Once you get hooked on national park visits, there’s no turning back. National parks are the best place to unplug from life’s chaos and unwind from your busy life. The animals, the vegetation, the silence, and life in the park are everything! At the park, you find peace, quiet, and beauty.
If you’ve made it your mission to visit all or as many national parks as you can, here is a practical three-step guide.
If you want to visit all national parks in one long road trip, check out how this couple did it in seven months!
Plan Your Journey
Before you start your journey, you need a plan. Plan when you intend to visit the national parks and how much you will spend. Will you visit on weekends, monthly, after a few months, or over the years? How will you finance your park visits? Will you save daily, weekly, monthly, or yearly?
Break down your adventure into small achievable, and thrilling adventures. There will be long drives, flights, and lodgings. Start with what you can afford and use the things you have.
Start With National Parks Close To Home
Before traveling across the country, it makes sense to start with the national parks closest to you. For this, you won’t need to pay for lodging, meals, or camping (unless you want to). While you may want to see everything in a day, it may not be possible if the park covers 500 hectares. It’s not about checking all the boxes on your bucket list. It’s about what you feel when you see unexpected things in the park. You might have to go four days before completing the whole park, and it’s okay! Take your time exploring what nature gives.
Then Expand To Neighboring Parks
After covering all the parks closest to you, visit the neighboring national parks. Go on and expand your radius. The further you go, the more expenses you may have to incur. But with proper planning, nothing will stop you.
How To Make The Most Of Your National Park Visits
- Think about the seasons. Some parks are best to visit during winter and others during the summer season. For example, some places in the park might get closed off when it’s very snowy.
- Research beforehand. Spontaneous is good, but planning is excellent! Visit the national park’s website for details you might need to know. Call the park for clarifications. Do your research. Here is a guide for the 63 national parks in the US.
- Always get the national park’s map. It’s the only way to find your way in the park.
- Keep your memories alive. Highlight the places national parks you have visited with photographs, videos, and mementos. You can keep track of all the parks visited by collecting national park rings. You can clip the rings in a keychain or wear them in a necklace. Every time you look at them, you remember where you have been and how much you are yet to cover.
- Have a traveling partner. Experiences are best when shared! Take the trip with your family or friend whenever you visit a park. Each of you can carry national park rings for the places you have been together. But don’t stop when you can’t get a partner. This man traveled with his grandma across the American national parks!
Happy national park visiting! Don’t forget to share what you see and learn in your adventures with the rest of the world.