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The 22 best US national parks to escape the crowds, chosen by experts

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Park visitation is at a record high good for tourism , not so good for peace and quiet. From Acadia to Zion, Bryce Canyon to Yosemite, leading writers and environmentalists share their alternatives to the most popular spots

1 The attraction: Acadia national park, Maine( 3.5 m annual trips)
The alternative: Voyageurs national park, Minnesota( 237,000 trips)

Location: Northern Minnesota, on the Canadian border
Best place to stay: Camping near Kabetogama lake, for the incredible quiet
Best entry point: Start paddling from Ash river visitor center

When you think of stunning waterscapes, targets like Acadia national park in Maine and Olympic national park in Washington probably spring to mind. Yet Voyageurs national park in Minnesota offerings some of the same works with a fraction of the crowds. Almost half the ballpark is water, with more than 500 islands and 655 miles of undeveloped shoreline. As someone who grew up in the Rockies, lived near the mountains of California and adventured in Alaska, I can tell you that Voyageurs is like no situate else.

The The northern lights above an island at Voyageurs national park
Fort Jefferson in Dry Tortugas
Hoodoo’ plot’ in the Grand Staircase-Escalante national monument
Zebra slit valley in Grand Staircase-Escalante
A live oak are covered under ferns on Cumberland Island, Georgia
Hikers stand beside a kitty on Root glacier
Fall hues at the Serpentine hot springs
Left, stone structures stand on the rims of ancient volcanos. Right, reindeer on the beach at Ikpek lagoon
Henry Hill at the Manassas national battlefield monument
Sunrise on the battlefield

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