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13 Best U.S. National Parks for 2024

December 16, 2023

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For more than 150 years, the National Park Service has managed millions of acres solely "for the enjoyment, education, and inspiration of this and future generations." Today, the United States' 63 national parks attract millions of visitors a year to witness the natural wonders and unforgettable terrain.

1. Glacier National Park

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Considered one of the world's best places to visit, Glacier National Park spans two mountain ranges and includes more than 700 lakes across Montana.

2. Grand Canyon National Park

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The Grand Canyon is so magnificent that even the highest quality photos do not do justice to the immense beauty of the Arizona park - you just have to see it in person.

3. Yellowstone National Park

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Even if Yellowstone doesn't hold the incredible distinction of being the world's first national park, the 2.2 million-acre park, which stretches across Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho, can easily stand on its own for its unique natural attractions and magnificent landscape.

4. Yosemite National Park

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One of the most visited national parks in California, Yosemite National Park stands out for its impressive waterfalls such as Vernal Fall and Bridalville Fall, as well as its unique granite rock formations such as Half Dome and El Capitan.

5. Zion National Park

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Utah's Zion National Park is a paradise for thrill-seekers. Hike Angel's Landing, which brings you up a nearly 1,500-foot natural staircase (permits are required to hike this popular trail and are awarded through an online lottery system).

6. Grand Teton National Park

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Jackson Hole's backcountry is a wild wonderland that begs to be explored. Once home to ranchers and fur trappers, this Wyoming park now offers more than 250 miles of trails.

7. Olympic National Park

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Within the nearly 1 million acres that make up Olympic National Park, visitors can wander through the enchanting Hoh Rainforest, take in stunning views and relax along more than 70 miles of Pacific Northwest coastline.

8. Arches National Park

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Established in 1929, Arches National Park covers approximately 77,000 acres in eastern Utah. Oddly shaped sandstone monuments occupy every view, and the formations make the park a wonderful place for backpackers.

9. Bryce Canyon National Park

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Hoodoos are oddly shaped rock pillars that stand up from the forces of erosion, and Bryce Canyon National Park is home to the largest range of hoodoos in the world.

10. Sequoia National Park

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Sequoia National Park is defined by its beautiful, towering sequoia trees - the largest trees in the world. Travelers can walk through this unique California national park to appreciate its trees, rivers, grasslands, and wildlife.

11. Rocky Mountain National Park

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The Rockies scored plenty of points to their advantage. Sitting about 70 miles northwest of Denver, Rocky Mountain National Park makes for an easy day trip.

12. Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park

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Visit Hawaii Volcanoes National Park for a chance to get up close and personal with two of the world's most active volcanoes, Mauna Loa and K?lau.

13. Crater Lake National Park

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Whether you're enjoying a scenic drive along the 33-mile Rim Drive, working up a sweat on a bike ride, or exploring America's deepest lake on a boat trip, you'll find plenty of ways to spend your time in this Oregon national park.

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