Clovis Family Day Trip: Sequoia National Park

Clovis families are on the look-out for new family-friendly activities. Luckily Clovis is less than two hours from the Bay Area, Central Coast, Yosemite, and the Sequoia National Park. The closest, family friendly day trip is just east of Clovis in the Sierra Nevada mountains, to Grant Grove on Highway 180.

Grant Grove is home to the General Grant Giant Sequoia tree, also known as America’s Christmas Tree. At Grant Grove, you can rent a cabin or room in a fine lodge and you can grab a burger at the local restaurant. From Grant Grove you will have a choice of heading north to Kings Canyon or south-east toward Lodge Pole.

Kings Canyon is about one hour north-east of Grant Grove. It is a photographer’s dream with sheer canyon walls and wild rapids at places such as Roaring River Falls. There are areas of Kings Canyon in which the canyon itself is deeper than the Grand Canyon. Just before Kings Canyon lies Boyden Cave, filled with stalactites and stalagmites and open to tours.

South-east of Grant Grove, about 30 minutes by car, is Lodge Pole providing camping, a hotel, restaurant, grocery store, and a ranger’s station. There are several trail heads out of Lodge Pole.

Just ten minutes from Lodge Pole is the world’s largest living thing, the General Sherman tree. Park your car and walk right up to the base of this living giant. Hike along a nearby trail to enjoy a grove of Giant Sequoia trees.

Continue along the highway to Moro Rock and enjoy this moderate climb and view the Sierra Nevada and the San Joaquin Valley below. For those with a tight schedule or unable to climb the entire height, there is a great outlook about one-third of the way up the rock with a spectacular view of the Sierras and the valley below.

As you drive along the highway, be sure to enjoy each of the tourist stops that allow you to park your car on a tree or drive through a tree with your car. As you drive and enjoy these stops, you will be able to continue on to Crescent Meadow. The meadow is a beautiful hike by any standard, but it holds a great surprise in the back — a large hollowed log that had been used as a house. “Tharpe’s Log” is a key tourist attraction in the park.

After you hit these highlights, you can turn around and head back to Clovis via Grant Grove. You can also continue down past Moro Rock to Three Rivers and have dinner at one of its fine restaurants. Three Rivers is also home to a well-known candy store with homemade ice cream to boot. The road from Sequoia to Three Rivers is winding, but worth it for the quaint community. From Three Rivers, the trip back to Clovis is just under ninety minutes.

Check Out Hawaii Volcanoes National Park to See a Different Side of Hawaii

Hawaii is famous for many things. For the most part, it is the food and the beaches, but another area of the islands that you will want to be sure to see is the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. There is no place like it in the United States and after seeing any part of the 500 square miles of space that it occupies, you will realize how incredible these volcanoes are.

While volcanoes are not as active as they once were, they are still letting people know that they are around on occasion. There are still two active volcanoes in Hawaii and activity has happened as recently as about 2 years ago. If you are feeling your oats and choose to walk close to the lava, you will feel a heat that is almost unbearable and will quickly realize how much damage this liquid fire can do.

If you are interested in passing by the two volcanoes that are still active, you will have to go see either Kilauea or Mauna Loa. Mauna Loa is a massive structure of 13,677 feet high and is absolutely breathtaking. Kilauea is the one that is more active and likes to let people know that it is still around more often than not. This is actually where the underwater Ring of Fire is located and made up of several of these volcanoes in the area.

Now just because these volcanoes are active, they have not truly erupted like the Halema’uma’u did in March of 2008. This was a massive spewing of gas and ash that covered some 70 acres of the island. To this day, the lava still streams and cuts off the roads to tourist activity.

For another look at how much damage a volcano can do, take the journey down Devastation Trail. It is only a short walk of about 30 minutes, but it leads you past an area that saw volcanic activity about 50 years ago. It is actually still a little difficult to breathe there and those with breathing or heart problems are advised to stay away to avoid any difficulties.

Hiking is obviously a big part of the enjoyment of this area. Walking the grounds is the best way to check things out because you can see up close how beautiful some of these creations are and how devastating the volcanoes have been over the years. They may look beautiful, but you do not want to be around when they get angry.

Thurston Lava Tube is another trail that you may want to check out. It is a fairly comfortable walk of about 4 miles that takes you into the rainforest. The path winds up at Kilauea Iki Trail where you can stare into the heart of a streaming crater. It is quite impressive and something that you would be hard pressed to see anywhere else.

When your day is coming to an end or at the very beginning, you would be well served to stop off at either the Jagger Museum or the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory. Both of them will give you a little extra knowledge about the area and help you better understand everything that you are about to see or have seen during your journey.

National Park Freebies – Ten Tips to Trim Your Travel Budget

Although there’s no such thing as a free lunch, it doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg to visit one of over 400 national parks and recreation areas across America. From free admission and tours, to special programs and even transportation, there’s no shortage of freebies to be had in these beautiful public lands. And although many of these cost-saving deals are well advertised, some are held as closely guarded secrets. With that in mind, here are ten tips to help trim your travel budget on your next national park visit.

US Citizens with a permanent disability can get a free Access Pass, which is good for free admission to all national parks, recreation sites, national monuments and wildlife refuges. Passes can be obtained at entrance kiosks, with proof of citizenship and disability. The pass also offers a 50% discount on campsites and boat launch fees.

Active members of the military can also get a free annual pass by presenting their Common Access Card or Military ID (Form 1173). This pass is available to members of all branches of the military — including reservists and National Guard members — and it has the same benefits as the Access Pass.

Many parks have free cell phone tours. For example, In Olympic National Park, visitors can call (360) 406-5056 to get recorded information on different areas of the park. Consult the park newspaper to see if a cell phone tour is available.

If you’re traveling with someone who can’t walk very far, check with the park visitor center, as many times they have manual wheelchairs for loan.

Some parks offer free tours on a first-come basis. Over in Zion visitors can take a free 90-minute ranger-led bus tour of Zion Canyon. Seats are limited and can only be reserved in person at the visitor center, up to three days in advance. It’s always a good idea to inquire at the visitor center whenever you visit a park, as that’s how you’ll discover freebies like this.

While we are on the subject, rangers are an excellent source of free information, so don’t hesitate to ask them for specific suggestions. On one visit to Yosemite, a ranger clued me in that Washburn Point was an excellent stop for wheelchair-users. This information wasn’t in the park newspaper, but the ranger knew because her brother was disabled.

Take advantage of the free shuttle buses in many parks, as they will save you time and frustration. For example, in Bryce National Park parking is limited along the main park road, but folks that take the optional shuttle bus dodge the parking hassle and have more time to enjoy the park.

If you have kids in tow ask about the junior ranger program at the main park visitor center. To become a junior ranger a child has to complete activities in the free junior ranger activity book, then have them checked by a ranger. If all goes well, they are sworn in as a junior ranger. It’s a fun way to encourage kids to learn about the natural environment while they explore a park.

If you have a fourth grader in the family you’ll be able to save even more money this year, thanks to the Every Kid in a Park Initiative. To celebrate the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service all fourth graders will receive a season pass for their family, good for admission to all parks in the 2015-2016 school year.

Last but not least, everybody gets free admission on national park free entrance days. These include the National Park Service Birthday (August 25), National Public Lands Day (September 26) and the first weekend of National Parks Week (mid-April). There’s also no admission charge on Veterans Day, Martin Luther King Jr Day, and Presidents Day weekend.

National Parks Are Memory Makers

Have you spent time daydreaming of where you might like to go or see? Are you searching for an idea for a dream vacation for you and your family? A vacation that is more than the visit to the water park or theme park? Are you looking for a vacation that could be labeled better as an experience you will never forget? Are you looking for a vacation idea that will let you tell stories of the trip to friends and new generations not yet here? If so I hope this article will give you an idea you have not really thought about that much. I hope this article will create to see natural beauty at its best!

If you and your family have not visited any of our national parks in our great nation you can’t imagine what you are missing. If you or your family have not visited our most wonderful and unique national parks then it is time to start. When it comes to beauty in natural settings, these are the places to visit. For breathtaking views and absolute amazement in our national parks, must see parks include Grand Canyon National Park and Yellowstone. Both of these parks offer miles and miles of beautiful views and extensive wildlife as well. They have a way of giving us a bold statement without saying a word. Good camping areas are available at both parks as well. This makes planning your trip a whole lot easier.

There are of course many other national parks to visit and each has their own unique beauty. You could end up at Glacier National Park where winter clothing is a must. There are over sixty parks that are included under the national park moniker. This means that it would take a lot of vacations and traveling to see them all. Many of the parks are huge and would not be able to be explored in one trip alone. Water, sand, caves, mountains, and volcanoes can all be found at different parks in this system.

You will be able to find lodging and other needed services near most parks. The internet makes a great tool for looking up the areas where the parks are located. This will allow you to plan as much of the mundane tasks that are part of vacationing before you leave and let you have more time visiting the park you have chosen. Many of the national parks have their own lodging options including camping. This will bring you even closer to nature and lets you feel like you are a part of the ecosystem.

The national park system offers such a wide choice of things for people to do. Wow, how much better can it get than this for the one really interested and has a passion for photography! The places to hike are unbelievable whether it be for the beginner of the most experienced.What about the people who love to just sit and gaze through natures window? Their choices of views are unlimited.

These parks are an important reminder of the natural world that we have left behind and sharing this with our families can be some of the most rewarding times of our lives.Lastly, I believe when one visits a national park they leave with a new attitude toward responsibility. We all have a huge responsibility to preserve these most wonderful gifts to mankind for generations to come. It is my hope that we will each have the opportunity to visit as many national parks as we can and make lifetime memories for all of us and our families.

The Grand Canyon National Park

Great National Parks – The Grand Canyon

The other Great National Park in the United States besides Yellowstone National Park is the Grand Canyon National Park. The Grand Canyon is of course the most dominating feature of this park. The Canyon is 277 miles long, 18 miles wide and one mile deep.

Accommodation

There are many places to stay in the Grand Canyon and bookings should be made well in advance as they are usually full up all the time. Prices range from about $69-$426 per night, depending on the type of accommodation you need. There are regular bus services from all lodgings to connect with restaurants, shops, visitor centers, scenic overlooks and trailheads. You can also stay outside the park at several inns nearby, which are usually cheaper. You do need to get a pass to enter the park though and this will need to be shown when requested.

Camping

It’s also possible to camp both rough and with vehicles in the Grand Canyon. The rules and regulations need to be followed for both. There are developed camping grounds with shower facilities and parking and it’s also possible to camp with tents and backpack in the park as well, but there are rules governing this.

Activities

There are many things to do in the Grand Canyon National Park and that is why it’s a great national park. You can take trips down the river, guided tours of the natural and archaeological sites, mule trips, hiking, guided tours given by experienced rangers and even sunrise and sunset tours which let you see the best views of the Grand Canyon at the most dramatic times. Hiking is one of the most popular ways to see the Grand Canyon and there are many different types of hiking and information available for the brave. You can take easy day trips that are just a few hours long as well as overnight hiking trips that will require a tent or at least some bedding. Both summer and winter hiking is possible and they both require different clothing and preparation. There are trail restrictions and weather warnings that you need to be aware of and this is found easily in the visitor centers when you are already there. Hiking in the Grand Canyon is very difficult and only the most experienced of hikers should attempt it and always in groups. You do need a permit as well to go off the trails so be aware of this.

Centennial

The 100th anniversary of the National Park Service will take place in 2016 and there will be many events and exhibitions organized in the Grand Canyon to celebrate this. Conservation, preservation of the environment and enjoyment will be the themes of this event in America’s greatest national parks. Many different projects will be started and funded by the government and private initiatives as well to keep the park alive for future generations.

Seasons

The South Rim of the Canyon is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. The North Rim is only open from May to October.

Trip Report For Tarangire National Park Safari in Tanzania

It was an extremely exciting day as I was living my dream of visiting the Africa safari. The whole thought of experiencing the National Geographic and Discovery channels live was thrilling to the core.

First day was the safari and game drive in Tarangire National park located 120 km south west of Arusha town. It took us 3 hours to reach the park wherein the last 5km had no roads, probably making visitors used to for no roads inside the park. The guide did all the documentation work for us to enter the park premises.

On the way we had crossed Arusha airport which seemed more like a private airport due to its size and proximity to the road with plying vehicles. We also passed by open large expanse of grasslands and occasional trees. It was drizzling a bit saturating the environmental colors. The road had many steep ups and downs but the powerful safari vehicles had no problems navigating through these terrains. On reaching inside the park we were given simple instructions by our guide:

Do not feed animals
Do not litter
Do not get out of the vehicle at any time as walking is not permitted

At all times inside the park one has to remain stay put in the safari vehicle. We reached the park by 10 am with packed lunches. It is a regular way of safari outing with picnic lunches to ensure the entire day is spent in game drives without returning to lodges/camps for meals. The driver cum guide is a trained personnel who has to take care of multiple things along with driving and sighting animals.

Some of the national park details he shared were:

Tarangire is national park gazette number 197.
It is in an area of 2580 sq km.
The park derives its name from the river Tarangire which flows within.
The word Tarangire means river of Warthogs due to the huge warthog population in this park.

Every national park has something unique, baobab trees and tusk elephants for Tarangire. The tusks of these elephants are massive and their population number is also huge within this park.

Once the instructions and information were shared and we were raring to go inside, the guide opened the complete roof for the best possible viewing. The windows are big enough for viewing but they can sometimes limit the landscape view. Once the roof was lifted it was simply beautiful with large open grasslands and eyes hunting for wildlife sighting. Driving another 500 meters and we were officially within the Tarangire national park limits. There were only mud roads but the ride did not still feel bumpy. Our first sight was of a termite mound. Termites and other ants are an extremely important part of the ecosystem and the best cleaners of planet earth. They travel in armies and ensure that nothing is left after a kill to stale or pollute the surroundings.

There were open grasslands along with trees which also included the unique Baobab tree. It is a hollow broad trunk tree with small branches and few leaves. Jokingly it is also termed as if the tree has been planted upside down with its roots visible instead of the actual branches. This tree has natural holes within it’s trunk deal for poachers to hide and animals to rest. The first animal visible was a giraffe that was silently grazing on yellow bark acacia which is an extremely long thorny tree and also a favorite for giraffe. The tongue twists in a direction to prevent any pricks from tree and then swallowed by the animal. Female giraffe can be identified by having visible hair on the horn at its head. Male species do not have any hair exposing the bare horns.

We were driving and sighted water bucks in the Tarangire river. They were small in number with multiple groups and enjoying the water around them. We could see 2 of them testing the strength of their horns. The open roof as giving good wide angle view of park landscape and the game drive. There were some ostriches also seem on the road side grazing on grasses. The males are black in color while the females are grey in color. It was very interesting to get to know all these minute random details from our guide about different species.

We seemed to be the only ones driving but spotted another safari vehicle stationary at a road curve. This is generally an indication of either a sighting or an expected wildlife activity. Our vehicle reached to it and saw a giant tusker near a Baobab tree. It got on the move and vehicles moved closer to it to see the big tusks. I have seen Asian elephants also and could easily make out the difference of its African counterpart with larger ears and bigger tusks. It was playing with a tree and easing out its body itchiness. It seemed to have had a mud bath with red soil shining over its complete large body. We stood there for some time shooting the animal in different angles and observing its activities. After few moments it went inside the trees with all of us losing its sight.

The next animal seen was gazelle which were also next to the road grazing fresh grass after the monsoon season. They are the ones hunted by carnivores in plenty. It is a deer like animal with silky golden shining fur and a black stripe to distinguish between a female and a male. One of them leaped and it would have been easily few meters in distance.

Maneuvering further in park we saw a family of warthogs crossing the road with the young ones completely secured from us. Herbivore animals with fake tusks meant only for defense. These animals are found in plenty here and lend their name to the river and this national park. They have to kneel down to feed on the grass due to the long legs.

We kept on driving around the game park and reached the picnic site. Each park has a dedicated secured picnic site where visitors can use sparkling clean washroom facilities, seating arrangement for the packed lunches. We got off the vehicle and walked around to feel the surroundings with lunch being the last priority. We decided to skip the lunch at the moment and explored the area which seemed like a hill top region with river views and greater landscape in front of us. There were many superb starlings in that site and they seemed extremely friendly. I was trying to shoot one at a distance and realized that another one had literally climbed onto my shoe and another one on my back. It was extremely nice to see myself surrounded by such beautifully colored birds and feel the proximity to nature.

After a 20 minutes stop we hopped back onto the vehicle for some more action. On descending down we saw many rock hyraxes. I was seeing and hearing them for the first time and appearance vise they are bigger versions of the mouse. They have another species of tree hyrax found only on trees. We could see a full community and multiple families laying on rocks. They were swift in climbing rocks and hiding within them.

The guide now started driving towards park exit(same as entrance) as we had planned to cover Manyara national park also on the same day. On the way back we saw martial eagle with its yellow eyes and a slight crest on its head sitting on one of the leafless tree branch. The arrogance with which it was sitting atop was noticeable, giving it a great position to watch the park. Further ahead on a tree we saw Griffon vultures which can be seen plenty in numbers around a hunt. They are also environment cleaners with their scavenging skills. The beaks of both these birds are pointed and needle like to rip apart any flesh attached to bones. The martial eagle is also responsible for opening up the carcass.

On a few trees we noticed blue cloth tied which is used to either collect or kill the Tse Tse fly whose bite can cause sleeping sickness. These flies appear like large housefly and attacks humans as well as animals. It was again so interesting to listen to all this unique information and understand the mother nature more closely which we do not even pay heed to, leading our hectic city life.

Now we had reached the park exit/entrance check post to hand over final exit documentation papers. Probably 5 km ahead we stopped at a local maasai market area to have our packed lunches. The lunch was full of red meat and I had to survive only on fruits which were also packed alongside thankfully. It had started to rain by this time and we were experiencing all the weathers in a day. The place was a small hut with chairs made out of goat skin. I was amazed to see the complete skin of goat with hair still attached and interestingly used as the chair seating cushion. During our meal, a lot of local people came to sell locally crafted bead garlands and other craft items. We skipped the shopping and started our journey to Manyara National park.

At all times I was feeling very comfortable with the bean bags we had customized for our game drives. I had done a lot of search and reading on web to find the one with right design and shape. I was quite pleased with the results and even happier when the usage seemed perfect in those vehicles.

Grand Teton National Park, Named For the Female Anatomy

One of the most fabulous parks in the National Park System is Grand Teton National Park located just south of Yellowstone Park in northwestern Wyoming. The origin of the name of the park is just as interesting as the park itself. The mountain range was mistakenly named by a French trapper who felt that some hills in the area of Arco, Idaho were reminiscent of the female anatomy and thus the word Tetons which is French for nipples was given to those hills. Years after that the name was incorrectly given to the mountains now within The Grand Teton National Park on a map!

Grand Teton National Park is considered one of the most picturesque and beautiful areas in the western United States. Visitors come from all over the country and the world for all the activities the park has to offer. While in Teton you can enjoy activities such as camping, biking, climbing, fishing, cross country snow skiing, horseback riding and hiking.

Within its 484 mile area is 200 miles of perfect hiking trails encompassing all level of hiking skill. No matter how serious or casual a hiker you may be, there is a trail within the park just for you. And, all along those trails are fabulous examples of flora and wildlife that will amaze and astound you. There are over 1,000 species of plants within the park and you could see everything from coyotes and moose to red squirrels and black bear.

Rising up straight out of the earth’s floor at Jackson Hole Wyoming, the Grand Tetons display an impressive vista that have been photographed and painted by some of the world’s most renowned artists. And, with good reason as Grand Teton National Park offers some of the most resplendent and lush scenery anywhere in America. It’s no surprise it would inspire those of an artistic constitution to be inspired by its beauty. Of course you don’t have to be an artist to be inspired to try out a little hiking, biking camping or alpining in Grand Teton. Let’s not forget the skiing. Some of the best back country and free skiing in North America can be had in Grand Teton National Park.

There are so many reasons to visit the Grand Teton National park. Truly there is something for every one of all ages to do in and around the Tetons. You will find ample choices of lodging, restaurants and interesting shops to explore surrounding the area as well. This is definitely one of the finest parks in the United States.

The Beautiful National Parks of New Zealand

New Zealand has some of the most amazing scenery in the world, and that’s no exaggeration. What makes this scenery so impressive and awe inspiring are the extreme differences in terrain, elevation, and features. New Zealand’s most beautiful scenery has been protected by National Parks, which can be found all over the North and South Islands. This page will give you an overview of some of the best New Zealand National Parks, but be warned… you may find yourself entirely obsessed with visiting the Land of the Long White Cloud (or Aotearoa, as the native Maori call it).

Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park

Just one look at this gigantic mountain and you’ll see why it’s been protected since 1953. It’s gorgeous. The park is the highest mountain in New Zealand and Australia. Poking through the clouds at 12,349 feet (3764m), this mountain is roughly double the height of the Adirondack’s highest mountain, Mount Marcy. The Ngai Tahu tribe that inhabit the South Island find this mountain sacred and have a legendary tale of how the mountain was formed.

Fiordland National Park

The largest of all of New Zealand’s National Parks, Fiordland, is a region overwhelmingly dominated by lush forests, inlets, rivers, sounds, and lakes. This area contains the often photographed Milford Sound, as well ad Doubtful Sound and Dusky Sound. There are 15 fiords within the park, all of which were formed by glacier activity during the Ice Age. The park is known also for its abundant wildlife, like the native Fiordland crested penguin.

Abel Tasman National Park

Located on the South Island’s northern side, this park is a limestone landscape with deep caves, underground rivers, and sandy, golden beaches. Abel Tasman National Park covers 87 square km (225 sq km), and is one of the top sea and kayaking destinations in all of New Zealand. From within the park, you can access beautiful waterfalls like the Wainui Falls, Harwood’s Hole, and the 32 mile (51 km) long Coast Track. Estuaries can be accessed from the Coast Track, but reservations for walking within the park are highly recommended.

Paparoa National Park

This is a particularly odd landscape, made up of sea weathered limestone. Located on the South Island, Paparoa National Park is a relatively short distance from Abel Tasman. The park was founded in 1987, and is widely known for its famous Pancake Rocks. Salt spray and constant pounding waves have shaped the limestone into these oddly stacked formations. These rocks during high tide become caverns, with the holes in the rocks filling up with water and pressure. The result is the entire Pancake Rocks area becoming a series of active blowholes, a stunning sight to see!

Recreational Activities at Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone national park is the most popular park in America with about 250000 visitors per month. It the first national park in America and one of the largest parks with 2.2 million acres of area and 370 miles of roadways. It is mainly located in Wyoming although it extends into Idaho and Montana. The park is popular for its varied wild life and eco systems. It is also popular for its geothermal features and old faith geyser is the most visited place in the yellow stone national park. Yellowstone is flooded with various lakes, rivers, canyon and mountain ranges. The yellow lake in the national park has a geographic importance; it is among on of the high-altitude lakes in North America.

The park has the most undisturbed ecosystem with hundreds of species of reptiles, mammals, fish, and birds. In Yellowstone national park you can even find some of the rarest species on the face of earth. There will be forest fires every year in the park, which is an issue that concerns man people. The worst forest fire occurred in the year 1988; about 1/3rd of the forest was burnt. Yellowstone national park organizes many recreational activities, which is attracting huge number of visitors to the park. Its a perfect destination for a week end holiday. Hiking, camping, fishing, boating are some of the recreational opportunities that you will not miss. In winter the visitors use snow mobiles and snow coaches to access the park and the paved road makes it possible to reach any corner of the park easily.

The national park has nine visitor centers and the utmost care is taken by the concerned authority to maintain the historical structures of the museums and 2000 building in the park. The historical structures in the park are Old Faith Inn constructed in 1903, historical landmarks and the Fort Yellowstone. A historical tour is a service provided by the national park authority which gives us detailed information about the national park and its development. Several campfires, recreational activities, guided walks and other informative presentations are organized at many locations inside the national park especially in summer.

To protect the ecosystem and wild life, hunting is strictly prohibited in the Yellowstone national park, how ever fishing is the most popular activity in the national park provided you have a Yellowstone park fishing license. Thus all care has been taken to protect the ecosystem and provide entertainment to the visitors.

Sweden’s National Parks – Come Witness the Beauty

Far from the hustle and bustle of Sweden’s busy cities, are its National Park System. Sweden’s national parks number 28, located from the north to south. The northern part of Sweden, is mountainous and offers a fascinating view of the hot springs, geysers that shoot hot water high into the air from beneath the earth. The terrain is similar to that of the moon. In fact, film makers often film on location in this area as a result.

Swedes believe strongly in being environmentally responsible and place a high standard on natural parks that provide protection to wildlife and plantlife. Of these, Abisko, a national park in the northern Lapland province of the country, near the Arctic circle is spectacular for its sweeping stretches of land that climb upward into mountains. Not only is it one of the 28 national parks of Sweden but it is also the site of a research center used primarily for environmental, biological and geological research.

Dalby Soderskog in southern Sweden is smaller and believed to be the remains of a primaeval forest. It is a lush, green area that contains the ruins of an ancient fortress.

Padjelanta is another national park of Sweden located in the north and is a UNESCO World Heritage site. It has two large lakes and an extensive plateau, mostly open and flat topographically. Here, the Sami lived in harmony with protected reindeer in a prolific pastoral setting. Sami ancestors were nomads who wandered the plateau herding reindeer.

Another interesting national park is Storre Mosse which defines in Swedish as “Big Marsh”. Located in southern Sweden, it’s large bogs cover more than 39 miles (100 square kilometers). It is protected by Swedish Environmental Protection Agency and encompasses varied animals and birds. Of It’s a lovely area that reminds one of the English moors or the US’s everglades region. Grasses grow thick and it’s surrounded by thick forest.

Of all of the national parks of Sweden, Tividen is perhaps, the most famous for its scenery and wilderness. But, also because it has been a hiding place for outlaws. It’s located between two lakes and is largely inaccessible. One of the most enchanting sites here are the red waterlilies. Folklore tells the tale of a farmer who met with a water spirit while fishing. The water spirit promised great catches of fish in exchange for his daughter. He agreed. Later she went down to the shore to meet the water spirit who suggested she go with him to his watery home. She refused, instead plunging a knife into her heart, falling dead, turning the water lilies blood red.

Near Stockholm is another national park of Sweden, Tyresta. it is surrounded by a nature reserve. In 1999, 10% of Tyresta was consumed by fire. There are two unforgettable lakes in this park, Lake Stensjon and Lake Arsjon.

Unlike many other national parks of the world, Sweden places preservation as its main consideration rather than national parks for tourism as some countries do.