National parks provide the perfect backdrop for unforgettable family adventures, allowing you to bond, explore, and create lasting memories together. With numerous options available, we have curated a list of the ten best national parks that offer a myriad of family-friendly activities and breathtaking natural wonders. To provide you with valuable insights, we teamed up with KURU Footwear to compile this list of the Best National Parks For Families, including some authentic reviews from families who have experienced these remarkable parks firsthand.
1. Yosemite National Park
Nestled in California’s Sierra Nevada mountains, Yosemite National Park offers a multitude of family-friendly activities amidst its stunning natural beauty. From awe-inspiring waterfalls to towering granite cliffs, Yosemite captivates visitors of all ages.
Review: “Yosemite is a dream destination for families. Our kids were amazed by the towering trees and the jaw-dropping vistas. Exploring the giant sequoias and hiking to the Lower Yosemite Falls made it an unforgettable experience for all of us.” – The Thompson Family
Watch this video by the Actively Family to get a glimpse of what to do with your family at Yosemite National Park:
2. Grand Canyon National Park
The Grand Canyon is a remarkable destination that offers something for every member of the family. From awe-inspiring viewpoints to educational programs, the park’s unique geology and breathtaking vistas will leave a lasting impression.
Review: “Visiting the Grand Canyon with our kids was a life-changing experience. We took a mule ride along the rim, hiked part of the Bright Angel Trail, and watched the sunset from Hopi Point. The park’s natural beauty sparked a sense of wonder and curiosity in our children.” – The Johnson Family
Watch this video by That Traveling Family to get a better understanding:
3. Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Spanning across Tennessee and North Carolina, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is a family-friendly paradise. With its diverse wildlife, scenic drives, and numerous hiking trails, the park offers endless opportunities for exploration and adventure.
Review: “The Great Smoky Mountains National Park provided the perfect getaway for our family. We enjoyed picnics by picturesque streams, spotting black bears in Cades Cove, and hiking to stunning waterfalls. The kids were in awe of the park’s natural wonders.” – The Garcia Family
Check out this video to see what families can do in the Great Smoky Mountains:
4. Zion National Park
Zion National Park in Utah offers a wide array of family-friendly activities amidst its red rock cliffs and narrow canyons. We covered it also in our favorite National Parks without a car. From easy nature walks to thrilling hikes, the park’s unique landscapes will captivate visitors of all ages.
Review: “Our family absolutely loved Zion National Park. The kids loved exploring the Riverside Walk and splashing in the Virgin River. We also ventured on the Emerald Pools trail, which offered breathtaking views. The park’s beauty and adventure possibilities were perfect for a family vacation.” – The Williams Family
Watch this video to get an idea:
5. Acadia National Park
Located on the coast of Maine, Acadia National Park provides a unique blend of coastal beauty and mountainous landscapes, offering numerous activities for families. From scenic drives to leisurely bike rides, the park’s beauty is accessible to visitors of all ages.
Review: “Acadia National Park stole our hearts. Our family enjoyed biking along the Carriage Roads, hiking the easy Jordan Pond Path, and exploring the rocky coastline. The kids were amazed by the tide pools and the breathtaking views from Cadillac Mountain.” – The Anderson Family
Watch this video to see what family hikes you should take:
6. Rocky Mountain National Park
Nestled in the majestic Rockies of Colorado, Rocky Mountain National Park offers endless opportunities for family adventure. With its alpine meadows, wildlife sightings, and picturesque lakes, the park provides a perfect playground for outdoor exploration.
Review: “Rocky Mountain National Park was a dream come true for our family. We hiked the family-friendly Bear Lake trail, spotted elk in the meadows, and marveled at the breathtaking vistas from Trail Ridge Road. The park’s natural beauty was a source of inspiration for our kids.” – The Martinez Family
7. Olympic National Park
Located in Washington State, Olympic National Park offers a diverse range of ecosystems, including lush rainforests, rugged coastlines, and snow-capped mountains. Families can explore the Hoh Rain Forest, relax on the stunning beaches, and embark on scenic drives.
Review: “Olympic National Park offered an ideal balance of excitement and tranquility for our family. We hiked through the enchanting rainforest, explored tide pools at Ruby Beach, and took in the breathtaking views from Hurricane Ridge. It was an unforgettable family getaway.” – The Thompson Family
Watch this video to get a glimpse of what you can do with kids at Olympic National Park:
8. Shenandoah National Park
Situated in Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains, Shenandoah National Park offers a variety of family-friendly activities. Families can enjoy scenic drives along Skyline Drive, hike to stunning waterfalls, and participate in educational programs at the visitor centers.
Review: “We had an incredible experience at Shenandoah National Park with our family. The kids loved the Junior Ranger program and spotting wildlife along the trails. We also enjoyed the beautiful vistas from Skyline Drive and the peacefulness of Dark Hollow Falls. It was a perfect escape into nature.” – The Johnson Family
Watch this video to see what hikes you should take with your family at Shenandoah National Park:
9. Everglades National Park
Located in Florida, Everglades National Park is a unique and vibrant ecosystem that offers educational and exciting experiences for families. From boat tours to ranger-led programs, families can explore the wetlands, spot alligators, and learn about the park’s rich biodiversity. If you’re driving from Miami – check out our post about scenic road trips from Miami for one that goes through the Everglades.
Review: “Our family embarked on an educational adventure at Everglades National Park. We took a thrilling airboat ride, went on a guided nature walk, and attended a ranger-led program about the importance of wetlands. It was an immersive experience that left us with a deep appreciation for nature.” – The Garcia Family
Here’s a video showing a trip to the Everglades with kids:
10. Cuyahoga Valley National Park
Nestled in Ohio, Cuyahoga Valley National Park offers a convenient and family-friendly escape into nature. Families can explore the park’s scenic trails, ride the historic train, and enjoy picnics amidst picturesque landscapes.
Review: “Cuyahoga Valley National Park was a hidden gem for our family. The kids loved the scenic train ride, and we enjoyed hiking the Towpath Trail and Brandywine Gorge. The park’s peacefulness and beauty were a wonderful surprise.” – The Williams Family
Watch this video to get a glimpse:
These ten national parks offer incredible opportunities for family adventures, allowing you to create cherished memories in the embrace of nature. From awe-inspiring landscapes to engaging activities, these parks cater to the diverse interests and ages of every family member. So pack your bags, gather your loved ones, and embark on an unforgettable journey through these remarkable natural wonders.