Get the deets on the most epic road trip that covers all the national parks

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Many of us crave a little more adventure in our lives. There's a whole world out there that is ours to explore, and it seems a waste not to make the most of it. And some of the areas in the US with the most incredible scenes of natural beauty have to be the amazing national parks.
There are a whopping 47 national parks in the US, which can leave you feeling overwhelmed with choices. But what if we told you you didn't have to choose? One clever road trip route, documented by the Washington Post, manages to take you through every single one of the national parks. So if you're looking for the most incredible road trip of a lifetime, look no further.
How long is the route?
This road trip covers almost 14,500 miles. This means it'll take you around two months to complete. Time well spent, in our opinion!
Where do you go?
Google Maps
The route, designed by Randal Olson, is circular, meaning you can start or finish it wherever you choose. It covers all 48 states of the continental US, with the furthest points being Acadia National Park in Maine and Redwood National and State Parks in California.
What are the details?
Below is a list of national parks covered by the route:
(We've laid out the list in groups of 5)
Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona
Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona
Saguaro National Park, Arizona
Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Texas
Carlsbad Caverns National Park, New Mexico
Big Bend National Park, Texas
Hot Springs National Park, Arkansas
Mammoth Cave National Park, Kentucky
Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Tennessee
Everglades National Park, Florida
Dry Tortugas National Park, Florida
Biscayne National Park, Florida
Congaree National Park, South Carolina
Shenandoah National Park, Virginia
Acadia National Park, Maine
Cuyahoga Valley National Park, Ohio
Isle Royale National Park, Michigan
Voyageurs National Park, Minnesota
Theodore Roosevelt National Park, North Dakota
Badlands National Park, South Dakota
Wind Cave National Park, South Dakota
Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado
Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, Colorado
Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park, Colorado
Mesa Verde National Park, Colorado
Canyonlands National Park, Utah
Arches National Park, Utah
Capitol Reef National Park, Utah
Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah
Zion National Park, Utah
Great Basin National Park, Nevada
Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming
Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
Glacier National Park, Montana
North Cascades National Park, Washington
Mount Rainier National Park, Washington
Olympic National Park, Washington
Crater Lake National Park, Oregon
Redwood National and State Parks, California
Lassen Volcanic National Park, California
Yosemite National Park, California
Kings Canyon National Park, California
Sequoia National Park, California
Pinnacles National Park, California
Channel Islands National Park, California
Joshua Tree National Park, California
Death Valley National Park, California
Do you miss anything?
As the route is circular, it does not include any national parks in Hawaii, Alaska, or any other US territories. It also omits National Monuments and National Historic Sites.
What's special about this route?
This route is cleverly designed to be the shortest possible route that still manages to hit every continental national park. It's thought the route had been worked on for years and was published to mark the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service.
How can the route be used?
While taking the whole route over a two-month period does sound like a dream, for many of us that just isn't practical. But what is cool about this route plan is that it covers all of the national parks - meaning you can take any section of it as an efficient way to visit all of the national parks in any one particular area, too!
Resources US Parks and Washington Post
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