Las Vegas, America’s hype city that never sleeps, is always on its toes and has a beaming glamour that shines throughout the globe. It is the busiest hub in Nevada, America. From resorts, parties, casinos, the Las Vegas strip, and never-ending entertainment, Las Vegas has an impeccable variety of attractions.
Besides being the Gambling Capital of the World, this sensational city has fountains, roller coasters, parties, botanical gardens, historical museums, national monuments, and distinguished Las Vegas national parks.
Tourists cross oceans to be at the thrilling spots of Las Vegas, but here are some of people’s favorite Las Vegas national parks. We will be jogging through the top 10 Las Vegas national parks, with many national parks closest to Las Vegas.
Unlike other national parks, Las Vegas national parks are some of the most popular national parks. Here, the national park system is a thrilling tourist magnet.
Top 10 Best Las Vegas National Parks
1 Death Valley National Park
Sitting comfortably on eastern California and Nevada lands lies the largest national park in downtown Las Vegas, Death Valley National Park.
It is one of the best national parks near Las Vegas. It is also the nearest national park to Las Vegas, which was registered as an international dark sky park.
Death Valley National Park is exactly as its name sounds; this national park is the most desiccated destination in North America. It is notable for its paramount weather increases and the least rainfalls.
One of the features after which the entire national park is coined is a national monument, the Death Valley. Other must-not-miss attractions of the national park service include,
- Badwater Basin
- Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes
- Zabriskie Point
- Dante’s View
- Devil’s Golf Course
- Artist’s Palette
- Desert Wildflowers
- Ubehebe Crater and other national recreation areas.
After reading about the weather conditions, the question arises as to why tourists consider the Death Valley National Park among their favorite Las Vegas National Parks. Because, as hot as it gets in the day, the more of a starry night is in the evening. The dunes are a great sightseeing spot.
The more dehydrated the skies feel during the day, the more alive heaven looks at night. Tourists have a lot to traverse, from hiking trails and exploration sites to the best sunset and sunrises.
Further, with a drive of two hours from Death Valley, backpackers travel to the Mojave National Preserve. The Mojave National Preserve is a compelling countryside that has legitimate nature adventures embedded within. Of America’s national park systems, this is the third-largest. You need the least 2 days to cover all activities like horseback riding, hiking trails, exploring the popular dunes, stargazing, and a great drive.
At the Death Valley National Park, thrills that are tourist famous are camping, sightseeing, hiking, farmland driving, mountain biking, exploring with your pet, running, and backpacking. Two hours from this national park is Lake Mead.
With the help of a guided tour, freshers at this national park can see the entirety of the majestic desert landscape with dunes. Because of these fascinating areas, the Desert Valley national park is at the top of Las Vegas National Park.
2 Grand Canyon National Park
The westernmost rim of the Grand Canyon National Park is within spitting distance of Las Vegas. Two hours from Las Vegas is the least it takes to reach this national park’s west rim; it is the second closest national park to Las Vegas.
Another fact is that the Grand Canyon National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is also home to a national monument, the Grand Canyon. The Grand Canyon has four rims: the north, south, west, and east. Are you in for some spectacular scenery, the best skywalk experience on one of the world’s largest glass cantilever bridges, climbs down the bright angel trail and the South Kaibab Trail, adventures that boost your heart rates, and wander the canyon as well as the Colorado river? Mark your to-go destination as the Grand Canyon National Park.
At this national park, you will find top-class views of the Colorado River and the Grand Canyon’s west rim length. For a day tour, the west rim seems faultless. Originally, this national park was in Arizona, with observation towers, a visitor center, and hiking with a guided tour. The north rim is relatively hushed than the south rim.
You can also engage in absolute rim hiking, animal rides, and rafting the Whitewater. From a distance of 9 minutes is the Grand Canyon village at the south rim. Taking a room for a stay in the Grand Canyon village makes reaching the sightseeing spots easier.
From a distance of 8 minutes is the Tule Springs Fossil Beds national monument. The Tule Springs Fossil Beds is a metropolitan park that preserves the history of changing ecosystems. If you are fond of the ice age, you can explore the sentiments at the Tule Springs Fossil Beds after the Death Valley National Park.
3 Joshua Tree National Park
Consisting of hard-wearing rocks and an incredible desert landscape, Joshua Tree National Park is situated in southern California. It is one of California’s national parks that is well-esteemed because of the Joshua trees. The Joshua trees show impeccable chronicles of harsh survivals, unbreakable beauty, and adaptability. The Joshua Tree National Park national park is about a three-hour drive from Las Vegas.
It is one of the best Las Vegas National Parks (southern California). It also has other attractions like Ryan Mountain, Joshua trees, White Tank Camping ground, Cholla Cactus Garden, and a sunset point that turns into a stargazing spot in the evening at the Keys view.
The Joshua Tree National Park is truly on the deserving list of the best national parks near Las Vegas. The Joshua Tree National Park also has a diversity of flora for you to explore. Two ecosystems, Colorado and Mojae, are entangled here in the Joshua Tree National Park.
4 Zion National Park
Another mild drive of two hours from Las Vegas falls the third closest national park Zion National Park. But, instead of jumping to its attractions, I would like you to travel to Zion National Park if you are a driving enthusiast. Sit back and enjoy the scenic road rather than wanting to reach the destination.
Coming to Zion National Park attractions are,
- Zion Canyon
- Angels Landingthe (most famous hiking hill trek!)
- Canyon Overlook Trail
- Sandstone Cliffs
Zion National Park is said to be a climber’s heaven. Hiking, camping, horse riding, programs in the park, and cycling, Zion National Park, as well as Zion Canyon, is full of zest and is in one of the most exciting national parks near Las Vegas.
5. Great Basin National Park
In eastern Nevada is a very famous stargazing destination, the Great Basin National Park. Similar to the Death Valley National Park, the Great Basin National Park is also an international dark sky park near Las Vegas.
Wheeler Peak is a hill of about 13,000 feet. Such natural recreational areas make the Great Basin National Park sit among the spectacular national parks near Las Vegas.
Additionally, visitors can spend their day starting from the national park’s visitor center, have a picturesque drive at Wheeler Peak, and go hiking or camping. Famous tourist attractions here are,
- The Wheeler Peak
- Lehman Caves National Monument
- Rock Glacier
- Bristlecone Pine Groves
- Alpine Lakes Loop Trail
- Virgin River
6 Bryce Canyon National Park
Dynamic rock formations, the distinctive Bryce Canyon, majestic landscapes, and beautiful flowerbeds confined the Bryce Canyon National Park. It marks almost the same place as Zion Canyon in the list of best canyon national parks near Las Vegas.
With a 3-hour scenic drive from Bryce Canyon National Park, tourists travel to one of the state parks on the way, Valley of Fire State Park.
Called a natural amphitheater, the best time to visit this national park is between May and September. Some of the main attractions are,
- Bryce Canyon National Park Sunset Point
- Queens Garden Trail
- Angels Landing
- Tower Bridge
- Mossy Cave Trail
Rock formation enthusiasts go out of their way to visit the Valley of Fire State Park, along with which has pretty landscapes and petroglyphs engraved on the sandstone cliffs. With a 2-hour drive, you will be able to reach the Snow Canyon State Park as well.
7 Capitol Reef National Park and The Antelope Canyon
South-central Utah is a tourist attraction spot that is truly a natural treasure trove. The feature that makes this national park so remarkable is its huge naturally formed crease also referred to as the Earth’s “wrinkle.” It is named the Water pocket fold.
A few of Capitol Reef National Park‘s attractions are the panorama point and sunset point, the rim overlook trail, the Cassidy arch, the Hickman bridge trail, etc. These are a few reasons why this national park is one of the most commendable national parks near Las Vegas.
Capitol Reef National Park services are plenty; they include,
- Spectacular drives
- Undemanding hikes
- Wildlife and Bird watching
- Rock climbing
- Hiking and horse riding
With a few hours’ drive from the Capitol Reef, you will be able to reach the Antelope Canyon, a tourist-loved destination near Las Vegas. The Navajo Upper Antelope Canyon is one of America’s most breathtaking slot canyons. The famous horseshoe bend, hanging garden hiking trails, overlook of the Glen Canyon, lake Powell, etc., are all attractions of the Antelope Canyon.
From Antelope Canyon, it will not take you more than 4 hours to reach Lake Mead, a reservoir formed by the Hoover Dam. Once you reach Lake Mead, several activities are ready for you, including boating, canoeing, fishing, kayaking, and water trails along the Hoover Dam.
The Lake Mead Recreational Area is another thrilling activity site near Las Vegas with wonderful sceneries, fauna, and coves. It is built by the Hoover Dam, which is 15 minutes from Lake Mead. Lake Mead is also famous for scuba diving.
8 Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks
Wonder why they both are written together on this li.t? Because after exploring Sequoia National Park, you can travel to the Kings Canyon National Park in about an hour, thanks to the General’s Highway that connects this pair.
Sequoia National Park, famously known for its humongous sequoia trees, is a great camping and hiking ground with huge lush trees towering. The Giant Sherman Tree grows in the Giant forest here too. You can see the Kings Canyon Scenic Byway from this Sequoia National Park.
Kings Canyon National Park is known for its skyline trees and the remains of sequoia trees. It is also said to be a “rival of Yosemite” since it has matching characteristics with Yosemite National Park.
Sequoia National Park has more high-rise famous trees, nature’s candid play, and groves, whereas Kings Canyon National Park has more canyons, waterfalls, and valleys.
At these destinations, you can split activities like group camping, hiking, picnicking, or just well-spent weekend getaways.
9 Arches and Canyonlands National Parks
The reason why they both are paired is that they are just 30 minutes away from one another. Two park packages in one travel.
Arches National Park, with over 2000 stone arches situated in Utah, is a US National Park Service. Arches National Park is proclaimed for its red rocks and majestic rock formations. These red rocks have a huge amount of density.
This national park is just adjacent to the Colorado River and has some of the best aesthetic rock settings. Tourists usually enjoy the sunset and the panoramic view from the Arches National Park. One of the famous trails here is the Park Avenue Trail.
Canyonlands National Park, at the meander of the Colorado River, is the Canyonlands National Park. It is recognized for its awe-inspiring landscapes, and it feels like the landscapes are almost touching the sky!
For hiking trails, the best option is the Canyonlands National Park; for more stone arches, the best choice is Arches National Park. Might any be your choice, reach One-Day some of the worth-seeing best national parks near Las Vegas.
With a 2-hour drive from Canyonlands, you would reach One-Day Monument Valley. Monument Valley is a tribal park of the Navajo nation known for its picturesque cinematic view.
It is said to be one of the “most photographed places on Earth.” For scenic drives, beautiful panoramas, and landscape vistas, Monument Valley is your bet.
10. Petrified Forest National Park
One sentence describes the Petrified Forest National Park as “worth all the time and money spent.” At the border of Las Vegas, in Arizona, famous for the petrified wood, is the location of Petrified Forest National Park. Activities like hiking and historical sightseeing are the most enjoyed.
The famous attractions of Petrified Forest National Park are,
- Rainbow Forest Museum
- Crystal Forest Loop
- Painted Desert
Just the overall structure of this national park shows a geological history. This national park is among the prime national parks near Las Vegas because of its scenic landscapes, history, museums, and hikes. With a 3-hour drive from Forest National Park, you could also explore One-Day Monument Valley.
Las Vegas is a commercially engrossed city in America. Still, once you are in downtown Las Vegas, you will meet some of the supremely incredible national parks near Las Vegas. From nature’s gorgeousness to historical museums, national parks, and places like Monument Valley and Antelope Canyon.
Here we presented our list of national parks near Las Vegas, with the top 10 national parks you shouldn’t miss. Which of the Las Vegas national parks was your best pick? Why not add a few of these national parks near Las Vegas to your travel list today!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q1. How many national parks are in Vegas?
A1. There are 12 national parks near Las Vegas, including national parks across Nevada, Utah, California, and Arizona. In addition, there are dozens more national monuments and recreation areas within driving distance of Las Vegas.
Q2. What is the closest National Park to Las Vegas?
A2. First of all, Death Valley National Park is the closest national park to Las Vegas. The largest national park in the contiguous U.S., it holds various records. Death Valley is home to the lowest point in North America and is the driest and hottest place on the continent.
Q3. What is so special about Bryce Canyon National Park?
A3. Bryce Canyon National Park in Southwestern Utah is famous for the largest collection of hoodoos—the distinctive rock formations at Bryce—in the world. Bryce Canyon is also home to horseshoe-shaped amphitheaters carved from the eastern edge of the Paunsaugunt Plateau, scenic vistas, and the dark night sky.
Q4. What is special about Kings Canyon National Park?
A4. Kings Canyon National Park features terrain similar to Yosemite Valley, and is home to the largest remaining grove of sequoia trees in the world! With its deep valleys, skyscraping trees, and distinctive rock outcroppings, Kings Canyon National Park is the place that John Muir once called “a rival to Yosemite.”
Q5. What is Grand Canyon famous for?
A5. It is one of the most studied landscapes in the world, with extensive fossil records, a multitude of geologic features and rich archeological history. Learn more about the history of the Grand Canyon. The oldest human artifacts found in the Grand Canyon are nearly 12,000 years old and date to the Paleo-Indian period.