Visitation To National Park System In 2023 Rose To 325.5 Million


While Death Valley National Park was closed for months last year due to storm damage, overall visitation to the National Park System increased over 2022 levels/NPS file

Visitation to the National Park System in 2023 rose to 325.5 million, with more and more visitors heading to lesser known parks.

Data from 400 park system units show a 4 percent increase in visitation from 2022, when the tally was 311,985,998. Along with the trend toward lesser known parks attracting visitors, the numbers reflect more visits in the spring and fall than seen in years past, the National Park Service reported Thursday. And 20 parks broke visitation records in 2023.

“From Kaloko Honokōhau National Historic Park in Hawai’i to Congaree National Park in South Carolina, parks are attracting more visitors each year to learn about our shared history,” Park Service Director Chuck Sams said. “Our national parks tell our shared American story. I’m glad visitors are finding hidden gems, exploring in the off-season and finding new ways to have a great time in our national parks.”

Visitation figures and trends guide how the National Park Service manages parks to ensure the best experience possible for park visitors. The Visitation Statistics Dashboard on NPS.gov provides recreational visit statistics for every park for 2023 and also for previous years, dating back to 1979 for some parks. Of the 429 parks in the National Park System, 400 parks counted visitors in 2023. For the first time, there are now parks reporting their visitation numbers from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and four U.S. territories. Five national parks began reporting in 2023, and this is the first year a park from Delaware is included.

The 20 parks that broke visitation records in 2023 were:  

  • Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site (149,043 visitors in 2023, 79,123 in 2022)
  • Congaree National Park (250,114 in 2023, 204,522 in 2022)
  • Dry Tortugas National Park (84,285 in 2023, 78,488 in 2022)
  • Glacier Bay National Park & Preserve (703,659 in 2023, 545,758 in 2022)
  • Glen Canyon National Recreation Area (5,206,934 in 2023, 2,842,776 in 2022)
  • Hagerman Fossil Beds National Monument (33,444 in 2023, 25,122 in 2022)
  • John Muir National Historic Site (50,872 in 2023, 38,878 in 2022)
  • Joshua Tree National Park (3,270,404 in 2023, 3,058,294 in 2022)
  • Kaloko Honokōhau National Historic Park (292,400 in 2023, 291,342 in 2022)
  • Keweenaw National Historic Park (29,221 in 2023, 15,255 in 2022)
  • Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park (1,284,320 in 2023, 342,909 in 2022
  • Lincoln Memorial (8,099,148 in 2023, 7,825,397 in 2022)
  • Longfellow House Washington’s Headquarters National Historic Site (67,376 in 2023, 60,558 in 2022)
  • Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historic Park (71,799 in 2023, 63,956 in 2022)
  • Medgar and Myrlie Evers Home National Memorial (59,542 in 2023, 11,231 in 2022)
  • Minidoka National Historic Site (18,358 in 2023, 13,717 in 2022)
  • Mojave National Preserve (1,178,998 in 2023, 773,463 in 2022)
  • New River Gorge National Park & Preserve (1,707,223 in 2023, 1,707,223 in 2022)
  • Nez Perce National Historic Park (377,392 in 2023, 344,517 in 2022)
  • Ninety Six National Historic Site  (118,207 in 2023, 108,082 in 2022)

Natural disasters and increasingly severe weather events affected visitation at some parks. Summer heat, wildland fires, and storms and natural disasters, floods and landslides required a number of parks to close for periods of time in 2023.  Some parks that were impacted include:

  • Death Valley National Park was entirely closed August 20 until October 15 due to flood damage.
  • Much of the Chilkoot Trail at Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park in Alaska was closed due to flooding in 2023.
  • Haleakalā National Park closed the Summit and Kīpahulu districts from August 8 until August 25 due to wildland fires and high winds.


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