It’s part of the program that grants visitors five free admission days in 2023.

two cyclists stand beside bikes looking out at a river and mountains
National Park Service
Cycling is a popular method of eco-friendly tourism

There’s nothing more glorious than visiting one of our country’s National Parks—unless your visit is free, that is. The National Parks Service has announced several free days for 2023, with the first of them being Monday, Jan. 16, the federal holiday honoring the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

There will be a total of five free entrance days this year. In addition to MLK Day, free entrance days include the first day of National Park Week on April 22; Great American Outdoors Day on Aug. 4; National Public Lands Day  on Sept. 23; and Veterans Day on Nov. 11.

“National parks are really amazing places and we want everyone to experience them,” said National Park Service Director Chuck Sams. “The entrance fee-free days encourage people to discover the beauty, history, and inspiration awaiting them in more than 400 national parks throughout the country.”

More Videos From Sunset

Whether taking advantage of a freebie or visiting any other day, planning well in advance would be wise. Numerous national parks have incorporated entry reservation systems in the recent years to compensate for soaring visitor numbers. Utah’s Arches National Park, for example, became the latest to implement reservations, with officials citing “congestion and crowding that can negatively impact public safety, visitor experiences, and park resources.”

If you are planning on visiting, whether it be on one of the free days or otherwise, a terrific tool to ensure you’re sufficiently planning is the National Park Service app, which streamlines the experience at any of the nation’s 423 NPS locations by consolidating information on hiking trails, lodging, news alerts, dining options, and more. You can also visit the National Park Service website to plan ahead.

Read the Current Issue Here!

Get one year of Sunset—and all kinds of bonuses—for just $24.95. Subscribe now!