50 underrated state parks across the US that everyone should visit in their lifetime



Slide 1 of 51: 
 Many state parks across the US offer breathtaking views,
 diverse wildlife, and a wide range of recreational activities. 
 You can catch a glimpse of stunning waterfalls at Fall Creek
 Falls State Park in Tennessee. 
 Animal
 lovers can see the hundreds of manatees that flock to Florida's
 Blue Spring State Park each winter. 
 Visit
 Insider's homepage for more stories. 
 National
 parks may boast massive networks of hiking trails and
 breathtaking views, but they also tend to come packed with
 tourists. However, state parks like Georgia's Cloudland Canyon or
 Hocking Hills in Ohio have just as many activities to offer
 without the overwhelming crowds. 
 Whether it's to see the manatees at Florida's Blue Spring State
 Park or to sandboard down the dunes at Bruneau Dunes in Idaho,
 here are the US state parks everyone
 should visit in their lifetime.
Slide 2 of 51: 
 Located in northeast Alabama, Cathedral
 Caverns State Park is named for its massive cathedral-like
 cave. The park welcomes guests on tours of the cave daily, where
 you'll catch a glimpse of one of the world's largest stalagmites.
Slide 3 of 51: 
 For the especially adventurous, Denali State
 Park in Alaska offers spectacular views of the Alaskan Range
 and untouched wilderness. Experienced hikers can even climb the
 Denali Mountain, which is the highest peak in North America.
Slide 4 of 51: 
 With mesmerizing Sedona red rock formations, lush meadows, and a
 babbling creek, guests can enjoy a diverse environment at
 Red Rock State
 Park in Arizona. There's even a 15-mile trail connecting Red
 Rock State Park to Dead Horse Ranch State Park that visitors can
 use to hike, ride horses, or bike.
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Slide 5 of 51: 
 The Civilian Conservation Corps used mostly natural materials in
 the 1930s to build the wood and stone structures found in Devil's
 Den State Park. The park still maintains its original cabins,
 which you
 can reserve a spot in today. 
 Devil's Den also features a rock dam, as well as trails fit for
 hiking, mountain biking, and horseback riding.
Slide 6 of 51: 
 California's Crystal Cove State
 Park boasts one of the last remaining natural seashores in
 Orange County. Take a dip in the Pacific Ocean, explore tide
 pools at low tide, or hike through the mountainous backcountry at
 this diverse park.
Slide 7 of 51: 
 State
 Forest State Park is home to sprawling forests, jagged peaks,
 and over 600 moose, which can be spotted year-round. This
 Colorado park also offers a variety of snow activities including
 skiing, snowshoeing, and snowboarding.
Slide 8 of 51: 
 This Connecticut park is centered around cascading waterfalls
 that lead to the Housatonic River. The best time to visit 
 Kent Falls State Park is right after a rainstorm or as snow
 is melting in the spring, which causes the waterfalls to appear
 especially dramatic.
Slide 9 of 51: 
 You can take a step back in time to learn about the Civil War at
 Fort
 Delaware State Park. Reenactors dressed in period clothing
 help guests understand what life was like in 1864.
 You may even spot a ghost while you're there as this Delaware
 park was featured on "Ghost Hunters" for 
 its paranormal activity.
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Slide 10 of 51: 
 During the winter months, 
 Blue Spring State Park in Florida welcomes hundreds of
 manatees to its warm, natural springs. With clear water and a
 boardwalk surrounding the springs, visitors can easily see these
 gentle marine mammals.
Slide 11 of 51: 
 Cloudland
 Canyon State Park offers a variety of interesting sights to
 enjoy. From deep canyons and waterfalls to sandstone cliffs, you
 won't run out of trails to hike or paths to bike at this Georgia
 park.
Slide 12 of 51: 
 Located on the island of Maui in Hawaii, Waiʻānapanapa
 State Park is famous for its black sand beach. Although
 tourists flock to the park for this reason, you'll want to be
 sure to check out its native hala forest, deep caves, and
 volcanic coastline while you're there.
Slide 13 of 51: 
 Bruneau
 Dunes State Park in Idaho is home to the tallest
 single-structured sand dune in North America. While you can
 simply hike through the park, daring visitors are encouraged to
 rent a sandboard.
Slide 14 of 51: 
 With 13 miles of hiking trails that take visitors through
 moss-covered canyons, plunging waterfalls, and sandstone bluffs,
 the Starved
 Rock State Park in Illinois is beautiful and full of history.
 Native American tribes called this area home as far back as 8,000
 BC.
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Slide 15 of 51: 
 The Chain O'
 Lakes State Park in Indiana is perfect for avid boaters. With
 nine lakes connecting to create a chain, there are plenty of
 opportunities for fishing, canoeing, and other water activities.
Slide 16 of 51: 
 A limestone dam welcomes guests to 
 Beed's Lake State Park in Iowa. The dam was originally built
 by the Civilian Conservation Corps so that water could be stored
 for running a mill but has since become a popular tourist
 destination. A two-mile trail leads visitors to the base of the
 dam where they can enjoy a refreshing mist of water.
Slide 17 of 51: 
 The first state park in Kansas, Kanopolis
 State Park, is full of caves, hills, and sandstone bluffs. In
 one of the caves, you can even catch a glimpse of carvings from
 early pioneers who used the structure for shelter. 
 The park offers more than 30 miles of trails made for hiking,
 mountain biking, or horseback riding.
Slide 18 of 51: 
 Dubbed the "Niagara of the South," Cumberland
 Falls State Resort Park in Kentucky is home to a
 125-foot-wide waterfall that creates a moonbow at night. During
 full moons, the falls create a stunning rainbow from the light of
 the moon, a phenomenon that doesn't occur anywhere else in the
 Western Hemisphere.
Slide 19 of 51: 
 Situated on Lake Pontchartrain in Louisiana, 
 Fontainebleau State Park contains the ruins of an abandoned
 sugar mill that was built in 1829. After exploring the history of
 the park, guests can enjoy sunbathing on the beach, birdwatching
 on the bayou, and hiking one of the scenic trails.
Slide 20 of 51: 
 The 
 Quoddy Head State Park is located on the coast of Maine and
 boasts a bright red-and-white-striped lighthouse. Commissioned by
 President Thomas Jefferson and built in 1808, you can still climb
 the lighthouse today to take in the spectacular views and spot
 migrating whales.
Slide 21 of 51: 
 Beachgoers flock to 
 Assateague State Park in Maryland to relax by the Atlantic
 Ocean, but the real draw is the nearly 100 wild ponies who call
 the park home. Although visitors may be tempted to approach the
 feral horses, park officials 
 warn against touching or feeding the animals.
Slide 22 of 51: 
 You can visit the longest single-drop waterfall in Massachusetts
 at the Bash
 Bish Falls State Park. Guests are encouraged to start hiking
 from the Upper Falls in order to take in the beauty of it all,
 but you'll want to be careful as it's a steep descent.
Slide 23 of 51: 
 With more than 90 miles of trails, 
 Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park is Michigan's
 largest state park. Check out the Summit Peak observation tower
 for stunning views of Lake Superior, lush forests, and streaming
 rivers.
Slide 24 of 51: 
 With less than 65,000 acres of tallgrass prairie remaining in the
 United States, Prairie
 State Park in Missouri offers a glimpse of this vanishing
 ecosystem. The park boasts more than 150 different kinds of
 birds, 500 plant species, and much more unique wildlife.
Slide 25 of 51: 
 As part of the Minnesota Bison Conservation, 
 Minneopa State Park is home to a number of bison that are
 free to roam 331 acres. Visitors hoping to spot the animals are
 free to drive through the range or spot them from the Seppmann
 Mill overlook. You can also walk the trails in Minneopa State
 Park to view its stunning waterfalls.
Slide 26 of 51: 
 Situated along the Pearl River, 
 LeFleur's Bluff State Park provides an oasis from the urban
 city. Guests can camp, fish, and even golf at this lush park in
 the heart of Jackson, Mississippi.
Slide 27 of 51: 
 As the former home of prehistoric hunters, Pictograph Cave State
 Park in Montana features cave drawings that date back over
 2,000 years. There is a walking loop that connects the three main
 caves, so visitors can peek at these ancient pieces of art.
Slide 28 of 51: 
 This rocky Nebraskan park is home to a diverse set of animals
 that aren't typically seen in other places in the United States.
 Visitors to the Wildcat Hills State
 Recreation Area can spot bighorn sheep, mule deer, and
 bobcats, among other creatures.
Slide 29 of 51: 
 The draw to Valley of Fire State
 Park in Nevada is its 40,000 acres of bright red sandstone
 outcrops that date back to the Jurassic period. Many of the
 trails take guests through the sandstone and allow hikers to see
 petroglyphs that were carved into the rocks more than 2,000 years
 ago.
Slide 30 of 51: 
 The 
 aerial tramway at 
 Franconia Notch State Park in New Hampshire takes visitors up
 4,080 feet to the summit of Cannon Mountain. When at the summit
 on a clear day, visitors can see the mountains of New Hampshire,
 Maine, Vermont, Canada, and New York.
 During your visit to Franconia Notch State Park, you can also
 swim in Echo Lake, go fly fishing at Profile Lake, rock climb,
 bike, and much more.
Slide 31 of 51: 
 Located in northern New Jersey, Liberty
 State Park offers views of the New York City skyline, Statue
 of Liberty, and Ellis Island. During your visit, be sure to take
 advantage of the range of recreational activities, which include
 kayaking, biking, rollerblading, and more.
Slide 32 of 51: 
 City
 of Rocks State Park in New Mexico is full of volcanic rock
 formations that reach as high as 40 feet. Land erosion over time
 created the formations which are separated by paths resembling
 city streets. 
 The park offers hiking trails, campsites, mountain biking, and
 more recreational activities.
Slide 33 of 51: 
 New York is home to the iconic Niagara Falls State
 Park, which is also the oldest state park in the United
 States. Established in 1885, visitors flock to the park each year
 to catch a glimpse of all three falls that make up the majestic
 Niagara Falls.
Slide 34 of 51: 
 Fort
 Macon State Park in North Carolina offers the amenities of a
 coastal beach park with a dose of American history. After taking
 a tour of the Civil War-era fort, guests can go fishing on the
 inlet or take a dip in the Atlantic Ocean.
Slide 35 of 51: 
 Offering sweeping views of the North Dakota badlands, much of the
 rugged Little
 Missouri State Park is only accessible to hikers and
 horseback riders. With 45 miles of trails, horse corrals, and hay
 for purchase, this park is perfect for equestrians.
Slide 36 of 51: 
 Hocking
 Hills State Park in Ohio has a multitude of activities on top
 of its natural beauty. Visitors can enjoy archery, disc golf, and
 fishing, in addition to hiking through caves, up waterfalls, and
 under tree-shaded gorges.
Slide 37 of 51: 
 A famous hideout for outlaws Jesse James and Belle Starr,
 Robbers Cave
 State Park in Oklahoma is now an outdoor lover's dream. With
 sandstone cliffs perfect for climbers and large lakes for trout
 fishing, guests have many options for experiences.
Slide 38 of 51: 
 Located just 45 minutes outside of Portland, Oregon, 
 Milo McIver State Park is situated on the Clackamas River,
 allowing visitors to kayak, canoe, or visit the Clackamas Fish
 Hatchery. In addition to river activities, there's a 27-hole disc
 golf course for those seeking unique fun.
Slide 39 of 51: 
 Given its remote location on untouched land in Pennsylvania, 
 Cherry Springs State Park is known for its uninhibited views
 of the night sky. The clear skies allow astronomy enthusiasts to
 check out the Milky Way and planets from its overnight Astronomy
 Field or short-term Night Sky Public Viewing Area.
Slide 40 of 51: 
 Beavertail
 State Park in Rhode Island offers a variety of marine life
 education programs for the whole family. With an aquarium and
 coastline location, the park allows visitors to take a peek into
 the plants and critters that call the coast home.
Slide 41 of 51: 
 With streams, mountains, and waterfalls, the natural beauty of
 Table Rock
 State Park in South Carolina shines. Hiking trails take
 guests to the top of the Pinnacle and Table Rock mountains for
 sweeping views.
Slide 42 of 51: 
 Across its 71,000 acres, Custer State
 Park in South Dakota welcomes guests with its abundance of
 activities, diverse wildlife, and breathtaking scenic views.
 Visitors can hike, rock climb, or swim, all while catching a
 glimpse of wild animals like bison or elk.
Slide 43 of 51: 
 While guests initially flock to Fall Creek Falls State Park in
 Tennessee for the waterfalls, it's the unique activities that
 keep them coming back. In addition to classics like hiking and
 biking, the park also has a full golf course and a challenging
 ropes course in the treetops.
Slide 44 of 51: 
 The second-largest canyon in the United States is located in
 Palo Duro
 Canyon State Park in Texas. For those looking for an
 overnight adventure, visitors can stay in cabins located on both
 the canyon rim and floor.
Slide 45 of 51: 
 Despite its name, Dead Horse Point
 State Park in Utah used to welcome cowboys herding wild
 mustangs in the 1800s. Today, visitors can enjoy the desert
 landscape from the top of sandstone cliffs.
Slide 46 of 51: 
 After President Thomas Jefferson outlawed American trade with
 Canada, many people in Vermont continued illegally trading by
 smuggling goods through the notch found in what is known today as
 Smugglers'
 Notch State Park.
 The park now welcomes hikers, rock climbers, ice climbers, and
 cave explorers to this lush and historic area.
Slide 47 of 51: 
 Named to commemorate the first European settlers' landing in
 North America, First
 Landing State Park in Virginia is a beach-goers' paradise.
 With access to both the Atlantic Ocean and the Chesapeake Bay,
 this park offers calm waters, uncrowded beaches, and easy
 boardwalk access.
 Guests looking to escape the busy pace of Virginia Beach can also
 stay overnight in a cabin.
Slide 48 of 51: 
 Cape
 Disappointment State Park in Washington is anything but a
 disappointment. Located on the Pacific Ocean, this park contains
 two lighthouses, eight miles of hiking trails, and an
 amphitheater for entertainment.
Slide 49 of 51: 
 The amber-colored water of the Blackwater
 Falls State Park waterfall in West Virginia is the main
 attraction for this park. Guests can view the waterfall from
 various steps and landings that are accessible year-round.
Slide 50 of 51: 
 Lakeshore State
 Park is located in the heart of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on the
 shore of Lake Michigan. With walking and biking trails
 throughout, the park offers a green oasis to those caught up in
 city life.
Slide 51 of 51: 
 Named for its natural hot springs, Hot
 Springs State Park in Wyoming has a free bathhouse where
 visitors can enjoy a therapeutic dip in water that remains at 104
 degrees Fahrenheit.
 Adventure seekers can also hike, boat, and view the park's herd
 of bison.
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 should visit to escape crowds 
 The
 best-kept secret tourist spot in every state

National
parks may boast massive networks of hiking trails and
breathtaking views, but they also tend to come packed with
tourists. However, state parks like Georgia’s Cloudland Canyon or
Hocking Hills in Ohio have just as many activities to offer
without the overwhelming crowds.

Whether it’s to see the manatees at Florida’s Blue Spring State
Park or to sandboard down the dunes at Bruneau Dunes in Idaho,
here are the US state parks everyone
should visit in their lifetime.

Explore a giant cave when you visit Alabama’s Cathedral Caverns State Park.

Located in northeast Alabama, Cathedral
Caverns State Park is named for its massive cathedral-like
cave. The park welcomes guests on tours of the cave daily, where
you’ll catch a glimpse of one of the world’s largest stalagmites.

Denali State Park in Alaska contains the highest peak in North America.

For the especially adventurous, Denali State
Park in Alaska offers spectacular views of the Alaskan Range
and untouched wilderness. Experienced hikers can even climb the
Denali Mountain, which is the highest peak in North America.

Red Rock State Park in Arizona is named for its beautiful red rock formations.

With mesmerizing Sedona red rock formations, lush meadows, and a
babbling creek, guests can enjoy a diverse environment at
Red Rock State
Park in Arizona. There’s even a 15-mile trail connecting Red
Rock State Park to Dead Horse Ranch State Park that visitors can
use to hike, ride horses, or bike.

Check out the natural structures built at Devil’s Den State Park in Arkansas.

The Civilian Conservation Corps used mostly natural materials in
the 1930s to build the wood and stone structures found in Devil’s
Den State Park. The park still maintains its original cabins,
which you
can reserve a spot in today.

Devil’s Den also features a rock dam, as well as trails fit for
hiking, mountain biking, and horseback riding.

Visit an untouched seashore at Crystal Cove State Park in California.

California’s Crystal Cove State
Park boasts one of the last remaining natural seashores in
Orange County. Take a dip in the Pacific Ocean, explore tide
pools at low tide, or hike through the mountainous backcountry at
this diverse park.

Chances are high that you will spot a moose roaming around Colorado’s State Forest State Park.

State
Forest State Park is home to sprawling forests, jagged peaks,
and over 600 moose, which can be spotted year-round. This
Colorado park also offers a variety of snow activities including
skiing, snowshoeing, and snowboarding.

Hike up to see cascading waterfalls at Kent Falls State Park in Connecticut.

This Connecticut park is centered around cascading waterfalls
that lead to the Housatonic River. The best time to visit

Kent Falls State Park is right after a rainstorm or as snow
is melting in the spring, which causes the waterfalls to appear
especially dramatic.

Fort Delaware State Park offers a look at American life in the 1800s.

You can take a step back in time to learn about the Civil War at
Fort
Delaware State Park. Reenactors dressed in period clothing
help guests understand what life was like in 1864.

You may even spot a ghost while you’re there as this Delaware
park was featured on “Ghost Hunters” for
its paranormal activity.

Manatees flock to Florida’s Blue Spring State Park each winter.

During the winter months,
Blue Spring State Park in Florida welcomes hundreds of
manatees to its warm, natural springs. With clear water and a
boardwalk surrounding the springs, visitors can easily see these
gentle marine mammals.

Explore the various landscapes at Cloudland Canyon State Park in Georgia.

Cloudland
Canyon State Park offers a variety of interesting sights to
enjoy. From deep canyons and waterfalls to sandstone cliffs, you
won’t run out of trails to hike or paths to bike at this Georgia
park.

Hawaii’s Wai’ānapanapa State Park is home to the famous black sand beach.

Located on the island of Maui in Hawaii, Waiʻānapanapa
State Park is famous for its black sand beach. Although
tourists flock to the park for this reason, you’ll want to be
sure to check out its native hala forest, deep caves, and
volcanic coastline while you’re there.

You can go sandboarding at Bruneau Dunes State Park in Idaho.

Bruneau
Dunes State Park in Idaho is home to the tallest
single-structured sand dune in North America. While you can
simply hike through the park, daring visitors are encouraged to
rent a sandboard.

Starved Rock State Park in Illinois features 18 canyons.

With 13 miles of hiking trails that take visitors through
moss-covered canyons, plunging waterfalls, and sandstone bluffs,
the Starved
Rock State Park in Illinois is beautiful and full of history.
Native American tribes called this area home as far back as 8,000
BC.

Indiana’s Chain O’ Lakes State Park is named for its nine connected lakes.

The Chain O’
Lakes State Park in Indiana is perfect for avid boaters. With
nine lakes connecting to create a chain, there are plenty of
opportunities for fishing, canoeing, and other water activities.

Visit the limestone dam at Beed’s Lake State Park in Iowa.

A limestone dam welcomes guests to
Beed’s Lake State Park in Iowa. The dam was originally built
by the Civilian Conservation Corps so that water could be stored
for running a mill but has since become a popular tourist
destination. A two-mile trail leads visitors to the base of the
dam where they can enjoy a refreshing mist of water.

Check out historic cave carvings at Kanopolis State Park in Kansas.

The first state park in Kansas, Kanopolis
State Park, is full of caves, hills, and sandstone bluffs. In
one of the caves, you can even catch a glimpse of carvings from
early pioneers who used the structure for shelter.

The park offers more than 30 miles of trails made for hiking,
mountain biking, or horseback riding.

You can view a moonbow at Kentucky’s Cumberland Falls State Resort Park.

Dubbed the “Niagara of the South,” Cumberland
Falls State Resort Park in Kentucky is home to a
125-foot-wide waterfall that creates a moonbow at night. During
full moons, the falls create a stunning rainbow from the light of
the moon, a phenomenon that doesn’t occur anywhere else in the
Western Hemisphere.

Fontainebleau State Park in Louisiana is home to an abandoned sugar mill.

Situated on Lake Pontchartrain in Louisiana,
Fontainebleau State Park contains the ruins of an abandoned
sugar mill that was built in 1829. After exploring the history of
the park, guests can enjoy sunbathing on the beach, birdwatching
on the bayou, and hiking one of the scenic trails.

Maine’s Quoddy Head State Park is home to a bright and historic lighthouse.

The
Quoddy Head State Park is located on the coast of Maine and
boasts a bright red-and-white-striped lighthouse. Commissioned by
President Thomas Jefferson and built in 1808, you can still climb
the lighthouse today to take in the spectacular views and spot
migrating whales.

Guests can view wild ponies at Assateague State Park in Maryland.

Beachgoers flock to
Assateague State Park in Maryland to relax by the Atlantic
Ocean, but the real draw is the nearly 100 wild ponies who call
the park home. Although visitors may be tempted to approach the
feral horses, park officials
warn against touching or feeding the animals.

Bash Bish Falls State Park boasts the longest single-drop waterfall in Massachusetts.

You can visit the longest single-drop waterfall in Massachusetts
at the Bash
Bish Falls State Park. Guests are encouraged to start hiking
from the Upper Falls in order to take in the beauty of it all,
but you’ll want to be careful as it’s a steep descent.

Michigan’s Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park has picturesque views.

With more than 90 miles of trails,
Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park is Michigan’s
largest state park. Check out the Summit Peak observation tower
for stunning views of Lake Superior, lush forests, and streaming
rivers.

You can spot diverse wildlife at Prairie State Park in Missouri.

With less than 65,000 acres of tallgrass prairie remaining in the
United States, Prairie
State Park in Missouri offers a glimpse of this vanishing
ecosystem. The park boasts more than 150 different kinds of
birds, 500 plant species, and much more unique wildlife.

Drive through an enclosed bison range at Minneopa State Park in Minnesota.

As part of the Minnesota Bison Conservation,
Minneopa State Park is home to a number of bison that are
free to roam 331 acres. Visitors hoping to spot the animals are
free to drive through the range or spot them from the Seppmann
Mill overlook. You can also walk the trails in Minneopa State
Park to view its stunning waterfalls.

You can play a round of golf at Mississippi’s LeFleur’s Bluff State Park.

Situated along the Pearl River,
LeFleur’s Bluff State Park provides an oasis from the urban
city. Guests can camp, fish, and even golf at this lush park in
the heart of Jackson, Mississippi.

Take a peek into prehistoric life at Montana’s Pictograph Cave State Park.

As the former home of prehistoric hunters, Pictograph Cave State
Park in Montana features cave drawings that date back over
2,000 years. There is a walking loop that connects the three main
caves, so visitors can peek at these ancient pieces of art.

Diverse wildlife calls Nebraska’s Wildcat Hills State Recreation Area home.

This rocky Nebraskan park is home to a diverse set of animals
that aren’t typically seen in other places in the United States.
Visitors to the Wildcat Hills State
Recreation Area can spot bighorn sheep, mule deer, and
bobcats, among other creatures.

Hike through bright red sandstone at Valley of Fire State Park in Nevada.

The draw to Valley of Fire State
Park in Nevada is its 40,000 acres of bright red sandstone
outcrops that date back to the Jurassic period. Many of the
trails take guests through the sandstone and allow hikers to see
petroglyphs that were carved into the rocks more than 2,000 years
ago.

Ride the aerial tramway at Franconia Notch State Park in New Hampshire for spectacular mountain views.

The
aerial tramway at
Franconia Notch State Park in New Hampshire takes visitors up
4,080 feet to the summit of Cannon Mountain. When at the summit
on a clear day, visitors can see the mountains of New Hampshire,
Maine, Vermont, Canada, and New York.

During your visit to Franconia Notch State Park, you can also
swim in Echo Lake, go fly fishing at Profile Lake, rock climb,
bike, and much more.

Take in the New York City skyline at Liberty State Park in New Jersey.

Located in northern New Jersey, Liberty
State Park offers views of the New York City skyline, Statue
of Liberty, and Ellis Island. During your visit, be sure to take
advantage of the range of recreational activities, which include
kayaking, biking, rollerblading, and more.

View the tall, volcanic rock formations at New Mexico’s City of Rocks State Park.

City
of Rocks State Park in New Mexico is full of volcanic rock
formations that reach as high as 40 feet. Land erosion over time
created the formations which are separated by paths resembling
city streets.

The park offers hiking trails, campsites, mountain biking, and
more recreational activities.

Each year, visitors flock to the famous Niagara Falls State Park in New York.

New York is home to the iconic Niagara Falls State
Park, which is also the oldest state park in the United
States. Established in 1885, visitors flock to the park each year
to catch a glimpse of all three falls that make up the majestic
Niagara Falls.

Learn Civil War history while kicking back on the beach at Fort Macon State Park in North Carolina.

Fort
Macon State Park in North Carolina offers the amenities of a
coastal beach park with a dose of American history. After taking
a tour of the Civil War-era fort, guests can go fishing on the
inlet or take a dip in the Atlantic Ocean.

The terrain at Little Missouri State Park in North Dakota is perfect for horseback riders.

Offering sweeping views of the North Dakota badlands, much of the
rugged Little
Missouri State Park is only accessible to hikers and
horseback riders. With 45 miles of trails, horse corrals, and hay
for purchase, this park is perfect for equestrians.

Enjoy lush and shaded gorges at Hocking Hills State Park in Ohio.

Hocking
Hills State Park in Ohio has a multitude of activities on top
of its natural beauty. Visitors can enjoy archery, disc golf, and
fishing, in addition to hiking through caves, up waterfalls, and
under tree-shaded gorges.

Robbers Cave State Park in Oklahoma used to be a famous hideout for outlaws.

A famous hideout for outlaws Jesse James and Belle Starr,
Robbers Cave
State Park in Oklahoma is now an outdoor lover’s dream. With
sandstone cliffs perfect for climbers and large lakes for trout
fishing, guests have many options for experiences.

Learn about fish hatcheries at Milo McIver State Park in Oregon.

Located just 45 minutes outside of Portland, Oregon,
Milo McIver State Park is situated on the Clackamas River,
allowing visitors to kayak, canoe, or visit the Clackamas Fish
Hatchery. In addition to river activities, there’s a 27-hole disc
golf course for those seeking unique fun.

Visit Pennsylvania’s Cherry Springs State Park at night for an exquisite view of the sky.

Given its remote location on untouched land in Pennsylvania,

Cherry Springs State Park is known for its uninhibited views
of the night sky. The clear skies allow astronomy enthusiasts to
check out the Milky Way and planets from its overnight Astronomy
Field or short-term Night Sky Public Viewing Area.

Beavertail State Park in Rhode Island offers an in-depth look at marine life.

Beavertail
State Park in Rhode Island offers a variety of marine life
education programs for the whole family. With an aquarium and
coastline location, the park allows visitors to take a peek into
the plants and critters that call the coast home.

Hike the mountains at Table Rock State Park in South Carolina for great views of the wilderness.

With streams, mountains, and waterfalls, the natural beauty of
Table Rock
State Park in South Carolina shines. Hiking trails take
guests to the top of the Pinnacle and Table Rock mountains for
sweeping views.

Large wild animals like bison and elk live in South Dakota’s Custer State Park.

Across its 71,000 acres, Custer State
Park in South Dakota welcomes guests with its abundance of
activities, diverse wildlife, and breathtaking scenic views.
Visitors can hike, rock climb, or swim, all while catching a
glimpse of wild animals like bison or elk.

Enjoy beautiful waterfalls at Fall Creek Falls State Park in Tennessee.

While guests initially flock to Fall Creek Falls State Park in
Tennessee for the waterfalls, it’s the unique activities that
keep them coming back. In addition to classics like hiking and
biking, the park also has a full golf course and a challenging
ropes course in the treetops.

Palo Duro Canyon State Park in Texas boasts the second-largest canyon in the United States.

The second-largest canyon in the United States is located in
Palo Duro
Canyon State Park in Texas. For those looking for an
overnight adventure, visitors can stay in cabins located on both
the canyon rim and floor.

Cowboys used to frequent Utah’s Dead Horse Point State Park in the 1800s.

Despite its name, Dead Horse Point
State Park in Utah used to welcome cowboys herding wild
mustangs in the 1800s. Today, visitors can enjoy the desert
landscape from the top of sandstone cliffs.

Learn about the illegal trading route to Canada at Smugglers’ Notch State Park in Vermont.

After President Thomas Jefferson outlawed American trade with
Canada, many people in Vermont continued illegally trading by
smuggling goods through the notch found in what is known today as
Smugglers’
Notch State Park.

The park now welcomes hikers, rock climbers, ice climbers, and
cave explorers to this lush and historic area.

Visitors can enjoy a picnic at First Landing State Park in Virginia.

Named to commemorate the first European settlers’ landing in
North America, First
Landing State Park in Virginia is a beach-goers’ paradise.
With access to both the Atlantic Ocean and the Chesapeake Bay,
this park offers calm waters, uncrowded beaches, and easy
boardwalk access.

Guests looking to escape the busy pace of Virginia Beach can also
stay overnight in a cabin.

Located on the ocean, Washington’s Cape Disappointment State Park has two lighthouses.

Cape
Disappointment State Park in Washington is anything but a
disappointment. Located on the Pacific Ocean, this park contains
two lighthouses, eight miles of hiking trails, and an
amphitheater for entertainment.

Check out the amber-colored waterfall at Blackwater Falls State Park in West Virginia.

The amber-colored water of the Blackwater
Falls State Park waterfall in West Virginia is the main
attraction for this park. Guests can view the waterfall from
various steps and landings that are accessible year-round.

Take a break from city life at Lakeshore State Park in Wisconsin.

Lakeshore State
Park is located in the heart of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on the
shore of Lake Michigan. With walking and biking trails
throughout, the park offers a green oasis to those caught up in
city life.

Bathe in the natural, mineral hot springs at Hot Springs State Park in Wyoming.

Named for its natural hot springs, Hot
Springs State Park in Wyoming has a free bathhouse where
visitors can enjoy a therapeutic dip in water that remains at 104
degrees Fahrenheit.

Adventure seekers can also hike, boat, and view the park’s herd
of bison. 

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