Getting the Great Outdoors for Free: National Park Week

Choose from 394 parks across the U.S. to visit for free

Yosemite Park


Don’t say the National Park Service never did anything for you. For one week, National Park Week (April 16 – 24), all 394 of the United States’ national parks are opening their doors to visitors without charging a dime. Earth Day, April 22nd, just happens to fall during the week, giving you even more of an excuse to head out and enjoy the great outdoors.

If nature and bugs and sunshine aren’t your thing, you'll be pleased to remember that the National Park Service maintains such non-park landmarks as Philly’s Independence Hall and the Statue of Liberty. If heading into the great outdoors seems like just what the doctor ordered, though, you have a slew of parks to choose from including South Dakota’s Badlands, Yosemite in California, and the Appalachian National Trail. (Photo courtesy of Flickr/Phil Photostream)

If you go to the National Park Service’s (surprisingly well-designed) website, you can pick and choose parks close to you or by activity. Feel like horseback riding next week (for free)? Go to the Blue Ridge Parkway in North Carolina and Virginia. Is (free) hunting your thing? Head to Cumberland Island in Georgia. All in all, National Park Week leaves you with very few excuses to stay inside.

Other events happening across the country during National Park Week include Volunteer Day on April 16 and Junior Ranger Day on April 23 (which will include some great events for little ones). (Photo courtesy of Flickr/rskoon)

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