This list wasn’t particularly difficult to create as I only visited 3 national parks in my trip to the states, hence why some world-famous parks such as Yellowstone have been omitted. But anyway, here’s a brief account of my experiences at the Yosemite, Grand Canyon and Zion National Parks (ranked in no particular order).
Yosemite was definitely an awesome introduction to the magnitude of national parks in America. The Lower Falls were spectacular despite the lack of water and the tiring (mostly uphill) hike to Vernal Falls was a worthwhile experience as well. Don’t miss out on the Yosemite Valley lookout point which personally capped off a great day and allowed me to truly appreciate the beauty of this place.
The South Rim lookout points were incredibly crowded, even late in the afternoon and early in the morning. So in spite of the awe-inspiring nature of the Grand Canyon, my trip would have been slightly disappointing without a trek into the heart of the canyon itself. After much research, I chose the South Kaibab Trail which according to most reviews is far less crowded and offers better views than the Bright Angel Trail, despite being steeper. It certainly didn’t disappoint with ever-changing views and I basically had the whole place to myself.
First sightings of Zion are mind-blowing following a long drive through a very dark tunnel. The difficult Angel’s Landing hike is well worth it as long as you’re sure-footed and well-prepared (unlike me – I wore Vans). The view from the top was one of the best I’ve seen in my 17 years and the treacherous hike added to the sense of accomplishment and satisfaction.