6 National Parks Every American Should See

Do you have a bucket list of every place you want to visit in the United States? Be sure that your list includes these five national parks. From backpackers to urbanites, all travelers will find something to please at these locations. So pack your Rampart Road Cases and hit the road for these amazing national treasures.

1. Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Great Smoky Mountains National Park by mikerhicks on Flickr

If you enter the park through Gatlinburg, Tennessee, you can take the kids to Dollywood or rent a rustic cabin. Once you are in the park,everyone will enjoy a driving tour to see gorgeous mountain views and gurgling trout streams. Be sure to explore the historic buildings in Cades Cove and elsewhere, and watch for black bears and other wildlife as you drive. And, as with all these parks, if you love hiking and camping, there is a wide variety of opportunities for the outdoorsy.

2. Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone National Park by Alaskan Dude on Flickr

Everyone knows about Old Faithful, but the geysers and mud pots of Yellowstone make parts of the park feel remarkably prehistoric, and minerals can color the pools in jewel-like blues and greens. Lodging includes 9 lodges and cabin complexes, ranging from the rustic-style Old Faithful Inn to the elegant Lake Yellowstone Hotel. Animals on these roads are larger–elk, bison, and grizzly bears.

3. Acadia National Park

Acadia National Park by Dougtone on Flickr

Home to the tallest mountain on the U.S. Atlantic Coast, the park encompasses a number of small islands. The oldest National Park East of the Mississippi, Acadia is home to over 40 different species of wildlife, including moose, beaver, porcupine, fox, bobcat, and black bear.

4. Sequoia National Park

Sequoia National Park by flatworldsedge on Flickr

This park of the world’s largest trees should be on everyone’s bucket list. Awe-inspiring Because Sequoia is located right next to Kings Canyon National Park, you can get a two-for-one trip. In these two parks, you can not only see the awe-inspiring trees, but also deep canyons and high peaks of the Sierra Nevada mountains.

5. Grand Canyon National Park

Grand Canyon National Park by Grand Canyon NPS on Flickr

No national park listing would be complete without the Grand Canyon. One fun way to get to this national treasure is to fly into Las Vegas and rent a car, stop at Hoover Dam, and then head for the South Rim’s iconic scenery. If you are looking for a quieter experience, try the North rim which is over 8000 feet in elevation. At the North rim, go to the Grand Canyon Lodge for an amazing first view of the Canyon.

6. Independence National Historic Park

Independence National Historic Park by Vlad Iorsh on Flickr

This Park takes you a little away from the outdoors and right into history. Located in historic Pennsylvania, this park is home to where our forefathers debated the constitution of the United States. You have the choice of a guided tour by one of the knowledgeable park rangers who will show you the all grounds including where the historic document was signed. This park offers a greater understanding the our rich history and is always a great choice!


Brionna Kennedy is native to the Pacific Northwest, growing up in Washington, then moving down to Oregon for college. She enjoys writing on fashion and business, but any subject will do, she loves to learn about new topics. When she isn’t writing, she lives for the outdoors. Oregon has been the perfect setting to indulge her love of kayaking, rock climbing, and hiking. 

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