When it comes to driving the nation, some of the best sights to behold are our national parks. From the epic Grand Canyon to Acadia in Maine, the national parks each have something special to offer. The guides on our blog to the national parks offer suggestions for the best hikes, scenic drives, and activities at the parks, along with information on where to stay nearby. As the 100th anniversary of the national park system approaches, there’s no better time to discover the wonders the parks hold.
“Just Visiting” is one of the sayings made familiar to anyone who has played the classic Parker Brothers board game, “Monopoly.” It is a great alternative to the other option of being incarcerated. The same can be said for Alcatraz Island. For many years it was one of the most famous prisons in the world. If it were still the same, we would prefer to be “just visiting” this place, nicknamed The Rock, a mile and a quarter from land in the middle of San Francisco Bay.
As we come into the summer months, it’s a good idea for outdoor lovers to plan summer trips. Camping and outdoor activities are great for this time of year. And what better place to start the planning then at one of the greatest state parks in the Midwest?
The drive from Telluride Colorado to the northwest of Uravan, Colorado can be accomplished in a little over an hour and a half, and if that is all the time you have to give it, you should go. But if you can spare longer, and stop along the way, you will have a chance to see much of what is also known as the San Miguel River Recreation Area.There are some access points along your drive where you can get up close to the San Miguel River for water and wildlife views, kayaking, rafting and fishing opportunities. It’s one of many freestone rivers in Colorado are not obstructed by dams. The San Miguel is beautiful and continually varying.
At City of Rocks National Reserve in Almo, Idaho, you can enjoy one of the most gorgeous and pristine places in the entire United States for breathtaking scenery, stimulating hiking, challenging rock climbing, and primitive camping. Towering granite rock spires inspire the imagination, as they allude to an ancient lost city. There is plenty of history as well, including signs of the 1840s-through-1880s pioneers who were heading west on California Trail; they were the first to describe this area as “a city of steeple rocks” with “tall spires.” Best of all, you can experience most of it in your car.
The 9,217-acre Devil’s Lake State Park, near Baraboo, Wisconsin, is the state’s most popular and most frequented park. The park is known for its trails, come prepared for a hike, to enjoy them. You can also bring your bike, kayak, and fishing gear, swim, boat, float, fly kites, play Frisbee, and watch the birds, including golden eagles. Kids of all ages love to climb on the giant rocks. Bring along a picnic so that you can savor the scenery. Devil’s Lake State Park has something for everyone to enjoy the lively or peaceful atmosphere.
The Chesapeake and Ohio Canal was created to provide a link between the Potomac River and the lands beyond the Appalachian Mountains, in the days when travel by water was faster than travel by land. In time, the canal was superseded by the railroad, canal towns that were not also on rail lines became somewhat frozen in time, and many have changed very little since that day.
The Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park, 205 W. Potomac St., Williamsport, MD, preserve the world in ways that most have forgotten. A visit there is a step back in history, and a step into a quieter world.
More than tropical temperatures and colorful flowers, the Pacific Islands are where battles raged, and cultures continue to flourish. Today, visitors have the opportunity to hear personal accounts of war survival. Also, witness artistry of indigenous peoples, or even feel the cold rush of rain (or lava!)
Decorated in white sand, verdant jungles, and colorful coral reefs, the national parks of the Pacific Islands are all ripe for exploration this time of year. Read on to learn our editors’ picks for the Best National Parks of the Pacific:
For those who have a passion for our National Parks, but aren’t quite sure how to contribute to protecting and supporting them, there are several ways to do so. It’s one thing to visit the parks and enjoy them for what they are, and it’s another thing to truly get in and get your hands dirty protecting and supporting them. Check out ten ways to help support our national parks.
The Drive The Nation blog places a special emphasis on America’s national parks, because no other natural attractions in the U.S. match their beauty and splendor. Outdoor adventurers, wildlife lovers and other travelers alike love to explore these amazing places. National parks make perfect road trip destinations because they are cost-effective (an annual pass to 300+ parks for the whole carload costs about $80), educational, and simply stunning. Begin your journey to the national parks with our helpful blog articles.