Stunning vistas, snow-capped peaks, fern-filled forests, untouched prairies—there are so many reasons to love national and state parks. Free from the dangers of development, animals roam unguarded, flowers grow wild, and the air feels supercharged with life-giving freshness.
But when you’re itching for an adventure, it can be tough to know where to start. With more than 400 national park sites spanning 84 million acres—and millions more covering state and city-protected public lands—there’s no shortage of trails to conquer and campsites to reserve.
That’s why we asked the outdoor-loving women of BRANWYN to share their must-see spots for nature-fueled escapades. Read on for 15 state and national parks to add to your bucket list. Whenever you’re venturing out in the wild, it’s important to respect her power and prepare accordingly. Make sure to research weather patterns, pack the safety gear (including food and water) you need, carry physical maps—and stay comfortable with naturally sustainable Merino Performance Innerwear, designed to support your off-the-grid wanderlust.
1. Grand Teton National Park, WY
Alpine terrain—and the glassy lakes that come along with it—provide a sweeping landscape where bison, pronghorn antelope, and elk roam.
“It has so many breathtaking views. Plus, after a long hike, you can head to Jackson Hole for some yummy food!” — Olivia
2. Chiricahua National Monument, AZ
Known as the “wonderland of rocks” in southeastern Arizona, visitors to this off-the-beaten-path park can hike through towering vertical rock formations called “hoodoos.”
“It's remote and not crowded. The Echo Trail Loop is the most surreal trail I've ever hiked... I swear the rocks were talking to me!” — Kayla
3. Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park, CO
Feel the echo of time in Western Colorado where the Gunnison River slices through Pre-Cambrian rock covered with evergreen trees.
“The view is incredible at sunset and the depth of the canyon takes my breath away!” — Mikayla
4. Olympic National Park, WA
Discover a rainforest dripping with moss, glaciated mountain peaks, and soaring cedar trees along Washington’s majestic coastline.
“The brightness of the green, the moisture held everywhere, the memories of such a formative time in my life, and of course, banana slug mating season!” — Mrunal
5. Big Bend National Park, TX
Located in far west Texas, this park covers the Chisos Mountain Range, the Chihuahuan Desert, and stunning Santa Elena Canyon where the powerful Rio Grande has carved out imposing limestone cliffs.
“I love that you very much have to *want* to go there. It’s so remote and there are so many different ways to experience the park: backcountry, campground, lodge, etc. Also the best stars of my life!” — Beth
6. Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park, CA
In California’s northwestern-most corner lies some of the largest organisms in the world: the majestic sequoias, protected through a system of interlocking public lands, including Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park.
“Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park for sure!! Beaches, giant old growth redwoods, and fern canyon! How do you compete?!” — Caity
7. Brown County State Park, IN
Indiana’s largest state park occupies a stunning 15,000-plus acres of protected land. Nicknamed the “Little Smokies,” this state park is popular all through the year—but come autumn, the trees really put on a show.
“Brown County State Park, Indiana ❤️ ” — Sarah E
8. Cape Lookout State Park, OR
Marked by cascading waterfalls and dramatic viewpoints, this rugged rock formation, overlooking an untamed forest abutting the ocean, makes for one of the best whale watching spots on the Oregon coast.
“It has everything: cabins, forest, river, coastline. It’s perfect.” — Zoey
9. Glacier National Park, MT
Share 1,583 square miles of pristine wilderness with grizzly bears and mountain goats. Bordering Canada, this park features stunning alpine lakes, carved valleys, and lush meadows.
“I could stay in Glacier NP until the end of time! Mountains, big trees, blue-blue water? What else do you need?!” — Jolie
10. Capitol Reef National Park, UT
In the heart or red rock country, Capitol Reef is home to towering sandstone structures, colorful canyons, massive domes, and soaring monoliths.
“I feel it is often forgotten about but deserves all the recognition. It’s beautiful red rocks up against the tall trees and green grass of the campground. Beautiful hikes through this wave-like valley up to the top of the ridge where you can see layers of the rock. Breathtaking!” — Shelby
11. Acadia National Park, ME
Tucked away on Maine’s Mount Desert Island, this seaside park features the highest peak on the East Coast, Cadillac Mountain. Explore 158 miles of hiking trails through rocky headlands, dense pine forests, and hidden beaches.
“Acadia!! 🏔🏔🏔” — Karyn Ellen
12. Klondike Gold Rush National Park, AK
Travel back into time at Klondike Gold Rush National Park in Skagway, Alaska, to learn about the 19th-century Gold Rush. Explore a ghost town or follow in the miner’s footsteps along Chilkoot Trail.
“It’s in the middle of the city and helps promote equitable access to the outdoors for kids :)” — Sammi
13. Badlands National Park, SD
Traverse expansive grasslands and striking geological formations atop impressive fossil beds where prehistoric rhinos and saber-tooth cats once roamed.
“The rolling prairie hills outside of the Badlands National Park in South Dakota, because it reminds me of Little House on the Prairie." — Janel
14. Carlsbad Caverns, NM
Home to more than 100 caves, with incredible limestone formations, Carlsbad Caverns lets adventurers experience an underground world hidden beneath the Chihuahuan desert.
“Carlsbad was amazing and I would’ve never known that huge cave is under all the desert land!” — Grace
15. Everglades National Park, FL
The largest subtropical wilderness in the United States, the Everglades covers 1.5 million acres of wetlands, full of mangroves and sawgrass marshes—plus manatees, Florida panthers, and alligators, of course.
“Everglades NP 💘🐊 " — Hannahlou Evergreen
+ Newberry National Volcanic Monument, OR
For extra credit, we’re adding one more that’s right in BRANWYN’s backyard. We’re so lucky to be headquartered out of beautiful Bend and to have access to the natural wonders Central Oregon has to offer. Newberry National Volcanic Monument, sometimes called “Baby Crater Lake” because of the stunning blue pool inside Newberry Crater, is located within Deschutes National Forest. The 1,200 square mile volcano remains active to this day—reminding us that nature is ever-changing and evolving and that it’s our responsibility to promote a sustainable lifestyle so that we support her power.
Thank you so much for considering including BRANWYN naturally sustainable Merino Performance Innerwear as part of your lifestyle—and thank you to all of the badass women who shared their favorite public lands. You inspire us! Rock on.