5 Nevada National Parks to Visit this Summer

Head to the great outdoors this summer and explore the beautiful scenery and exciting activities Nevada national parks have to offer.

Death Valley National Park

If you love the summer heat, Death Valley National Park is definitely one to visit this season. Straddling the California-Nevada border, Death Valley is the largest U.S. National Park outside of Alaska–as well as one of the lowest and driest. Barren salt flats, rolling sand dunes and rugged mountains make the scenery unlike any other, along with unique wildlife that thrives in the hot climates. Check out incredibly adaptive species such as big horn sheep and desert tortoises that can survive hot temperatures and limited rainfall. Death Valley National Park is open year-round. Passes are required and begin at $15 per person. For more information, visit www.nps.gov/deva.

Lehman Caves

Great Basin National Park

A land of natural diversity, Great Basin National Park has it all for explorers and leisure-seekers to enjoy. Visiting this Nevada national park is a free and exciting adventure year-round with snowshoeing and skiing in the winter and beautifully scenic hiking trails open in the spring and summertime. While on the property, the Lehman Caves are a must-see with marble rock enclosing stalagmites and stalactites from centuries of condensation erosion. If you’re a licensed fisher, head to the streams to catch trout and relax, or embark on one of the many hiking trails with kid-accessible options available. For more information, visit www.nps.gov/grba.

Lake Mead National Recreation Area

Lake Mead National Recreation Area

While not classified as a park, Lake Mead is the first and largest National Recreation Area in the U.S., and it’s right in Las Vegas’s backyard! Both Lake Mead and Lake Mohave offer fresh, blue waters for boating, fishing and swimming for a refreshing summer vacation. And the hiking is not to be missed–ranging from easy to strenuous. Open year-round, Lake Mead is a great escape for the family that has an activity for everyone. Campgrounds, lodges and restaurants allow for the experience to be as rustic as you make it and adjusted to your comfort level. But the stunning scenery is sure to keep you outside. The cost per individual starts at $15. For more information, visit www.nps.gov/lake.

Tule Springs National Monument

Tule Springs Fossil Beds National Monument

Explore nearly 570,000 years of history in one national monument. Tule Springs Fossil Beds is an urban park that has been transformed by water into an incredibly unique landscape. If you and your family are fascinated by fossils, this is the summertime spot for you. Paleontology reigns supreme in this once-wet valley that was abundant with now-extinct life. Let a ranger lead you around the area, or embark on a trail on your own. Tule Springs is open year-round for exploration and is free to visit. For more information, visit www.nps.gov/tusk.

Valley of Fire

Valley of Fire State Park

A state park unlike any other, Valley of Fire dominates the Mohave Valley with its natural grandeur and bright, reddish coloring. The Aztec sandstone draws onlookers during all seasons to hike and explore the 2,000 years of petroglyphs and petrified trees on nearly 40,000 acres of land. Camping is first-come, first-served, and encouraged to capture the full essence of this beautiful state park. Hiking is also available, with some trails making fantastic photo spots. Enjoy where nature, history and scenic beauty meet with a trip to Valley of Fire State Park. Passes begin at $10 per person. For more information, visit parks.nv.gov/parks/valley-of-fire.

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