Since we began our full-time travels in our RV in 2007, and during our cruise of Mexico on our sailboat (2010-2013), we’ve made it a point to visit as many National Parks, National Monuments and UNESCO World Heritage Sites throughout North America as possible.
This page provides an index of links to all of our blog posts from these special places, grouped by country. They appear in reverse chronological order. America’s National Parks are also broken down by state. This page is accessible from the Menus as well.
If there is a particular park you are looking for, use the “Ctrl-F” key (Windows) or “Command-F” key (Mac) to search for it on this page.
Links to the official websites for each of North America’s National Park agencies plus lists of the UNESCO World Heritage sites in each country are given at the bottom of this page.
Google Maps links to the locations of all the parks we’ve visited are at the bottom of this page as well. These are interactive maps that you can zoom in and out of.
You can navigate to each section of this page using these links:
- America’s National Parks and National Monuments
- Canada’s National Parks and World Heritage Sites
- Mexico’s National Parks and World Heritage Sites
In our travels, we have loved all of the National Parks we have visited, and we were intrigued to learn that Yellowstone National Park was the first National Park ever created in the world. It was established by the US Congress with the Yellowstone Act of March 1, 1872, which was signed into law by President Ulysses S. Grant. Lots more National Parks followed, both in the US and abroad.
On August 25, 1916, President Woodrow Wilson created the National Park Service, a bureau in the Department of the Interior, to consolidate the management of Yellowstone and the 35 other National Parks that had been established in the years since 1872.
This year, on August 25, 2016, the National Park Service is celebrating its 100th anniversary.
Happy 100th Birthday NPS!!
Following is the index of posts from our visits to these wonderful places…
The National Park Service manages not only America’s National Parks but also the National Monuments, National Seashores, National Historic Sites, Battlefields, some of the National Recreation Areas and much much more.
In the summer of 2016, the National Park Service is managing 412 sites that spread out across more than 131 square miles. The sites were visited by over 307 million tourists in 2015, and the NPS had 22,000 employees and 221,000 volunteers.
Here are the ones we’ve visited in our RV travels:
- Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum – Wild Animals in Tucson AZ 03/05/16 The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum in Tucson AZ houses wild animals along a labyrinth of paths and raptors fly free overhead twice a day!
- Canyon de Chelly, AZ – A Canyon of Indian Cliff Dwellings 06/27/12 Canyon de Chelly has evocative Indian cliff dwelling in a gorgeous canyon close to the Navajo Code Talker memorial at Window Rock.
- Grand Canyon’s North Rim – Its Better Half! 07/31/08 The Grand Canyon’s North Rim is less visited than the South Rim, and we found a heavenly campsite in the Kaibab Nat’l Forest.
- Grand Canyon’s North Rim – Magnificent Yet Intimate! 12/06/16 The North Rim of the Grand Canyon is magnificent yet intimate…here are photos from our RV trip across northern Arizona!
- Horseshoe Bend Overlook – Page, Arizona – Stunning! 03/24/16 Breathtaking Horseshoe Bend overlook near Page, Arizona, is ideal for a daytrip during an RV road trip through northeastern Arizona.
- Montezuma’s Castle & Schnebly Hill – Sedona Heights! 05/19/14 Montezuma’s Castle & Montezuma’s Well are wonderful daytrips from Sedona and Schnebly Hill Road is a thrilling scenic drive.
- Navajo National Monument, Monument Valley and Bears Ears 03/28/16 Navajo National Monument has ancient cliff dwellings, Monument Valley has dramatic rock formations, and Bears Ears NM is PROPOSED.
- Petrified Forest NP and Mogollon Rim – Cool pines & hot rocks in AZ! 05/29/12 AZ’s rugged Mogollon Rim, crazy Petrified Forest & stunning Painted Desert eased our transition from Mexico & our sad family times…
- Saguaro National Park Petroglyphs – Tucson Mountains, AZ 02/20/16 Amid the cactus studded hillsides of Saguaro National Park (Tucson Mountains) there are evocative petroglyphs at Signal Hill.
- Sunset Crater, AZ – Looks Like it Exploded Yesterday! 06/15/08 Sunset Crater (Flagstaff AZ) has intriguing lava flows & other-worldly cinder lakes, and was a great place to install our solar panels…
- Tonto National Monument AZ – Lower Cliff Dwellings 12/16/15 The Lower Cliff Dwellings at Tonto National Monument in Arizona are ancient Indian ruins high on a hill overlooking Roosevelt Lake.
- Tonto National Monument AZ – Workamping with the Ancients! 01/07/16 At Tonto National Monument’s Upper Cliff Dwellings in Arizona, we learned about workamping and volunteering at archaeological sites.
- Wupatki Nat’l Monument – Ancient Indian Ruins & Great Camping in AZ! 08/25/11 Wupatki National Monument in AZ has 1,000 year old Indian Ruins, and next door Bonito Campground is our all-time favorite!
- Death Valley, CA – An Exotic Landscape 11/25/07 Death Valley is full of exotic landscapes, but most important for us was our introduction to the world of RV boondocking…
- Yosemite National Park, CA – Sheer Beauty 06/19/07 We drove our RV into Yosemite National Park via Tioga Pass and found crystal clear mountain streams and towering waterfalls.
- Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park, CO – Steep and Deep! 10/21/14 The Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park in Colorado is a land of wild and rugged beauty and very sheer cliffs!
- Colorado National Monument & Fruita CO – Red Rocks, Cycling & Wine! 10/18/12 Colorado National Monument’s red rocks are gorgeous, nearby Fruita has an awesome farmer’s market while Palisade has tasty wine!
- Mesa Verde National Park, CO – Life on the Edge with the Ancients 06/19/12 Mesa Verde National Park has canyons filled with awe-inspiring Indian cliff dwellings and Utah’s Bicentennial Highway is sensational!
- Gulf Islands National Seashore – Florida’s Emerald Coast! 04/17/15 The Gulf Island National Seashore and Pensacola Beach are gems for RV travelers visiting Florida’s Emerald Coast.
- Craters of the Moon + Cataclysms from Sun Valley ID to Alpine WY 09/02/14 Volcanic cinders at Craters of the Moon NM capped our cataclysmic theme of wildfires and floods from Sun Valley ID to Alpine WY!
- Acadia National Park – Alluring Beauty on the Maine Coast 07/01/15 Acadia National Park is home to some of the most beautiful scenery along Maine’s north coast, fabulous for an RV roadtrip!
- Acadia National Park’s Carriage Roads in Maine – Thanks, Rockefeller! 07/07/15 The Carriage Roads at Acadia National Park are a 50 mile trail system for non-motorized traffic courtesy of John D. Rockefeller, Jr.
- Natchez Trace Parkway, MS – A Scenic Drive with No Trucks Allowed! 03/25/09 The beautiful Natchez Trace Parkway is closed to commercial traffic and is full of history from ancient times to the mid-1800’s.
- Natchez Trace Parkway, MS – Echoes of History! 04/30/08 Natchez Trace Parkway’s Rocky Springs Campground peers eerily into history. Finding Kermit the Frog nearby was the best!
- “Going to the Sun” from Glacier National Park’s East Side – Breathtaking! 08/21/16 Driving the Going to the Sun Road from Glacier National Park’s east side offers breathtaking views of snowy peaks, lakes and valleys.
- Glacier National Park in Montana – Mirrors at Lake McDonald 05/29/16 Glacier National Park is great for an RV roadtrip, and going before peak season avoids the crowds, especially at serene Lake McDonald.
- Glacier National Park, MT – Mountain Goats and Lake Views 08/27/07 At Montana’s Glacier National Park we drove the famous Going to the Sun Road and saw the infamous mountain goats at Logan Pass.
- Glacier National Park’s Quieter Side – Saint Mary 08/17/16 The eastern side of Glacier National Park is its quieter and possibly more beautiful side, and St Mary is a great RV home base.
- White Sands National Monument – New Mexico’s Desert Dunes! 03/04/15 White Sands National Monument in New Mexico is a fun park where you can make snow angels and go sledding in pure white sand.
- A Jewel of a Waterfall – Great Smoky Mountains National Park 05/12/15 An unmarked and unnamed waterfall in Great Smoky Mountains National Park on the Oconaluftee River makes for awesome photos.
- Great Smoky Mountains National Park – A First Glimpse 05/25/15 The mysterious Smoky Mountains – beautiful layers of mountains, rushing streams, lush vegetation and a canopy of trees over the roads.
- Smoky Mountain Adventures – Elk, Indians and Waterfalls 05/31/15 In North Carolina’s Smoky Mountains we found some great running trails, saw elk, hiked to waterfalls, and hung with the Indians!
- Waterfalls of the Blue Ridge Parkway (North Carolina) 06/10/15 Soco Falls, Duggers Creek Falls and Crabtree Falls are three spectacular waterfalls for photos and hiking on the Blue Ridge Parkway.
- Crater Lake National Park in Oregon – Bluer than blue! 06/13/14 Crater Lake wowed us with stunning views of royal blue water, deep green trees and snow capped mountains.
- A Glimpse of Big Bend National Park in Texas 03/05/15 Big Bend National Park in Texas is a land of extremes with freezing cold, searing heat, boulders, wildflowers, songbirds and sunsets
- Big Bend National Park – Mountain, River & Desert Hikes 03/19/15 Big Bend National Park in Texas has all kinds of day hikes, from ascending mountains to walking beside rivers and through deserts.
- Big Bend National Park TX – Vast and Varied with Views! 03/17/15 Big Bend National Park is a huge park that is ideal for an RV trip, with mountains, a huge river, desert terrain and great views.
- Boondocking at Big Bend National Park – Cheap & Scenic RV Camping 03/26/15 Boondocking at Big Bend National Park in Texas is inexpensive and scenic, but it can be a little tricky!
- Blue Ridge Parkway (Virginia) – Waterfalls & Rhododendrons 06/18/15 In spring the waterfall hikes along Blue Ridge Parkway burst with the pink color of rhododendrons, but the hiking can be strenuous!
- Blue Ridge Parkway Highlights (Virginia) – Mills, Music & Farms! 06/14/15 The historic Mabry Mill and free concerts at the Blue Ridge Music Center are two highlights on the Blue Ridge Parkway in Virginia.
- Shenandoah National Park, Virginia – Climbs & Falls! 06/20/15 Two highlights in Shenandoah National Park in Virginia are the great hikes to Dark Hollow Falls and the summit of Mary’s Rock
- Arches National Park Utah – A Playground of Soaring Red Rock Bridges! 04/21/16 Arches National Park in Utah is filled with soaring red rock sandstone bridges, a gorgeous playground that brings out the kid in everyone.
- Bryce Canyon – Hiking The Rim & Navajo Loop + A Tourist Time-lapse! 09/29/16 Bryce Canyon National Park’s most popular hikes are the Rim and Navajo Loop Trails. How busy are they? Check out the time-lapse!
- Bryce Canyon Gone Wild – Tempests, Rainbows & Wildlife 10/09/16 Bryce Canyon National Park has a wild side where tempests and hailstorms give way to beautiful rainbows, deer and pronghorn…
- Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah – Inspiration Point – OMG! 09/27/16 Bryce Canyon National Park is a MUST SEE for everyone exploring the west in an RV – Inspiration Point is a jaw-dropper!
- Bryce Canyon, UT – Fairyland of Pink Turrets 08/25/08 Bryce Canyon, a fairyland of pink and red rock spires and spikes, is one of the gems of the National Park system.
- Bryce Canyon’s Rainbow Point – Bristlecone Pines and Sweeping Vistas 11/01/16 Bristlecone Trail at Rainbow Point in Bryce Canyon National Park is an easy hike that passes sweeping views and ancient trees.
- Canyonlands National Park UT – Island in the Sky (and Night Skies!) 04/28/16 Canyonlands National Park in Utah offers both dramatic vistas and awesome night skies in the Island in the Sky district near Moab.
- Canyonlands National Park Utah – Hiking in the Needles District! 04/12/16 The Needles District of Canyonlands National Park in Utah is filled with pink spires best seen on the Chesler Park hike.
- Capitol Reef National Park Utah – Awe-inspiring! 06/25/12 Capitol Reef Nat’l Park captivated us with dramatic vistas at Sunset Point and Capitol Gorge plus its unique Mormon pioneer history.
- Cedar Breaks National Monument – A Hidden Jewel in Utah 09/23/16 Cedar Breaks National Monument is a hidden Utah jewel that’s easy for RV travelers to miss when visiting the bigger National Parks.
- Cedar Breaks National Monument in Utah – Better Than Bryce? 08/30/11 Even though Cedar Breaks National Monument is less visited than neighboring Zion, Bryce and Grand Canyon, it may be more stunning!
- Dinosaur National Monument, UT – More than fossilized dinosaur bones! 10/12/12 Dinosaur National Monument in Utah and Colorado is home to Fremont petroglyphs, historic homesteads & great views.
- Fairyland Trail in Bryce Canyon National Park – A Beautiful Hike! 10/02/16 The Fairyland Trail at Bryce Canyon National Park is a quiet and stunning hike that wanders between the red rock hoodoos.
- Natural Bridges National Monument Utah – Vertical Hiking! 06/15/12 Natural Bridges National Monument has three unique natural rock bridges. The hikes to see them are nearly vertical!
- RV Trip to Zion National Park “West” – Gorgeous Kolob Canyons! 12/22/16 Kolob Canyons, gorgeous and lesser known in Zion National Park, is a must see on an RV trip, esp. hiking Taylor Creek Trail in Fall.
- The Waterfall at Bryce Canyon National Park – “Mossy Cave” 10/18/16 Bryce Canyon National Park is known for its red rock pinnacles, but there is a beautiful waterfall at Mossy Cave too!!
- Zion National Park RV Trip – One AWESOME Canyon! 12/15/16 Zion National Park is an awesome RV trip destination with towering rock walls, great hikes and bike rides. Here are pics and tips!
- Zion NP, Kodachrome Basin & Snow Canyon, UT – Great Red Rocks! 10/31/07 Zion National Park’s and Kodachrome Basin’s cliffs awed us while nearby Snow Canyon was ideal for hiking & biking.
- Devil’s Tower, WY – Remember “Close Encounters of the Third Kind” ?? 09/30/07 Devil’s Tower Wyoming, known for the movie “Close Encounters,” is sacred to the Lakota and has a cool community of prairie dogs.
- Grand Teton National Park – 101 Ways to Enjoy The Tetons! 09/20/14 Grand Teton National Park is a place to be savored, and we discovered lots of ways folks do just that!
- Grand Teton National Park WY – Mirrored Waters 09/17/14 We loved the mirrored reflections of the stunning Grand Teton National Park mountains at Shwabacher’s Landing & Jenny Lake.
- Grand Teton National Park WY – Wild Skies 09/10/14 Fiery sunsets, mysterious mists, and rosy pink sunrises filled the skies at Grand Teton National Park.
- Grand Teton National Park Wyoming – Rare Sightings! 09/29/14 We had some special sightings during our stay in Grand Teton National Park: rainbows, starry nights, fox, badger and leaping bison!
- Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming – Stunning! 09/28/07 We visited Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming and were awe-struck by the majesty of the mountains reflecting in Jenny Lake.
- Yellowstone National Park, WY – Big Game Animals 09/17/07 Yellowstone National Park lived up to its billing with big game animals up close and elk courting outside our RV window.
- Yellowstone National Park, WY – Bubbling Geysers 09/22/07 Yellowstone National Park has bubbling geysers and hot springs and lots of mysterious looking mineral formations.
In 1911, Canada was the first country in the world to establish a government agency specifically to oversee its National Parks. This agency is Parks Canada.
Parks Canada preserves and protects nationally significant examples of Canada’s natural and cultural history and is mandated to commemorate Canada’s history. In 2016, Parks Canada is managing 46 National Parks, 168 National Historic Sites and 11 UNESCO World Heritage Sites covering nearly 350,000 square miles of land and water.
We’ve enjoyed the extraordinary beauty of Canada’s National Parks located in the Canadian Rockies in British Columbia and Alberta as well as the picture postcard perfect town of UNESCO World Heritage Site Lunenburg, Nova Scotia.
- Hot Springs in the Canadian Rockies – Swimming in Giant Hot Tubs!! 07/10/16 The hot springs in the Canadian Rockies are a great place to spend a few hours on a cold rainy day in the mountains. Here’s a look…
- Icefields Parkway – Canadian Rockies Scenic Drive – WOW! 06/14/16 The Icefields Parkway in Banff National Park is an eye-popping Canadian Rockies scenic drive well worthy of an RV road trip.
- Icefields Parkway – True Blue Lakes, Avalanches & Grouse! 06/16/16 In our RV adventure on the Icefields Parkway in Banff National Park we saw blue lakes, heard avalanches and played with grouse.
- Jasper National Park – Columbia Icefields & Athabasca Falls 07/12/16 The Columbia Icefields are a highlight on the Icefields Parkway in Jasper National Park, and Athabasca Falls is a delight at sunrise.
- Kootenay National Park Canada – Bears, Mountains & Rivers! 06/07/16 Koontenay National Park is a fun RV destination in Canada’s Rocky Mountains where bears are common and rivers are turquoise.
- Lake Louise – RV Travels to the Heart of the Rockies in Banff 06/10/16 Lake Louise is a great RV travel destination in Banff National Park (heart of the Canadian Rockies), and hiking to Lake Agnes is a must.
- Lunenburg, Nova Scotia – Pretty As A Picture! 07/31/15 Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, is a tourist’s and photographer’s delight with colorful buildings on the docks and pretty boats in the bay.
- Moraine Lake – Crown Jewel of Banff National Park 06/19/16 Moraine Lake is the crown jewel of Banff National Park and is a “must see” on any visit to Lake Louise whether by bike, by RV or by car.
- Waterton Lakes Nat’l Park – Starry Skies, the Milky Way & Wildflowers 08/09/16 Waterton Lakes National Park in Canada is awesome for starry night sky viewing on an RV trip, and in summer the Milky Way glows bright.
- Waterton Lakes National Park – Rocky Mountain High! 07/28/16 Waterton Lakes National Park is a phenomenal place for an RV trip, with glorious scenery, campsites on the lake and a sweet town.
- Waterton Shoreline Cruise – A Classy Tour of Waterton-Glacier NP 08/05/16 The Waterton Lakes Shoreline Cruise was the highlight of our stay in Waterton-Glacier National Park and is a great way to see the park.
- Yoho National Park – Emerald Lake & Natural Bridge – Aqua Magic! 06/26/16 Emerald Lake and Natural Bridge are wonderful highlights at Yoho National Park in the Canadian Rockies where we found true Agua Magic!
Many of Mexico’s most thrilling places are designated as UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and some are National Parks as well. These sites include expansive grounds of ancient ruins that were built by the Mayans, Zapotecs and other cultures 2,000 years ago as well as historic Spanish Colonial cities that are home to exquisite architecture and cathedrals built by the Spanish in the 16th and 17th centuries.
If you have never traveled in Mexico, we highly recommend it. The Mexicans have an exuberant and colorful culture that is extraordinarily friendly. Mexico is easily the friendliest place we’ve traveled (besides Maysville, KY…). If you are concerned about safety, we jotted down some notes that are worth pondering at this link: Is Mexico Safe?
- Agua Azul & Misol-Ha – Waterfall Adventures in Mexico 03/30/12 Special Biosphere Reserve Agua Azul Waterfall is a fabulous cascade of turquoise, while Misol-Ha is a tall thin spray!
- Guanajuato – Colors, stairs, tunnels and characters! 06/14/13 Guanajuato amazed us with its vivid colors, steep hills & deep tunnels. It’s a fun town with lots of character and characters!
- Guanajuato – Full of Song and Spirit! 06/24/13 Guanauato, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is not only colorful but a place where street music is elevated to high performance art.
- Loreto Area: La Ramada Cove, Isla Coronado & Puerto Escondido – Gifts From and To the Sea 10/30/11 We hiked and snorkeled at La Ramada Cove and Isla Coronado, two great Sea of Cortez anchorages, but were alarmed by a shipwreck.
- Loreto: Isla Coronado & Villa del Palmar – Taming the Sea of Cortez 05/16/11 Loreto’s gorgeous new Villa del Palmar was a shocking contrast to the leaping manta rays of UNESCO World Heritage SIte Isla Coronado.
- Monarch Butterfly Migration at El Rosario – A Fabulous Daytrip!! 03/02/13 High in the Michoacán mountains near Morelia, Mexico, we hiked into the forest at El Rosario to see millions of monarch butterflies.
- Morelia Mexico’s Magnificent Cathedral & Aqueduct – Awe-inspiring! 02/27/13 A whirlwind tour of Morelia, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, blew us away with its gorgeous cathedral, churches and antique aqueduct.
- Oaxaca – A City of Vibrance, Color & Soul 02/18/12 Oaxaca, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, treated us to all kinds of action and fun: concerts, parades, and a golden cathedral wedding!
- Oaxaca – Quirky, Fun, and lots of Gold Leaf 02/12/12 Energetic and artsy, Oaxaca, has a fabulous gold leaf trimmed 16th century cathedral & a huge town square full of activity.
- Oaxaca’s “Mitla Tour” – Ancient Zapotec Ruins & More! 02/28/12 On Oaxaca’s outskirts, we visited the 2,000 year old Zapotec ruins at Mitla, saw petrified waterfalls and met traditional weavers.
- Oaxaca’s Monte Alban – Mysterious Ancient Zapotec Ruins 02/24/12 The Zapotec ruins of Monte Alban are mysterious and alluring, and the beautiful Oaxaca Cultural Center houses Mixtec relics.
- Palenque – Ancient Mayan Ruins and Terror in the Jungle! 03/20/12 A beautiful all-day bus ride delivered us to the exotic ancient Mayan ruins of Palenque where we got spooked in the jungle!
Thailand has many stunning National Parks, both in the jungle and on the coasts where the water is turquoise and the reef fish are extraordinary.
- Erawan Falls – Jewel of Erawan National Park – with Mellow Adventures 02/07/17 Mellow Adventures Review: An incredible visit to Erawan Falls at Erawan National Park in Kanchanaburi Thailand – Serenity & beauty!
- Huay Mae Khamin – Thailand’s Most Beautiful Waterfall – Mellow Adventures 02/15/17 Touring Kanchanaburi with Mellow Adventures, we saw Thailand’s most beautiful waterfall: Huay Mae Khamin Waterfall. Here’s pics…
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More info about North America’s National Parks and UNESCO World Heritage Sites:
- America’s National Park Service Official Website
- National Park Service History
- Yellowstone National Park History
- America’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites
- Parks Canada Official Website
- Canada’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites
- Mexico’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites
- Mexico’s National Parks
Map Links for the Locations of America’s National Parks & Monuments We’ve Visited
These maps will give you an idea of where these wonderful sites are in each state, but they are not intended for routing or itinerary purposes. You can only absorb the beauty of so many National Parks at once! Please note that you can zoom in and out of each map too.
- Arizona Map Link
- California Map Link
- Colorado Map Link
- Florida Map Link
- Idaho Map Link
- Maine Map Link
- Mississippi Map Link
- Montana Map Link
- New Mexico Map Link
- North Carolina Map Link
- Oregon Map Link
- Texas Map Link
- Utah Map Link
- Virginia Map Link
- Wyoming Map Link
Map Links for Canada’s National Parks & World Heritage Sites
Map Link for Mexico’s National Parks & World Heritage Sites
For our European readers, renting an RV is great way to explore America:
Our most recent posts:
- “Wild Camping” & RV Boondocking Tips – Escapees Magazine 02/19/17
- Huay Mae Khamin – Thailand’s Most Beautiful Waterfall – Mellow Adventures 02/15/17
- Erawan Falls – Jewel of Erawan National Park – with Mellow Adventures 02/07/17
- Train from Bangkok to Kanchanaburi – A Ride Through Thailand’s Countryside 02/02/17
- Damnoen Saduak Floating Market – Bangkok or Disney’s Epcot Center? 01/24/17