15 most-visited national parks in USA 2023

By a significant margin, the Great Smoky Mountains remains the most frequented national park in the United States.

Newly released data from the National Park Service reveals that approximately 13 million individuals explored this park, which spans across North Carolina and Tennessee, during the past year. While this figure is slightly lower than the 14.1 million visitors in 2021, it still surpasses the attendance at all of the other 62 national parks by a substantial margin.

Superintendent Cassius Cash conveyed in a press release, “The 2022 visitation report reaffirms what we have long understood – Great Smoky Mountains National Park holds its special status for countless visitors.” He further noted, “We are contemplating the implications of the park’s average visitation over the last decade as we plan for the upcoming ten years, ensuring that we safeguard both the quality of the visitor experience and the park’s valuable resources.”


Great Smoky Mountains remains America's most visited national park by a long shot.

Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Located on the border of North Carolina and Tennessee, this park’s lush forests and misty mountains make it a haven for outdoor enthusiasts. The nearby city of Gatlinburg, TN, serves as a gateway. Visitors can also explore Cherokee, NC, and the Blue Ridge Parkway.

Grand Canyon National Park

Arizona’s iconic Grand Canyon offers awe-inspiring vistas carved by the Colorado River. Nearby, Flagstaff provides access, while Sedona’s red rock formations and Petrified Forest National Park’s ancient trees offer further exploration.

Zion National Park

Utah’s Zion boasts towering red cliffs and thrilling hikes in Zion Canyon. Springdale is the gateway town, offering access to the park’s wonders. Bryce Canyon’s unique hoodoos and St. George’s desert landscapes are nearby.

Rocky Mountain National Park

Colorado’s Rocky Mountain Park showcases alpine lakes and wildlife. Estes Park and Grand Lake serve as gateways. Denver, with its urban charm, and Boulder, nestled in the foothills, are close by.

Acadia National Park

Maine’s Acadia features rocky shores and Cadillac Mountain. Bar Harbor provides access, while Portland’s coastal vibes and the charming town of Camden are not far away

Yosemite National Park

California’s Yosemite impresses with waterfalls and giant sequoias. Nearby, Fresno offers access, while Mammoth Lakes’ outdoor activities and Sequoia National Park’s massive trees are within reach.

Yellowstone National Park

Iconic geysers and hot springs define Wyoming’s Yellowstone. Gateway towns like West Yellowstone and Cody provide access. Grand Teton’s towering peaks and Jackson Hole’s outdoor recreation are nearby.

Joshua Tree National Park

Southern California’s Joshua Tree showcases desert landscapes and unique rock formations. Joshua Tree and Twentynine Palms offer access. Palm Springs’ resort vibes and Anza-Borrego Desert State Park’s wildflowers are close.

Cuyahoga Valley National Park

Ohio’s Cuyahoga Valley boasts forests and waterfalls near Cleveland. Akron provides access, while Amish Country’s charm and the cultural hub of Cleveland are nearby.

Glacier National Park

Montana’s Glacier features pristine lakes and glaciers. Gateway towns include West Glacier and Whitefish. Flathead Lake’s beauty and Waterton Lakes National Park across the border in Canada are nearby.

Indiana Dunes National Park

Indiana’s dunes meet Lake Michigan’s shores. Nearby, the city of Gary offers access. Chicago’s urban delights and the charming lakeside town of New Buffalo are close.

Grand Teton National Park

Wyoming’s Grand Teton boasts dramatic peaks and wildlife. Jackson serves as a gateway, and the charming town of Dubois and the Wind River Range’s hiking opportunities are nearby.

Hot Springs National Park

Arkansas’ Hot Springs offers thermal waters and historic bathhouses. The city of Hot Springs provides access, while Little Rock’s cultural attractions and Ouachita National Forest’s beauty are nearby.

Olympic National Park

Washington’s Olympic features rainforests and coastline. Port Angeles is a gateway, while Seattle’s urban scene and Mount Rainier National Park’s iconic volcano are not far away.

Bryce Canyon National Park

Utah’s Bryce Canyon showcases intricate hoodoos. Gateway towns include Bryce Canyon City and Tropic. Zion’s stunning cliffs and Capitol Reef National Park’s rugged landscapes are nearby.

FAQs about National Parks in the USA

1. What is a national park?

A national park is a designated area of natural, historical, or cultural significance protected and managed by the U.S. National Park Service. These areas are preserved for future generations to enjoy and explore.

2. How many national parks are there in the USA?

As of the most recent data, there are 63 national parks in the United States. These parks vary in size, ecosystems, and attractions.

3. What can I do in a national park?

National parks offer a wide range of activities such as hiking, camping, wildlife viewing, photography, birdwatching, rock climbing, kayaking, and stargazing. Each park offers unique opportunities based on its landscapes and features.

4. How do I plan a visit to a national park?

Research the park you’re interested in to learn about its attractions, weather, and regulations. Check the National Park Service website for park information, maps, and alerts. Make camping or lodging reservations in advance if needed.

5. Do I need to pay an entrance fee?

Most national parks charge an entrance fee, which provides access to the park for a specified period. However, there are fee-free days throughout the year. Some parks also offer annual passes for unlimited visits.

6. Are pets allowed in national parks?

Pets are generally allowed in national parks, but there are specific rules and restrictions to protect both wildlife and visitors. Always keep your pet on a leash, clean up after them, and adhere to park guidelines.

7. Can I camp in a USA national park?

Yes, many USA national parks offer camping facilities. There are different types of campsites, including developed campgrounds, backcountry camping, and RV camping. Reservations may be required for popular sites.

8. Are there accommodations within national parks?

Many national parks have lodges, cabins, and hotels operated by the National Park Service or concessionaires. These accommodations can vary in terms of amenities and availability.

9. What's the best time to visit a national park?

The best time to visit depends on the park and your interests. Generally, spring and fall offer mild weather and fewer crowds. Summer is popular but can be crowded. Winter offers unique experiences in some parks.

10. How are national parks preserved for future generations?

National parks in USA are protected through various conservation efforts. The National Park Service manages and maintains these areas while focusing on preserving their natural, cultural, and historical resources for generations to come.

11. Are there volunteer opportunities in national parks?

Yes, many American national parks offer volunteer programs for individuals and groups interested in contributing to park conservation and education efforts. These opportunities can range from trail maintenance to educational programs.

12. Can I get a job in a national park?

Yes, the US National Park Service employs a wide range of professionals, from rangers and biologists to administrative staff and law enforcement officers. Job openings are posted on the USAJOBS website.

13. Are there educational programs for kids in national parks?

Yes, most national parks in America offer educational programs for kids, including Junior Ranger programs. These programs engage young visitors in learning about the park’s natural and cultural heritage.

14. Can I visit multiple national parks in one trip?

Absolutely! Many travelers plan road trips or itineraries that include visits to multiple national parks, especially those located within close proximity to one another.

15. How can I support national parks?

You can support national parks by visiting, volunteering, donating to park foundations, purchasing annual passes, and practicing Leave No Trace principles to minimize your impact on these precious landscapes.

16. What is the most visited US national park?

The most visited US national park is the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

17. सबसे ज्यादा देखा जाने वाला यूएस नेशनल पार्क कौन सा है?

सबसे ज्यादा देखा जाने वाला यूएस नेशनल पार्क ग्रेट स्मोकी माउंटेंस नेशनल पार्क है।

18. What are the top 5 states with the most national parks?

सबसे ज्यादा नेशनल पार्क्स वाले पांच राज्य हैं: कैलिफोर्निया, अलास्का, यूटा, कोलोराडो, और अरिजोना।

19. What are the most famous parks in the US?

Some of the most famous parks in the US include Yellowstone National Park, Grand Canyon National Park, Yosemite National Park, Zion National Park, and Rocky Mountain National Park.

कुछ प्रमुख यूएस नेशनल पार्क्स में येलोस्टोन नेशनल पार्क, ग्रैंड कैन्यन नेशनल पार्क, योसेमाइट नेशनल पार्क, जायन नेशनल पार्क, और रॉकी माउंटेन नेशनल पार्क शामिल हैं।

Conclusion: These remarkable national parks offer a diverse range of natural wonders and outdoor experiences, often with charming nearby cities and attractions that enhance the overall adventure.