National Parks in the United States are getting a lot of attention as of late. The big goals right now are being able to say you went to all 63 National Parks. If you are planning a road trip with the pups and want to find the most dog friendly National Parks in the United States you are at the right place! There are a few that are very dog friendly and then some that are not able to be dog friendly at all. But don't worry, with the majority you can still have the dogs with you, but they can only be on paved roads, parking lots or in designated campgrounds with at least a 6' leash. Each National Park has their own website that will guide you through their individual rules.
The Most Dog Friendly National Parks in the United States
The most dog friendly national parks that we have come across while traveling are the following!
Great Sand Dunes National Park, Colorado
Great Sand Dunes National Park is probably the most dog friendly national park in the United States. The dogs must be on a leash but they can be anywhere that a human can get on the dunes, plus there is a river running through for them to cool off on the hot days and this area can get hot. So if you are bringing your dog in the summer, you really should have booties on them. The sand can burn their pads within minutes.
White Sands National Park, New Mexico
White Sands National Park is the newest national park and they are just like Great San Dunes. If a human can get there so can your dog. This national park feels like it is in the middle of nowhere New Mexico and it has stunning white sand that you can run or sled on. There is great parking for RVs and places to stay for the day and have a picnic.
Acadia National Park, Maine
Acadia National Park comes in at the top because it provides about 100 miles of trails that dogs can be on and all the campgrounds except Duck Harbor allow your dogs to join you.
Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona
Petrified Forest National Park comes in at the top as well because again, dogs can be with you on any of the trails. Day hiking trails or backpacking trails, your best friend can join you. The only place dogs are not allowed are within buildings and they must always be on a 6' leash.
Crater Lake National Park, Oregon
Being the only national park in a dog friendly state, Crater Lake National Park is finding ways for you to be able to enjoy parts of the park with your dog. They can join you on the drive around the rim, but must stay in the car unless in a parking lot and they can join you for the views at the visitor center. The only trails that they can be on are the following:
Lady of the Woods, Godfrey Glen, Annie Spur Trail, Grayback Drive and PCT (official not alternate).
Congaree National Park, South Carolina
Dogs are allowed on all the trails and on the most popular boardwalk hike through the national park. They are also allowed in the campgrounds and small dogs are allowed on the guided kayak trips (private company)!
Enjoy these national parks and remember to practice Leave No Trace. Including your dog's poo!