A road trip through the national parks of the USA is one of the most interesting forms of campervan travel you can take on earth. There are a lot of national parks in the southwest of the USA and each one has its own charm and peculiarities. On a road trip through the national parks by campervan you can experience many highlights of the United States in a short time. A campervan trip combines all the advantages of camping in nature with the possibility to change your location quickly. Without the hassle of searching for hotels, campervan travellers can focus on the scenic highlights. The main American national parks to visit on this trip are:
- Arches National Park
- Monument Valley and Navajo Reservation
- Zion National Park
- Bryce Canyon National Park
- Grand Canyon National Park
- Death Valley National Park
- Yosemite National Park
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1. Arches National Park
Arches National Park could be the first stop on a road trip through the national parks when picking up the campervan in Salt Lake City. This impressive park in the US state of Utah has the highest concentration of natural stone arches in the world. On a camping tour with a rented campervan through the Southwest, you will experience all the magic of the fascinating landscape with thousands of stone arches. Among the highlights of this park are the rock formations Balanced Rock, Parade Of Elephants, the Double Arch and the freestanding Delicate Arch, which has become an icon of this park. Take a drive along the Arches National Park Scenic Drive to experience all the highlights of the park. Enjoy the majestic views from your camper van’s pitch.
2. Monument Valley and Navajo Reservation
A road trip through the national parks of the USA would not be complete without a visit to Monument Valley and Navajo Reservation. Monument Valley in the south of the state of Utah on the border with Arizona is not a national park in the literal sense, but only enjoys the status of an American national monument. The sight of the rock formations and mesas is breath-taking and inseparable from the feeling of freedom in the American Southwest. A campervan can be used to drive the gravel road around the idiosyncratic rocks. Then, at a parking area near the monoliths, you’ll enjoy the iconic backdrop in the great outdoors, that will seem familiar from of the many Western movies filmed there.
3. Zion National Park
Only about 250 miles west of Monument Valley and a four hours’ drive away on the road trip through the national parks lies the next highlight of the round trip, Zion National Park. This Park received the status of an American national park more than 100 years ago and is also located in the border area of the states of Utah and Arizona. For all nature lovers Zion National Park is a dream. On extended hikes you can experience the biodiversity of flora and fauna. Immerse yourself in this fascinating landscape with your campervan and take exciting excursions from the campground into a breath-taking natural spectacle. The Zion Canyon, which is formed by the Virgin River, offers an impressive scenery at the same time.
4. Bryce Canyon National Park
In the immediate vicinity of Zion is Bryce Canyon National Park about 75 miles to the northeast. As soon as you enter the park, you notice the many rock spires and rock pyramids that give the park a striking appearance with high recognition value. Interesting trails alternate in Bryce with majestic viewpoints. A sunset at Sunset Point is an unforgettable experience, when the setting sun lets the reddish colour of the rocks shine in a magical light. From Bryce Point you can experience a magnificent view into the canyon during the day. Bryce Canyon should be a “must” on a campervan tour through the southwest of the USA.
5. Grand Canyon National Park
The Grand Canyon National Park is probably the most famous US national park and the ultimate experience with wow effect. The campervan traveller can approach the Grand Canyon either from the North Rim or from the South Rim, whereas the better infrastructure for tourists can be found in the southern area. A hike into the canyon is hard to beat, during the descent and ascent the hiker experiences several vegetation and climatic zones simultaneously. However, the hike takes several hours and should only be undertaken if you are in good physical condition. Those who look into the abysm of the canyon after a completed hike can be really proud of their achievement.
6. Death Valley National Park
A visit to Death Valley National Park is also part of the mandatory program of a road trip through the national parks of the USA. This Park is largely located on the territory of the US state of California and is a record holder in various categories: Death Valley is simultaneously the hottest, the driest and the lowest national park in the United States. When traveling to the park in a campervan, visitors should always remember to have a sufficient supply of water, otherwise it can quickly become unpleasant and uncomfortable in this inhospitable landscape. The Badwater Basin in the centre of the park is even considered the lowest spot in the entire Western Hemisphere.
7. Yosemite National Park
Also located in California, Yosemite National Park could be the last highlight of a road trip through the national parks before you reach the West Coast with the major cities Los Angeles and San Francisco. The most iconic landmark in Yosemite is the majestic El Capitan, the widely visible mountain in the centre of the park. More than one million visitors per year testify to the attractiveness of this park, which offers a variety of impressive hiking trails and great viewpoints. Several waterfalls with a total height of over 700 meters form a great backdrop.
There are very few regions on earth that combine this many spectacular natural wonders in such a small area. A round trip by campervan is the best way to experience this unique region and is equally suitable for solo travellers, or as a trip with a partner or family. The possibilities for camping are sufficiently developed, so a travel experience very close to and in nature is possible. Waking up in the campervan in the morning and experiencing magnificent views of the backdrop of the national parks is one of the most impressive travel experiences possible in the USA.