My Bucket List of National Parks

Jena C. Henry is a writer, blogger, book reviewer, and bon vivant. Her goal is to make friends with everyone in the world. Jena enjoys reading new books and encouraging writers to be their best. Jena C. Henry holds a juris doctor degree from the University of Akron and practiced law and raised her family in tropical Ohio. Now retired, she writes novels, conducts writing workshops and enjoys good times with friends and family. Her fiction series, The Golden Age of Charli, spotlights the love and laughter of family life and retirement.

Natural Beauty

July was National Parks and Recreation Month and we were exhorted to “get our play on.” I don’t believe I got my play on, but I was inspired to make a bucket list of U.S. National Parks that I have been wanting to visit. Now that I don’t have young kids at home that I must nurture and expose to experiences that are good for them, I haven’t planned any trips to National Parks. Oops. National Parks and Recreation Month got me to thinking that I might be missing out on some amazing adventures.

My heart does yearn to visit some parks, so I will be sharing my bucket list with you and asking you to tell me about your trips to our Parks.

But first, some numbers and facts.

Number of National Parks- 59

Number of states with National Parks- 27, plus 2 territories

State with the most Parks: California has 9, followed by Alaska-8, Utah-5, Colorado-4.


Criteria to become a National Park: 

Natural beauty

Unique geological factors

Unusual ecosystems

Recreational opportunities

National Monuments are chosen for their historical or archaeological significance.


BONUS QUESTION-  The first National Park was ??? It was signed into law by President ??? in what year?

I have been blessed to visit some of our parks. The easiest one for me to get to is in Ohio! Cuyahoga Valley National Park is about 30 minutes from my house. I visited this area many times in my youth before it even became a park. Located along the Cuyahoga River (no jokes please, it’s lovely) my park has waterfalls, hills, trails, and exhibits on early rural living. The Ohio and Erie Canal Towpath Trail follows the Ohio and Erie Canal where mules towed canal boats. The park has numerous historic homes, bridges, and scenic views.

I have