Heads up! We’re working hard to be accurate – but these are unusual times, so please always check before heading out.
There’s never been a better time to show your support for this country’s incredible National Park system. We’re lucky to live in a nation that protects and preserves 63 separate parks (nine of which are in California, the most in any state) totaling 52.2 million acres of land. We highly suggest making the trip to as many of these parks as possible, but have chosen to highlight those within a day’s drive (eight hours or less) from Los Angeles—some are perfect for a day trip; others are better reserved for a road trip or weekend of camping. So get out there and enjoy (before it’s too late!).
Psst: Look out for free entrance days at all of these parks in 2021, including Martin Luther King Jr. Day (Jan 18), the first day of National Park Week (Apr 17), the one-year anniversary of the Great American Outdoors Act (Aug 4), the National Park Service’s birthday (Aug 25), National Public Lands Day (Sept 25) and Veterans Day (Nov 11).
As we move through the winter, all National Parks on this list are open but with some restrictions, which we’ve noted below. However, a state travel advisory issued in early January asks Californians to avoid travel more than 120 miles away and discourages out-of-state visitors. The National Park Service recommends avoiding high-risk outdoor activities and following Leave No Trace principles and CDC guidance—which includes six feet of social distancing.