I never think, when I start itching to travel again, to just seek out the nearest national park. That’s Shenandoah for me, and it’s only about an hour and a half away from my home in DC. For people living out West, there are a ton more options: Less than 10 of the country’s 59 parks are east of the Mississippi, with huge numbers of them in California, Utah, Arizona, and Alaska.
And they’re all truly spectacular. While there are obviously the popular destinations of Yellowstone, Yosemite, and the Grand Canyon, there are at the same time less visited ones, particularly in the more remote parts of Utah and Alaska, that are nonetheless mindblowingly awesome. Here are pictures from each of the 59 designated national parks, along with their locations. You know, in case you’re itching to travel a bit.
This post was originally published on May 5, 2014.