Located in Angel Canyon just north of Kanab , this is one of the more unusual destinations in Utah. The scenic canyon was formerly the set for several Western movies and TV shows (including The Outlaw Josie Wales and Rin Tin Tin), and several of the sets are still standing. However, the canyon is now home to Best Friends Animal Sanctuary (5001 Angel Canyon Rd.), the largest no-kill animal shelter in the country.
Best Friends takes in unwanted or abused “companion animals”—pets, farm animals, or other abandoned or neglected creatures—and gives them a permanent home on the preserve’s 350 acres. Most animals are rehabilitated and are given new homes. Around 1,800 animals live at the sanctuary at any given time.
Ninety-minute tours of the facility are offered several times a day. Call 435/644-2001 for reservations. Donations are gladly accepted. The tour also visits some of the movie sets and features a short talk on the natural history of the canyon.
This well-graded trail provides a close look at the geology, plantlife, and animals of the Vermilion Cliffs  just north of town. Allow about an hour on the moderately difficult trail to reach the first overlook (two miles round-trip with a 400-foot elevation gain) or 90 minutes to go all the way up (three miles round-trip with an 800-foot elevation gain).
Views to the south take in Kanab, Fredonia, Kanab Canyon, and the vast Kaibab Plateau. At the top, look north to see the White, Gray, and Pink Cliffs of the Grand Staircase.
The trailhead is at the north end of 100 East near the city park. Pick up a trail guide at the information center (brochures may also be available at the trailhead or BLM office). Bring water and try to get a very early start in summer.
This natural cave (five miles north of Kanab  on U.S. 89, 435/644-8525, www.moquicave.com , 9 a.m.-7 p.m. Mon.-Sat. Memorial Day-Labor Day, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Mon.-Sat. off-season, $5 adults, $4.50 seniors, $3.50 ages 13-17, $3 ages 6-12) has been turned into a tourist attraction with a large collection of Native American artifacts. Most of the arrowheads, pottery, sandals, and burial items on display have been excavated locally.
A diorama re-creates an Anasazi ruin located five miles away in Cottonwood Wash. Fossils, rocks, and minerals are exhibited too, including what’s claimed to be one of the largest fluorescent mineral displays in the country.
The collections and a gift shop lie within a spacious cave that stays pleasantly cool even in the hottest weather.
This 1895 Queen Anne–style Victorian house (13 South 100 East, 435/644-3966, 1-5 p.m. Mon.-Fri. in summer, free) reflects the prosperity of two of Kanab’s early Mormon residents.
Henry Bowman built it, but he lived here only two years before going on a mission. He sold the property to Thomas Chamberlain, who led a busy life serving as a leader in the Mormons’ United Order and caring for his six wives and 55 children. A guide will show you around the house and explain its architectural details.
The town had no stores when the house was built, so each family grew its own vegetables and fruit. The grape arbor, berry bushes, and trees here represent those grown during pioneer times; fruit is free for visitors to pick.
The owners assembled this movie-set replica (297 W. Center St., 435/644-5337 or 800/551-1714, 9 a.m.–11 p.m. Apr.–Oct., free) in Kanab to show tourists a bit of Hollywood’s Old West. Some of the buildings have seen actual use in past movies and TV shows.
Many small exhibits display Western and movie memorabilia; there’s a selection of Western costumes available for rent if you feel like getting gussied up as a cowboy or showgirl. Souvenir photos, a gift shop, a saloon, and chuck wagon dinners bring in the money.
Churning air currents funneled by surrounding mountains have deposited huge sand dunes in this valley west of Kanab . The ever-changing dunes reach heights of several hundred feet and cover about 2,000 of the park’s 3,700 acres. Different areas in the park (435/648-2800, 800/322-3770 reservations, www.stateparks.utah.gov , $6 per vehicle day use, $16 per vehicle camping) have been set aside for hiking, off-road vehicles, and camping.
From Kanab, the shortest route to the park is to go north eight miles on U.S. 89 (between Mileposts 72 and 73), turn left and go 9.3 miles on the paved Hancock Road to its end, then turn left (south) and go one mile on a paved road into the park. From the north, you can follow U.S. 89 3.5 miles south of Mount Carmel Junction, then turn right (south) and go 11 miles on a paved road. The back road from Cane Beds in Arizona has about 16 miles of gravel and dirt with some sandy spots; ask a park ranger for current conditions.
The canyon country surrounding the park has good opportunities for hiking and ATV travel; the BLM office in Kanab can supply maps and information. Drivers with four-wheel drive vehicles can turn south on Sand Springs Road (1.5 miles east of Ponderosa Grove Campground) and go one mile to Sand Springs and another four miles to the South Fork Indian Canyon Pictograph Site in a pretty canyon. Visitors may not enter the Kaibab-Paiute Indian Reservation, south across the Arizona state line, from this side.