15 Most Underrated National Parks in America
National Parks are America’s most treasured earth-made creations. The country is laden with parks throughout, and many of them are world renowned – but there are also those that don’t accrue nearly as much credit as they deserve.
Here are the 15 most underrated National Parks in The United States.
- Denali national park is home to over six million acres of terrain filled with wildlife and serenity. Its main attraction is Mt Denali standing at over 20,000 feet tall. It’s the perfect place for a quiet and relaxing getaway.
- Bryce Canyon National Park in Utah is overflowing with red rock and fantastic peaks. The Grand Canyon is usually testified by its name- grand, but Bryce Canyon is much more interesting to the eye. You can hike all around the park, but it’ll be hard to do anything other than stare.
- California is known for its National Parks like Yosemite and Sequoia, but often overlooked is Joshua Tree National Park. It’s filled to the brim with activities like hiking their many different trails, rock climbing and marveling over the eclectic and famous Joshua Tree.
- Mammoth Cave is located in Kentucky- their only National Park. It holds the longest cave system on the entire planet! With icicle-like rocks hanging overhead and cave walls on either side of you, it’s a completely encapsulating experience from start to finish.
- Island Royale in Michigan is named after its many groups of islands. It’s the perfect place for a hike or boat tour. You can even dive under the water and discover the wreckage of ships from over 25 boats.
- Virgin Islands National Park is located in the U.S. Virgin Islands. They have a 225-yard snorkeling trail which makes this park extremely unique. Interestingly, you’re allowed to drive on the left side of the road in the Virgin Islands.
- Canyonlands is a magnificent park in Arizona. It’s just as the name implies, a land of canyons. The Colorado River carved them all over the park creating incredible rock pinnacles and canyons throughout. You can even find rock paintings expected to be over 2,000 years old.
- This park makes the list for its plethora of spires, canyons, and prairie land. Badlands National Park in South Dakota is littered with wildlife including buffalo, horned sheep, and prairie dogs. The animals you can spot are a significant crowd pleaser along with the thought of the ancient animals that once roamed the land. A saber-toothed cat once patrolled the park along with rhinoceros.
- Voyageurs National Park in Minnesota is loved by everyone who attends for its beautiful lakes and waterfalls. If you adore fishing, this is the perfect park for you. With all of the waterways, it’s the ideal spot to set up camp if you’re vying for a few fish.
- An Acadia is a type of SUV to many, but Acadia National Park is the true namesake. Located in Maine, it’s an absolute wonder in the winter. If you’re looking for a snowy haven, you’ll love Acadia during the colder months. If you’re a warm weather lover, the summers are just as beautiful. They offer hiking, camping, and many more activities to keep you entertained.
- Haleakala is known for its giant volcano. It can be found in East Maui in the state of Hawaii. A quarter of the island is even entirely formed from a volcano. It’s known for the most awe-inducing sunrises you can view. It’s worth waking up early for this park
- Like I mentioned earlier, California is famous for its Giant Sequoias, but the redwoods warrant a visit as well. Redwood National Park has not only forests to marvel at, but also beaches and grasslands. It’s also home to Fern Canyon which is a 50-foot high canyon laced to the top with plants and leaves. If you’re a nature lover, you’ll be smitten with Redwood National Park
- Lassen Volcanic National Park in California may not be the most populated by tourists, but it’s one of the highest rated parks by those who do venture there. It has hydrothermal attractions like sizzling mud pots. You can see the aftermath of the volcano’s last eruption from the volcanic rock and debris sprinkled throughout the park
- Gates of the Arctic in Alaska is known for being the northernmost park in the United States, and the second largest. It was meant to be a National Monument but was turned into a National Park via the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act enacted in 1980. It holds the beautiful Brooks mountain range and crystal blue rivers leaving guests with endless opportunities for adventure.
- Zion National Park is the place to be if you’re a hiking lover. Found in Utah, it has hikes for everyone ranging in degrees of difficulties. One of the most difficult but rewarding hikes is through “The Narrows.” As you walk through the water towards the ever-dwindling gap in canyon walls, you’ll be thrilled by the beautiful red rock surrounding you. You can spend days, even weeks, at this park without getting tired of it
Many National Parks are loved by guests from all over the globe, but it’s time we draw attention to our natural wonders that don’t get the recognition they deserve.
On your next trip, make sure to stop and stare at the magnificent phenomena our earth has created. Search for the road less traveled and venture into these 15 lesser known National Parks.
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