10 Best National Parks in the USA
National Parks in the USA were originally created to preserve the pristine beauty and wilds of the nation. Today, these awe-inspiring masterpieces of nature have become worldwide phenomena of beauty. A visit to these national parks makes you feel timid in front of the enormity of nature. These are both humbling and petrifying. The way in which the US national parks are preserved is commendable. Out of the whopping number of 59 national parks in the country, here is a list of best national parks in the USA.
1. Yosemite National Park
The Yosemite National Park is not just the waterfalls, lakes, clear streams, and meadows. It signifies persistence of life through the mighty granite cliffs, giant sequoia groves, and the untouched wildlife. Half Dome, El Capitan, Yosemite Falls and the Mirror Lake are some iconic sites of Yosemite. The gigantic granite cliffs glow like fire at sunset. The park inhabits over 400 animal species and also world’s tallest waterfalls. The sheer wilderness of Yosemite National Park makes you want to get lost here forever.
2. Denali National Park
The Denali National Park is an abode to North America’s highest peak- Mount McKinley, which is 20,320 feet high. Denali is so tall it ‘makes its own weather’! It has five gigantic glaciers and houses deciduous taiga and tundra. Still, need more reasons to visit Denali? The history of the park dates 12,000 years ago and you will actually be following the footsteps of your ancestors from the Ice Age era while taking a stroll here.
3. Arches National Park
Perched up above the Colorado River, the Arches National Park is decorated with natural arches carved by weathering and erosion. With over 2,000 natural stone arches and soaring pinnacles, this park attracts millions of visitors every year. The Delicate Arch, Double Arch, Landscape Arch, Devil’s Garden, and Balanced Rock are the most popular attractions of Arches National Park. These rustic and brawny terrains will surely leave you awestruck!
4. Yellowstone National Park
Apart from being the world’s first national park, the Yellowstone National Park has many feathers in its cap. The park is bigger than two U.S. states combined and sits atop North America’s largest super volcano. It also houses the nation’s oldest herd of bison. The Yellowstone National Park is home to the world’s tallest active geyser-Steamboat, world’s largest log cabin building, and world’s largest collection of geysers. This park is considered as one of the best national parks in the world.
5. Grand Canyon National Park
Decorated with exposed layers of colorful rocks and tributary canyons, the Grand Canyon National Park stands proudly as a ‘World Heritage Site’. The ‘Grand Canyon Skywalk’, a cantilevered walkway allows you to get an aerial view of the park without leaving the ground. The Tuweep region of the park provides a stunning view of the Colorado River and the North Rim. The Grand Canyon has over 1,000 caves made out of the Redwall Limestone. No wonder why Grand Canyon is one of the seven natural wonders of the world.
6. Rocky Mountain National Park
The Rocky Mountain National Park is one of the highest national parks in the USA. It has over 60 mountain peaks higher than 12,000 feet. This landscape makes for a picturesque view. The park due to its varied terrains and climatic conditions consists of many types of habitats and wildlife. It has Montane, Subalpine, Alpine Tundra and Glacier regions. Whether it is the snow-capped mountains or the roaring rivers, the majestic elk or the bighorn sheep, you name it and the Rocky Mountain National Park has it.
7. Olympic National Park
The Olympic National Park houses three types of ecosystems- Subalpine Forest, Wildflower Meadow and Temperate Forest, all nestled along the rugged Pacific Shore. The park has over 650 Archaeological sites and 4 cultural landscapes. A summer hike to the Hurricane Ridge offers a stunning view of the park. A hike through the Ozette Triangle Trail nestled across the coastline will provide you a chance to see the ancient carvings on the beach rocks. The Olympic National Park is a must-see national park in the US.
8. Great Smoky Mountains National Park
The Great Smoky Mountains are also known as the ‘Shaconage’, which means place of the blue smoke. It is one of the most visited National Parks in the United States. The park has over a hundred species of plants which is unique for a national park in the USA. With the ever-present morning fog, over 80 historical sites and the abundant wildlife, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is one of the most popular national parks in the world.
9. Hot Springs National Park
The Hot Springs National Park is one of the few national parks which are a part of a city rather than being located in a remote location. The hot water from the springs was said to cure many diseases. The jungles of the park normally consist of oak, hickory, and pine. The wildflowers and flowering trees grace the mountains beautifully during the spring season. The Bathhouse Row in the park is designated as a National Historic Landmark District and consists of the grandest collection of bathhouses. You get to experience natural spa in the Hot Springs National Park!
10. Voyageurs National Park
Housing miles of wilderness, the Voyageurs National Park is free of any artificial light and pollutants. The park offers a stunning view of the Northern Lights, owing to its clear sky. The Voyageurs National Park is surrounded by many lakes and this is a favorite place for boating, kayaking, and canoeing. The rolling hills and stunning rock formations are also a point of attraction in the park. Camping and residing on houseboats are famous activities in the park. The Voyageurs National park due to its rugged topography is a haven for all adventurists.
It doesn’t matter whether you are a mountain person or not, the cool winds and crystal waters of these mountains will definitely soothe your soul. Which of the above paradises is your favorite? Let us know in the comment section below.