Put away the smart phones and tablets and bring out the tents and sleeping bags, we’ve got places to go and sights to see! Dr. Willard’s has put together a list of our favorite destinations from around the country, ranging from California to Alaska. In order to appreciate the beauty of nature to its fullest, sometimes we have to take it in first-hand. To help you do that, here are five fantastic camping destinations in no particular order.
Yosemite National Park
A national park located in northern California, Yosemite has some unbeatable views of nature. It’s diverse in wildlife and plant species, the terrain is fascinating, and there are plenty of activities to keep yourself busy.
Grand Teton National Park
You can find the Grand Teton National Park amongst the peaks in the Teton Range. The park has a huge number of campsites ready to use, whether they be drive-in or tent only. Experience the drastic changes in elevation during the day and catch a glimpse of the stars at night.
Surrounded by a thick forest, the Black Hills are located in western South Dakota, sprawling out across the Great Plains of the United States. The southern portion of the hills are home to many tourist attractions, including Mount Rushmore, Jewel Cave, Harney Peak, and the Crazy Horse Memorial, which is actually the largest sculpture in the world! The Black Hills offer everything you would expect and then some, ranging from numerous hiking trails and campgrounds to fishing and sight-seeing. After a long day of enjoying the outdoors, one can always retreat to Rapid City and experience the local nightlife, located at the foot of the hills.
Grand Canyon National Park
A list of great camping destinations wouldn’t be all that great of a list if it didn’t have the Grand Canyon on it. People from around the world travel thousands of miles to come witness the effect natural forces can have on the landscape, and you should too. Hiking is the most common reason for visiting the Grand Canyon, but it also has three main campgrounds that are open for reservations throughout most of the year. Backcountry camping is also available and encouraged, but requires a license that has a small fee attached. The nice thing about the hiking trails is the variation you can find – ranging from beginner to expert difficulty, hiking enthusiasts of all skill levels will definitely feel rewarded as the day winds down and they settle into their sleeping bags. This is one that really should be on everyone’s bucket list.
Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve
To throw in some variety, our last camping destination will be Glacier Bay, located on the Alaskan panhandle. Right away you’ll be in for a treat, as most park attendees arrive by cruise ship. Activities like hiking, camping, fishing, bird-watching, and hunting are available depending on what your interests are. You can even see glaciers up close and personal! While glaciers around the world may be in retreat due to global warming, Glacier Bay has several who have not felt the harsh effects of rising global temperatures. It’s difficult to get an experience like this anywhere else – just make sure you pack warmer clothes than usual!
If you need a break from the hustle of modern day life, there’s no greater relief than traveling somewhere and viewing the natural beauty without the all the distractions we’re used to seeing every day. Activities like camping are good for both the body and the mind, and it’s an approach we recommend to anyone who has the means to experience it. Whether it’s one of the destinations above or just your local campground, the act of stepping away from normal life for a few seconds can really change your perspective.