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How to Visit the National Parks for Free in 2020

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Yosemite National Park is one of the many that will be free during certain times this year.

Photo by Josh Carter on Unsplash

Yosemite National Park is one of the many that will be free during certain times this year.

The U.S. National Park Service announced five days this year where you can explore the great outdoors for no price at all.

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Mark your calendars, budget travelers: The National Park Service announced its “entrance-fee free” dates throughout 2020. On these days, the more than 100 park sites that normally charge visitors to get in will offer complimentary admission to everyone. In total, there are five free days throughout the year. They include:

  • January 20: Martin Luther King Jr. Day
  • April 18: First day of National Park Week
  • August 25: National Park Service Birthday
  • September 26: National Public Lands Day
  • November 11: Veterans Day

Days with no entrance fee are a perfect opportunity to revisit a favorite park or explore a new one. Of the 419 parks managed by the National Park Service, 111 charge regular entrance fees ranging from $5 to $35. It’s important to note that this waiver does not include fees for activities such as commercial tours, transportation, or campsites and third-party concessions. 

For avid parkgoers, the annual America the Beautiful National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass is only $80 and allows unlimited entrance to more than 2,000 federal recreation areas year-round.

Ready to get out there? Check out our top National Park trip ideas and tips.

This article originally appeared online on January 12, 2017; it was updated in January 2020 to include current information.

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