Our national parks are among the most underrated vacation destinations. Miles away from the city’s thick, polluted air were hundreds of thousands of square acres designated as national parks. These parks are free to enter and explore and offer some of the most scenic views this country has to offer. If you’re already planning a spring break vacation, you should check out these five national parks. Each offers their own beauty and unique qualities that will provide visitors with a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
This park is beautiful, gigantic and undisturbed. Walking through the park is like stepping into a new world. Walking through the forest gives a sense of peace and tranquility as the huge trees provide a shelter and silence effect for those who walk between them. The fresh air and streaks of sunlight breaking through the thick layer of trees will really create a sense of calm. If you hate tree huggers, this park might still be for you – during early spring, gray whales migrate along the coast and rest, making for a beautiful sight few have ever experienced.
2. Zion National Park
An absolute blast. It has huge canyons that descend into a beautiful forest. This park looks like something out of a movie. While spring is the rainy season, it is also the season to see most of the trees and flowers in full bloom. This park also has tons of wildlife – 75 species of mammals, 300 species of birds, and 900 native plant species. For an experience like no other, Zion National Park is the way to go.
3. Yosemite National Park
One of the most famous national parks. It is characterized by everything! There is so much diversity in the landscape – soaring white-topped peaks, warm plains covered with golden lawns, as well as jutting and jagged cliffs that end where huge valleys and lakes begin. It has one of the most plant and animal diversity found anywhere in the US. While often crowded, that inconvenience is largely overshadowed by the sheer beauty of the surrounding nature.
4. Yellowstone National Park
Another very popular national park. Unthinkable in size, this park is a glimpse into the past. It was the first national park ever, and as a result is largely untouched by human development and far removed from the pollution of major cities. This park is covered with huge mountains, dense forests and vast plains crisscrossed by bison and elk. Blue lakes are fed by beautiful waterfalls. It is also home to the largest number of natural geysers in the world.
5. Glacier National Park
It is described by many as the most beautiful national park. As the name implies, this park was covered by 25 active glaciers, as well as 700 pristine lakes and 150 waterfalls. The lakes remain cold all year round and rarely rise above 50 degrees. Few plants or plankton survive at that temperature and as a result most lakes are crystal clear.
Pictured here is Flat Head Lake in Glacier National Park. It is more than 100 feet deep, but doesn’t look like it because of the clear water.
National parks are treasures to be preserved and admired. For a Spring Break trip, they are a great and inexpensive alternative to a week of partying across the country. Driving to the parks offers an amazing experience complete with scenic views that create emotions that cannot be experienced by looking at pictures.