You'll have a bird's-eye view of southeastern Utah's incredible landscape from Moab 's Canyonlands Field with Redtail Aviation (435/259-7421 or 800/842-9251, www.redtailaviation.com ). Flights include Canyonlands National Park  (Needles, Island in the Sky, and Maze Districts; $140). Longer tours are available, too. Rates are based on two or more persons. Flights operate all year.
Also based at Canyonlands Field, Slickrock Air Guides (435/259-6216 or 866/259-1626, www.slickrockairguides.com ) offers a one-hour tour over the Canyonlands area for $140 per person, and 3.5 hours over Canyonlands, Natural Bridges, Lake Powell , and the Capitol Reef  area with a stop for lunch at the Marble Canyon Lodge (not included in rate) for $385.
As an alternative to four-by-four touring in the backcountry, there's all-terrain vehicle (ATV) and motorcycle "dirt biking," typically but not exclusively geared toward youngsters and families. Although youths ages 8-15 may operate an ATV if they have an Education Certificate issued by Utah State Parks and Recreation or an equivalent certificate from their home state, parents should research ATV safety before agreeing to such an outing.
Much of the public land surrounding Moab is open to ATV exploration, with many miles of unpaved roads and existing trails on which ATVs can travel. However, ATV and dirt-bike riding is not allowed within either Arches  or Canyonlands National Park .
One particularly popular area for ATVs is White Wash Sand Dunes, with many miles of dirt roads in a strikingly scenic location (48 miles northwest of Moab, reached by driving south 13 miles from Exit 175 on I-70, just east of Green River). The dunes are interspersed with large cottonwood trees and bordered by red sandstone cliffs. In addition to the dunes, White Wash is a popular route around three sides of the dunes.
ATVs and dirt bikes are available from a number of Moab-area outfitters, including High Point Hummer (281 N. Main St., 435/259-2972 or 877/486-6833, www.highpointhummer.com ) and Moab Tour Company (543 N. Main St., 435/259-4080 or 877/725-7317, www.moabtourcompany.us ). A half-day dirt bike or ATV rental starts at around $120.
Road tours offer visitors a special opportunity to view unique canyonland arches and spires, indigenous rock art, and wildlife. An interpretive brochure at the Moab Information Center outlines the Moab Area Rock Art Auto Tour, which routes motorists to petroglyphs tucked away behind golf courses and ranches. You might also pick up a map of Moab-area four-wheel-drive trails: four rugged, 15- to 54-mile loop routes through the desert, which take 2.5-4 hours to drive.
Those who left their trusty four-by-four and off-road-driving skills at home can take an off-road jeep tour through a private operator. Most Moab  outfitters offer jeep tours, often in combination with rafting or hiking options. Tag-A-Long Tours (452 N. Main St., Moab, 435/259-8946 or 800/453-3292, www.tagalong.com ) and Adrift Adventures (378 N. Main St., 435/259-8594 or 800/874-4483, www.adrift.net ) have half-day (starting at $70) and full-day jeep tours (starting at $110), with combination jet-boat or hiking options. Full-day tours include lunch.
You can rent jeeps and other four-wheel-drive vehicles at a multitude of Moab outfits, including Farabee Jeep Rentals (1125 S. U.S. 191, 435/259-74944, www.moabjeeprentals.com ), Canyonlands Jeep Adventures (225 S. Main St., 435/259-4412, www.canyonlandsjeep.com ), and Cliffhanger Jeep Rentals (40 W. Center St., 435/259-0889, www.cliffhangerjeeprental.com ). Expect to pay upwards of $150 per day.
The Moab Golf Club (2705 SE Bench Rd., 435/259-6488, www.moabcountryclub.com/golf , $42) is an 18-hole, par-72 public course set in a well-watered oasis amid stunning red-rock formations. To get there from town, go south five miles on U.S. 191, turn left on Spanish Trail Road and follow it two miles, then go right on Murphy Lane and follow it to Bench Road and the golf course.
Several tour operators, including Adrift Adventures (378 N. Main St., 435/259-8594 or 800/874-4483, www.adrift.net ) offer horseback riding options in conjunction with rafting, hiking, and jeep exploration. The Moab Adventure Center (225 S. Main St., 435/259-7019 or 866/904-1163, www.moabadventurecenter.com ) and Red Cliffs Lodge (Milepost 14, Hwy. 128, 435/259-2002 or 866/812-2002, www.redcliffslodge.com ) offer horseback rides amid the dramatic scenery of Castle Valley. Half-day rides are $70 per person; children must be 8 or older, and an adult must accompany children. Riders must weigh less than 220 pounds.
The city park (181 West 400 North, 435/259-8226) has shaded picnic tables, a playground, and an outdoor swimming pool. Lions Park offers picnicking along the Colorado River, two miles north of town. Rotary Park, on Mill Creek Drive, is family-oriented and has lots of activities for kids.
Just outside of town, the cliffs along Highway 279 and Fisher Towers attract rock climbers. A good place for rock climbing gear and information is Pagan Mountaineering (59 S. Main St., 435/259-1117, www.climbmoab.com ). The friendly folks here also offer a climbing guide service to the local rock.
If you think the Arches  and Canyonlands  area looks dramatic from an airplane tour, imagine the excitement of parachuting into the desert landscape. Skydive Moab (Canyonlands Fields Airport, 435/259-5867, www.skydivemoab.com ) offers jumps for both first-time and experienced skydivers. First-timers receive 30 minutes of ground schooling, followed by a half-hour flight and a tandem parachute jump with an instructor from 10,000 feet. A tandem skydive, including instruction and equipment, starts at $235. For experienced skydivers with their own equipment, jumps start at $16; equipment and parachutes are available for rent.