The Most Visited Parks in 2011: Are Your Favorites on the List?
Last week, the National Park Service released data on the most visited parks of 2011. The list includes many of the same iconic places that attract tourists year after year, including the Great Smoky Mountains, Yellowstone, Yosemite, the Grand Canyon, and Grand Teton, and it’s interesting to see the variety and geographic diversity of popular destinations, representing sites from Utah to Maine to Ohio to California to Washington. The ten most popular units of the entire park system, which includes monuments, recreation areas, and other federal historic sites in addition to the national parks, covers even wider ground, from New Jersey to Nevada to Mississippi (although it’s worth noting that vehicle traffic on roadways in the park system certainly affects the visitation numbers).
All in all, the park system has seen an astounding 12.4 billion recreational visits since the Park Service was founded in 1916. Are your favorite parks on the list? View the numbers here: http://www.npca.org/exploring-our-parks/visitation.html
-Jennifer Errick, Editor, Online Communications