USA National Parks Travel Guide

Where to go and what to do in America's National Parks

Visit America’s National Parks

Yosemite & California National Parks

In California, the popular Yosemite, Kings Canyon, Death Valley and Sequoia National Park’s are all easily explored from San Francisco, Los Angeles and Las Vegas. Each of these spectacular parks offers its own unique experience and due to their close proximity to each other, can be combined into one holiday.

Utah’s National Parks

To the east of California, in Utah, lay the dramatic sandstone vistas of Zion, Bryce Canyon and Arches National Parks, plus nearby Monument Valley. These landscapes have been carved out over millions of years to create an astounding backdrop of canyons, cliffs, arches and bridges. Utah’s magnificent parks are best visited using Las Vegas and Salt Lake City as a gateway and all can be included in a wonderful self drive or motorhome holiday.

Yellowstone & North West National Parks

Best seen from the cities of Seattle and Portland in the north-west, the mountainous National Parks of Mount Rainer, Olympic, Glacier and Grand Teton offer a completely different experience to the desert scenery found in Utah. Here you’ll find snow-capped peaks, lush green forests and crystal clear lakes filled with ice cold glacier water.

Also in the north-west lays America’s very first National Park, Yellowstone. This volcanic hotspot contains dramatic canyons, alpine rivers, verdant forests, hot springs and gushing geysers. It’s also home to hundreds of animal species, including bison, 5,000 of which roam free around the park.

National Park Highlights

  • Watch Yellowstone’s Old Faithful Geyser erupt
  • Arches’ 2,000 natural sandstone formations
  • Bryce Canyon’s breathtaking Hoodoos
  • Monument Valley’s 17-mile Valley Drive
  • Stand under Sequoia’s ‘General Sherman’
  • Witness Death Valley’s extreme landscape
  • Hike the Narrows of Zion National Park
  • Hike or climb in Mount Rainier National Park
  • Spot Wildlife in Olympic National Park
  • Explore Grand Teton’s two hundred miles of trails
  • Look for Glacier National Park’s ‘Hidden Lake’

Getting Around

America is the land of the motor vehicle and all these USA National Parks are accessible by car and motorhome. Attractions are well signed and usually with ample parking and excellent visitor centres – see our National Park fly drives or hire a motorhome.

If you want to explore the Western USA National Parks without driving, check out our California and West Coast USA tours.

Discover America's National Parks

Take to the open road or join an insightful guided tour - there's plenty of ways to discover America's national parks.

Western USA’s Top 15 National Parks

America’s fabulous National Parks contain spectacular landscapes unchanged in hundreds of years. From the forest-clad peaks and valleys of the Sierra Nevada to the scorched red desert Monument Valley, each park will inspire you with its untouched beauty.

  • Yosemite – forest-clad peaks and plunging valleys – head for Yosemite Falls, Bridal Veil Falls and the mighty El Capitan. Airports: LA, San Francisco, Las Vegas
  • Monument Valley – imposing rock formations rising out of a flat, red desert landscape. Head for the Navajo Tribal Park. Airports: Phoenix, Salt Lake City
  • Kings Canyon – ribbon-like waterfalls tumbling over granite escarpments. Head for Cedar Grove and Zumwalt Trail. Airports: Los Angeles, San Francisco
  • Death Valley – eerie landscape of windswept dunes and hidden canyons. Head for the Badwater, the lowest point in North America. Airports: Las Vegas
  • Sequoia – towering forests of giant sequoia trees. Head for General Sherman Tree and Moro Rock for 360 degree views. Airports: Los Angeles, San Francisco
  • Grand Canyon – America’s largest and most spectacular natural wonder Head for the viewing points on North or South Rim. Airports: Las Vegas
  • Zion – rugged scenery and lush vegetation. Head for Scenic Drive or Angels Landing for amazing views. Airports: Las Vegas, San Francisco
  • Bryce Canyon – stunning canyon views and rock formations Head for Inspiration Point and the mysterious ‘hoodoos‘. Airports: Salt Lake City, Las Vegas
  • Arches – strange wind carved natural wonders. Head to Balanced Rock, Devils Garden and Fiery Furnace. Airport: Salt Lake City
  • Canyonland – barren red wilderness of rocky outcrops and blind canyons. Head to the Mesa Arch or Grand View Point. Airport: Salt Lake City
  • Yellowstone – America’s oldest National Park with stunning scenery, unique wildlife and gushing geysers. Head to the ‘Old Faithful’. Airport: Salt Lake City
  • Mount Rainer – snow-capped peaks rising from ancient forests. Head for the Grove of the Patriarchs. Airport: Seattle
  • Olympia – wilderness trails through lush, temperate rainforest. Head for the Ruby Beach on the Pacific shoreline. Airport: Seattle
  • Glacier – remote and magnificent with awesome mountain scenery. Head for Avalanche Lake for views a the lake and waterfalls. Airport: Seattle
  • Grant Teton – mountainous landscape and alpine lakes. Head for the Jenny Lake Trail for a flat path along the base of the mountains. Airport: Salt Lake City
Plan your holiday

Discover the West of America

From well-known cities and attractions to lesser known states and regions, there's so much to see in West USA.

Tailor Made USA Holidays

Discover America your way. Combine a self drive with a city stay or an escorted tour with a cruise.

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Coronavirus – Notice for Customers

We are currently contacting all customers whose holiday may be affected by the current travel restrictions in place due to the coronavirus (Covid-19) outbreak.

For the latest Government advice regarding travel to any particular country please visit the Gov.uk website: https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice