Introducing Exciting New Features for National Park Fans on Google Maps

Introducing Exciting New Features for National Park Fans on Google Maps

As someone who's visited 55 of America’s 63 national parks, I know how incredibly rewarding it can be to explore the great outdoors. From bonding with nature alongside my family to marveling at breathtaking views on extended hikes with friends, these adventures have left me with unforgettable memories. However, I'm also well-acquainted with the challenges of planning outdoor escapades — like locating the best trailheads or nearest public restrooms.

To help make your National Park visits more enjoyable, Google Maps is rolling out four groundbreaking updates for iOS and Android. These enhancements are designed to make everything from navigating a park to discovering exciting activities feel as relaxing as, well, a walk in the park. These updates will be launched this month, perfectly timed for National Park Week, kicking off on April 22nd. On that day, park entry fees will be lifted for all guests.

Google Maps

Discover a Park's Must-See Attractions in a Snap

Quickly pinpoint the most sought-after sites in a park — such as attractions, campgrounds, visitor centers, and trailheads — thanks to the Maps community.

  • Search for a park to see photo highlights of key attractions
  • Tap on any photo to uncover even more details like videos and reviews
  • Determine whether a spot is a must-see on your itinerary and plan an unforgettable trip

Uncover Popular Trails from Start to Finish in Maps

Trails within parks have never been more accessible.

  • Search for a trail to see its entire route illuminated on the map
  • Check reviews and photos from the Google Maps community
  • Find helpful details like the trail type, difficulty, and whether it's better suited for running, walking, or cycling

Navigate with Ease Using Detailed Directions

Get more accurate directions to the must-see spots and trails you want to tackle in the park.

  • Park entrances will be highlighted right on the map later this month
  • Request walking or cycling directions to a specific trail, and Maps will lead you straight to the trailhead

Download Offline Maps for Seamless Navigation in Any Park

With the new offline map feature, you can find your way around without internet access or cellular data.

  • Tap the 'download' button on the park's Google Maps listing to save it for offline use
  • The download button will appear on park listings later this month

These features will be available in all U.S. national parks this April and will expand to parks worldwide in the coming months. With Google Maps, you can spend less time planning and more time exploring. See you out there!

Here is a list of the top 10 national parks with the highest user ratings on Google Maps.

Rank Park Location Overall Rating
1 Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve Alaska 4.8
2 Arches National Park Utah 4.8
3 Canyonlands National Park Utah 4.8
4 Yellowstone National Park Wyoming, Montana, Idaho 4.7
5 Grand Canyon National Park Arizona 4.7
6 Yosemite National Park California 4.7
7 Rocky Mountain National Park Colorado 4.6
8 Zion National Park Utah 4.6
9 Olympic National Park Washington 4.6
10 Grand Teton National Park Wyoming 4.6

These parks are all incredibly popular with visitors, and for good reason. They offer stunning scenery, a variety of activities, and a wealth of history and culture. If you're looking for a truly unforgettable outdoor experience, be sure to add one of these parks to your travel bucket list.

Here are some additional details about each park:

  • Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve is a UNESCO World Heritage Site located in the southeastern part of Alaska. The park is home to a vast array of wildlife, including bears, whales, and sea otters. Visitors can enjoy a variety of activities, such as hiking, kayaking, and camping.
  • Arches National Park is located in the southeastern part of Utah. The park is known for its towering sandstone arches, which were formed over millions of years by wind and water erosion. Visitors can enjoy a variety of activities, such as hiking, camping, and rock climbing.
  • Canyonlands National Park is located in the southeastern part of Utah. The park is known for its three main canyons: Island in the Sky, The Needles, and The Maze. Visitors can enjoy a variety of activities, such as hiking, camping, and canyoneering.
  • Yellowstone National Park is located in the northwestern United States, straddling the states of Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho. The park is known for its geysers, hot springs, mudpots, and travertine terraces. Visitors can enjoy a variety of activities, such as hiking, camping, fishing, and boating.
  • Grand Canyon National Park is located in the northwestern part of Arizona. The park is home to the Grand Canyon, which is one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World. Visitors can enjoy a variety of activities, such as hiking, camping, rafting, and mule rides.
  • Yosemite National Park is located in the central part of California. The park is known for its towering granite cliffs, giant sequoia trees, and cascading waterfalls. Visitors can enjoy a variety of activities, such as hiking, camping, rock climbing, and mountain biking.
  • Rocky Mountain National Park is located in the central part of Colorado. The park is home to the Rocky Mountains, which are some of the most beautiful mountains in the world. Visitors can enjoy a variety of activities, such as hiking, camping, fishing, and skiing.
  • Zion National Park is located in the southwestern part of Utah. The park is known for its towering sandstone cliffs, narrow canyons, and hanging gardens. Visitors can enjoy a variety of activities, such as hiking, camping, canyoneering, and rock climbing.
  • Olympic National Park is located in the northwestern part of Washington. The park is home to three distinct ecosystems: the temperate rainforest, the alpine zone, and the coastal beaches. Visitors can enjoy a variety of activities, such as hiking, camping, fishing, and kayaking.
  • Grand Teton National Park is located in the northwestern part of Wyoming. The park is home to the Teton Mountains, which are some of the most rugged mountains in the Rocky Mountains. Visitors can enjoy a variety of activities, such as hiking, camping, fishing, and boating.

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