There is nothing like the feeling of spending time outdoors and exploring new areas. As we have been traveling less abroad, we can take advantage of some of the most beautiful places on the planet right here in the United States. Many people have been travelling to see national parks and because of that some parks have become very busy. We’ve picked our top 5 beautiful national parks that are some of the least-visited, but most beautiful places so you can start planning your next national parks get-away.
Alaska is the Place to Experience Several Facets of Nature
In Southern Alaska, Katmai National Park and Preserve is home to the world’s largest population of Alaskan brown bears. Now before you get scared of imagining gigantic bears feeding on salmon-rich diet, consider that you get to view the brown bear fest at Brooks Camp, from a safe distance and from one of the park buses that take you through the Valley of Ten Thousand Smokes. An additional site to look out for here is the remains of smoking fumaroles. More than a century ago when they erupted, they left creeks and carved canyons into the ash which are now available for visitors as a peek into the layers underneath the earth’s surface.
Alaska Has Even More Potential to Delight Your Wanderlust
Gates of the Arctic is another national park and it’s big enough in size to leave Belgium behind. Situated entirely north of the Arctic Circle, this park is for those who cannot have enough ice and snow. Not only this but the terrain and minimal road development of the park means that it is a place nature designed only for the truly adventurous travelers.
With gigantic spectacular glaciers and Brooks Range straddling the park from East to West along the Continental Divide this is the place to watch the water run-off to the northern side of the Arctic Ocean. The best way to enjoy this family trip would be to start from the park headquarters in Fairbanks and then drive to the ranger station at the south of the park.
Colorado Has Got You Covered If You Prefer Mountains Over Ice
Gunnison National Park has the steepest canyon in North America where you can see the Gunnison River plunging at more than 10 meters per mile through this narrow national park. For comparison, the Colorado River has an average speed of 2.3 meters per mile through the Grand Canyon.
The place is called Black Canyon and its namethat is derived from thethe fact that only limited sunlight, and they are made even darker by the black Precambrian gneiss and schist rock of the walls of the canyon. The site is said to be 1.7 billion years old and has become extremely hard and therefore excellent for rock climbing. However, that is a feat still better left to experts. For your family trip and sight-seeing go to the easier three miles trail hike on the north rim, known as Exclamation Point.
Arizona is Your Pick if it’s The Heat You Seek
Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument is a beautiful slice of the Sonoran desert. This is also the only place in the country, if not the world, where the stunning and rare organ pipe cactus grows wild. An interesting thing for you to note would be that this cactus is primarily pollinated by bats and it has the heft and presence of the iconic saguaro cactus, but with many more arms snaking upwards from its central trunk.
In the upcoming spring months, there will also be other types of cacti giving the whole area a beautiful and vibrant colorful view. If you wish to work up your legs too after this quarantine time, then cycle from the 21 miles fromling Ajo Mountain drive to the Arch Canyon trailhead which will take you to a 1.2 mile round trip trail with a 25 meter wide natural arch view.
Florida Will Make an Entrance Here Too
Dry Tortugas National Park, quite opposite to its name, is the perfect place for you if your family has some avid swimmers. The name, however, comes from the fact that this park has an abundance of turtles as well as a lack of potable surface water.
Despite being one of the most aesthetically pleasant and spiritually healing destinations in the country, the number of visitors is not very high, primarily owing to the fact that this park is only accessible by boats. Right in the center of this turtle dominated park, is the massive unfinished remains of the glorious Fort Jefferson. It is the largest masonry building in the western hemisphere and was built around the late 1800s.
On top of it all, if you get the chance to visit this place in April or May, you will be able to spot 100, or even more, species of birds flying over Dry Tortuga and landing on the island to rest for a while. If you have the need for that extra kick of history along with sight-seeing then it might interest you that this fort had also been used as a prison as well as medical quarantine facility before being turned into a National Monument in 1935 and then into a national park later in 1992. Fitting the times, isn’t it?