Maybe you’re like me and whenever you see that someone has posted a gorgeous picture from their hike at a National Park, you suddenly get the urge to dust off your boots. That is until you find out that there’s practically no chance of you making the trip happen because you missed the reservation window.
I vow not to be that person anymore and luckily, we have a few planning tools that will help you (and me) get ahead of those required reservations.
With more than 423 national parks in the US, it’s hard to narrow down which park to visit and what the reservation windows and requirements are. First, we recommend starting with this guide. It outlines all the booking windows, fees, and any lottery systems for the most popular parks. While this guide is fairly thorough, it only highlights a few parks and is more focused on day passes.
For those of you who are keen to camp out at the parks, we recommend checking out the latest Dyrt booking reservation guide. Dyrt is the leading app for camping information and booking and their newest guide will have more specific and helpful information regarding overnight stays.
Keep in mind that National Park reservations open up anywhere between 30 days and 13 months in advance so if you have a park you’ve been eyeing for a while, add their reservation window to your calendar.
If you end up getting an overnight reservation, consult our Best National Park Stays or our Best National Park Hotels guides.