I know national parks are some of the most common tourist attractions in the country, but this statistic still came as a shock to me:

According to the National Park Service site, roughly 325.5 million recreation visits were paid national parks last year. That's a notable increase of 13-million more visits (or 4%) more than in 2022. The biggest year for national park visits was 2016 with 330.97-million.

The National Park Service (NPS) oversees more than 400 sites, which include memorials, battlefields, recreation areas and of course, the parks themselves. The national parks get a lot of the attention, but they only account for 28% of total visitors to all National Park Service sites in 2023.

Our very own Acadia National Park was one of the most visited parks in 2023, coming in at #7. The top 10 are:

  1. Great Smoky Mountains National Park (13.29 million)
  2. Grand Canyon National Park (4.73 million)
  3. Zion National Park (4.62 million)
  4. Yellowstone National Park (4.50 million)
  5. Rocky Mountain National Park (4.11 million)
  6. Yosemite National Park (3.89 million)
  7. Acadia National Park (3.87 million)
  8. Grand Teton National Park (3.41 million)
  9. Joshua Tree National Park (3.27 million)
  10. Olympic National Park (2.94 million)

Surprising? No, not really. I say it time and time again, people from all over the country and even the world flock to Bar Harbor, Maine, to experience Acadia National Park, and we are so fortunate to have it a quick road trip away.

I have never heard of anyone visiting Acadia National Park and leaving disappointed, though I am sure that person does exist.

How many national parks have you visited? Which was your favorite?

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