Last updated on March 20th, 2023 at 01:33 am
The National Park Service is over 100 years old! How many of our beautiful national parks have you been to?
Enjoy free admission to National Parks on special “free entrance days.” More than 100 national parks that usually charge admission will be free on these days.
There are over 400 national parks in all, and most are actually free every day. On special “free entrance days,” all parks are free. These dates are listed below.
Free admission to national parks: 2023 calendar
- January 16: Martin Luther King Jr. Day
- April 22: First day of National Park Week
- August 4: Anniversary of the Signing of the Great American Outdoors Act
- September 23: National Public Lands Day
- November 11: Veterans Day
The free days may be busy, so call ahead if you plan to camp overnight, and find out about reservations.
Be sure to check out the annual passes for active duty military too. This program offers free admission to national parks all year round for veterans and gold star families!
The free Military Pass is a way to thank America’s veterans, Gold Star Families, and current military and their dependents for their support of our country and to encourage them to explore recreational opportunities on our public lands and waters.
Every Kid Outdoors
Every Kid Outdoors allows U.S. fourth graders and their family members free access to over 2,000 federal lands and waters. What a great opportunity to discover our nation’s wildlife, resources, and history.
Every Kid Outdoors aims to create crucial connections to public lands and inspire a future generation of stewards for America’s spectacular national parks and other public lands.
To obtain a pass, fourth grade students can visit the bilingual Every Kid Outdoors website, participate in a short educational activity, and then download a paper voucher to print and bring with them to visit public lands and waters all across the country.
Every Kid Outdoors begins each year on September 1 and goes through August 31. Visit Every Kid Outdoors, and get your free fourth grade pass today.
Park Service Educational Programs
And, parents and teachers, check out this link. It’s all about the Park Service’s educational programs. There is field trip information and much more.
Here’s just a a sampling of what the Park Service offers for educators and students:
Teaching with Historic Places
You’ll love the National Park Service’s place-based lesson plans that teach history through images, maps, readings, and other primary source documents.
Check out the “curiosity kits,” one-hour history lessons, and see how you can use the National Register to research historic places in your community.
Spaceflight Explorer Junior Ranger Program
The spaceflight explorere junior ranger program includes a free NASA/NPS Spaceflight Explorer Junior Ranger booklet for ages five to 12.
The Spaceflight Explorer Jr. Ranger book is a free, printable booklet with math puzzles, spot-the-difference pictures, matching puzzles, scrambled words, and anagrams. Take the pledge to become a Spaceflight Explorer Junior Ranger, make your own badge, and put your name on the certificate.
Classroom Materials and Materials for Loan
Want to borrow some educational materials from a park? Some parks allow you to check out a traveling trunk or other media for loan.
Classroom materials include primary sources, science labs, and other in-class activities.
Our national parks are here for all of us to enjoy, so find out which parks are near you, and then plan your visit.
And, you might want to check out these posts too:
US National Parks Checklist, Map, & Free Printable Bucket List
Best National Park Day Hikes for Beginners
Photo by John Baker on Unsplash
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I love taking the kids to fun places that are also educational! National parks are a great idea!