U staple.
  • Taqueria 27 offers an extensive tequila menu for an evening margarita break.
  • Ruth’s Diner, the iconic brunch spot offers a good excuse for a drive as it sits about a mile up scenic Emigration Canyon.


  • Natural History Museum, a kid and adult fav, this architectural marvel is filled with dinosaur bones and other western wonders.
  • Hogle Zoo, family fun can be found.
  • This is the Place Heritage Park, which is chock-full of Mormon and pioneer history.

4. Cottonwood heights


This slower-paced ‘hood offers the best of both worlds: quick access to downtown and its adjacent neighborhoods and quick access to the mountain resorts and their wonderful, magical snow.


  • Cafe Trio serves up contemporary Italian cuisine.
  • Canyon Inn, offering live entertainment and legendary pizza, the Inn gets packed in all the right ways.
  • Blue Lemon, for pastries, sandwiches and the beloved sweet potato fries.


    • Utah Ski & Golf is known for excellent service and top-notch gear.
    • Play it Again Sports, dig for gems in the pre-owned-equipment.

5. Millcreek

Courtesy of Hikes and Lakes.
Courtesy of Hikes and Lakes.

Nestled right at the base of the Wasatch Mountains, Millcreek is something of an outdoor gear mecca. Not only can you shop for gear in this neighborhood, you can climb at a state of the art gym, cross-country ski with your dog and fine dine in the canyon.


  • Roots Café, start your day with a hearty breakfast
  • The Kathmandu has one of the best Indian food buffets in the city.
  • Tres Hombres dishes up massive portions of traditional Mexican and Tex-Mex.


  • Olympus Hills Bowling Lanes
  • Momentum Indoor Climbing Millcreek
  • Millcreek Canyon

6. Midvale

Courtesy of Top Golf
Courtesy of Top Golf

Midvale has its own identity. It grew up separately from Salt Lake City with an economy, industries, culture and history all its own. And the town still takes its gritty independence seriously, offering shopping and entertainment that reflect an understated urban vibe.


  • For a hearty breakfast, you can’t go wrong with Midvale Mining Company Cafe where the guys at the grill make hash browns like they mean it.
  • Epic serves contemporary American cuisine including tenderloin of beef, seared ahi tuna and brick-oven flatbreads. It also features an extensive wine list and full bar.


  • The whole family can compete and polish golf skills at Topgolf, an entertainment facility that doubles as a neighborhood hangout with a full dining and drink menu.
  • Midvale Museum explore how the discovery of silver in nearby canyons in the 1800s created a boomtown.

7. Holladay/Murray

Courtesy of Tripadvisor
Courtesy of Tripadvisor

This family-friendly neighborhood is quickly becoming a dining hub in its own right, with exciting new establishments opening up regularly. In this neighborhood, you’ll also enjoy quick access to great hiking and some of Salt Lake Valley’s most unique historic attractions.

Eat & Drink:

    • It’s hard to say exactly which is the best garlic burger in Utah, but many locals will heatedly argue that Cotton Bottom Inn has it.
    • Caputo’s Market & Deli, this local deli proudly displays the largest selection of Italian and Southern European foods in Utah.
    • Three Cups, bakery/coffee shop
    • Taking its name from the Johnny Cash tune, Bar Named Sue is a little bit country and a little bit city.


  • Fashion Place Mall


  • Wheeler Historic Farm is a restoration of the turn-of-the-century dairy farm of Henry J. Wheeler. The farm offers demonstrations, a historic houses tour, milking cows, visiting animals, riding a wagon and more.

8. Sandy

The South Valley area is a perfect place to stay if you plan on spending most of your time near the resorts, but want to enjoy urban amenities. Sandy, the ultimate basecamp, is 20 minutes from all the hiking, mountain biking and mountain scenery you can handle, but is also home to great hotels, restaurants and bars.


  • Tin Roof Grill, featured on “Diners, Drive Ins, and Dives.”
  • Tiburon Fine Dining enjoy a variety of specialty entrees coupled with a finale of homemade sorbet.
  • Mizumi Sushi Bar & Grill for gluten-free choices, beautifully displayed sushi and tempura that rivals any you’ve had.


  • Scheels isn’t just about shopping. The massive store doubles as an amusement park, with a 65-foot operating Ferris wheel, mini bowling, a nostalgic shooting gallery and several sport simulators.
  • The Shops at South Town offers mall shopping with 121 stores.

9. Draper

Courtesy of Travel Mag

A family-friendly neighborhood with a rapidly growing hi-tech community, Draper is warm and welcoming with down-to-earth dining and lodging options. Also appealing are its 90 miles of hiking and biking trails and a natural climbing wall that can be accessed most of the year.


    • Cliff House Gastro Pub hits all the right notes with its selection of sushi, artisanal beers and craft cocktails.
    • Pirate O’s isn’t a specialty store selling eye patches and parrots. It’s an importer of fine and artisanal goods.
    • Donkey Tails Cantinainexpensive options are the Mexican dishes and fresh salsas.


  • Cactus & Tropicals has an incredible assortment of heirloom succulents, as well as exotic and traditional plants for home and garden.
  • Get lost in the Swedish wonderland of home goods at IKEA.


  • The Loveland Living Planet Aquarium is home to 4,000 creatures representing 450 species.
  • Boondocks is the place for mini golf, bumper boats, go-karts, batting cages and a driving range.
  • Give the kids some airtime at Airborne Trampoline Arena.

10. West Valley

Courtesy of Utah Gov
Courtesy of Utah Gov

Utah’s second-largest city, West Valley City, is investing a whopping $500 million over the next several years to create a bustling downtown area. In the meantime, the city has some of the most diverse culinary experiences in Utah, plus family entertainment year round.


  • Myung Ga is widely agreed to be the best Korean BBQ in the valley.
  • Coppercreek Pub & Grub is famous for the Chubby Melt, a ground chuck patty smashed between two grilled cheese sandwiches.
  • Jugos y Tortas El Morelense which specializes in al pastor (pork roasted on a vertical spit).


  • Hale Centre Theatre, showcases nationally renowned family-friendly productions with a talented cast of local actors.
  • Maverik Center which was the official venue for men’s and women’s ice hockey during the 2002 Olympic Winter Games and home of the Utah Grizzlies.
  • Utah Olympic Oval , follow in the blade marks of 2002 Winter Games’ speed-skating great Apolo Ohno for a $4 admission.


  • Backcountry.com Retail Store, pick from the online retailer’s catalog, and runners will fetch your gear from the connected warehouse.
  • Sundance Catalog store to stock up on housewares and chic Western inspired fashion.
  • Valley Fair Mall has 120 shops.

Visit our Newcomer’s Guide for more tips.

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