The quintessential ski resort experience has to be Park City Ski Resort. When you talk about ski resorts that most people recognize and idolize, Park City has to be among the top five. When you want a headline skiing experience and something to look back on for years to come, head to Park City.
Park City Ski Resort is one of very few, if any others, that is about 30 minutes from a major international airport (Salt Lake International Airport). Unlike many other resorts that you have to fly into small and expensive airports, or land a major airport hours away and drive, you can catch a shuttle from the SLC International Airport directly to the resort.
Something to understand about Park City is that it is a former mining town that actually hit its boom in modern times, and not during its mining days. Park City sits in between several terrain features that make the town of Park City very cramped and crowded and unable to have large streets. This is especially an issue during mid January to the end of January when the Sundance Film Festival is going on. The Sundance Film Festival is kind of what made Park City big. It's also what makes Park City very difficult to navigate during the time it is running. Traffic jams can be lengthy, it may be faster to walk to your destination depending on distance.
Sundance Film Festival is something that you should take in if you get the chance. It is definitely worth it, but be aware that all the lodging will be really expensive and hard to find during that time, not that it's cheap anytime.
Park City has some of the most expensive real estate in Utah, and is one of the higher real estate costs for ski resorts in general. Be prepared to pay a pretty penny during the film festival and only slightly less when it isn't in town. However, if you can hit the slopes while the film festival is running you'll find yourself on some fairly deserted runs. Most people are there to see the films, not the slopes during that time.
Speaking of the slopes, Park City Ski Resort has some great terrain and runs. Park City Ski Resort bought out a neighboring ski resort and turned it all into one giant ski resort. You can ski both sides of the mountain and catch buses or a new gondola lift between the two former resorts, now just one. There are several terrain parks, numerous lifts and some hidden powder runs if you know where to go.
When you're all done with your skiing or film watching and are ready for some food, your choices are almost endless. There are some amazing restaurants throughout the town and ski resorts. You have almost every conceivable ethnicity and price. Be aware that like everything in Park City, you will pay a pretty high price for any of the better restaurants.
So much to do and see plan sufficient time to do it right, but keep in mind that your budget may be ready to leave before you are. Even if you can't stay for more than a few days, I would definitely make this one of my stops on my travel adventures.