Are you ready for free entry to any of California's national parks? California has 28 national parks, recreation areas, and national monuments, and for five days every year, the National Park Service offers free entry to all National Park Service sites that otherwise charge an entrance fee. The next one is on August 4, 2022. Keep reading for a rundown of some of the most popular national parks in California. For a family of 4 or more, the cost can add up, so you stand to make quite a saving if you go on one of the free days.
California National Parks
Yosemite National Park
Of the nine national parks in California, the most popular one is Yosemite National Park. Seven-day entry passes usually cost $15 per individual or $35 per car. So with free admission, it's a massive saving!
The highlights of the park include many waterfalls, streams, and lakes. The giant sequoia groves, the granite cliffs, and the majestic scenery make it surreal. Yosemite National Park is a must-visit!
The park is just 4.5 hours from Los Angeles, so if you are up for an impromptu road trip, you better get packing for your free adventure!
Joshua Tree National Park
The otherwordly geological features of Joshua Tree National Park make it an essential destination for lovers of rock formations and otherworldly landscapes. The Joshua trees light up the landscape in a vast area consisting of rugged rock shapes and a spectacular desert landscape.
As it's only 2 hours of travel from Los Angeles, it's a favored weekend destination for locals.
Sequoia National Park
For lovers of giant trees, the Sequoia national park is known for its huge sequoia trees.
The largest trees on Earth can be found at Sequoia national park. This includes the General Sherman Tree, the largest tree in the world at 52,508 cubic feet.
Kings Canyon National Park
Another park known for its Sequoia Trees, the ancient trees, diverse landscape, epic mountains and canyons, and forest trails are a highlight of Kings Canyon National Park.
Also, the General Grant Tree, the second largest tree in the world, is located in this park.
Channel Islands National Park
The Channel Islands National park consists of five islands which are accessed from the mainland at Ventura and Oxnard Harbors via park concessionaire boats (Island Packers) or private boats.
Its remoteness from the main city centers makes you feel like you are a world away.
Death Valley National Park
On the border of California and Nevada, highlights include the salt flats Badwater Basin, the 600-foot-deep Ubehebe Crater, and the incredible Artist's Palette.
Death Valley National Park is just 3.5 hours of travel time from Los Angeles, so this would be our pick for a last-minute getaway.
Redwood National Park
With the tallest trees on Earth, an old temperate rainforest, a rugged coastline, prairies, and oak woodlands, this UNESCO World Heritage Site is a much visited California national park.
Additionally, it is always free to visit (except for day-use areas and campgrounds) so you could save this one for any weekend.
Lassen Volcanic National Park
The Lassen Volcanic National Park boasts gigantic mountains and canyons and an active volcanic landscape with its craters, bubbling mud, lava pinnacles, and numerous volcanoes.
The lakes and rivers are plentiful.
Pinnacles National Park
America's newest national park is home to the California condor, the largest bird in North America. With many varieties of birds there, bird watchers love the park.
Astonishing rock formations are scattered throughout the park, and there are many caves that are loved by cavers and rock climbers.
Check The National Park Service website before you go to ensure the parks and roads are open. Also, you may need to make a reservation. Otherwise, you can not get in even though it's free.
Additionally, August 4 is a good time to visit California's national monuments and recreation areas. The ones that usually charge an entrance fee are also free on this day.
Finally, if you already have made plans for August 4, you have an additional chance for free entry this year on September 24 & November 11.
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