Outdoor enthusiasts have understandably been disappointed to learn that national and state parks have been closed as a result of the COVID-19 global health pandemic. These parks have been closed in an effort to stop the spread of the deadly virus. You can make this time in quarantine more enjoyable by planning your next trip. Here are five places to vacation once the state parks are open again to the public to enjoy.
While it is undoubtedly remote, a trip to Alaska is worthy of any bucket list travel item. It is well worth your effort to get to Alaska to take in this unparalleled wonder. No trip to Alaska is complete without a visit to Denali State Park. This park offers a myriad of camp sites and cabins so that you can immerse yourself in your surroundings. You will encounter a variety of wildlife, including deer, sheep, and moose. If you visit Alaska during the warmer summer months, do not miss your chance to tour the Birch Lake State Recreation Site, featuring a stunning lake that is ideal for all of your water recreational activities. Conveniently located just outside of Anchorage, Chugach State Park covers more than 495,000 acres. This expansive park offers campsites, the scenic Eagle River for kayaking and rafting, and a vast network of trails for hiking, biking, ATV riding, and more.
The Golden State is rich in outdoor fun, thanks in large part to its wide array of state parks. One especially popular activity is white water rafting in California. With a bevy of tour options and lengths covering a multitude of classes, it is a breeze to find the right white water rafting adventure for your family. The Lower Middle Fork of the American River is perfect for families with young children needing a more gentle rafting experience. For a bigger adrenaline rush, choose a tour on the South Fork of the American River or the Lower Klamath River. Or choose the ultimate thrill with a tour of the North Fork of the American River or the Upper Klamath River.
Over 50 state parks and recreation areas dot the landscape of South Dakota. Located in the famous Black Hills, it is no surprise that visitors flock to Custer State Park for its sweeping views and an abundance of wildlife that call the park home. While touring this national treasure, you will be sharing the space with over 1,000 bison as well as bighorn sheep, elk, and more. Traveling the 18-mile Wildlife Loop Road is an easy way to spot these creatures in the wild. Other notable places to put on your travel itinerary include Hartford Beach State Park and Newton Hills State Park.
The Evergreen State is flush with an abundance of state parks that beautifully exhibit the region’s splendor. From oceanside vistas to towering mountain landscapes, Washington’s state parks offer something for everyone. Located on the southwest tip of the state, Cape Disappointment State Park is anything but a disappointment. This gem delivers magnificent views of the Pacific Ocean along with two classic lighthouses. Or head to Wallace Falls State Park for the chance to hike through the foothills of the Cascade Mountains while gazing at the splendid waterfalls.
Everything is bigger in Texas, including its state park system. With over 90 state parks, there is no shortage of amazing places to spend time in the great outdoors in the Lone Star State. Palo Duro Canyon State Park boasts over 30 miles of hiking and biking trails, providing plenty of recreational opportunities. Dinosaur Valley State Park is a perfect destination for the budding geologist in your family. When the water of the Paluxy River is low, visitors can even spot dinosaur imprints. Or check out Longhorn Cavern State Park with its distinctive caverns.
You are not alone if you are patiently waiting for the parks to re-open so that you can get out there and immerse yourself in the beauty of Mother Nature once again. Make the most out of this downtime at home by planning your next epic state park vacation by learning more about these five destinations.