We are staying in St. George on the first week of August 2018. Not being familiar with the area, do we park outside the gates to catch the shuttle??
If possible you may want to spend at least one night, preferably more, in Springdale.
From St. George:
If you can get to the viistor's center before 8 am you can probably find parking there. From there you take the mandatory shuttle into Zion.
If you don't get to the visitors center in time to find parking you will have to park somewhere in Springale which costs $22 per day. You take a different shuttle from Springdale to the visitor's center. Then at the visitor's center you transfer to the in park shuttle.
Another issues to consider - shuttle lines can be long. If you are in Springdale getting up very early pays big dividends - to get the same advantage from St. George you have to get up even earlier.
Ditto what Brian said. If you aren't staying in Springdale, you need to be at the Zion visitor center by 8 AM if you have any hope of getting a parking spot there. Otherwise, you will be looking for a parking place in Springdale and pay $22 for all day. It's an hour from St. George to Springdale. You should be on the road to Zion no later than 7 AM and that may be too late. If you arrive in Springdale after 8, just look for a parking place in town and use the town shuttle to connect to the mandatory Zion shuttle.
There are two different shuttle systems. The Springdale town shuttle operates on the main street of Springdale, with stops through out town from the Majestic View Lodge to the Visitor Center. Passengers get off the town shuttle at the visitor center and get on the Zion Park shuttle there. Passengers from the town shuttle walk thru the pedestrian gate at the visitor center to the Zion Park shuttle bus. Visitors have the option of using the town shuttle, driving their cars to the visitor center or walking from Springdale to the visitor center.
Ok, great, Connie! Is the cost the same whether you drive to the visitor center or walk through and catch the shuttle? Sorry, I know it's a lot of questions, but y'all are so helpful!
The cost to enter Zion is the same either way - $30 for the group. (Unless there is only 1 of you then walking in is cheaper.)
However, Springdale charges $22 to park in the city for the day. (You don't have to pay this if you park at the Zion Visitor's Center of if you park at your hotel in Springdale.
From the park website:
If you will be visiting other national parks sometime before or after your visit to Zion and within a year, purchase an annual pass for $80. That will give you entry to that national park and all others, national including monuments, recreation areas, seashores, etc.
Oops $35 dollars for a group/car. Did it change somewhat recently or did I just remember wrong? Note: You can buy the car pass even if you walk in if you have 3 or more in your group.
I would have quoted $30 a vehicle also, cause that is also what is stuck in my mind.
Obviously it is best just to arrive early and park in the park at the visitor center. You would pay the vehicle pass of $35. The vehicle pass will get your group into the pedestrian access without an extra cash outlay unless there is way more than 4 in your group. If you choose to walk in(and pay the parking fee in Springdale), then you can still (try to) buy the car pass as Brian has mentioned above. That will get you into the park on another day by vehicle. Passes are good for 7 days.