The National Parks are an extremely popular destination choice for families looking to get away in the summer and fall and for more reasons than just the obvious. If you visit a National Park in the US on August 25th (National Park Service Birthday), September 28th (National Public Lands Day) or Veterans Day Weekend (November 9-11th), it's free. Of course, there are plenty of cabin and camping choices at the different parks across the country, but here's a list for those looking to enhance their experience with a little luxury.
If You Go To: Yellowstone National Park and Grand Teton National Park:
Yellowstone National Park is the world's first national park with 2.2 million acres of natural wonders and wild animals. Top sights include the Old Faithful, Yellowstone Lake, the Grand Prismatic Spring on the Lower Loop, Mammoth Hot Springs on the Upper Loop and Yellowstone Falls near the shared section of the two. At the southern edge of Yellowstone Park lies Grand Teton National Park which boasts majestic views of the jagged peaks of the Teton Ranges and miles of hiking and wildlife-watching by Snake River.
Stay At: Hotel Terra Jackson Hole (Jackson Hole, Wyoming):
Located at the gateway to Grand Teton National Park and a short one hour drive to the southern entrance to Yellowstone National Park, the LEED-Silver Certified and AAA Four Diamond luxury Hotel Terra Jackson Hole's Passport to the Parks package provides the ideal destination for adults and families looking to explore some of the world's most treasured natural sites.
The Passport to the Parks package includes:
- 3 nights lodging in a Terra Guest Room
- 7-day park pass to Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Park
- $20 daily breakfast credit at Terra Cafe
- Guidebook to Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Park
- Backpack for 2 children with kids guide book, reusable water bottle and camera
- Rates start at $235+ per night; Minimum 3-night stay
- Valid May 16 - September 30, 2013
If You Go To: The Grand Canyon National Park:
The Grand Canyon is 277 miles long, up to 18 miles wide and has a depth of over a mile. Known for it's visually overwhelming size and intricate and colorful landscape, the Grand Canyon boasts some of the world's most jaw-dropping and dynamic views.
Stay At: L'Auberge de Sedona (Sedona, Arizona):
Situated just 45 minutes south of The Grand Canyon in Sedona, Arizona, L'Auberge de Sedona is just a short drive from the country's acclaimed Grand Canyon National Park. The experts at the luxury boutique hotel have a breadth of knowledge to share with their guests if they'd like to tackle the trails on their own, or guests can book the Grand Canyon Package.
The Grand Canyon Package:
The Grand Canyon is an awe-inspiring monument that must be seen. Guests can relax in L'Auberge's beautiful accommodations, then spend a memorable day on a professionally guided tour of one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World. The travel up Oak Creek Canyon, via luxury mini coach, is one of the top 10 scenic drives in America.
The package includes:
- Two nights in either Lodge Room or Cottage Room
- Grand Canyon tour for two; tour times range 10-11 hours
- $36 breakfast credit at L'Auberge Restaurant on Oak Creek
- Rates approximately $465 depending on the date and accommodations; Minimum 2 night stay
If You Go To: Saguaro National Park and Coronado National Forest:
Divided into two sections, called districts, Saguaro National Park is 91,442 acres, 70,905 acres of which is designated wilderness. The park gets its name from the saguaro, a large cactus which is native to the region. Close by is the Coronado National Forest which is spread throughout mountain ranges in southeastern Arizona and southwestern New Mexico. Divided into five ranger districts, each consist of multiple "ski island" mountain ranges.
Stay At: Tanque Verde Ranch (Tuscon, Arizona):
Ideally located amongst Saguaro National Park and the Coronado National Forest, Tanque Verde translates as the "green pool," a name given by the Pima Native Americans due to the seasonal river that runs through the land to create a mountainous desert oasis of vibrant cacti and various unique plants. Tanque Verde Ranch offers a variety of activities that allow guests to take advantage of this beautiful landscape, including expert-guided hikes through the Sonoran Desert or rugged Rincon and Catalina ranges, mountain biking tours, trail rides on horseback, birding adventures and nature walks. All of these activities are complementary with all-inclusive rates, which also include three daily meals and accommodations in tastefully decorated southwestern styled accommodations.
If You Go To: Shenandoah National Park:
This 200,000 acre park is haven to deer and songbirds and is an ideal location for outdoor activities for the whole family.
Stay At: Salamander Resort & Spa (Middleburg, Virginia):
Salamander Resort & Spa is set to open this August in the heart of Virginia wine and horse country in the quaint 18th century village of Middleburg and a short 2-hour scenic drive along Virginia's Skyline Drive to Shenandoah National Park. Set on 340 acres of farmland, the brand new resort will offer an unparalleled luxury experience in the region with 168 guest rooms and suites; a culinary program led by Chef Todd Gray of Equinox Restaurant in DC including a two restaurants, wine bar, cooking studio and 2-acre culinary garden; a world-class spa with 14 treatment rooms and a couples suite and an array of activities including an onsite Equestrian program to rival any other in the world, with a 22-stall barn, practice ring, riding trails and instructional classes. The property boasts tennis courts and an outdoor pool complex, and guests have privileges at the nearby Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course. Fifty wineries are within an hour's drive of the resort, as are opportunities for whitewater rafting, sporting clays and raceway spectating.