Lovers of the outdoors could spend a lifetime exploring the most beautiful national parks of the U.S. From rugged mountaintops to captivating canyons, here are the 5U.S.national parks you have to visit in your lifetime.
Grand Canyon National Park
Beautifully carved by the Colorado River, this 277-mile-long canyon is one of the most beautiful national parks and places to visit in the US. Whether you want to hike through the canyon, simple go sightseeing, or take on rafting its waters, the Grand Canyon is full of adventure and natural beauty.
Hike to Havasu Falls and witness its awe-inspiring gushing waterfall. Commence to reward yourself with a dip in its crystal blue water for a perfect day hike excursion in the Grand Canyon. Don’t forget to pack an eco-friendly water bottle for your hike!
Joshua Tree National Park
For some of the finest hiking in the California desert, Joshua Tree National Park is the answer. Bask in the sun at the cactus gardens, hike around its stunning rock formations, and when the sun goes down, witness some of the world’s best stargazing—maybe you’ll even spot a shooting star!
Yosemite National Park
A paradise for any outdoorsy traveler, the Yosemite National Park is located in California’s Sierra Nevada Mountains and is simply stunning with its massive rock formations, cliffs, meadows, and waterfalls – to name just a few. It’s easily one of the best national parks in North America for its diverse terrain and inspiring landscapes.
Climb up the popular Half Dome for a rewarding adventure or wander the forests in search of one of the many wild animals that live in the park.
Glacier National Park
Montana’s Glacier National Park is a massive wilderness area nestled in the Rocky Mountains. Offering more than 700 miles of hiking trails, unique scenery, snowcapped mountains, and the tranquility of Montana, visiting Glacier National Park is a must. Whether you want to go kayaking, trekking, or backcountry camping, you’ll find what you’re looking for.
Take advantage of a drive through Going-in-the-Sun Road. The famous scenic drive offers one of the best drives in the US with 50 miles of wildlife spotting and magnificent views.
Zion National Park
Venture over to southwest Utah to dive deep into this nature preserve featuring the stunning hues and shapes of the Zion Canyon.
You can also enjoy through Zion Canyon Scenic Drive, which cuts through the park and leads to forest trails along Utah’s Virign River. The river itself leads to striking emerald pools with long waterfalls.
Visiting Zion National Park is great at any time of the year but especially at fall as the canyon complements the fall foliage very well.
Looking for more park guides? Here’s our favorite parks in and around Malibu.
Christa Adams is a writer, photographer, and sustainable traveler based in Barcelona. She’s been traveling solo since 2014 has a passion for the outdoors, coffee culture, and exploring quaint European towns. Follow her adventures at www.thespiritedexplorer.com