Do you know the name of the oldest national park in the US? Or where the smallest and largest national parks are located? What about which park was most recently designated as a national park? The answers are Yellowstone, Pennsylvania, Alaska, and White Sands National Park, respectively.
If you don’t know these answers, or for that matter, anything about the National Park System, maybe a trip is in order to visit a few of these wonderful gems. For most people, a national park vacation falls somewhere on their bucket list. While it would be super ambitious to visit every park in the National Park System, which numbers 419 national park sites, why not start with a few and find out for yourself why national park trips are so bucket list-worthy.
With many looking for new ways to travel in 2020 and the popularity of camping increasing, what better summer vacation is there than to get outside, grab some fresh air and enjoy our national parks. To make it easier for you to visit the parks and stay at a nearby campground, use the map search on RVontheGo.com to find a convenient location near many of these national parks.
Arcadia National Park
At 47,000 acres, Maine’s Acadia National Park is home to the highest point on the East Coast – Cadillac Mountain has 45 miles of carriage roads, has almost 300 yards of a sandy beach and 120 miles of hiking trails. You can spend days and days exploring this rugged and rocky national park and the nearby town of Bar Harbor. Mt. Desert Narrows Camping Resort is less than 7 miles from Acadia and offers tent and RV sites as well as cottage rentals.
Everglades National Park
Florida’s Everglades National Park has all kinds of things to fascinate visitors – alligators, crocodiles, a mangrove forest, and an airboat-load of endangered species. As the third-largest national park in the lower 48 states, a visit to Everglades National Park is quite an adventure. Kayak, bird watch, hike, bike or just enjoy the experience that is the Everglades. Miami Everglades RV Resort is less than 20 miles away and has cabin rentals, and RV and tent sites.
Mammoth Cave National Park
If caves are your thing, a trip to Mammoth Cave National Park should definitely be on your bucket list. This national park in Kentucky is where you will find the longest cave system in the known world. Established as a national park in 1941, it was also designated as a World Heritage Site in 1981. Aside from cave tours, other things to do at Mammoth Cave National Park include hiking, biking and horseback riding. Diamond Caverns RV Resort is less than a mile from the park and has tent and RV sites as well as condo rentals.
Yosemite National Park
California has the most national parks of any US state and on RVontheGo.com you’ll find locations convenient to two of the most beautiful, Joshua Tree National Park and Yosemite National Park. Yosemite National Park, which is in the Sierra Nevada mountains, is one of the oldest parks in the system, dating back to 1890. Home to the oft-photographed and iconic Half Dome and El Capitan granite peaks among other spectacular sights, Yosemite should be near the top of most bucket lists. Yosemite Lakes RV Campground is less than five minutes from the national park’s gates. To make the trip even more memorable, rent one of the campground’s yurts for your Yosemite stay.
Joshua Tree National Park
Joshua Tree National Park is named for the unique trees that dot the more than 700,000 acres of the park that sits in a desert landscape near Palm Springs. Must-sees include Skull Rock, the Cholla Cactus Garden, and the panoramic vista from Keys View. The perfect place to stay when visiting Joshua Tree National Park is Palm Springs RV Resort, which is about 30 miles away. While tent and RV sites are available here, consider renting one of the resort’s colorful cottages.
Zion National Park
Utah’s Zion National Park features the highest highs and the lowest lows with its soaring peaks and deep canyons. The Navajo Sandstone cliffs are a painter’s palette awash with colors ranging from red to pink to gold to white. Rock formations here include spires, arches and the mysterious and bewitching hoodoos. St. George Campground is a great place to make camp while you explore Zion National Park and is less than 35 miles from the park entrance.
North Cascades National Park
Snow-capped peaks, lush forests, rivers, streams and waterfalls make up the Washington State wonderland that is known as North Cascades National Park. Designated a national park in 1968, the park welcomes more than 30,000 visitors annually who enjoy hiking, boating, fishing, biking and bird and wildlife viewing. Grandy Creek RV Campground, located at the base of Mt. Baker, is roughly 30 miles from the park and has RV and tent site rentals.
Stop wasting time and get to know our National Park System. If you start planning your national parks bucket list trips soon, you might have a shot at visiting them all!