(NEXSTAR) – Visitor numbers increased across the national park system last year. new data Twelve parks have each recorded over 5 million visits. Parks that are expected to have high visitor numbers, such as the Grand Canyon, Zion, and the Great Smoky Mountains, are expected to have high visitor numbers, but not as much as the one park that isn’t exactly a park.
According to the National Park Service (NPS), 312 million recreational visits 15 million more visitors reported in 2022 across 395 parks tracking visitors 2021 and above But that falls short of the 318 million and 327 million recorded in 2018 and 2019, respectively.
Each of the 75 parks had more than 1 million recreational visits, but only one was the most visited. 15.7 million visitors last yearsurpassing Golden Gate National Recreation Area with just over 72,000 visits.
Blue Ridge Parkway It’s not the kind of park you might imagine when you think of Yosemite or the Grand Tetons. Instead, it’s a series of parks linked by 469 miles of roads through Virginia’s Appalachian Highlands to the western tip of North Carolina.
Slideshow: Blue Ridge Parkway
Blue Ridge Parkway also offers Some of the oldest mountains in the world. You can also check:
- Mount Mitchell, highest peak in the eastern United States
- The New River, the oldest river in North America
- Linville Gorge, the deepest canyon east of the Grand Canyon’s deeper canyons
- Whitewater Falls, the highest waterfall east of the Rocky Mountains
It is also the longest planned single-unit highway in the United States, according to NPS. Built as part of a series of major public works projects to help revitalize the travel and tourism industry, the Blue Ridge Parkway helped the Appalachian region emerge from the Great Depression nearly 100 years ago.
Construction of the Blue Ridge Parkway began in 1935. About 170 miles were passable and another 160 were under construction by the time World War II began about four years later. It would take him until 1987 to complete the 469-mile route.
The parkway not only protects the mountain landscape along it, but also preserves “the vestiges of early industries such as mountain pioneers’ log cabins, textile kings’ summer cottages, logging, railroads and old canals.” I’m here.according to NPSThe Blue Ridge Parkway features eight campgrounds, 300 miles of hiking trails, 13 picnic areas, and concerts of traditional Southern Appalachian music.
Follow the parkway to the southern end to reach Great Smoky Mountain National Park, the third most visited national park in 2022.
The Blue Ridge Parkway isn’t the only “non-park” landing among last year’s most-visited locations. Three parkways, three recreational areas, two monuments and a national seashore also landed in the top ten. park. Here are the 10 most visited national parks in 2022.
- Blue Ridge Parkway: 15.7 million visits
- Golden Gate National Recreational Area: 15.6 million visitors
- Great Smoky Mountains National Park: 12.9 million visitors
- Gateway National Recreational Area: 8.7 million visitors
- Lincoln Memorial: 7.8 million visits
- George Washington Memorial Parkway: 7.3 million visitors
- Natchez Trace Parkway: 6.5 million visits
- Gulf Islands National Seashore: 5.6 million visitors
- Lake Mead National Recreation Area: 5.5 million visitors
- Vietnam Veterans Memorial: 4.8 million visitors
The Blue Ridge Parkway recorded the most visitors in 2002. Over 21 million guestsSince then, 2014 is the only year the Parkway has had less than 14 million visitors. Between 2011 and 2022, the Blue Ridge Parkway was his seven most-visited. His other five years were tops at Golden Gate National Recreation Area.
Naturally, the Blue Ridge Parkway is Most Visited National Parks on Recordaccording to NPS data.
https://www.mystateline.com/news/it-was-the-most-visited-national-park-in-2022-but-it-isnt-exactly-a-park/ Most popular national parks in 2022 that aren’t technically parks