Looking to get outdoors and explore nature on an incredible hiking trip? The US has over 400 national parks to choose from and deciding where to go is dependent on what type of experience you'd like or what is within close proximity to you. With the recent trends of glamping in canvas tents, yurts, and bubbles—Now national parks are reaching a larger demographic of travelers, away from the traditional camper. Below, we've compiled a list of top national parks to visit in the US, along with the best deals on stays in or near the parks and flights to get you there.
Possibly the most iconic national park in the US, the Grand Canyon attracts millions of visitors each year, and in total, its area is larger than the state of Rhode Island—277 miles in length.
The Glacier National Park got its name from the landscape that is still marked by the last ice age. Unfortunately, the real glaciers in the park continue to recede - but this does not make the park any less interesting. There is a huge network of hiking trails in the park where nature lovers can experience untouched forests, the glaciers, colorful meadows, and spectacular lakes.
located in California's Sierra Nevada Mountains, this park that encompasses over 1,200 square miles can be visited all year round. Here you'll find mountainous terrain and high cliffs, as well as giant sequoia trees and deep valleys. The national park is particularly beautiful in May/June. Right after the snow melts, the rivers in and around the park are rich in water and the waterfalls in the park are also most impressive at this time.
For many, this park is probably one of the more unknown after the classics. In fact, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is the most visited national park in the USA. The entire park is covered by dense forest. This forest is one of the oldest forests in the world and is the largest primeval forest area in the USA.
Here you have New England at its best. Lakes, forests, the sea - outdoor and photography fans in particular have the opportunity to experience great moments here.
Bryce is one of five national parks in the state of Utah. No other state in the USA has so many national parks. If you think the national parks all look the same, you're wrong. Each one is special and looks different. Bryce Canyon is especially known for its alien-looking "hoodoos", the characteristic stone towers.
Big Bend National Park is one of the most difficult national parks to reach in the USA. It is located on the border with Mexico in deep and rural West Texas. Here you will find, far and wide, NOTHING. In the park itself, the huge canyon, the Santa Elena Canyon, and the ghost town of Terlingua are well worth seeing. If you want to visit Big Bend National Park, you should plan your trip really well. The journey alone takes forever and accommodation is very limited. The nearest villages are Alpine and Marathon, which alone are more than a two-hour drive through the desert.
Yellowstone National Park is the oldest national park in the world and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is one of the largest national parks in the USA and is known for its geothermal springs, of which there are almost 10,000. In addition to the thousands of springs, you can also experience a diverse animal and plant world in Yellowstone. Wild bison, for example, can be found in the park
A recent trend in the travel world has been with glamping properties set up outside of National Parks. You can often find great value on a yurt, canvas tent, or bubble accommodation.
Another great way to see the open country is by camper van. You have the freedom to change your location each night, and a lot of National Parks offer safe parking facilities or there are many campgrounds that you can stay at and park your campervan for a reasonable fee.
Check out the National Park Service's Page on where you can camp in or near national parks. They provide great recommendations and tips for your camping trip. Camping is allowed in all national parks in the US for minor fees.
Of course, you can opt to find a hotel near the national park you want to visit. This is a great idea if you are looking for the ultimate comfort on your trip.