It’s not too often travelers will plan an entire vacation to experience a national park. Parks in general are side-trip excursions in popular destinations, and, realistically, these stunning places in America become afterthoughts. Vacationers who visit Florida might see the Everglades (a national park). Book a trip to Palm Springs, and, if there’s time, they might check out Joshua Tree (a national park). Obviously, there are exceptions where trips revolve around a magnificent nature reserve (like Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, and the Rocky Mountains), but considering our country is blessed with a whopping 408 national parks, it’s a small handful.
National parks, however, are garnering plenty of attention with the universal rise of outdoor enthusiasts, the awareness of environmental impacts, and, of course, the burgeoning of preservation groups and nature lovers who are changing our impressions of national parks across the country. In fact, the visitor numbers in the majority of national parks have increased substantially in the past decade, a major feat for the park communities. San Francisco Maritime National Park rose from 3.9 million to 4.2 million, Yosemite went from 3.3 million to 3.7 million, and Zion National Park in Utah has seen a wild increase from 2.5 million to 3.2 million. According to the National Park Service, all states saw staggering climbs in visitor days in 2014 compared to the previous year.
But now you can take advantage of getting to know our national—for FREE—and showing the government how important these parks are to our country.
Take advantage of this year’s dates:
- January 15: Martin Luther King Jr. Day
- April 21: First day of National Park Week
- September 22: National Public Lands Day
- November 11: Veterans Day
Find out more about Why We Love Our National Parks over at Passport magazine online…