There are 61 national parks in the United States, all administered by the National Park Service. These parks protect natural environments, animals, plants or natural features that are unique and rare. They can be very large like Denali National Park or small like Mammoth Cave Park. The first park was established in 1872, while the last one was established in 2019. There are very isolated parks and others that can be considered a unique park, American parks would be to visit all of them to discover environments that we can't even imagine. These natural environments are protected to preserve them and to show anyone who wants to see them these wonders of nature. These parks must be established by an act of the United States Congress. Hunting and mining are prohibited in these parks. Fourteen of these parks are also UNESCO World Heritage Sites and 21 are designated as Biosphere Reserves by UNESCO. Thirty states have at least one national park. California has nine, the state with the most national parks. The total area protected by the parks is about 211,000 square kilometers.
Record visitation occurred in 2017 when over 84 million people visited the parks. Many of the national parks were established after previously being a U.S. National Monument and there are also national parks that have been dissolved.
National Parks preserve natural and cultural resources for the enjoyment, education, and inspiration of this and future generations. The Park Service cooperates with partners to extend the benefits of natural and cultural resource conservation and outdoor recreation throughout the U.S. states and the world.
The National Park Service is a federal agency that takes over all of the National Parks in the U.S. and preserves their heritage to showcase for future generations. One of the divisions of this institution is the Park Rangers who work to keep visitors safe and protect the parks in the field. Before 2016, the year the NPS (National Park Service) was founded, the government had direct control over the parks and this complicated some actions.