National Park Service Announces Entrance Fee-Free Days for 2020
One of America’s greatest treasures, our national parks, grasslands, and monuments are always worth visiting – but they’re even better to visit when they’re FREE!
In 2020, the National Park Service will be offering free admission on the following days:
- January 20: Birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr.
- April 18: First day of National Park Week
- August 25: National Park Service Birthday
- September 26: National Public Lands Day
- November 11: Veterans Day
According to National Park Service Deputy Director David Vela, “across the country, more than 400 national parks preserve significant natural and cultural areas, each one an important piece of our national identity and heritage. Free entrance days serve as additional motivation for people to get outside and enjoy these places of inspiration and recreation.”
Out of the 419 National Park Service sites, only about 110 of them charge entrance fees. I’d recommend hitting them on the free days, and heading over to the other 309 NPS managed properties during the rest of the year. As an aside: the fee waiver is for entrance fees only. You still get to pay amenity/user fees for “camping, boat launches, transportation or special tours” according to the NPS.
From the NPS website: Since their inception almost 150 years ago, national parks have protected resources and provided places for public health and enjoyment. With at least one site in every state, the National Park Service’s 419 parks, recreation areas, cultural sites, rivers, and trails are accessible destinations that supply benefits for overall physical and mental wellbeing.
Time spent in nature reduces stress and blood pressure and often leads to lifestyle choices that include more exercise and better nutrition. Paddling, bicycling, walking, fishing, star gazing, and camping are just some of the many memorable and healthful recreational activities available in national parks.
If you do visit our National Park Service managed properties the entrance fees can range from $5 to 35 depending on the park and the season. You might want to look into an America the Beautiful National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Annual Pass. This pass will get you unlimited entry to more than 2,000 federal recreation areas, including all national parks across the nation. If you’ve got a bit of Scottish heritage in you like I do, and you just on’t like parting with your hard-earned cash, you might dig a little deeper as there are also free or discounted passes available for “senior citizens, active duty members of the U.S. military, families of fourth grade students, and disabled citizens” on the NPS website.
Get outside in 2020.