The 8 Best National Parks In The USA
March 3rd, 2021, Posted by travelwith2ofus
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There is nothing like spending time enjoying the beautiful outdoors. In the USA, there are many options to choose from.
The National Park Service (NPS) manages 423 parks which, can be found in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and US territories.
While all U.S. parks are worth visiting, there are some clear favorites, and for 2020 visitors made their choices known.
Let's look at the top eight national parks in the USA, based on visitor numbers.
Great Smoky Mountains National Park
In 2020 the Great Smoky Mountains National Park attracted an enormous number of visitors.
But what does this park offer that attracts 12.1 million people?
The changing seasons provide such a beautiful environment that differs completely every season.
In the Winter, there is so much visible, which is usually hidden during the other seasons. Old stone foundations and walls from communities that long ago lived there, for example.
Spring is just so beautiful, with waves of colorful wildflowers cascading through the newly flowering trees.
In summer, the opportunities to follow sparkling mountain streams as they meander through the cool forest landscape.
Finally, in the Autumn, hikers can enjoy the crisp, cool air that heightens awareness of the ever-changing pallet of colors that make up the trees.
Yellowstone National Park
Coming in second with 3.8 million visitors, we have Yellowstone National Park with its unique collection of geysers and hot springs.
There are over 10,000 hydrothermal features to see in the park, and some of them are truly spectacular. Of course, the most famous, "Old Faithful," is a sight everyone wants to see.
It is named Old Faithful because of the predictability of its eruptions. The park service website will give a forecast of when it will next erupt.
In addition to the park's hydrothermal features, Yellowstone National Park has abundant wildlife. Specifically, elk and bison, both of which can be dangerous if not treated with respect.
You will also see bears and wolves, and you should keep at least 100 yards away from them, while at least 25 yards away from all other animals, as recommended by the NPS.
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Zion National Park
The 232 square miles of Zion National park are high plateau with deep sandstone canyons.
The best time to visit is in the Spring and Autumn months where the weather is still warm, ranging from 60 to 90 degrees, on average.
This beautiful national park attracted 3.6 million visitors who enjoy hiking, wading, swimming, and rappelling in the deep canyons.
You must check out Angel's landing. There is a five-mile strenuous hike that is far more exciting than the average, but this should not be tackled by those who have a great fear of heights. Fortunately, the most difficult parts of the trail have chain handrails to hold.
Rocky Mountain National Park
The Rocky Mountain National Park is a fantastic destination for vacations. Enjoy mountain climbing, hiking, camping, and some breathtaking scenery to admire. If that all sounds too demanding, then try the serenity of a crystal clear mountain lake.
One of the favorite pastimes is watching the wildlife. Depending on the season, you will see herds of elk and mule deer, moose, bighorn sheep, black bears, coyotes, cougars, eagles, hawks, and scores of smaller animals.
In 2020, there were 3.3 million visitors to the park. If you want to enjoy isolation at the park, you will need to go to one of the remote campsites. However, remember, they fill up very quickly, so book well in advance.
Grand Teton National Park
Grand Teton National Park is one of Wyoming's most beautiful attractions, located just north of Jackson. The park stretches over 310,000 acres, with many landscapes ranging from green valley floors and rising into the mounting peaks.
The best time to visit the national park is from Mid May through to September, and most of the 3.3 million visitors last year came during that period.
Grand Teton National Park, like many other national parks, is populated with black and Grizzly bears. Don't let that put you off, as there have only been six reported bear attacks since 1994.
Nevertheless, visitors should always carry bear spray. Bears move around at any time but are most commonly on the move at dawn and dusk.
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Cameras And Accessories to capture the moment
These cameras and accessories will help you capture those memorable moments at these National Parks.
Grand Canyon National Park
The optimum time to visit the Grand Canyon National Park is March through to May and September through to November.
If you decide to visit during summer, you will be competing with the vast majority of visitors for accommodation at the best places. In 2020 there were 2.9 million visitors to the park.
Formed over six million years ago by erosion from the Colorado River and other geological activities, the Grand Canyon is one of the world's most studied geographical areas.
If you plan to visit, please follow all safety instructions. Every year there are around three deaths from people falling over the rim of the canyon.
The Grand Canyon National Park has a rather unusual animal at the top of its dangerous animal list. It is the Rock Squirell. They are everywhere in the park, and they are pretty vicious. Seriously! They will bite you.
Cuyahoga Valley National Park
Cuyahoga is a historical wonderland that attracted 2.8 million visitors last year.
Animals found in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park include smaller animals like raccoons and those industrious beavers. You will also come across skunks, which can ruin your day.
The valley was the former home of the many native American Tribes. One tribe that once inhabited the area is the Lenape Nation, which had a complex sociopolitical structure, a wide-ranging trading network, and was skilled in making boats, weapons, pottery, and clothing.
Due to conflicts and legal means, the Lenape were pushed out of their original lands and into the Cuyahoga Valley, then later pushed out into Oklahoma.
One place worth visiting is the Cuyahoga Scenic Railroad, which runs steam and diesel-powered trips through the national park.
Another favorite is the "Ledges Trail," which is an enjoyable circular walk that features rock formations and old trees. It is an excellent place to enjoy the sunset.
Acadia National Park
At number eight, the Acadia National Park attracted 2.8 million visitors in 2020. The park is most famous for the incredible colors of its foliage in Autumn. It is also stunning during winter. Snowshoeing and cross-country skiing are among the park's favorite activities.
Acadia National Park has so much to see, with romantic ocean views of the rocky shoreline, trails for hiking, and biking that lead to a sandy beach.
Highspots for tourists are Cadillac mountain, Jordon Pond, and Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse. Acadia National Park may be the final park on this list, but it is far from being the least worthwhile to visit.
Which is your favorite National Park?
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