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List of 63 US National Parks By State + Printable Checklist

Charlotte Bailey

Wondering what the 63 national parks in the US are? Here’s a complete list of all US national parks by state and territory.

Only sixty-three national parks are officially named, so let’s do a whirlwind tour of these national parks by state to get an overview of some of the most beautiful acreage in the world.

Board our virtual helicopter, sit back, and let us pilot you to all the national parks listed by state. They are all designated because of their natural beauty and ecological diversity. You can handpick from the complete list of national parks we cover those you’d love to revisit in person.  

From the coral reefs of the Dry Tortugas, the world’s largest trees in Sequoia, the magnificent waterfalls in Yosemite, to the glaciers of Denali, Alaska, there is a jaw-dropping variation in every one of the thirty states that are home to national parks.

This article has a complete list of US national parks by state with park info, a simpler list, a printable checklist for your adventures, and an interactive map. Enjoy! 

Pssst: if you’re visiting 3 or more national parks in a 12-month period, you might want to check out the America the Beautiful Pass. This national park pass can save you some serious money in entry fees. Here’s our America the Beautiful Pass review.

Awesome lake reflecting Mt. Rainier in Mt. Rainier National Park
Mt. Rainier National Park

Table of Contents

Quick Facts About The US National Parks

  • Oldest US National Park: Yellowstone in Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming, which was established in 1872.
  • Newest US National Park: New River Gorge in West Virginia, which was established in 2020.
  • Largest US National Park: Wrangell-St. Elias in Alaska, which measures 13.2 million acres.
  • Smallest US National Park: Gateway Arch in Missouri, which measures 91 acres.
  • Most Visited US National Park: Great Smoky Mountains in North Carolina and Tennessee, which received over 14 million visitors in 2021.
  • Least Visited US National Park: Gates of the Arctic in Alaska, which received a little over 7 thousand visitors in 2021.
  • Most Remote National Park: Dry Tortugas in Florida.

Sequoia National Park in California is home to the largest tree in the world, measuring 88,500 cubic feet.

Mammoth Cave National Park in Kentucky has the longest known cave system in the world.

Great Sand Dunes National Park in Colorado has the tallest sand dune in North America, measuring 755 feet tall.

Mesa Verde National Park in Colorado protects 5,000 archaeological sites.

Scratch-Off National Park Maps on Amazon

Here are some of our favorite scratch-off maps on Amazon:

National Park Tips

Trash your trash: People leaving trash, dog poop, and other paraphernalia on trails across the USA is becoming an increasing problem. Leave no trace.

Watch out for wildlife: Some animals might feel or be unsafe near humans. Never startle, disturb, approach, or feed wild animals.

Don’t pocket the past: Help preserve the great American heritage. Leave all artifacts exactly where you find them and report their location to a ranger.

Campfire only in fire ring: When allowed, only have a campfire in fire rings to avoid ground scarring and wildfires.

Know your limits: The reason we include trail info, such as distance and elevation gain, is so that you can plan according to your physical condition. Beyond that, always wear sunscreen, insect repellent, and appropriate clothing/hiking shoes. For instance, these trail-runners have the perfect balance of breathability and terrain grip.

Share your plans: Because some trails are more challenging and far out in nature, it’s always better to let others know where you’ll be.

Drink plenty of water: Last but definitely not least. Pack enough potable water with you. We love this high-quality Camelbak and it fits 70oz of water.

Buy the America The Beautiful Pass: If you plan to visit three national parks within a year, the best value is to buy the America the Beautiful pass. For only $80, you get access to every US national park with this handy national park pass. We highly recommend it! Click here to buy you America the Beautiful pass.

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Another amazing beach on the West Coast is Ruby Beach in Washington
Olympic National Park, Washington

List of US National Parks By State

Here are all US national parks by state with some information about them. We’re sure you will enjoy it. After all, these are some of the best places to visit in America!

Alaska National Parks

Second to California, in terms of the number of national parks in the state, Alaska has eight. 

On top of that, Alaska boasts the largest national park in the US (Wrangell-St. Elias), measuring 13.2 million acres, the tallest mountain in the US, let alone North America (Mount Denali), at 20,310 ft, as well as unique wildlife in the massive herds of caribou.

Alaska, maybe not surprisingly, has America’s least visited national park, with only 7,362 visitors in 2021 (Gates of the Arctic). 

In fact, of the fifteen least visited national parks, seven of them are in Alaska. 

In our list of national parks by state, these are the eight Alaskan parks:

Glacier Bay National Park

The list of the best National Parks By State won't be complete without including Glacier Bay National Park
The list of the best National Parks By State won’t be complete without including Glacier Bay National Park
  • Established: 1980
  • Annual visitors (2021): 89,768
  • Size: 3.3 million acres
  • Check it out: watch the whales, go on a boat tour, go sea kayaking, hike the Forest Trail

Denali National Park

Scenic landscape of Denali National Park, Alaska
  • Established: 1917
  • Annual visitors (2021): 229,521
  • Size: 4.7 million acres
  • Check it out: hike Savage Alpine Trail, take in Mount Denali, flightseeing

Gates of the Arctic National Park

Beautiful landscape of the Gates of the Arctic National Park
  • Established: 1980
  • Annual visitors (2021): 7,362
  • Size: 8.5 million acres
  • Check it out: flightseeing tour, hike the Arrigetch Peaks, birding

Katmai National Park

Grizzly bears fishing for Salmon at Katmai National Park
  • Established: 1980
  • Annual visitors (2021): 24,764
  • Size: 4.3 million acres
  • Check it out: hike to the viewpoint over Brooks Camp, spot brown bears, hike through Valley of Ten Thousand Smokes

Kenai Fjords National Park

Amazing Kenai Fjords in Alaska
  • Established: 1980
  • Annual visitors (2021): 411,782
  • Size: 607,805 acres
  • Check it out: hike the Harding Icefield Trail, spot humpback whales and orcas, kayak in front of glaciers

Kobuk Valley National Park

Interesting landscape of Kobuk Valley National Park
  • Established: 1980
  • Annual visitors (2021): 11,540
  • Size: 1.75 million acres
  • Check it out: flightseeing tour, spot wildlife, see Ice Age sand dunes

Lake Clark National Park

A float plane by the lakeshore at Lake Clark National Park
  • Established: 1980
  • Annual visitors (2021): 18,278
  • Size: 4 million acres
  • Check it out: go boating, raft wild rivers, bear viewing

Wrangell-St. Elias National Park

Wrangell-St. Elias National Park is largest among the US National Parks
Wrangell-St. Elias National Park is largest among the US National Parks
  • Established: 1980
  • Annual visitors (2021): 50,189
  • Size: 13.2 million acres
  • Check it out: see Mount Wrangell, Root Glacier Trail, spot wildlife

American Samoa National Parks

There’s only one national park in American Samoa, deep in the South Pacific. About 50% of this US national park territory is marine acres, so there are lots of coral reefs to see.

Beautiful beaches, rainforests, and villages protecting Samoan culture are the key attractions. 

This American national park is the most remote of all the US national parks and is the second-least visited of all the national parks.

National Park of American Samoa

Seascape and lush forest of the National Park of American Samoa
  • Established: 1988
  • Annual visitors (2021): 8,495
  • Size: 9,500 acres
  • Check it out: snorkel, hike Mount ‘Alava, visit Jean P Haydon Museum

Arizona National Parks

There are only three national parks in Arizona, but what they lack in numbers is more than compensated for by their uniqueness and grandeur. 

The Grand Canyon is the most prominent feature in the state and is considered one of the Seven Wonders Of The World. 

In 1979, it was also proclaimed a World Heritage Site, and today it is a “must” on anyone’s list of national parks by state. 

Over four million visitors a year flock to what President Theodore Roosevelt called “a natural wonder…. unparalleled throughout the rest of the world.” 

Grand Canyon National Park

Incredible landscape of Grand Canyon National Park during sunrise
  • Established: 1919
  • Annual visitors (2021): 4,532,677
  • Size: 1.2 million acres
  • Check it out: hike Rim Trail, see Desert View Watchtower, take in the views from Mather Point, helicopter tour, hummer tour

Petrified Forest National Park

Ancient Petrified Forest National Park landscape in Arizona
  • Established: 1962
  • Annual visitors (2021): 590,334
  • Size: 221,390 acres
  • Check it out: hike the Blue Mesa Trail, cycle through the Tepees, Painted Desert

Saguaro National Park

Petroglyphs in Saguaro National Park in Arizona
  • Established: 1994
  • Annual visitors (2021): 1,079,786
  • Size: 92,867 acres
  • Check it out: horseback riding, camping, Cactus Forest Drive

Arkansas National Parks

The state of Arkansas can only claim one national park. However, it’s one of the oldest national parks in the US, having been proclaimed a National Reservation in 1832 to protect the hot springs. 

Set aside as a park in 1880, it was finally designated Hot Springs National Park in 1921. 

Today the national park incorporates part of the city of Hot Springs but includes trails, camp areas, and the country’s most famous collection of bathhouses in Bathhouse Row.

It’s one of the smallest national parks listed by state, but it’s Arkansas’ contribution to our list:

Hot Springs National Park

Hot Springs National Park, Arkansas is one of the best places to visit in February in the USA
  • Established: 1921
  • Annual visitors (2021): 2,162,884
  • Size: 5,554 acres
  • Check it out: Hot Springs Mountain Tower, Fordyce Bathhouse, Garvan Woodland Gardens 

California National Parks

California is home to nine of the 63 national parks, more than any other state, one of which is shared with the State of Nevada. 

Our virtual helicopter sweep of the Golden State takes us from islands in the Pacific Ocean through valleys and deserts to the peaks of the Sierra Nevada – a rich kaleidoscope of colors, terrain, and experiences through the best West Coast national parks for any and all visitors.

Ninety-two million people visited the sixty-three national parks in 2021, and nearly four million chose Yosemite National Park.    

California can claim the largest national park, at just over three million acres. Of all the national parks listed by state, It’s also the hottest, driest and lowest. 

Yet despite its name, Death Valley has a rich biodiversity of plants and wildlife and is the only known home of the Saltwater Pupfish. 

The national parks in California provide visitors with an endless range of activities and are a must on your selected national parks by state.

Channel Islands National Park

Channel Islands National Park is one of the best places to visit in California
  • Established: 1980
  • Annual visitors (2021): 319,252
  • Size: 249,561 acres
  • Check it out: Painted Cave Trail, spot dolphins, watch whales, sailboat tour

Death Valley National Park

Death Valley National Park is one of the places to visit in the US
  • Established: 1994
  • Annual visitors (2021): 1,146,551
  • Size: 3.4 million acres
  • Check it out: Zabriskie Point, Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes, Ubehebe Crater, Badwater Basin, self-guided driving tour

Joshua Tree National Park

Beautiful grove of Joshua Trees in Joshua Tree National Park
  • Established: 1994
  • Annual visitors (2021): 3,064,400
  • Size: 795,155 acres
  • Check it out: Skull Rock, offroad tour, Keys View, Hidden Valley Nature Trail (and many other trails)

Kings Canyon National Park

Giant Trees along General Grant Tree Trail, Kings Canyon National Park
  • Established: 1940
  • Annual visitors (2021): 562,918
  • Size: 461,901 acres
  • Check it out: Zumwalt Meadows, Rim Walk, Roaring River Falls, Grizzly Falls Picnic Area

Lassen Volcanic National Park

Steam escaping to the surface in Lassen Volcanic National Park
  • Established: 1916
  • Annual visitors (2021): 359,635
  • Size: 106,589 acres
  • Check it out: Bumpass Hell, Summit Lake, Kohm Yah-mah-nee Visitor Center

Pinnacles National Park

Unique landscape of Pinnacles National Park
  • Established: 2013
  • Annual visitors (2021): 348,857
  • Size: 26,685 acres
  • Check it out: Bear Gulch Cave Trail, Condor Gulch Trail, Balconies Cave Trail

Redwood National Park

Redwood National park is one of the best places to visit in California
  • Established: 1968
  • Annual visitors (2021): 435,879
  • Size: 138,999 acres
  • Check it out: Lady Bird Johnson Grove Trail, Tall Trees Trail, scenic drives

Sequoia National Park

The giant General Sherman Tree in Sequoia National Park
  • Established: 1890
  • Annual visitors (2021): 1,059,548
  • Size: 404,062 acres
  • Check it out: General Sherman Tree, Tunnel Log, Moro Rock

Yosemite National Park

Breathtaking Yosemite Falls in Yosemite NP, California
  • Established: 1890
  • Annual visitors (2021): 3,287,595
  • Size: 761,747 aces
  • Check it out: Yosemite Falls, Tunnel View, Glacier Point, full-day tour

Colorado National Parks

Spectacular – that’s the only way to describe these four national parks in one word.

From deep canyons gouged out over a period of two million years, where the sun only shines for thirty-three minutes a day, to the tallest sand dunes in the US and the magnificent alpine lakes and peaks of the Rockies, Colorado has it all.

There are also over seven hundred years of history to uncover in the Mesa Verde, where ancient tribes built flourishing communities in carved elaborate homes into the cliffsides.

Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park

Black Canyon Of the Gunnison National Park, Colorado
  • Established: 1999
  • Annual visitors (2021): 308,910
  • Size: 30,779 acres
  • Check it out: Painted Wall, South Rim Road, Pulpit Rock Overlook

Great Sand Dunes National Park

Great Sand Dunes National Park, Colorado
  • Established: 2004
  • Annual visitors (2021): 602,613
  • Size: 107,345 acres
  • Check it out: Little Medano Creek, High Dune, stargaze

Mesa Verde National Park

  • Established: 1906
  • Annual visitors (2021): 548,477
  • Size: 52,485 acres
  • Check it out: Cliff Palace, Balcony House, Spruce Tree House, see petroglyphs

Rocky Mountain National Park

Emerald Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado

Florida National Parks

Florida is next on our list of national parks by state, with three designated national parks. 

Two of the three national parks in Florida are coastal, protecting reefs of coral and spectacular marine life, and most easily accessed by boat or seaplane. 

Also in Florida is the third-largest national park in the contiguous US and the largest tropical wilderness in the United States.

On top of that, it’s safe to say the Sunshine State has some of the most beautiful East Coast national parks.

Over one million visitors annually to experience the unique swamps, see the alligators, and marvel at one of the world’s most complex ecosystems. 

Biscayne National Park

Biscayne National Park is one of the national parks in Florida to visit
  • Established: 1980
  • Annual visitors (2021): 705,665
  • Size: 172,971 acres
  • Check it out: SUP at Jones Lagoon, spot dolphins, dive in turquoise waters

Dry Tortugas National Park

Awesome aerial shot of Fort Jefferson in Dry Tortugas National Park in Florida
  • Established: 1992
  • Annual visitors (2021): 83,817
  • Size: 64,701 acres
  • Check it out: spot sea turtles, kayak Loggerhead Key, explore Fort Jefferson

Everglades National Park

Awesome airboat tour along the Everglades National Park in Florida

Hawaii National Parks

Spectacular sunrises and sunsets, hikes through volcanic landscapes, and learning of the ancient and modern cultures of the people of Hawaii – this awaits you in Hawaii.

It’s also the site of not one but two of the most active volcanoes in the world, so a visit here is quite an experience  – in fact, the island is still recovering from intense eruptions in 2018, so not the whole park is accessible.

Haleakala National Park

Impressive Waimoku Falls in Haleakala National Park in Hawaii

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

Big Island, Hawaii is one of the best places to visit in February in the USA

Idaho National Parks

Although Idaho lays claim to part of Yellowstone National Park, it only houses 1%, so you’ll also find it listed under Montana and Wyoming in our list of national parks by state.

Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone National Park is one of the best places to visit in the US
  • Established: 1872
  • Annual visitors (2021): 4,860,242
  • Size: 2.2 million acres
  • Check it out: Thumb Geyser, kayak tour, Mammoth Hot Springs, hiking, Old Faithful

Kentucky National Parks

The hardest part of visiting Kentucky’s only national park seems to be getting there! 

Even the official word is that GPS and online maps have taken people in the wrong direction or to the north gate, which requires a ferry crossing. 

However, once you’re in, it’s your choice as to which activity you prefer. 

There is the longest cave system in the world to explore, with over four hundred miles of caves and tunnels surveyed. 

Staying above ground, you have hiking and biking trails, fishing on thirty miles of the Green and Nolin Rivers, or kayaking and camping on the many islands. 

Mammoth Cave National Park

sunrays inside Mammoth cave National Park
  • Established: 1941
  • Annual visitors (2021): 515,774
  • Size: 54,016 acres
  • Check it out: Dinosaur World, wild cave tour, hiking, kayaking

Indiana National Parks

With fifteen miles of shoreline on the southern side of Lake Michigan, historic farms, bird life, and 11,000-year-old dunes, there’s something different to do in every season in this national park.

Designated in 2019, the park attracts over 3 million people every year. 

With 369 different species of flowering plants, spring is spectacular, while in winter, the snow-covered dunes are perfect for skiing.    

Indiana Dunes National Park

The Amazing Indiana Dunes National Park
  • Established: 2019
  • Annual visitors (2021): 3,177,210
  • Size: 15,349 acres
  • Check it out: hit the beach, birding, camp, check historical sites, photo hike

Maine National Parks

Maine has the only national park in the northeast region of the US, but that hasn’t put people off, and more and more people visit the park every year. 

In 2021 a record 4.06 million people visited it, making it the sixth-most popular national park in the US. 

Mount Desert Island, half of which falls within the park, was once the summer retreat of America’s wealthiest families. 

John D. Rockefeller financed the construction of fifty-seven miles of carriage roads, most of which are still used today. The coping  along the edge of the road is known as “Rockefeller’s Teeth.” 

The rugged rocky coastline and the mountains provide dramatic scenery, and the peak of Cadillac Mountain is where the first sight of sunrise in the United States can be viewed. 

We add here to our National Parks By State the “Crown Jewel Of the North Atlantic Coast”:

Acadia National Park

Fantastic view of the Maine Coastline from Acadia National Park

Michigan National Parks

Take an island in the middle of Lake Superior, add 400 small adjacent islands and the water between them, and you have a very different type of national park. 

The main island, Isle Royale, 45 miles long and 9 miles wide, is the fourth largest lake island in the world. 

Isle Royale has a fascinating history, used as a hunting ground by indigenous people, dating back to 3000 B.C., as well as a source of copper which they mined on the island. 

For visitors, activities include hiking, kayaking, fishing, and camping. 

Access to many campsites is by hiking, canoe, or kayak, as no wheeled vehicles are permitted (except wheelchairs). 

This park is the only one in the country closed for part of the year (November to April). This explains why it has the lowest visitor figures of all sixty-three national parks by state.

Nevertheless, it is on our list of national parks by state:

Isle Royale National Park

Interesting Rock Harbor Lighthouse in the Isle Royale National Park
  • Established: 1940
  • Annual visitors (2021): 25,844
  • Size: 571,790 acres
  • Check it out: Rock Harbor, lighthouse tour, take a hike, ferry ride

Minnesota National Parks

It took eighty years before President Richard Nixon proclaimed Minnesota’s first and only national park in 1971. Covering just over 218,000 acres, the park is only accessible by boat.

In the park, there are four large lakes and many smaller ones in a beautiful remote setting – the remoteness is one of the reasons why not many people visit. 

Those that do get to enjoy the fishing, hiking the one hundred miles of trails, and sightseeing, as well as the tranquillity and quiet beauty of the park.

Voyageurs National Park

Stunning night sky at Voyageurs National Park
  • Established: 1975
  • Annual visitors (2021): 243,042
  • Size: 218,222 acres
  • Check it out: Ellsworth Rock Gardens, Beaver Pond Overlook, Locator Lake Trail

Missouri National Parks

A unique national park, and the only one in the state, has as its focal point a catenary steel arch and is the smallest national park at only ninety-one acres.

As an urban national park, its creation involved purchasing and demolishing many buildings to create a memorial park. 

One of the few that survived is the Old Courthouse, which stands at the base of the Gateway Arch. 

The arch is the world’s tallest at 630 feet and offers a unique tram ride to the viewpoint at the very top. 

Gateway Arch National Park

the breathtaking Gateway Arch in St. Louis
  • Established: 2018
  • Annual visitors (2021): 1,145,081
  • Size: 91 acres
  • Check it out: tram ride to the top of Gateway Arch, Monument to the Dream Documentary 

Montana National Parks

Montana has only two national parks, one of them is Yellowstone which is also covered under Idaho and Wyoming in our list of national parks by state.

This magnificent national park spans over one million acres, boasts 700 lakes, 200 waterfalls, six mountains over 10,000 feet in height, and a history of peoples and tribes dating back 10,000 years.

Sadly, with climate change, the glaciers that gave the park its name and numbered 150 in the mid-19th century are estimated to disappear entirely by 2030.

Glacier National Park

Beautiful scenery at Glacier National Park, Montana
  • Established: 1910
  • Annual visitors (2021): 3,081,656
  • Size: 1 million acres
  • Check it out: Saint Mary Falls, scenic float, Going-to-the-Sun Road, Highline Trail (and many other hiking trails)

Yellowstone National Park

A crowd of tourists watching the Old Faithful Geyser erupting
  • Established: 1872
  • Annual visitors (2021): 4,860,242
  • Size: 2.2 million acres
  • Check it out: Thumb Geyser, kayak tour, Mammoth Hot Springs, hiking, Old Faithful

Nevada National Parks

Nevada has two national parks, one of them is the Death Valley National Park which has also been listed in California, so we will list it twice here. 

The other national park, Great Basin, protects 77,180 acres and is best known for the Lehman Caves, which began forming 550 million years ago, and whose main occupants include bacteria, spiders, mites, and pseudoscorpions! Oh, yes, and several species of bats. 

Several trails have been created,  and hikers who choose to camp can experience spectacular stargazing as the park is renowned for its dark night skies.

Great Basin National Park

Rocky hiking trail in Great Basin National Park
  • Established: 1986
  • Annual visitors (2021): 144,875
  • Size: 77,180 acres
  • Check it out: Lehman Caves, Wheeler Peak, scenic drive

Death Valley National Park

Awesome vistas from Dante's View in Death Valley National Park
  • Established: 1994
  • Annual visitors (2021): 1,146,551
  • Size: 3.4 million acres
  • Check it out: Zabriskie Point, Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes, Ubehebe Crater, Badwater Basin, self-guided driving tour

New Mexico National Parks

Above and below ground, New Mexico offers visitors to its two national parks an insight into another world. 

In one park, endless dunes of snow-white gypsum cover 275 square miles of desert. 

Under the ground of the Chihuahuan desert is a maze of over 119 caves, including The Big Room, which is over 4000 feet long, 625 feet wide, and 255 feet high. 

Carlsbad Caverns National Park

the Big Room at Carlsbad Caverns National Park in New Mexico
  • Established: 1930
  • Annual visitors (2021): 349,244
  • Size: 46,766 acres
  • Check it out: Slaughter Canyon Cave, Walnut Canyon Desert Drive, Rattlesnake Springs

White Sands National Park

One of the most beautiful places in the US is White Sands National Park, New Mexico
  • Established: 2019
  • Annual visitors (2021): 782,469
  • Size: 146,344 acres
  • Check it out: Dune Life Nature Trail, Interdune boardwalk, sled the dunes

North Dakota National Parks

North Dakota’s one national park has a unique claim to fame – it’s the only park named in honor of an individual person. 

Based on Theodore Roosevelt’s love of the area and his policies on wildlife conservation, the park was established after his death in 1919. 

Today the park is home to a wide variety of Great Plains wildlife, including bison, elk, bighorn sheep, mustang horses, and deer, as well as nearly two hundred bird species. 

Theodore Roosevelt National Park

Sunrise over Theodore Roosevelt National Park, North Dakota
  • Established: 1978
  • Annual visitors (2021): 796,085
  • Size: 70,446 acres
  • Check it out: hike Skyline Vista Trail, spot wildlife, kayak 

North Carolina National Parks

North Carolina takes pride of place as the state with the most visited national park, with over fourteen million people in 2021 coming to the park from all over the world. 

Mountains, forests, waterfalls, and beautiful scenery are the main attractions. There is also a rich historical element, with many old barns, log cabins, and churches still preserved. 

Covering over 500,000 acres, the park has sadly experienced fires every year of its existence and, at one stage, was the most polluted national park in the country. 

Fortunately, steps are being taken to control pollution, which has improved steadily over the last few years. 

Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Sea of fog in the Great Smoky Mountains
  • Established: 1934
  • Annual visitors (2021): 14,161,548
  • Size: 522,426 acres
  • Check it out: bicycling, viewing wildlife, touring Cades Cove, overnight backpacking

Ohio National Parks

An unusual national park, and the only one in Ohio, it is sandwiched between two big cities and surrounded by freeways, busy highways, and urban sprawl. 

As such, this “green lung” offers refuge to wildlife and city folk with its deep valley, forested walks, and meandering river. 

There are several biking and hiking trails, and a scenic railroad will take you on a wonderful ride through the valley without the exercise if that’s your choice! 

Cuyahoga Valley National Park

The spectacular Brandywine Falls in Cuyahoga Valley National Park
  • Established: 2000
  • Annual visitors (2021): 2,575,275
  • Size: 32,571 acres
  • Check it out: hike Ledges Trail, Brandywine Falls, Kendall Lake

Oregon National Parks

The only national park in Oregon and the fifth oldest in the country, this park was created on the caldera and surrounding of an ancient, ruined volcano. 

The lake in the crater has no rivers running into or out of it. It relies purely on rain and snow to maintain its water level and its extraordinary azure blue purity.

The park is snow-covered for about eight months a year. It’s only open for travel when the roads are not blocked, generally from June or July through October, so visitor numbers are limited. 

Nevertheless, about 700,000 people a year visit this one of the most pristine lakes in the world. 

Crater Lake National Park

Awesome vista of Crater Lake National Park
  • Established: 1902
  • Annual visitors (2021): 647,751 acres
  • Size: 183,224
  • Check it out: Toketee Falls, birding, Cleetwood Cove Trail, day tour

South Carolina National Parks

As the only designated national park in South Carolina, it’s protection for one of the largest concentrations of champion trees in the world, so called because of their unique height, girth, and significance.

Once designated a swamp, it no longer is and offers hiking trails, kayaking and canoe trails, and an elevated walkway that protects fungi and plants in wetter areas.

Congaree National Park

A boardwalk through the enchanting Congaree National Park
  • Established: 2003
  • Annual visitors (2021): 215,181
  • Size: 26,692 acres
  • Check it out: Boardwalk Loop Trail, kayak, wildlife viewing

South Dakota National Parks

South Dakota offers visitors to its two national parks amazing landscapes of buttresses, pinnacles, and spires carved out by glacial action and erosion dating back thirty-five million years.

It also offers a formation of caves, of which about 130 miles have been mapped to date. 

This part of South Dakota has been termed the Badlands because of its unforgiving landscape and arid climate. 

Because many animals failed to make the journey to water and died in the heat, some fascinating fossil remains have been discovered in the park. 

Badlands National Park

Spectacular rock formations in Badlands National Park
  • Established: 1978
  • Annual visitors (2021): 1,224,226
  • Size: 242,755 acres
  • Check it out: Big Badlands Overlook, spot bison, Loop Road, private tour

Wind Cave National Park

  • Established: 1903
  • Annual visitors (2021): 709,001
  • Size: 33,970 acres
  • Check it out: cave tour, wildlife viewing, hike

Tennessee National Parks

This national park, the only one in Tennessee, has been covered under North Carolina in our list of national parks by state.

Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Beautiful fall foliage by the road in Great Smoky Mountains
  • Established: 1934
  • Annual visitors (2021): 14,161,548
  • Size: 522,426 acres
  • Check it out: bicycling, viewing wildlife, touring Cades Cove, overnight backpacking

Texas National Parks

The remoteness of the two national parks in Texas, close to the Mexican and New Mexico borders, has resulted in fewer visitors than one would expect, making it even more special for those who venture through them. 

Almost unbelievably, the sea covered this part of the world hundreds of millions of years ago, and the proof is in the fossilized coral reefs that are now visible.

Hikes will take visitors through arid deserts, rocky crags to verdant river valleys. Camping can be tailored to suit, from simple tents to luxurious lodges – Texas has it all. 

Big Bend National Park

Big Bend National Park is one of the romantic getaways in Texas for couples
  • Established: 1944
  • Annual visitors (2021): 581,220
  • Size: 801,163 acres
  • Check it out: hike Santa Elena Canyon, scenic drives, Lost Mine Trail, canyon float tour

Guadalupe Mountains National Park

Guadalupe Mountains National Park in Texas; one of the best weekend getaways from Dallas.
  • Established: 1966
  • Annual visitors (2021): 243,291
  • Size: 86,367 acres
  • Check it out: scenic drives, Guadalupe Peak, Salt Basin Dunes

Utah National Parks

Utah’s five national parks are all unique, close to each other, and all offer excellent hiking opportunities at all levels, making for a great family vacation without having to travel out of state. 

Towering sandstone arches carved by millennia of erosion, orchards, river canyons, and coniferous forests can all be viewed in The Mighty Five road trip, which can be done in five days, but ideally should take you two weeks.   

Arches National Park

Amazing Delicate Arch in Arches National Park
  • Established: 1971
  • Annual visitors (2021): 1,806,865
  • Size: 76,678 acres
  • Check it out: Delicate Arch, Landscape Arch, Devils Garden, 4×4 adventure

Bryce Canyon National Park

Marvelous landscape of Bryce Canyon National Park at dawn
  • Established: 1928
  • Annual visitors (2021): 2,104,600
  • Size: 35,835 acres
  • Check it out: Bryce Amphitheater, Navajo Loop Trail, Inspiration Point, scenic tour, hiking experience

Canyonlands National Park

Amazing landscape of the Island in the Sky District in Canyonlands National Park, Utah
  • Established: 1964
  • Annual visitors (2021): 911,594
  • Size: 337,597 acres
  • Check it out: Mesa Arch, Green River Overlook, Island in the Sky, tour from Moab

Capitol Reef National Park

Famous Cassidy Arch in Capitol Reef National Park, Utah
  • Established: 1971
  • Annual visitors (2021): 1,405,353
  • Size: 241,904 acres
  • Check it out: Cassidy Arch, Hickman Natural Bridge, Chimney Rock pillar

Zion National Park

Zion National Park is one of the best places to add to your USA bucket listces to add to your USA bucket list

Virgin Islands National Parks

About 7,259 acres of land plus another 5,650 acres of the ocean make up this national park. 

Its main attractions are the coral reefs surrounding the park, the warm ocean waters and marine life, the beaches, and the tropical forests. 

Snorkeling and diving, hiking the forest trails, and relaxing in the many resorts make a visit to the Virgin Islands an escape to paradise.    

Virgin Islands National Park

Beautiful white sand beach at Virgin Island National Park
  • Established: 1956
  • Annual visitors (2021): 323,999
  • Size: 12,909 acres
  • Check it out: hit the beach, go swimming, scuba dive, kayak

Virginia National Parks

Just a short drive out of Washington, DC, and you’ve escaped the city into a world of wildflowers, waterfalls, and beautiful vistas. 

To take it all in, take the 105-mile Skyline Drive along the “backbone” of the park, the crest of the Blue Ridge Mountains. 

It’s a three-hour drive at the speed limit of 35mph but make a day of it! 

Shenandoah National Park

Shenandoah National Park, Virginia is one of the best summer vacations in the USA
  • Established: 1935
  • Annual visitors (2021): 1,592,312
  • Size: 200,192 acres
  • Check it out: Skyline Drive, Appalachian National Scenic Trail, Old Rag Mountain Hike

Washington National Parks

There are three national parks in this state, each with its own beauty and each with different attractions for visitors. 

You’ll find Paradise on the slopes of Mount Rainier, a vast protected wilderness to ensure the integrity of this glaciated mountain. 

Fauna in the shape of black bears, elk, coyotes, and mountain goats live with numerous other species in a varied landscape, and rivers abound with salmon. 

It is a rich source of entertainment for the millions of visitors who appreciate the beauty of the region. 

With climate change, many glaciers are slowly receding, some rivers are not receiving the same levels of runoff, and inevitable changes in the biodiversity of the fauna and flora are occurring.

Mount Rainier National Park

Mount Rainier National Park is one of the best places to visit in the US
  • Established: 1899
  • Annual visitors (2021): 1,670,063
  • Size: 236,381 acres
  • Check it out: Paradise Overlook, Skyline Trail, Narada Falls, day trip from Seattle

North Cascades National Park

Beautiful lake in North Cascades National Park in Washington
  • Established: 1968
  • Annual visitors (2021): 17,855
  • Size: 504,780 acres
  • Check it out: Diablo Lake Overlook, Blue Lake Trail, Cascade Pass

Olympic National Park

Fascinating Hoh Rain Forest in Washington
  • Established: 1938
  • Annual visitors (2021): 2,718,925
  • Size: 922,649 acres
  • Check it out: Lake Crescent, Hurricane Ridge, Hoh Rain Forest, hiking

West Virginia National Parks

With over 70,000 acres along 53 miles of the New River, this national park in West Virginia was designated in 2021, so it is a very recent addition to the list of national parks by state. 

The deepest river gorge to be found east of the Mississippi and the location for the finest white-water rafting, this national park also offers visitors the opportunity to do some serious climbing and hiking. 

New River Gorge National Park

Awesome landscape of New River Gorge National Park
  • Established: 2020
  • Annual visitors (2021): 1,682,720
  • Size: 7,021 acres
  • Check it out: rock climbing, white water rafting, scenic drives

Wyoming National Parks

Two national parks, one within 10 miles of the other and the most famous national park of them all. 

Together, with their connecting John D Rockefeller Parkway, they comprise the almost eighteen million acres of  The Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, with the same flora and fauna that have existed since prehistoric times. 

Geothermal features, the most famous being Old Faithful, also make this a unique national park listed by state. 

Endless opportunities exist for visitors to immerse themselves in this rich source of entertainment, learning, and relaxation, to take in the area’s history, and have the vacation of a lifetime. 

Grand Teton National Park

Incredible views of Grand Teton National Park

Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone National Park is one of the most beautiful places in the US that is a must-visit
  • Established: 1872
  • Annual visitors (2021): 4,860,242
  • Size: 2.2 million acres
  • Check it out: Thumb Geyser, kayak tour, Mammoth Hot Springs, hiking, Old Faithful

Quick List of US National Parks by State

Here’s an easy and simple list of all national parks in America by state.


  • Denali National Park
  • Gates of the Arctic National Park
  • Glacier Bay National Park
  • Katmai National Park
  • Kenai Fjords National Park
  • Kobuk Valley National Park
  • Lake Clark National Park
  • Wrangell-St. Elias National Park

American Samoa

  • National Park of American Samoa


  • Grand Canyon National Park
  • Petrified Forest National Park
  • Saguaro National Park


  • Hot Springs National Park


  • Channel Islands National Park
  • Death Valley National Park
  • Joshua Tree National Park
  • Kings Canyon National Park
  • Lassen Volcanic National Park
  • Pinnacles National Park
  • Redwood National Park
  • Sequoia National Park
  • Yosemite National Park


  • Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park
  • Great Sand Dunes National Park
  • Mesa Verde National Park
  • Rocky Mountain National Park


  • Biscayne National Park
  • Dry Tortugas National Park
  • Everglades National Park


  • Haleakala National Park
  • Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park


  • Yellowstone National Park


  • Mammoth Cave National Park


  • Indiana Dunes National Park


  • Acadia National Park


  • Isle Royale National Park


  • Voyageurs National Park


  • Gateway Arch National Park


  • Glacier National Park
  • Yellowstone National Park


  • Great Basin National Park
  • Death Valley National Park

New Mexico

  • Carlsbad Caverns National Park
  • White Sands National Park

North Dakota

  • Theodore Roosevelt National Park

North Carolina

  • Great Smoky Mountains National Park


  • Cuyahoga Valley National Park


  • Crater Lake National Park

South Carolina

  • Congaree National Park

South Dakota

  • Badlands National Park
  • Wind Cave National Park


  • Great Smoky Mountains National Park


  • Big Bend National Park
  • Guadalupe Mountains National Park


  • Arches National Park
  • Bryce Canyon National Park
  • Canyonlands National Park
  • Capitol Reef National Park
  • Zion National Park

Virgin Islands

  • Virgin Islands National Park


  • Shenandoah National Park


  • Mount Rainier National Park
  • North Cascades National Park
  • Olympic National Park

West Virginia

  • New River Gorge National Park


  • Grand Teton National Park
  • Yellowstone National Park

List of US National Parks by State in Alphabetical Order

  • Acadia National Park, Maine
  • National Park of American Samoa, American Samoa
  • Arches National Park, Utah
  • Badlands National Park, South Dakota
  • Big Bend National Park, Texas
  • Biscayne National Park, Florida
  • Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park, Colorado
  • Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah
  • Canyonlands National Parks, Utah
  • Capitol Reef National Park, Utah
  • Carlsbad Caverns National Park, New Mexico
  • Channel Islands National Park, California
  • Congaree National Park, South Carolina
  • Crater Lake National Park, Oregon
  • Cuyahoga Valley National Park, Ohio
  • Death Valley National Park; California and Nevada
  • Denali National Park, Alaska
  • Dry Tortugas National Park, Florida
  • Everglades National Park, Florida
  • Gates of the Arctic National Park, Alaska
  • Gateway Arch National Park, Missouri
  • Glacier National Park, Montana
  • Glacier Bay National Park, Alaska
  • Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona
  • Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming
  • Great Basin National Park, Nevada
  • Great Sand Dunes National Park, Colorado
  • Great Smoky Mountains National Park; North Carolina and Tennessee
  • Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Texas
  • Haleakala National Park, Hawaii
  • Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii
  • Hot Springs National Park, Arkansas
  • Indiana Dunes National Park, Indiana
  • Isle Royale National Park, Michigan
  • Joshua Tree National Park, California
  • Katmai National Park, Alaska
  • Kenai Fjords National Park, Alaska
  • Kings Canyon National Park, California
  • Kobuk Valley National Park, Alaska
  • Lake Clark National Park, Alaska
  • Lassen Volcanic National Park, California
  • Mammoth Cave National Park, Kentucky
  • Mesa Verde National Park, Colorado
  • Mount Rainier National Park, Washington
  • New River Gorge National Park, West Virginia
  • North Cascades National Park, Washington
  • Olympic National Park, Washington
  • Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona
  • Pinnacles National Park, California
  • Redwood National Park, California
  • Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado
  • Saguaro National Park, Arizona
  • Sequoia National Park, California
  • Shenandoah National Park, Virginia
  • Theodore Roosevelt National Park, North Dakota
  • Virgin Islands National Park, US Virgin Islands
  • Voyageurs National Park, Minnesota
  • White Sands National Park, New Mexico
  • Wind Cave National Park, South Dakota
  • Wrangell St. Elias National Park, Alaska
  • Yellowstone National Park; Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming
  • Yosemite National Park, California
  • Zion National Park, Utah

How Many National Parks Are There In The US?

The United States has 63 national parks across its states which are protected areas operated by the U.S. National Park Service. 

However, the National Park System encompasses 423 national park sites, which include national monuments, national preserves, national memorials, national historic sites, and more in each state, including parks in American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands.

Their mission is to “[…] preserve unimpaired the natural and cultural resources and values of the National Park System for the enjoyment, education, and inspiration of this and future generations”.

Which State Has The Most National Parks?

From the 63 US national parks, California leads the list of states with nine national parks. The Golden State is followed by Alaska with eight parks, Utah with five national parks, Colorado with four, and Arizona, Florida, and Washington with three.

How Many States Have National Parks?

Currently, thirty US states have national parks, together with the territories of American Samoa and the Virgin Islands.

Which States Have No National Parks?

While thirty states have at least one national park, twenty states have not a single one. These include Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Wisconsin.

What Are The 63 US National Parks (By State)?

Here’s a table of all US national parks by state or territory.

StateNational Parks
New Mexico2
South Dakota2
American Samoa1
North Dakota1
South Carolina1
Virgin Islands1
West Virginia1
North Carolina1

How Many National Forests Are There In The US?

There are 154 national forests in all but ten US states: Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Iowa, Kansas, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, North Dakota, and Rhode Island.

National Park Resources

Below are some helpful and cool resources for national park lovers!

Scratch-Off National Park Maps on Amazon

Here are some of our favorite scratch-off maps on Amazon:

Printable National Park Checklist

Here’s the free, printable national park checklist for your personal use. Click here to get it! Have fun!

US National Park Interactive Map

As promised, here is the interactive, free national park map. Click here to access it.

To use it, simply open the map on your smartphone, click on the icons to see their info on the map, and the location will be displayed on the lower side of the screen.

You can choose the directions to get to that location or save it for later.

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