Visit a National Park for Free

On Fridays, we usually visit a state, but today we’re looking at the larger picture: America the beautiful. The National Parks Service (NPS) has announced dates when the parks will be open for free in 2019. Of the U.S.’ 418 national parks, 303 are free year-round. Others have admission fees and are only unrestricted a few times a year. Oft referred to as America’s best idea, the land protected in national parks not only cleans our air and water and aids in biodiversity, it also gives people a way to escape into nature that otherwise might elude them.

While most national parks are free, the 115 that are not can be pricey. To see which parks charge — and for a full list of prices — click here. Double check with the list below that any you want to visit are participating in the free admission days. If you’ve wanted to visit, but the prices have been too much, take note of the dates!

January 21: Birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr.
April 20: First day of National Park Week
August 25: National Park Service Birthday
September 28: National Public Lands Day
November 11: Veterans Day

Right here in Glucocil’s hometown of San Diego, Cabrillo National Monument — seen in the NPS’s photo above — will be waving its usual fee. If you are in our area, the tide pools alone are well worth a look, and that’s before you consider the history of the area, the wildflowers in spring and the lighthouse! Check out the list of which parks will be free and plan your visit. Getting out into nature is good for your health, both physically and mentally. Even gentle exercise has a positive impact on health.

In this chilly time of year, it’s easy to stay inside, not venturing out into the cold for more than trip to the store or a restaurant. We encourage everyone to walk, even if it’s just in your own space. We understand your trepidation about going out. At this time of year, many people get exercise via shopping, wrapping gifts, standing while cooking. It all adds up! There are a lot of good ways to stay fit while inside, including yoga and calisthenics. Exercising during the winter can help keep your mood, weight and energy levels stable. Stay moving now and, by the time the first free day at the national parks arrives, you’ll be fit as a fiddle and ready to go!

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