You don’t have to travel the world to find something amazing to see or experience. There are plenty of adventures waiting much closer to home that don’t require crossing oceans or spending half a day on an airplane. Set out to explore North America, and you’ll find some impressive experiences, with many that are practically in your backyard.
Moab has the distinct honor of being situated between two of the most impressive national parks in the United States – Canyonlands and Arches. Settle into a comfortable hotel or bring your camper to one of the many campsites in the area and then explore the rivers, mesas, canyons and impressive rock formations and arches.
Rent a jeep to explore because your adventures will definitely take you off road and stay out after dark. There is no end to the stars and night sky viewing in this wide open country. See the Milky Way with your naked eye from the middle of a wide open expanse before heading back to a kitschy western bar or restaurant for some evening fun.
Drive right up to the Athabasca Glacier and experience one of the true wonders of North America before it disappears. The Columbia Icefield is right outside of Jasper in the Canadian Rockies and gives you a glimpse into the continent’s past and future. See the massive sheets of ice that once covered much of our home and watch it continue to recede as our world continues to warm.
After your trip to the Athabasca Glacier, drive under two hours back south to Lake Louise where you can explore the luxurious Fairmont hotel or head just a few minutes north to fully immerse yourself in the rugged outdoors, trees and mountains of Jasper National Park.
Tofino, British Columbia
Whales, salmon, kayaking, hiking, surfing and more await you in Tofino, the small town with plenty of outdoor activities and things to do along the coast of British Columbia. Arrange an offshore fishing trip to pull in halibut and king salmon. Or hike into the nearby Pacific Rim park to enjoy the temperate rain forests and massive old growth forests.
Don a wetsuit any time of year and try your hand at cold water surfing along the many beaches of Tofino or take a more relaxed approach to your adventure and settle into a local resort for comfortable seating and ocean views. Or watch for whales in the summertime and wild storms in the winter while you truly escape city life.
Big Bend National Park, Texas
Want to experience three trips in one? You can do it easily from the comfort of the lodge in the center of Big Bend National Park. This is one of the most remote national parks in the United States, tucked down in the corner of Texas along the Rio Grande – a literal stone’s throw from Mexico.
Stay and hike in the Chisos mountains and look for mountain lions and black bears. Then journey down the mountains to the desert for impressive rock formations and dinosaur fossils. Finally, end your trip with a rafting trip through Santa Elena canyon to surround yourself with sheer rock walls more than 1500 feet high.
Glacier National Park
Along the border with Canada in northern Montana, you’ll find Glacier National Park. This is rugged park that is filled with wildlife, but the biggest sight you’ll see here are the brown bears. Grizzly bears wander the park and you certainly don’t want to see them up close, but you can spot them from a distance as you drive along Going to the Sun road that traverses the park.
Drive the scenic byway to see impressive vistas and wildlife. Then don your hiking shoes to take a trek up to Avalanche Lake. It’s a two hour hike to this crystal clear mountain lake surrounded by snowy mountains and beautiful waterfalls. And when you’re done exploring the mountains, settle in for the night – still surrounded by the wild beauty – in a National Park lodge.
There’s something special about this park that defies words, and after being to Banff, Jasper and others in the area, Glacier stands out.
With so many adventures to choose from throughout North America, deciding on your next excursion can be a challenge at times. Hopefully these suggestions make it a little easier and a whole lot more fun.