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5 Underrated National Parks To Visit In 2023

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Everyone knows about Zion, Yellowstone and the Grand Canyon, the most visited national parks in the United States. Each of these parks welcomes millions of visitors each year for good reason.

They are beautiful parks that boast awe-inspiring natural wonders. Visitors can enjoy spectacular scenery, great hiking, wildlife spotting opportunities, and stunning viewpoints.

However, the United States has over 60 national parks, and not all of them enjoy the same level of popularity.

Flowers in North Cascades National Park

Many of the U.S. national parks are grossly underrated despite having so much to offer. Remote areas such as northern Alaska and American Samoa in the South Pacific make these parks difficult to visit.

But many of the United States’ least-visited national parks are easily accessible. And their underrated status means you can enjoy smaller crowds.

Here are five of our favorite underrated national parks.

Glacier National Park with a creek running through the photo

1. North Cascades National Park, Washington

For breathtaking scenery and glacial vistas, North Cascades National Park is a must.

One of the least-visited national parks in the United States, with fewer than 18,000 visitors a year, those who make the effort are rewarded with pristine wilderness and the largest glacier outside of Alaska. increase.

About three hours from Seattle, this national park is a must-visit for the adventurous. Visitors can go river rafting, horseback riding, and hiking on hundreds of miles of trails.

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Glacial lakes in North Cascades National Park

2. Voyageurs National Park, Minnesota

Did you know you can see the Northern Lights in America?

Indeed, one of the best places to witness this colorful natural phenomenon is Minnesota’s Voyageurs National Park.

In addition, the national park is known for its diverse landscape of forests, wetlands, and Arctic watersheds, where visitors can spot a wide variety of wildlife, from moose to northern leopard frogs and blue salamanders.

Aurora Borealis at Voyageurs National Park

3. Dry Tortugas National Park, Florida

Despite the fact that Florida is one of the most popular destinations in the United States, with over 125 million visitors, Dry Tortugas National Park receives only 80,000 visitors annually.

This is largely due to the park’s remote location on an island 70 miles west of Key West. The national park can only be reached by boat, ferry or seaplane, but it’s worth it.

Once there, enjoy stunning views, explore a 19th-century fort, and spot marine life while snorkeling in the national park’s crystal clear waters.

Aerial view of Dry Tortugas National Park on islands in blue waters

4. Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Texas

The landscape of western Texas is mostly flat and barren, but that changes abruptly when you arrive at Guadalupe Mountains National Park.

This underrated national park is home to Texas’ tallest mountains, unique scenery, and plenty of great hiking trails.

Located less than two hours from El Paso, Texas, this national park receives less than 200,000 visitors annually. However, visitors who come here have some of the best views in Texas.

Mountains of Guadalupe Mountains National Park

5. Great Basin National Park, Nevada

Nearby Utah, Arizona and California are home to many popular national parks that are often forgotten, but this one in Nevada is worth a visit, especially for stargazing enthusiasts.

Great Basin National Park has been named one of the best stargazing destinations in the United States due to its clear, unpolluted night skies.

There are also great hikes and scenic views, from mountains to crystal clear alpine lakes to wildflower fields.

Low-rise wide-angle view from the edge of Lake Sutera towards iconic Wheeler Peak in Nevada's Great Basin National Park, Nevada

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