How to Visit the National Parks for Free in 2024

The U.S. National Park Service has announced the select dates in 2024 when you can enter the parks without paying a fee.

Sunrise over hoodoos in Bryce Canyon National Park

Bryce Canyon National Park is one of the many parks that will be free during select days in 2024.

Courtesy of Swapan Jha/Getty Images

The National Park Service recently announced its “entrance-fee free” dates for 2024. On these days, the more than 100 park sites that normally charge visitors to enter will offer complimentary admission to everyone. In total, there will be six fee-free days throughout the year—an increase from the five available in 2023.

“The entrance fee-free days expand opportunities for people to visit their national parks and experience the beauty and history of our country,” National Park Service director Chuck Sams said in a statement about the fee-free days.

In 2024, you can visit U.S. national parks for no fee on these dates:

  • January 15: Martin Luther King, Jr. Day  
  • April 20: First Day of National Park Week  
  • June 19:  Juneteenth  
  • August 4: Great American Outdoors Day  
  • September 28: National Public Lands Day  
  • November 11: Veterans Day  

Note that this waiver does not include fees for activities such as commercial tours, transportation, or campsites and third-party concessions.
Days with no entrance fee are a perfect opportunity to revisit a favorite park or explore a new one. Of the 419 parks, including historic sites, monuments, rivers, and more, managed by the National Park Service, 108 charge regular entrance fees ranging from $10 to $35 that will be waived. This includes popular national parks like Yosemite in California, the Grand Canyon in Arizona, Olympic in Washington, Zion and Bryce Canyon in Utah, and Acadia in Maine.

If you’d rather beat the crowds and use this opportunity to explore some less-visited, though equally scenic, national parks, then consider spending the day at Shenandoah in Virginia, Sequoia and Kings Canyon in California, or Guadalupe in Texas.

For avid parkgoers, the annual America the Beautiful National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass is only $80 ($20 for seniors; free for active military members) and allows unlimited entrance to more than 2,000 federal recreation areas year-round.

This article originally appeared online in January 2017; it was most recently updated on December 5, 2023, to include current information. Maggie Fuller contributed reporting.

Michelle Baran is a deputy editor at AFAR where she oversees breaking news, travel intel, airline, cruise, and consumer travel news. Baran joined AFAR in August 2018 after an 11-year run as a senior editor and reporter at leading travel industry newspaper Travel Weekly.
From Our Partners
Sign up for our newsletter
Join more than a million of the world’s best travelers. Subscribe to the Daily Wander newsletter.
More From AFAR