NatureUnited States of America
Forget the beach this year and head somewhere where all your senses will come alive. The US is lucky to be home to some of the most remarkable natural landscapes in the world, many of which are now protected National Parks. From glaciers to deserts, mountains to lakes, here are 15 of the most extraordinary parks to explore this year. Whether you are a wildlife-lover, a happy-camper, a hiker or a swimmer, there is no place better to embark on an adventure than in these incredible places.
Arches National Park, Utah
The Arches National Park in Utah is a fascinating place with some 2,000 natural sandstone arches, including the Delicate Arch or the Landscape Arch and Balanced Rock, which towers over the desert in the centre. It is a great spot for hikers, bikers, drivers, campers and climbers. There are enough outdoor activities for everyone in this vast desert landscape.
Everglades National Park, Florida
Everglades is made up of coastal mangroves, sawgrass marshes and pine flatwoods that are home to hundreds of animal species. It is the perfect National Park for wildlife-lovers with its huge variation of rare species including the endangered leatherback turtle, Florida panther and West Indian manatee.
Rocky Mountains National Park, Minnesota
This is a spectacular mountain environment which includes hiking trails, wildflowers, wildlife-watching, incredible starry skies at night and much more. It is best known for its Trail Ridge Road and its Old Fall River Road, which are exhilarating routes that take you up past aspen trees and rivers. There is also the possibility of climbing the famous Keyhole Route, going up vertical rock faces all the waygggg to Longs Peak, which is the park's tallest mountain.
Hot Springs National Park, Arkansas
Hot Springs National Park contains 47 hot springs, or geothermal pools that spout up from inside the Earth. Visitors can bathe at a bathhouse in the park that pipes in water collected from the springs. The hot springs flow from the western slope of Hot Springs Mountain, part of the Ouachita Mountain range making it a place of natural relaxation.
Acadia National Park, Maine
Acadia is a stunning national treasure on Maine's Mount Desert Island. Its landscape is beautiful and diverse and made up of woodland, rocky beaches and mountains, including Cadillac Mountain. The wildlife that inhabits the stunning terrain includes moose, bears and whales.