5 Things You Should Know About Living in Salt Lake City, Utah

Salt Lake City has seen record growth over the past ten years, with thousands of new residents moving in from Nevada, Arizona, Washington, and California. Many others from across the country are discovering the benefits of living in Salt Lake City, from the economy to the scenery to the food and entertainment options. Anyone searching for fun and exciting opportunities ought to consider life here in “the crossroads of the west.” You’ll find a lot to like and even more to love.

The Silicon Slopes Are Teeming with Jobs

Salt Lake City is a great place for young professionals. There are plenty of jobs in high-paying, fast-growing industries, such as energy, healthcare, and technology. There are fossil fuel companies developing oil resources and distributing natural gas, as well as innovative businesses working on the next generation of solar panels. Brave souls can even apply to EnergySolutions, one of the international leaders in the recycling, processing, and disposal of nuclear waste.

The growing population has also created an increased demand for doctors, nurses, and medical specialists, but it’s the tech sector that’s drawn the most people. Coders call it the "Silicon Slopes" for a reason - Salt Lake City is one of the most active tech markets in the United States today. Thanks to low operating costs and an affordable standard of living, the city has continued to add tech jobs year over year like clockwork, despite the slowdowns elsewhere in the tech industry. There are established companies like Adobe and Overstock.com, as well as startups like Filevine and PassiveLogic, who are hard at work building new software platforms for lawyers and property managers, respectively.

Its Mountains, Valleys, and Natural Parks Are Second to None

Salt Lake City is surrounded by nature. Sandwiched between the Great Salt Lake and the Wasatch Mountains, it provides easy access to some of the best hiking, biking, camping, and skiing in the country. The city is within driving distance of five national and 40 state parks, including Arches, Bryce Canyon, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, and Zion.

Residents can explore a whole maze of towering red rock formations, jagged hoodoos jutting up from the desert floor, and natural stone bridges cut into the mountainous landscape by centuries of wind and rain. Deserts give way to vibrant meadows and rolling hills dotted with trees, intercut with sparkling rivers that meander through the scenic canyons around the city.

Some say things are even better in winter. Salt Lake City has some of the greatest snow in the world. There are 11 ski resorts in the Wasatch Mountains. Rustic, elegant, with hundreds of runs spread out over thousands of acres and over 500 inches of powder a year, it's a skiing and snowboarding paradise.

But despite the record snowfall, the weather’s surprisingly clear most of the time. Thanks to the region’s unique climate, Salt Lake City enjoys an average of 220 days of sunshine ‒ plenty of opportunities for fun and adventure.

It’s Packed with Breweries and Distilleries

Living in Salt Lake City doesn’t mean you can’t have a drink. The state’s liquor laws have loosened considerably and, as a result, breweries and distilleries are springing up all over the place. You'll find all your traditional favorites ‒ pilsners, Irish stouts, German lagers, English ales, double IPAs, fruited sours ‒ plus a few new ones as well.

Utah brewers love to experiment with hops, oats, rye, wheat, citrus, and berries in order to craft unforgettable flavors unique to the Rocky Mountains. There are also aged rums, bitter spirits, straight gin, organic vodka, and botanical liqueurs sold throughout the city, the perfect ingredients for delicious and potent cocktails.

But thirsty residents don’t have to travel from bar to bar to sample their favorite brews. The city hosts several major tasting events throughout the year, such as:

  • Utah Beer Festival. Largest drinking event in the state, with over 200 beers, ciders, hard seltzers, and kombucha cocktails from national and local brewers.
  • Octoberfest at Snowbird. Enjoy over 50 styles of beer, along with traditional German food and music, set amid green and yellow woodlands.
  • SLUG Mag’s Brewstillery. Discover Salt Lake City’s best up-and-coming breweries and distilleries. It’s a family-friendly celebration of Utah’s beer and liquor industry.
  • Wild West Collab Fest. Local brewers join forces to create startling, one-off flavors you won’t find anywhere else or ever again.
  • Salt Lake City Wine & Dine. Taste the finest food and drink from 40 of Salt Lake City’s most acclaimed restaurants, distilleries, and wineries.

The Food and Restaurant Scene Will Blow Your Mind

Dining out in Salt Lake City can take you all over the world. There are handmade Mexican tortillas and moles at the Red Iguana, German wiener schnitzel and bratwurst at Siegfried's Delicatessen, Italian duck at Valter's Osteria, stir fry noodles at Chanon Thai Café, Lebanese hummus at Laziz Kitchen, as well as Hawaiian musubi at Pacific Seas Restaurant.

Anyone craving traditional American food can enjoy mouth-watering steaks at Table X, cheeseburgers at the Shooting Star Saloon, pork chops and steak fries at the Copper Onion, and fried chicken and buttermilk biscuits at HSL.

But the city also has a few signature dishes and flavors worth trying. No matter how far you travel, you’ll never find anything quite like them. That includes:

  • Fry Sauce. Salt Lake’s trademark dip, made from equal parts ketchup and mayonnaise, sometimes with a few spices thrown in as well. Created in the 1950s, it’s now a staple of most french fry and burger joints.
  • Utah Scones. Deep fried flatbread coated in honey and sugar. Dense and soft, with a flaky outer layer, they’re served in coffee shops all around the city.
  • Navajo Tacos. Seasoned ground beef, black beans, grated cheese, sour cream, tomatoes, and lettuce served in a taco shell made from fry bread ‒ a crunchy and delicious take on traditional Mexican tacos.
  • Crown Burgers. A cheeseburger served with a layer of hot pastrami, available only at Crown Burgers, a small, fast-food chain started in none other than Salt Lake City.
  • Funeral Potatoes. Commonly served as comfort food after funerals, made from diced potatoes, shredded cheese, dried onion, cream soup, sour cream, and melted butter, topped with corn flakes or crushed potato chips.

Sports, Nightlife, and Festivals Are out of This World

Salt Lake City is a young town. Half the residents are under 35, so it’s not surprising weekends here are anything but quiet. Partygoers can rock out at the Depot, Urban Lounge, State Room, Commonwealth Room, and the Metro Music Hall. Besides hosting some of the finest DJs, rock bands, and country artists in the nation, they’re also a great place to catch burlesque shows and comedians, not to mention some of the craziest dance parties west of the Rockies.

The Twilight Summer Concerts are a magnet for indie rock. Previous artists include Death Cab for Cutie and international sensation Rina Sawayama. The Mormon Tabernacle Choir also holds regular concerts throughout the year. Though affiliated with the Mormon Church, everyone is welcome to come and experience their astounding repertoire of classical and contemporary music.

Sports fans won’t want to miss a game by the Utah Jazz, who have some of the loudest and wildest fans in the nation. The National Women’s Soccer League is returning with the Utah Royals in 2024 and hockey fans love watching the Utah Grizzlies at Maverick Center. When it comes to college sports, make sure to pick your teams carefully. The rivalry between Brigham Young University and the University of Utah is notoriously heated.

But nothing can beat the Sundance Film Festival ‒ your chance to meet a celebrity and watch some of the biggest independent films in America. Dakota Johnson, Jordan Peele, Daisy Ridley, Jeff Goldblum, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, and Dwayne “the Rock” Johnson are just a few of the stars who have graced the red carpet in nearby Park City. After you’re done hobnobbing, check out the bold new films they’re promoting. Massive hits like Get Out, Little Miss Sunshine, and the Blair Witch Project all premiered at this festival.

Moving to Salt Lake City

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