Most Popular U.S. National Parks
WIth 60 National Parks across 28 states, have you ever wondered what the most popular U.S. National Parks are? According to the Federal News Network, these are the top ten most visited national parks in 2017.
#10 Glacier National Park – Montana
At 3,305,512 visitors in 2017, this national park saw more than a 12% increase in visitors from the previous year. Glacier National Park is one of the best family vacation destinations and home to picturesque views so amazing you won’t believe they are real. View the mountains reflection in water so still and clear, you can see the lake bed bottom. Ideal vacationing time for this pristine park is July through September.
#9 Grand Teton National Park – Wyoming
Grand Teton National Park saw only a few more visitors at 3,317,000 in 2017. This was only an increase of about 1.4% from the previous year. Grand Teton National Park offers a near pristine ecosystem of flora and fauna that have existed here since prehistoric times. With over 1,000 drive-in camping spots and over 200 miles of trails, Grand Teton National Park is a popular destination for fishing, hiking, camping, and mountaineering.
#8 Olympic National Park – Washington
3,428,537- that is the number of visitors that saw Olympic National Park last year. With almost 1 million acres of wilderness, Olympic National Park offers endless options for outdoor enthusiasts and exciting things to do on summer break. Adventure awaits at Olympic and there is no shortage of opportunities given its three distinct ecosystems: sub-alpine forest and wildflower meadow, temperate forest, and the rugged Pacific shore.
#7 Acadia National Park- Maine
With over 49,000 acres, Acadia National Park, the oldest national park east of the Mississippi River, has outdoor activities for everyone. Bald eagles, golden eagles, and peregrine falcons are just a few of the majestic birds that call Acadia National park home. This park offers diverse terrain from mountains, oceanic shoreline, to beautiful woodlands and lakes. It is easy to see why 3.5million visitors chose Acadia to vacation last year. That’s a 6.2% increase from 2016.
#6 Yellowstone National Park- Idaho, Montana, Wyoming
Yellowstone offers: 2.2 million acres of diverse landscape across three states abundantly filled with bison, elk,bears and gray wolves; 300+ geysers, 290 waterfalls, and one of the world’s largest petrified forests. It also happens to be the world’s first national park. Even though Yellowstone saw a 3.8% decrease in visitors, it still saw more than 4 million tourists in 2017.
#5 Yosemite National Park- California
Yosemite saw the largest decline in actual percentage of visitors at -15.1% over the previous year. However, 4.2 million visitors still flocked to Yosemite to see the wildflower meadows, giant Sequoia trees in Mariposa Grove, glacier carved valleys, and innumerable majestic waterfalls within the park. Spring is peak viewing season for many of Yosemite National Park’s world famous waterfalls. With several falls in excess of 2,000 ft, prepare to be amazed at the sights.
#4 Rocky Mountain National Park- Colorado
Ranked at #4 with 4,437,215 visitors last year, Rocky Mountain National Park offers a number of things to do with kids and bring family fun for everyone. From majestic mountain landscapes to tundra wildflowers, abundant wildlife, and over 300 miles of trails for hiking and camping; there is something for the whole family.
#3 Zion National Park- Utah
Whether you are interested in just taking in the views of the beautiful sandstone canyon, mesas and unique rock sculptures via auto touring or are more of an adventure seeker ready to tackle and scale the famous big walls Zion is known for, go bouldering, or canyoneering; you won’t be disappointed with Zion National Park. 4,504,813 visitors experienced Zion last year. Will you be next?
#2 Grand Canyon National Park- Arizona
If you thought the Grand Canyon National Park would be number one on the list, you’d be mistaken. It did, however, see 6,139,967 visitors last year. Whether you choose to visit the less traveled North Rim or the widely popular South Rim, you will be awed with mesmerizing views when visiting the Grand Canyon. Plan a trip to go backpacking in the inner canyon or take a trip down the Colorado River and through the canyon. It is considered by many to be one of the wonders of the world.
#1 Great Smoky Mountains National Park- Tennessee
At 11,338,893, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park sees almost double the visitors annually compared to its number two counterpart. It is considered by many to be one of america’s best national parks. You might come for the mountains at Great Smoky Mountains National Park but you’d be missing out on so much more of what the park has to offer. You can explore historic buildings, go horseback riding, bicycling, or engage in wildlife watching, hiking on one of the 150+ trails, and camping. The possibilities are endless. Scientists estimate that there are more than 50,000 plant and animal species within the GSMNP and is home to the densest population of black bears in the United States.
These are the most popular U.S. national parks by virtue of being the most visited national parks in 2017. While outdoor camping can be a great opportunity for family bonding, it isn’t for everyone. Most of these national parks offer affordable hotels or cabin rentals nearby. MySitti.com can help you find restaurant deals nearby these amazing destinations that suit all your travel needs.