America’s #1 Most Visited National Park Is Now Just 2 Hours From Charlotte


The 424 national parks administered by the US National Park Service (NPS) have been steadily rebounding from the Covid pandemic with one here in the Tar Heel state landing on the top spot for the most visited in 2022.

“We’re excited to see our efforts to increase visitation to parks in the off-season and in parks that are less well-known paying off,” NPS Director Chuck Sams said in an online statement this week.

Out of roughly 312 million visits to all national parks last year, 15.71 million were racked up along the peaks of the North Carolina mountains.

The 469 miles long Blue Ridge Parkway National Park toped the Golden Gate National Recreation Area by 70,000 visitors (Golden Gate saw 15.64 million in 2022), the Lincoln Memorial by roughly 8 million visitors (Lincoln attracted 7.83 million people in 2022), and the Grand Canyon by about 11 million visitors (The Grand Canyon saw 4.73 million visitors last year).

You can see the full ranking of the most visited parks in 2022 here.

Here are some interesting facts about the most visited national park in our nation from the official website of the Blue Ridge Parkway:

  • It is the longest road planned as a single unit in the United States.
  • It is an elongated park, protecting significant mountain landscapes far beyond the shoulders of the road itself.
  • It is a series of parks providing the visitor access to high mountain passes, a continuous series of panoramic views, the boundaries of its limited right-of-way rarely apparent and miles of the adjacent countryside seemingly a part of the protected scene.
  • It is a “museum of the managed American countryside,” preserving the roughhewn log cabin of the mountain pioneer, the summer home of a textile magnate, and traces of early industries such as logging, railways, and an old canal.
  • It is the product of a series of major public works projects which provided a boost to the travel and tourism industry and helped the Appalachian region climb out the depths of the Great Depression.
  • Stretching almost 500 miles along the crest of the Blue Ridge mountains through North Carolina and Virginia, it encompasses some of the oldest settlements of both pre-historic and early European settlement.