Post Summary: United States National Park Checklist

The United States is a diverse country both in culture and landscape. The U.S. is home to arid desert to towering mountain ranges to tropical islands. There is a little bit of everything.

The US National Parks are as diverse as our landscape and if they aren’t on your bucket list, they should be. The National Parks have a little bit of everything and no matter your skill level, there is something to explore. There are 63 National Parks in the United States. They are spread across 29 states and 2 US territories. I have put together this amazing United States National Park Checklist.

In addition to checklist of national parks listed by state, I’ll cover

  • Tips for planning a national park trip
  • A map of all 63 National Parks in the US
  • Most Visited National Parks
  • Least Visited National Parks
  • Free Printable Checklist of National Parks.

This printable list of national parks was updated on December 2020, to included the elevation of New River Gorge National River to New River Gorge National Park and Preserve.

Looking to check every national park off your bucket list? Download your free National Park Checklist HERE.

This post may contain affiliate links, meaning if you book or buy something through one of these links, I may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you! Read the full disclosure policy here

Are you on a quest to visit all the United States National Parks?  Here is a free National Park Checklist download to help you track your progress.

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Looking for other ways to document your national park bucket list? Check out these posts!

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Get Your Printable List of National Parks by State

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How many National Parks are there in United States?

If you are talking about places with “National Park” in their name, there are 63 National Parks in the United States. If you are talking about sites managed by the National Park Service (NPS) there are 423 National Park Service Units. The National Parks Service Units have titles like National Monuments, National Historical Parks, National Memorials, National Battlefields, and about a half dozen other titles.

What is the difference between a National Park and National Parks Service Unit? The short story is nothing other than a name and how it was created. According to NPS, all units managed by them are the same and they consider there to be 423 national parks under their control.

Every unit within the National Parks Service system is a gem in its own right and well worth a visit. That being said, the National Parks are the massive central gemstones of collections (with a few exceptions, I’m looking at you Gateway Arch).

I personally consider there to be 63 National Parks and 424 national parks. When I am talking about those parks with the designation National Park, I capitalize the words National Park. When I am talking to the system as a whole, I use national parks. This is my personal opinion and my personal choice.

If you’d like the long story, here is a detailed explanation on how national parks are created.

Tips for Planning a National Park Trip

Over the years, I have made more than my far share of mistakes when visiting the National Parks. Here are a few important tips about visiting the National Parks.

  • Always check the NPS.gov site. The National Park Service Website will have the most up-to-date information on park operations and closures, permitting, and other critical information such as shuttle operations. When you are planning your visit check every park for alerts such as long-term closures and planned construction. As your visit approaches, keep an eye on the site for weather-related closures.
  • Always stop at the visitor center. The Park Ranger standing at the information desk at the visitor center has the most up-to-date information. The trail conditions and closures don’t always make it on the website, but the front desk ranger will have a status report. They will also have reported animal sighting as well as other helpful last-minute information.
  • Follow Leave No Trace Principles. We are the first line of defense for protecting our National Parks. Leave No Trace Principles are designed to help reduce our impact on the natural spaces. So please do your part and stay on the trails and pack out your trash. Do your part to help protect the National Parks for generations to come.
  • Start Early. The parks are getting busier and busier. Starting your day at 6:00 am vs 8:00 am can mean the difference between getting a spot at the popular trailhead.
  • Visit during the shoulder seasons. The majority of parks are busiest during the summer. A spring or fall visit to the parks will have smaller crowds while still having decent weather.
  • Avoid holidays. Holidays are busy times in the parks. When possible try to avoid visiting near national or school holidays. Spring Break is particularly bad for some parks.

Want more planning tips? Check out these other National Park Trip Planning Posts

63 National Parks Map

Alphabetical US National Park List

  1. Badlands, South Dakota
  2. Big Bend, Texas
  3. Biscayne, Florida
  4. Black Canyon of the Gunnison, Colorado
  5. Bryce Canyon, Utah
  6. Canyonlands, Utah
  7. Capitol Reef, Utah
  8. Carlsbad Caverns, New Mexico
  9. Channel Islands, California
  10. Congaree, South Carolina
  11. Crater Lake, Oregon
  12. Cuyahoga Valley, Ohio
  13. Death Valley, California / Nevada
  14. Denali, Alaska
  15. Dry Tortugas, Florida
  16. Everglades, Florida
  17. Gates of the Arctic, Alaska
  18. Gateway Arch, Missouri
  19. Glacier, Montana
  20. Glacier Bay, Alaska
  21. Grand Canyon, Arizona
  22. Grand Teton, Wyoming
  23. Great Basin, Nevada
  24. Great Sand Dunes, Colorado
  25. Great Smoky Mountains, Tennessee / North Carolina
  26. Guadalupe Mountains, Texas
  27. Haleakala, Hawaii
  28. Hawai’i Volcanoes, Hawaii
  29. Hot Springs, Arkansas
  30. Indiana Dunes, Indiana
  31. Isle Royale, Michigan
  32. Joshua Tree, California
  33. Katmai, Alaska
  34. Kenai Fjords, Alaska
  35. Kings Canyon, California
  36. Kobuk Valley, Alaska
  37. Lake Clark, Alaska
  38. Lassen Volcanic, California
  39. Mammoth Cave, Kentucky
  40. Mesa Verde, Colorado
  41. Mount Rainier, Washington
  42. New River Gorge, West Virginia
  43. North Cascades, Washington
  44. Olympic, Washington
  45. Petrified Forest, Arizona
  46. Pinnacles, California
  47. Redwood, California
  48. Rocky Mountain, Colorado
  49. Saguaro, Arizona
  50. Sequoia, California
  51. Shenandoah, Virginia
  52. Theodore Roosevelt, North Dakota
  53. Virgin Islands, US Virgin Islands
  54. Voyageurs, Minnesota
  55. White Sands, New Mexico
  56. Wind Cave, South Dakota
  57. Wrangell – St. Elias, Alaska
  58. Yellowstone, Wyoming / Idaho / Montana
  59. Yosemite, California
  60. Zion, Utah

Ready to start tracking your journey though the National Parks? Download this free printable National Park Checklist HERE.

63 National Parks List By State

Let’s get into the best national park. I have provided a little bit of useful planning advice to help get you started on your visit including the best time to visit and must-do activities in each national park.

This list of national parks by state is organized in alphabetical order by state then by park name. To learn around all 63 National parks, keep scrolling down.

If you’re looking for parks in a specific state, simply click on the state below to jump ahead!

Alaska ~ American Samoa ~ Arizona ~ Arkansas ~ California ~ Colorado ~ Florida ~ Hawaii ~ Indiana ~ Kentucky ~ Maine ~ Michigan ~ Minnesota ~ Missouri ~ Montana ~ Nevada ~ New Mexico ~ North Dakota ~ Ohio ~ Oregon ~ South Carolina ~ South Dakota ~ Tennessee ~ Texas ~ Utah ~ Virgin Islands ~ Virginia ~ Washington ~ West Virginia ~ Wyoming

Several National Parks are located in parts in multiple states. For ease of use, multi-state National Parks are located under their primary state. Here is a list of the multi-state National Parks and where to find them.

  • Death Valley National Park is listed under California. A small section known as Devils Pool is located in Nevada.
  • Great Smoky Mountains National Park is listed under Tennessee. The park is roughly split 50-50 between Tennessee and North Carolina. I’m Tennessean so I’m claiming it.
  • Yellowstone National Park is listed under Wyoming. Small sections of the park are located in Idaho & Montana.

Alaska National Parks

Denali National Park

  • Date Established: February 26, 1917
  • Annual Visitation: 601,152 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: June to mid-September
  • Must-Sees of Denali:
    • See Denali
    • Hike Mount Healy
    • Dog Sled Demonstration
    • Bus tour to Katnishnia

Learn more about visiting Denali National Park and Preserve.

Gates of the Arctic National Park

  • Date Established: December 2, 1980
  • Annual Visitation: 10,518 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: July to August
  • Must-Sees of Gates of the Arctic:
    • Scenic flight tour
    • Hiking on the tundra
    • Paddle the park’s rivers

Learn more about visiting Gates of the Arctic National Park

Glacier Bay National Park

  • Date Established: December 2, 1980
  • Annual Visitation: 672,087 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: May to September
  • Must-Sees of Glacier Bay:
    • Boat tour to the glaciers
    • Hike Bartlett River
    • Hike Tlingit Trail
    • Kayak Muir Inlet

Learn more about visiting Glacier Bay National Park

Katmai National Park

  • Date Established: December 2, 1980
  • Annual Visitation: 84,167 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: June to September
  • Must-Sees of Katmai:
    • See the bears at Brooks Falls
    • Visit the Valley of Ten Thousands Smokes
      • Flightsee
      • Bus Tour
      • Backpacking

Learn more about visiting Katmai National Park

Kenai Fjords National Park

  • Date Established: December 2, 1980
  • Annual Visitation: 356,601 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: June to August
  • Must-Sees of Kenai Fjords:
    • Boat tour to the Glaciers
    • Hike Harding Icefield
    • Hike to Exit Glacier

Learn more about visiting Kenai Fjords National Park

Kobuk Valley National Park

  • Date Established: December 2, 1980
  • Annual Visitation: 15,766 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: June to October
  • Must-See of Kobuk Valley:
    • See Kobuk Sand Dunes
    • Flightseeing tour
    • Hike in the Tundra
    • Visit Onion Portage

Learn more about visiting Kobuk Valley National Park

Lake Clark National Park

  • Date Established: December 2, 1980
  • Annual Visitation: 17,157 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: July to August
  • Must-Sees of Lake Clark:
    • Hike Tanalian Falls
    • Visit Dick Proenneke Cabin
    • Canoe or Kayak on one of the park’s lakes

Learn more about visiting Lake Clark National Park

Wrangell – St. Elias National Park

  • Date Established: December 2, 1980
  • Annual Visitation: 74,518 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: June to August
  • Must-Sees of Wrangell – St. Elias:
    • Tour Kennecott Copper Mine
    • Hike Root Glacier
    • Flightseeing

Learn more about visiting Wrangell – St. Elias National Park

Other Alaska National Park Service Units

  • Alagnak Wild River
  • Aniakchak National Monument & Preserve
  • Bering Land Bridge National Preserve
  • Cape Krusenstern National Monument
  • Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park
  • Lake Clark National Preserve
  • Noatak National Preserve
  • Sitka National Historical Park
  • Yukon-Charley Rivers National Preserve

>> Take me back to the state list.

American Samoa National Parks

National Park of American Samoa

  • Date Established: October 31, 1988
  • Annual Visitation: 60,006 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: October to December and April
  • Must-See of the National Park of American Samoa:
    • Hike Mount ‘Alava Trail
    • Hike Tuafanua Trail
    • Hike Si’u Point
    • Snorkel Ofu Beach

Learn more about visiting National Park of American Samoa

>> Take me back to the state list.

Arizona National Parks

Grand Canyon National Park

  • Date Established: February 26, 1919
  • Annual Visitation: 5,974,411 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: March to October
  • Must-Sees of the Grand Canyon:
    • Hike Bright Angel Trail
    • View Desert View Watchtower
    • Hike South Kaibab
    • Watch the sunset from the rim

Learn more about visiting Grand Canyon National Park

Petrified Forest National Park

  • Date Established: December 9, 1962
  • Annual Visitation: 643,588 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: May to July
  • Must-Sees of Petrified Forest:
    • Hike Painted Desert Rim Trail
    • Hike Blue Mesa
    • Hike Crystal Forest
    • Hike Agate House
    • Tour Puerco Pueblo

Learn more about visiting Petrified Forest National Park

Saguaro National Park

  • Date Established: October 14, 1994
  • Annual Visitation: 1,020,226 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: February to April and October to December
  • Must-Sees of Saguaro:
    • Drive Scenic Bajada Loop
    • Drive Cactus Forest Drive
    • Hike Valleyview Overlook Trail
    • Hike Mica View Trail
    • Check out Signal Hill Petroglyphs

Learn more about visiting Saguaro National Park

Other Arizona National Park Service Units

  • Canyon De Chelly National Monument
  • Casa Grande Ruins National Monument
  • Chiricahua National Monument
  • Coronado National Memorial
  • Fort Bowie National Historic Site
  • Glen Canyon National Recreation Area
  • Hohokam Pima National Monument
  • Hubbell Trading Post National Historic Site
  • Lake Mead National Recreation Area
  • Montezuma Castle National Monument
  • Navajo National Monument
  • Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument
  • Pipe Spring National Monument
  • Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument
  • Tonto National Monument
  • Tumacacori National Historical Park
  • Tuzigoot National Monument
  • Walnut Canyon National Monument
  • Wupatki National Monument

>> Take me back to the state list.

Arkansas National Parks

Hot Springs National Park

  • Date Established: March 4, 1921
  • Annual Visitation: 1,467,153 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: May to October
  • Must-Sees of Hot Springs:
    • Take a Traditional Bath at Buckstaff Bathhouse
    • Enjoy a Modern Spa Treatment at Quapaw
    • Have a Beer Made from Hot Springs Water
    • Hike to Goat Rock
    • Tour Fordyce Bathhouse

Learn more about visiting Hot Springs National Park

Other Arkansas National Park Service Units

  • Arkansas Post National Memorial
  • Buffalo National River
  • Fort Smith National Historic Site
  • Little Rock Central High School National Historic Site
  • Pea Ridge National Military Park
  • President William Jefferson Clinton Birthplace Home National Historic Site

>> Take me back to the state list.

California National Parks

Channel Islands National Park

  • Date Established: March 5, 1980
  • Annual Visitation: 409,630 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: March to September
  • Must-Sees of Channel Islands:
    • Kayak the Sea Caves
    • Hike Inspiration Point
    • Hike Potato Harbor

Learn more about visiting Channel Islands National Park

Death Valley National Park

  • Date Established: October 31, 1994
  • Annual Visitation: 1,659,702 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: February to May and August to October
  • Must-Sees of Death Valley:
    • Watch the Planes Fly Through Jedi Canyon
    • Watch the Sunrise at Zabriskie Point
    • Hike Golden Canyon
    • Hike Ubehebe Crater
    • Visit Badwater Basin
    • Hike Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes

Learn more about visiting Death Valley National Park

Joshua Tree National Park

  • Date Established: October 31, 1994
  • Annual Visitation: 2,988,547 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: October to May
  • Must-Sees of Joshua Tree:
    • Visit Skull Rock
    • Watch the Sunset in Cholla Cactus Garden
    • Hike Barker Dam Nature Trail
    • Hike Ryan Mountain
    • Tour Keys Ranch

Learn more about visiting Joshua Tree National Park

Start marking your progress off today! Download this free printable National Park Checklist HERE.

Kings Canyon National Park

  • Date Established: March 4, 1940
  • Annual Visitation: 1,246,053 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: May to September
  • Must-Sees of Kings Canyon:
    • Walk to General Grant Tree
    • Drive Generals Highway
    • Drive Kings Canyon Scenic Byway
    • Explore Zumwalt Meadow

Learn more about visiting Kings Canyon National Park

Lassen Volcanic National Park

  • Date Established: August 9, 1916
  • Annual Visitation: 517,039 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: May to October
  • Must-Sees of Lassen Volcanic: Drive Main Park Road, Hike Lassen Peak, Hike Bumpass Hell, See Manzanita Lake
    • Hike Bumppass Hell
    • Hike Lassen Peak
    • Hike to Manzanita Lake
    • Drive the scenic highway

Learn more about visiting Lassen Volcanic National Park

Pinnacles National Park

  • Date Established: January 15, 2013
  • Annual Visitation: 177,224 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: March to June
  • Must-Sees of Pinnacles:
    • Hike Peaks Trail
    • Hike Condor Gulch Overlook
    • Visit Bear Gulch Reservoir
    • Explore a Talus Cave

Learn more about visiting Pinnacles National Park

Redwood National and State Park

  • Date Established: October 2, 1968
  • Annual Visitation: 504,722 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: April to October
  • Must-Sees of Redwoods:
    • Hike Tall Trees Grove
    • Hike Fern Canyon
    • Visit Stout Grove
    • Drive the Coastal Drive Loop

Learn more about visiting Redwood National Park

Sequoia National Park

  • Date Established: September 25, 1890
  • Annual Visitation: 1,246,053 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: May to September
  • Must-Sees of Sequoia:
    • Drive under Tunnel Log
    • See the General Sherman tree
    • Hike Moro Rock
    • Hike Big Trees Trail

Learn more about visiting Sequoia National Park

Yosemite National Park

  • Date Established: October 1, 1890
  • Annual Visitation: 4,422,861 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: May to October
  • Must-Sees of Yosemite:
    • Hike to Yosemite Falls
    • Hike Half Dome
    • Hike Mirror Lake
    • Hike to Inspiration Point
    • Explore Yosemite Valley
    • Watch the Sunrise over the Valley
    • Watch the Sunset over the Valley

Learn more about visiting Yosemite National Park

Other California National Park Service Units

  • Cabrillo National Monument
  • Castle Mountains National Monument
  • César E. Chávez National Monument
  • Devils Postpile National Monument
  • Eugene O’Neill National Historic Site
  • Fort Point National Historic Site
  • Golden Gate National Recreation Area
    • Alcatraz Island
  • John Muir National Historic Site
  • Lava Beds National Monument
  • Manzanar National Historic Site
  • Mojave National Preserve
  • Muir Woods National Monument
  • Point Reyes National Seashore
  • Port Chicago Naval Magazine National Memorial
  • Rosie the Riveter/World War II Home Front National Historical Park
  • San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park
  • Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area
  • Tule Lake National Monument
  • Whiskeytown-Shasta-Trinity National Recreation Area

>> Take me back to the state list.

Colorado National Parks

Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park

  • Date Established: October 21, 1999
  • Annual Visitation: 432,818 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: May to August
  • Must-Sees of Black Canyon of the Gunnison:
    • Hike the Oak Flat Loop Trail
    • Hike the Rim Rock Nature Trail
    • See Gunnison Point

Learn more about visiting Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park

Great Sand Dunes National Park

  • Date Established: September 13, 2004
  • Annual Visitation: 527,546 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: May to August
  • Must-Sees of Great Sand Dunes:
    • Hike Dunes Overlook
    • Hike High Dune
    • Hike Star Dune
    • Play in Medano Creek
    • Try Sand Sledding

Learn more about visiting Great Sand Dunes National Park

Mesa Verde National Park

  • Date Established: June 29, 1906
  • Annual Visitation: 556,203 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: June to September
  • Must-Sees of Mesa Verde:
    • Tour Cliff Palace
    • Tour Balcony House
    • Tour Long House
    • Hike Petroglyph Point

Learn more about visiting Mesa Verde National Park

Rocky Mountain National Park

  • Date Established: January 26, 1915
  • Annual Visitation: 4,670,053 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: June to September
  • Must-Sees of Rocky Mountain:
    • Hike Emerald Lake
    • Hike Bear Lake
    • Hike Sky Pond Lake
    • Drive Trail Ridge Road

Learn more about visiting Rocky Mountain National Park

Other Colorado National Park Service Units

  • Bent’s Old Fort National Historic Site
  • Colorado National Monument
  • Curecanti National Recreation Area
  • Dinosaur National Monument
  • Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument
  • Hovenweep National Monument
  • Sand Creek Massacre National Historic Site
  • Yucca House National Monument

>> Take me back to the state list.

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Florida National Parks

Biscayne National Park

  • Date Established: June 28, 1980
  • Annual Visitation: 708,522 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: Year-round
  • Must-Sees of Biscayne:
    • Kayak in the mangroves
    • Visit Elliot Key
    • Take a boat tour
    • Snorkel the barrier reef

Learn more about visiting Biscayne National Park

Dry Tortugas National Park

  • Date Established: October 26, 1992
  • Annual Visitation: 79,200 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: Year-round
  • Must-Sees of Dry Tortugas:
    • Tour Fort Jefferson
    • Snorkel Garden Key
    • Visit Loggerhead Key

Learn more about visiting Dry Tortugas National Park

Everglades National Park

  • Date Established: May 30, 1934
  • Annual Visitation: 1,118,300 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: November to April
  • Must-Sees of Everglades:
    • See Shark Valley
    • Go Kayaking in Flamingo
    • Hike Anhinga Trail
    • Hike Bayshore Trail

Learn more about visiting Everglades National Park

Other Florida National Park Service Units

  • Big Cypress National Preserve
  • Canaveral National Seashore
  • Castillo de San Marcos National Monument
  • De Soto National Memorial
  • Fort Caroline National Memorial
  • Fort Matanzas National Monument
  • Gulf Islands National Seashore
  • Timucuan Ecological and Historic Preserve

>> Take me back to the state list.

Hawaii National Parks

Haleakalā National Park

  • Date Established: July 1, 1961
  • Annual Visitation: 994,394 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: May to July
  • Must-Sees of Haleakalā:
    • See Haleakalā Summit at sunrise
    • See Pepe’s Paint Pot
    • Hike Pīpīwai Trail
    • Hike the Pā Ka’oao Trail
    • Drive the nearby Road to Hāna

Learn more about visiting Haleakalā National Park

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

  • Date Established: August 1, 1916
  • Annual Visitation: 1,368,376 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: Steady Year-round
  • Must-Sees of Hawaii Volcanoes:
    • Hike Thurston Lava Tube Trail
    • See the Pu’u Loa petroglyphs
    • See Halema’uma’u Crater
    • Hike to the top of Pu’u o Lokuana Cinder Cone
    • Drive Crater Rim and Chain of Craters Road

Learn more about visiting Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

Other Hawaii National Park Service Units

  • Honouliuli National Historic Site
  • Kalaupapa National Historical Park
  • Kaloko-Honokohau National Historical Park
  • Pearl Harbor National Memorial
  • Pu’uhonua O Honaunau National Historical Park
  • Pu’ukohola Heiau National Historic Site

>> Take me back to the state list.

Indiana National Parks

Indiana Dunes National Park

  • Date Established: February 15, 2019
  • Annual Visitation: 2,134,285 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: May to October
  • Must-Sees of Indiana Dunes:
    • Swim in Lake Michigan
    • Hike West Beach
    • Tour Mount Baldy
    • Visit the Bailly Homestead

Learn more about visiting Indiana Dunes National Park

Other Indiana National Park Service Units

  • George Rogers Clark National Historical Park
  • Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial

>> Take me back to the state list.

Kentucky National Parks

Mammoth Cave National Park

  • Date Established: July 1, 1941
  • Annual Visitation: 551,590 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: April to October
  • Must-Sees of Mammoth Cave:
    • Take a tour to see Frozen Niagara
    • Take the Historic Tour
    • Walk down the New Entrance
    • Hike the Sloan’s Crossing Pond boardwalk
    • Hike River Styx Spring Trail

Learn more about visiting Mammoth Cave National Park

Other Kentucky National Park Service Units

  • Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historical Park
  • Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area
  • Camp Nelson Hertiage National Monument
  • Cumberland Gap National Historical Park
  • Fort Donelson National Battlefield
  • Mill Springs Battlefield National Monument

>> Take me back to the state list.

Start planning your route today! Download this free printable National Park Checklist HERE.

Maine National Parks

Acadia National Park

  • Date Established: February 26, 1919
  • Annual Visitation: 3,437,286 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: May to September
  • Must-Sees of Acadia:
    • Drive Park Loop Road
    • See Cadillac Mountain
    • Visit Sand Beach
    • Hike Jordan Pond
    • Hike the Precipice Trail
    • See Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse

Learn more about visiting Acadia National Park

Other Maine National Park Service Units

  • Appalachian National Scenic Trail
  • Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument
  • Saint Croix Island International Historic Site

>> Take me back to the state list.

Michigan National Parks

Isle Royale National Park

  • Date Established: April 3, 1940
  • Annual Visitation: 26,410 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: June to September
  • Must-Sees of Isle Royale:
    • Hike to Suzy’s Cave
    • Hike Scotville Point
    • Visit the Wolf-Moose Research Station
    • Visit Rock Harbor Lighthouse
    • Explore Windigo

Learn more about visiting Isle Royale National Park

Other Michigan National Park Service Units

  • Keweenaw National Historical Park
  • Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore
  • River Raisin National Battlefield Park
  • Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore

>> Take me back to the state list.

Minnesota National Parks

Voyageurs National Park

  • Date Established: April 8, 1975
  • Annual Visitation: 232,974 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: June to August
  • Must-Sees of Voyageurs:
    • Sett Kettle Falls
    • Hike the Blind Ash Bay Trail
    • Go Canoeing or Kayaking

Learn more about visiting Voyageurs National Park

Other Minnesota National Park Service Units

  • Grand Portage National Monument
  • Mississippi National River and Recreation Area
  • Pipestone National Monument
  • Saint Croix National Scenic Riverway

>> Take me back to the state list.

Missouri National Parks

Gateway Arch National Park

  • Date Established: February 22, 2018
  • Annual Visitation: 2,055,309 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: June to August
  • Must-Sees of Gateway Arch:
    • Go to the top of the Arch
    • Visit the Old Courthouse

Learn more about visiting Gateway Arch National Park

Other Missouri National Park Service Units

  • George Washington Carver National Monument
  • Harry S Truman National Historic Site
  • Ozark National Scenic Riverways
  • Ulysses S. Grant National Historic Site
  • Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield

>> Take me back to the state list.

Montana National Parks

Glacier National Park

Learn more about visiting Glacier National Park

Other Montana National Park Service Units

  • Big Hole National Battlefield
  • Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area
  • Fort Union Trading Post National Historic Site
  • Glacier National Park
  • Grant-Kohrs Ranch National Historic Site
  • Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument
  • Nez Perce National Historical Park
    • Bear Paw Battlefield
    • Cayon Creek

>> Take me back to the state list.

Nevada National Parks

Great Basin National Park

  • Date Established: October 27, 1986
  • Annual Visitation: 131,802 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: May to September
  • Must-Sees of Great Basin:
    • Hike Bristlecone Trail
    • Hike to Lexington Arch
    • Drive Wheeler Peak Scenic Drive
    • Tour Lehman Caves

Learn more about visiting Great Basin National Park

Other Nevada National Park Service Units

  • Lake Mead National Recreation Area
  • Tule Springs Fossil Beds National Monument

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New Mexico National Parks

Carlsbad Caverns National Park

  • Date Established: May 14, 1930
  • Annual Visitation: 440,691 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: June to July
  • Must-Sees of Carlsbad Caverns:
    • Visit the Hall of Giants Cave
    • Take a tour of the Big Room
    • See the Bats fly out of the Cave

Learn more about visiting Carlsbad Caverns National Park

White Sands National Park

  • Date Established: December 20, 2019
  • Annual Visitation:
  • Best Time to Visit:
  • Must-See of White Sands:

Learn more about visiting White Sands National Park

Other New Mexico National Park Service Units

  • Aztec Ruins National Monument
  • Bandelier National Monument
  • Capulin Volcano National Monument
  • Chaco Culture National Historical Park
  • El Malpais National Monument
  • El Morro National Monument
  • Fort Union National Monument
  • Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument
  • Manhattan Project National Historical Park
  • Pecos National Historical Park
  • Petroglyph National Monument
  • Salinas Pueblo Missions National Monument
  • Valles Caldera National Preserve

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North Dakota National Parks

Theodore Roosevelt National Park

  • Date Established: November 10, 1978
  • Annual Visitation: 691,658 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: June to September
  • Must-Sees of Theodore Roosevelt:
    • Drive Scenic Loop
    • Hike Painted Canyon
    • Hike the Caprock Coulee Nature Trail
    • Hike the Petrified Forest Loop
    • See Oxbow Bend Overlook

Learn more about visiting Theodore Roosevelt National Park

Other North Dakota National Park Service Units

  • Fort Union Trading Post National Historic Site
  • Knife River Indian Villages National Historic Site

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Ohio National Parks

Cuyahoga Valley National Park

  • Date Established: October 11, 2000
  • Annual Visitation:
  • Best Time to Visit: April to May, September-October
  • Must-Sees of Cuyahoga Valley:
    • Hike Brandywine Falls
    • Hike The Ledges
    • Ride the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad

Learn more about visiting Cuyahoga Valley National Park

Other Ohio National Park Service Units

  • Charles Young Buffalo Soldiers National Monument
  • Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park
  • First Ladies National Historic Site
  • Hopewell Culture National Historical Park
  • James A. Garfield National Historic Site
  • Perry’s Victory and International Peace Memorial
  • William Howard Taft National Historic Site

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Oregon National Parks

Crater Lake National Park

  • Date Established: May 22, 1902
  • Annual Visitation: 704,512 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: June to September
  • Must-Sees of Crater Lake:
    • Drive Rim Drive
    • Hike to Wizard Summit
    • Hike Watchman Peak
    • Take a Boat Tour

Learn more about visiting Crater Lake National Park

Other Oregon National Park Service Units

  • Fort Vancouver National Historic Site
  • John Day Fossil Beds National Monument
  • Lewis and Clark National Historical Park
  • Nez Perce National Historical ParkDug Bar
    • Joseph Canon Viewpoint
    • Old Chief Joseph’s Gravesite
    • Lostine Campsite
  • Oregon Caves National Monument and Preserve

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South Carolina National Parks

Congaree National Park

  • Date Established: November 10, 2003
  • Annual Visitation: 159,445 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: March to May
  • Must-Sees of Congaree:
    • Hike the Boardwalk Trails
    • Hike the Weston Lake Loop Trail
    • Go kayaking/canoeing

Learn more about visiting Congaree National Park

Other South Carolina National Park Service Units

  • Charles Pinckney National Historic Site
  • Cowpens National Battlefield
  • Fort Sumter and Fort Moultrie National Historical Park
  • Kings Mountain National Military Park
  • Ninety Six National Historic Site
  • Reconstruction Era National Historical Park

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South Dakota National Parks

Badlands National Park

  • Date Established: November 10, 1978
  • Annual Visitation: 970,998 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: June to September
  • Must-Sees of Badlands:
    • Hike Notch Trail
    • Hike the Window Trail
    • Hike Saddle Pass Trail
    • Drive Badlands Loop Road

Learn more about visiting Badlands National Park

Wind Cave National Park

  • Date Established: January 9, 1903
  • Annual Visitation: 615,350 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: July to August
  • Must-Sees of Wind Cave:
    • Feel the wind blow out of Wind Cave
    • Hike Rankin Ridge
    • Hike the Prairie Vista loop

Learn more about visiting Wind Cave National Park

Other South Dakota National Park Service Units

  • Jewel Cave National Monument
  • Minuteman Missile National Historic Site
  • Missouri National Recreational River
  • Mount Rushmore National Memorial

>> Take me back to the state list.

Tennessee National Parks

Great Smoky Mountains National Park

  • Date Established: June 15, 1934
  • Annual Visitation: 12,547,743 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: May to September
  • Must-Sees of Great Smoky Mountains:
    • See Cades Cove
    • Hike Clingmans Dome
    • Hike Alum Cave Trail
    • Hike the Chimney Tops Trail

Learn more about visiting Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Other Tennessee National Park Service Units

  • Andrew Johnson National Historic Site
  • Appalachian National Scenic Trail-
  • Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area
  • Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park
  • Cumberland Gap National Historical Park
  • Fort Donelson National Battlefield
  • Manhattan Project National Historical Park
  • Natchez Trace National Scenic Trail
  • Natchez Trace Parkway
  • Obed Wild and Scenic River
  • Shiloh National Military Park
  • Stones River National Battlefield

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Texas National Parks

Big Bend National Park

  • Date Established: June 12, 1944
  • Annual Visitation: 463,832 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: October to May
  • Must-Sees of Big Bend:
    • Float the Rio Grande
    • Soak in the Hot Springs
    • Hike Lost Mine
    • Hike the Windows
    • Hike Santa Elena Canyon
    • Hike Boquillas Canyon 

Learn more about visiting Big Bend National Park

Guadalupe Mountains National Park

  • Date Established: October 15, 1966
  • Annual Visitation: 188,833 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: March
  • Must-Sees of Guadalupe Mountains:
    • Summit Guadalupe Peak
    • Hike The Bowl
    • Hike the Devil’s Hall Trail

Learn more about visiting Guadalupe Mountains National Park

Other Texas National Park Service Units

  • Alibates Flint Quarries National Monument
  • Amistad National Recreation Area
  • Big Thicket National Preserve
  • Chamizal National Memorial
  • Fort Davis National Historic Site
  • Lake Meredith National Recreation Area
  • Lyndon B. Johnson National Historical Park
  • Padre Island National Seashore
  • Palo Alto Battlefield National Historical Park
  • Rio Grande Wild and Scenic River
  • San Antonio Missions National Historical Park
  • Waco Mammoth National Monument

>> Take me back to the state list.

Ready to start tracking your journey though the National Parks? Download this free printable National Park Checklist HERE.

Utah National Parks

Arches National Park

  • Date Established: November 12, 1971
  • Annual Visitation: 1,659,702 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: March to May, September to November
  • Must-Sees of Arches:
    • Hike Delicate Arch
    • Hike the Windows Loop
    • Hike Double Arch
    • Hike the Firey Furnace
    • Hike Sand Dune Arch

Learn more about visiting Arches National Park

Bryce Canyon National Park

  • Date Established: February 25, 1928
  • Annual Visitation: 2,594,904 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit:
  • Must-Sees of Bryce Canyon:

Learn more about visiting Bryce Canyon National Park

Canyonlands National Park

  • Date Established: September 12, 1964
  • Annual Visitation: 733,996 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: April to October
  • Must-Sees of Canyonlands:
    • Hike Mesa Arch for sunrise
    • Hike Grand Viewpoint Overlook
    • Hike Upheaval Dome
    • Hike Chelser Loop
    • See Green River Overlook and Shafer Point Overlook

Learn more about visiting Canyonlands National Park

Capitol Reef National Park

  • Date Established: December 18, 1971
  • Annual Visitation: 1,226,519 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit:
  • Must-Sees of Capitol Reef:
    • Pick fruit at Fruita Orchard in fall
    • Hike Cohab Canyon
    • Hike to Hickman Bridge
    • Hike to the Pioneer Register
    • Drive Capitol Gorge Road

Learn more about visiting Capitol Reef National Park

Zion National Park

  • Date Established: November 19, 1919
  • Annual Visitation: 3,437,286 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: May to September
  • Must-Sees of Zion:
    • Hike The Narrows
    • Hike Angels Landing
    • Hike Canyon Overlook
    • Hike Observation Point
    • Drive thru the Zion – Mt. Carmel Tunnel

Learn more about visiting Zion National Park

Other Utah National Park Service Units

  • Cedar Breaks National Monument
  • Dinosaur National Monument
  • Glen Canyon National Recreation Area
  • Golden Spike National Historical Park
  • Hovenweep National Monument
  • Natural Bridges National Monument
  • Rainbow Bridge National Monument
  • Timpanogos Cave National Monument

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Virgin Islands National Parks

Virgin Islands National Park

  • Date Established: August 2, 1956
  • Annual Visitation: 133,398 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: January to April
  • Must-Sees of Virgin Islands:
    • Hike the Salt Pond Bay and Ram Head Trails
    • Hike the Francis Bay Trail
    • Snorkel the Underwater trail in Trunk Bay
    • Snorkel Cinnamon Bay

Learn more about visiting Virgin Islands National Park

Other Virgin Islands National Park Service Units

  • Buck Island Reef National Monument
  • Christiansted National Historic Site
  • Salt River Bay National Historical Park and Ecological Preserve
  • Virgin Islands Coral Reef National Monument

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Virginia National Parks

Shenandoah National Park

  • Date Established: December 26, 1935
  • Annual Visitation: 1,425,507 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit:
  • Must-Sees of Shenandoah:
    • Drive Skyline Drive
    • Hike Old Rag Trail
    • Hike Dark Hollow Falls

Learn more about visiting Shenandoah National Park

Other Virginia National Park Service Units

  • Appalachian National Scenic Trail
  • Appomattox Court House National Historical Park
  • Arlington House, The Robert E. Lee Memorial
  • Assateague Island National Seashore
  • Blue Ridge Parkway
  • Booker T. Washington National Monument
  • Cedar Creek and Belle Grove National Historical Park
  • Colonial National Historical Park
    • Cape Henry Memorial
    • Historic Jamestowne
    • Yorktown Battlefield
  • Cumberland Gap National Historical Park
  • Fort Monroe National Monument
  • Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park
  • George Washington Birthplace National Monument
  • George Washington Memorial Parkway
  • Harpers Ferry National Historical Park
  • Maggie L. Walker National Historic Site
  • Manassas National Battlefield Park
  • Petersburg National Battlefield
  • Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail
  • Prince William Forest Park
  • Richmond National Battlefield Park
  • Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts

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Washington National Parks

Mount Rainier National Park

  • Date Established: March 2, 1899
  • Annual Visitation: 1,501,621 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: July to September
  • Must-Sees of Mount Rainier:
    • Hike the Skyline Trail
    • Hike Fremont Lookout
    • Hike Tolmie Peak
    • Visit Grove of the Patriarchs

Learn more about visiting Mount Rainier National Park

North Cascades National Park

  • Date Established: October 2, 1968
  • Annual Visitation: 38,208 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: July to August
  • Must-Sees of North Cascades:
    • Hike Trappers Peak
    • Hike Hidden Lake Trail
    • Hike Cascade Pass

Learn more about visiting North Cascades National Park

Olympic National Park

  • Date Established: June 29, 1938
  • Annual Visitation: 3,245,806 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: May to September
  • Must-Sees of Olympic:
    • See Ruby Beach
    • Explore the tide pools
    • Hike Hoh Rain Forest
    • Hike Sol Duc Falls
    • Hike Shi Shi Beach

Learn more about visiting Olympic National Park

Other Washington National Park Service Units

  • Ebey’s Landing National Historical Reserve
  • Fort Vancouver National Historic Site
  • Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park
  • Lake Chelan National Recreation Area
  • Lake Roosevelt National Recreation Area
  • Lewis and Clark National Historical Park
  • Manhattan Project National Historical Park
  • Nez Perce National Historical Park
    • Burial Site of Chief Joseph the Younger
    • Nez Perce Campsites at Nespelem
    • Buffalo Eddy
  • Ross Lake National Recreation Area
  • San Juan Island National Historical Park
  • Whitman Mission National Historic Site

>> Take me back to the state list.

West Virginia National Parks

New River Gorge National Park

  • Date Established: December 27, 2020
  • Annual Visitation: 1,195,721 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit:
  • Must-Sees of New River Gorge:
    • Whitewater rafting
    • Take the Bridge Walk
    • Hike Endless Wall Trail

Learn more about visiting New River Gorge National Park

Other West Virginia National Park Service Units

  • Appalachian National Scenic Trail
  • Bluestone National Scenic River
  • Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park
  • Gauley River National Recreation Area
  • Harpers Ferry National Historical Park
  • New River Gorge National Park

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Wyoming National Parks

Grand Teton National Park

  • Date Established: February 26, 1929
  • Annual Visitation: 3,405,614 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: June to September
  • Must-Sees of Grand Teton:
    • Hike Inspiration Trail
    • Hike to Cascade Canyon
    • Visit Oxbow Bend
    • Do a Colter Bay boat tour
    • Explore Mormon Row

Learn more about visiting Grand Teton National Park

Yellowstone National Park

  • Date Established: March 1, 1872
  • Annual Visitation: 4,020,288 (in 2019)
  • Best Time to Visit: June to September
  • Must-Sees of Yellowstone:
    • See Grand Prismatic Spring
    • See Old Faithful Erupt
    • Hike Mount Washburn
    • Hike to Artists Point at the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone
    • Explore the Norris Geyser Basin

Learn more about visiting Yellowstone National Park

Other Wyoming National Park Service Units

  • Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area
  • Devils Tower National Monument
  • Fort Laramie National Historic Site
  • Fossil Butte National Monument
  • John D. Rockefeller Memorial Parkway

>> Take me back to the state list.

States without National Parks (But other National Park Service Units)

Let’s get into the best national park. I have provided a little bit of useful planning advice to help get you started on your visit including the best time to visit and must-do activities in each national park.

This list of national parks by state is organized in alphabetical order by state then by park name. To learn around all 63 National parks, keep scrolling down.

If you’re looking for parks in a specific state, simply click on the state below to jump ahead!

Alabama ~ Connecticut ~ Delaware ~ Georgia ~ Guam ~ Idaho ~ Illinois ~ Iowa ~ Kansas ~ Louisiana ~ Maryland ~ Massachusetts ~ Mississippi ~ Nebraska ~ New Hampshire ~ New Jersey ~ New York ~ North Carolina ~ Oklahoma ~ Pennsylvania ~ Puerto Rico ~ Rhode Island ~ Vermont ~ Washington D.C ~ Wisconsin

Several National Parks are located in parts in multiple states. For ease of use, multi-state National Parks are located under their primary state. Here is a list of the multi-state National Parks and where to find them.

  • Death Valley National Park is listed under California. A small section known as Devils Pool is located in Nevada.
  • Great Smoky Mountains National Park is listed under Tennessee. The park is roughly split 50-50 between Tennessee and North Carolina. I’m Tennessean so I’m claiming it.
  • Yellowstone National Park is listed under Wyoming. Small sections of the park are located in Idaho & Montana.

Alabama National Parks

  • Birmingham Civil Rights National Monument
  • Freedom Riders National Monument
  • Horseshoe Bend National Military Park
  • Little River Canyon National Preserve
  • Natchez Trace National Scenic Trail
  • Natchez Trace Parkway
  • Russell Cave National Monument
  • Tuskegee Airmen National Historic Site
  • Tuskegee Institute National Historic Site

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Connecticut National Parks

  • Appalachian National Scenic Trail
  • Weir Farm National Historic Site

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Delaware National Parks

  • First State National Historical Park

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Georgia National Parks

  • Andersonville National Historic Site
  • Appalachian National Scenic Trail
  • Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area
  • Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park
  • Cumberland Island National Seashore
  • Fort Frederica National Monument
  • Fort Pulaski National Monument
  • Jimmy Carter National Historic Site
  • Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park
  • Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site
  • Ocmulgee Mounds National Historical Park

>> Take me back to the state list.

Guam National Parks

  • War in the Pacific National Historical Park

>> Take me back to the state list.

Idaho National Parks

Idaho contains a TINY sliver of Yellowstone National Park.

  • City of Rocks National Reserve
  • Craters of the Moon National Monument
  • Craters of the Moon National Preserve
  • Hagerman Fossil Beds National Monument
  • Minidoka National Historic Site
  • Nez Perce National Historical Park
    • Ant and Yellowjacket
    • Asa Smith Mission
    • Camas Meadows Skirmish Site
    • Camas Prairie
    • Canoe Camp
    • Clearwater Battlefield
    • Confluence Overlook
    • Cottonwood Skirmishes
    • Coyote’s Fishnet
    • Craig Donation Land Claim
    • Fort Lapwai
    • Hasotino
    • Heart of the Monster
    • Lenore
    • Lewis and Clark Long Camp
    • Lolo Pass and Trail
    • Looking Glass’ 1877 Campsite
    • McBeth House
    • Musselshell Meadow
    • Northern Idaho Indian Agency
    • Pierce Court House
    • Spalding Sites
    • St. Joseph’s Mission
    • Tolo Lake
    • Weippe Prairie
    • Weis Rockshelter
    • White Bird Battlefield

>> Take me back to the state list.

Illinois National Parks

  • Lincoln Home National Historic Site
  • Pullman National Monument

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Iowa National Parks

  • Effigy Mounds National Monument
  • Herbert Hoover National Historic Site

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Kansas National Parks

  • Brown vs. Board of Education National Historic Site
  • Fort Larned National Historic Site
  • Fort Scott National Historic Site
  • Nicodemus National Historic Site
  • Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve

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Louisiana National Parks

  • Cane River Creole National Historical Park
  • Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve
  • New Orleans Jazz National Historical Park
  • Poverty Point National Monument
  • Vicksburg National Military Park

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Maryland National Parks

  • Antietam National Battlefield
  • Appalachian National Scenic Trail
  • Assateague Island National Seashore
  • Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park
  • Catoctin Mountain Park
  • Clara Barton National Historic Site
  • Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine
  • Fort Washington Park
  • George Washington Memorial Parkway
  • Greenbelt Park
  • Hampton National Historic Site
  • Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad National Historical Park
  • Monocacy National Battlefield
  • Piscataway Park
  • Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail
  • Thomas Stone National Historic Site

>> Take me back to the state list.

Massachusetts National Parks

  • Adams National Historical Park
  • Appalachian National Scenic Trail
  • Blackstone River Valley National Historical Park
  • Boston African American National Historic Site
  • Boston Harbor Islands National Recreation Area
  • Boston National Historical Park
  • Cape Cod National Seashore
  • Frederick Law Olmsted National Historic Site
  • John F. Kennedy National Historic Site
  • Longfellow House–Washington’s Headquarters National Historic Site
  • Lowell National Historical Park
  • Minute Man National Historical Park
  • New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park
  • Salem Maritime National Historic Site
  • Saugus Iron Works National Historic Site
  • Springfield Armory National Historic Site

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Mississippi National Parks

  • Brices Cross Roads National Battlefield Site
  • Gulf Islands National Seashore
  • Medgar and Myrlie Evers Home National Monument
  • Natchez National Historical Park
  • Natchez Trace National Scenic Trail
  • Natchez Trace Parkway
  • Shiloh National Military Park
  • Tupelo National Battlefield
  • Vicksburg National Military Park

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Nebraska National Parks

  • Agate Fossil Beds National Monument
  • Homestead National Monument of America
  • Missouri National Recreational River
  • Niobrara National Scenic River
  • Scotts Bluff National Monument

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New Hampshire National Parks

  • Appalachian National Scenic Trail
  • Saint-Gaudens National Historical Park

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New Jersey National Parks

  • Appalachian National Scenic Trail
  • Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area
  • Gateway National Recreation Area
  • Great Egg Harbor Scenic and Recreational River
  • Morristown National Historical Park
  • Paterson Great Falls National Historical Park
  • Statue of Liberty National Monument
    • Ellis Island
  • Thomas Edison National Historical Park

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New York National Parks

  • African Burial Ground National Monument
  • Appalachian National Scenic Trail
  • Castle Clinton National Monument
  • Eleanor Roosevelt National Historic Site
  • Federal Hall National Memorial
  • Fire Island National Seashore
  • Fort Stanwix National Monument
  • Gateway National Recreation Area
  • General Grant National Memorial
  • Governors Island National Monument
  • Hamilton Grange National Memorial
  • Harriet Tubman National Historical Park
  • Home of Franklin D. Roosevelt National Historic Site
  • Martin Van Buren National Historic Site
  • Sagamore Hill National Historic Site
  • Saint Paul’s Church National Historic Site
  • Saratoga National Historical Park
  • Statue of Liberty National Monument
    • Ellis Island
  • Stonewall National Monument
  • Theodore Roosevelt Birthplace National Historic Site
  • Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural National Historic Site
  • Vanderbilt Mansion National Historic Site
  • Women’s Rights National Historical Park

>> Take me back to the state list.

North Carolina National Parks

North Carolina is shares Great Smoky Mountain National Park with Tennessee. As I am from Tennessee, I included the Smokies under Tennessee.

  • Appalachian National Scenic Trail
  • Blue Ridge Parkway
  • Cape Hatteras National Seashore
  • Cape Lookout National Seashore
  • Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site
  • Fort Raleigh National Historic Site
  • Guilford Courthouse National Military Park
  • Moores Creek National Battlefield
  • Wright Brothers National Memorial

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Oklahoma National Parks

  • Chickasaw National Recreation Area
  • Fort Smith National Historic Site
  • Washita Battlefield National Historic Site

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Pennsylvania National Parks

  • Allegheny Portage Railroad National Historic Site
  • Appalachian National Scenic Trail
  • Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area
  • Edgar Allan Poe National Historic Site
  • Eisenhower National Historic Site
  • First State National Historical Park
  • Flight 93 National Memorial
  • Fort Necessity National Battlefield
  • Friendship Hill National Historic Site
  • Gettysburg National Military Park
  • Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site
  • Independence National Historical Park
  • Johnstown Flood National Memorial
  • Middle Delaware National Scenic River
  • Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail
  • Steamtown National Historic Site
  • Thaddeus Kosciuszko National Memorial
  • Upper Delaware Scenic and Recreational River
  • Valley Forge National Historical Park

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Puerto Rico National Parks

  • San Juan National Historic Site

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Rhode Island National Parks

  • Blackstone River Valley National Historical Park
  • Roger Williams National Memorial

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Vermont National Parks

  • Appalachian National Scenic Trail
  • Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historical Park

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Washington, D.C. National Parks

  • Belmont-Paul Women’s Equality National Monument
  • Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park
  • Carter G. Woodson Home National Historic Site
  • Constitution Gardens
  • Dwight D. Eisenhower Memorial
  • Ford’s Theatre National Historic Site
  • Franklin D. Roosevelt Memorial
  • Frederick Douglass National Historic Site
  • George Washington Memorial Parkway
  • Korean War Veterans Memorial
  • Lincoln Memorial
  • Lyndon Baines Johnson Memorial Grove on the Potomac
  • Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial
  • Mary McLeod Bethune Council House National Historic Site
  • National Capital Parks
  • National Mall
  • Pennsylvania Avenue National Historic Site
  • Rock Creek Park
  • Theodore Roosevelt Island
  • Thomas Jefferson Memorial
  • Vietnam Veterans Memorial
  • Washington Monument
  • White House and President’s Park
  • World War I Memorial
  • World War II Memorial

>> Take me back to the state list.

Wisconsin National Parks

  • Apostle Islands National Lakeshore
  • Saint Croix National Scenic Riverway

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Most Visited National Parks in 2020

  1. Great Smoky Mountains National Park (12.1 million visitors)
  2. Yellowstone National Park (3.8 million visitors)
  3. Zion National Park (3.6 million visitors)
  4. Rocky Mountain National Park (3.3 million visitors)
  5. Grand Teton National Park (3.3 million visitors)
  6. Grand Canyon National Park (2.9 million visitors)
  7. Cuyahoga Valley National Park (2.8 million visitors)
  8. Acadia National Park (2.7 million visitors)
  9. Olympic National Park (2.5 million visitors)
  10. Joshua Tree National Park (2.4 million visitors)

Learn more about the Most Visited National Parks.

Least Visited National Parks in 2020

  1. Gates of the Arctic National Park (2,900 visitors)
  2. National Park of American Samoa (4,800 visitors)
  3. Lake Clark National Park (5,000 visitors)
  4. Glacier Bay National Park (5,700 visitors)
  5. Isle Royale National Park (6,500 visitors)
  6. Kobuk Valley National Park (11,200 visitors)
  7. Wrangell – St. Elias National Park (16,700 visitors)
  8. North Cascades National Park (30,900 visitors)
  9. Dry Tortugas National Park (48,500 visitors)
  10. Katmai National Park (51,500 visitors)

Learn more about the Least Visited National Parks.

List of National Park by Creation Date

  • Yellowstone – March 1, 1872
  • Sequoia – September 25, 1890
  • Yosemite – October 1, 1890
  • Mount Rainier – March 2, 1899
  • Crater Lake – May 22, 1902
  • Wind Cave – January 9, 1903
  • Mesa Verde – June 29, 1906
  • Glacier – May 11, 1910
  • Rocky Mountain – January 26, 1915
  • Hawaii Volcanoes – August 1, 1916
  • Lassen Volcanic – August 9, 1916
  • Denali – February 26, 1917
  • Acadia – February 26, 1919
  • Grand Canyon – February 26, 1919
  • Zion – November 19, 1919
  • Hot Springs – March 4, 1921
  • Bryce Canyon – February 25, 1928
  • Grand Teton – February 26, 1929
  • Carlsbad Caverns – May 14, 1930
  • Everglades – May 30, 1934
  • Great Smoky Mountains – June 15, 1934
  • Shenandoah – December 26, 1935
  • Olympic – June 29, 1938
  • Kings Canyon – March 4, 1940
  • Isle Royale – April 3, 1940
  • Mammoth Cave – July 1, 1941
  • Big Bend – June 12, 1944
  • Virgin Islands – August 2, 1956
  • Haleakala – July 1, 1961
  • Petrified Forest – December 9 , 1962
  • Canyonlands – September 12, 1964
  • Guadalupe Mountains – October 15, 1966
  • North Cascades – October 2, 1968
  • Redwoods – October 2, 1968
  • Arches – November 12, 1971
  • Capitol Reef – December 18, 1971
  • Voyageurs – April 8, 1975
  • Badlands – November 10, 1978
  • Theodore Roosevelt – November 10, 1978
  • Channel Islands – March 5, 1980
  • Biscayne – June 28, 1980
  • Gates of the Arctic – December 2, 1980
  • Glacier Bay – December 2, 1980
  • Katmai – December 2, 1980
  • Kenai Fjords – December 2, 1980
  • Kobuk Valley – December 2, 1980
  • Lake Clark – December 2, 1980
  • Wrangell – St. Elias – December 2, 1980
  • Great Basin – October 27, 1986
  • American Samoa – October 31, 1988
  • Dry Tortugas – October 26, 1992
  • Saguaro – October 14, 1994
  • Death Valley – October 31, 1994
  • Joshua Tree – October 31, 1994
  • Black Canyon of the Gunnison – October 21, 1999
  • Cuyahoga Valley – October 11, 2000
  • Congaree – November 10, 2003
  • Great Sand Dunes – September 13, 2004
  • Pinnacles – January 15, 2013
  • Gateway Arch – February 22, 2018
  • Indiana Dunes – February 15, 2019
  • White Sands – December 20, 2019
  • New River Gorge – December 27, 2020

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Frequently Asked Questions About The US National Park Checklist

When will this National Park Checklist be updated?

I try to update this list within 48 hours of the official creation of a National Park and email a new National Park Checklist out. I can’t promise that it will always happen but I try. Usually, I know the park’s elevation is coming and am watching the for the bill to be signed into law. Some times they catch me off guard when some sneaky politician sneaks it into an completely unrelated bill to get it passed.

What will be the next NEW National Park?

I have no idea. Personally, I don’t think Congress should redesignate any existing units as NEW National Parks or create any NEW other NPS units. NPS has been underfunded for 30 plus years and its showing. The infrastructure in many existing parks in inadequate and needs an overhaul but Congress doesn’t care. They like getting to say “Look at me, I love the National Parks. I love them so much I created a new one. Don’t ask about funding or if the existing infrastructure can support a 25-50% increase in visitors. My creation of a new parks shows I care.” If you want to learn more about my thoughts on this click here to read an open letter I wrote when White Sands was elevated to NPS status.

Based on legislation submitted to Congress between 2019 and June 6, 2021, there are three possible candidates for the 64th National Park:

As for the 424th unit of the National Park System, there are at least 8 bills before Congress to create units with various designations. Any one of them could pass or be added to a larger bill to sneak it through Congress. So I’d expect to get 1-3 new units before the end of 2021.

Which state has the most National Parks?

California has the most national parks of any state at 9 National Parks. Alaska has the second most National Parks at 8 National Parks. As well as having the most National Parks, California has the most NPS units at 28. Washington DC is next at 25 followed by Alaska at 23.

What states have no National Parks?

The states with no National Parks are Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Wisconsin. The territories of Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, and Puerto Rico do not have National Parks. The District of Columbia doesn’t have a National Park.

What is the largest National Park in the US?

Wrangell – St. Elias National Park is the largest national park in the United States at 8.32 million acres. That’s slightly larger than Belgium and smaller than Switzerland. Wrangell St. Elias is larger than Maryland, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Connecticut, Delaware, and Rhode Island.

When combined with the 4.85 million acres of Wrangell-St. Elias National Preserve, the combined unit is 13.17 million acres and its the 2nd largest National Park and 12th largest protected area of land in the world

What is the largest National Park in the lower 48 states?

Death Valley National Park is the largest National Park in the contiguous United States. Death Valley National Park is 3.37 million acres in size. That’s slightly smaller than Connecticut but larger than Delaware and Rhode Island.

What is the smallest National Park in the US?

Gateway Arch National Park is the smallest National Park in the US. Gateway Arch is made of 90.9 acres in downtown St. Louis, MO. It is not however the smalless NPS unit. At 0.02 acres, Thaddeus Kosciuszko National Memorial is the smallest NPS unit.

Final Thoughts on this National Parks List

Visiting all 63 National Parks is a wonderful journey and a worthy adventure but don’t get so obsessed with marking parks off your National park Checklist that your forget to stop and enjoy the view.

If you are in need of any gear suggestions check out our gear guides below.

If you are looking for advice on other types of outdoor gear specific guides:

Here are some other National Park gear you might like:

Pin it to Share: United States National Park Checklist (Updated with all 63 National Park)

Are you on a quest to visit all the United States National Parks?  Here is a free National Park Checklist download to help you track your progress.

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Jennifer is a long time national park blogger and the founder of National Park Obsessed. She is a dedicated National Park lover who is working on visiting all 62 US National Parks. She has currently been to 53 of the National Parks. She is dedicated to sharing her knowledge of the Parks with others and helping them learn to love the parks as much as she does.

3 Thoughts on “2021 FREE U.S. National Park Checklist includes the 63 National Parks”

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