10 U.S. Places Every Nature Lover Must Visit

The United States is a big country, full of picturesque landscapes. Tropical beaches? Check! Colorful desert? We’ve got it! Lush green forests? Yes, the U.S. has got it, along with just about everything else in between.

Travel is often a balm for the chafing that daily life so commonly creates, and when you include a natural destination in your itinerary, that balm morphs from a soothing experience to discovering a paradise you never want to leave. The following 10 spots are some of our favorite places every nature-loving person must get their outdoorphins at.

1) Rocky Mountain National Park: Few things can display the smallness of our existence quite like the Rocky Mountains, and this is one spot that won’t disappoint. Packed with perfect views, great trails and 415 square miles of protected mountain environments, it’s a postcard your mind’s eye certainly needs.

2) Acadia National Park: Complete with 125 miles of perfect hiking trails, the woods and the water have never looked so spectacular together. Watch the sunrise from Cadillac Mountain and spot the harbor seals basking in the sun while you’re there.

3) Yosemite Falls: Located inside Yosemite National Park, the falls comes in at 2,425 feet, the highest on the continent. A six-hour hike will put you near the top and give you a view that tops your list.

4) Blue Ridge Parkway: This space is 469 miles of history and natural beauty that you have to see to believe. Take a bike, go for a hike, or just spend a few extra hours in this space that offers you a picturesque look at the Appalachian Highlands.

5) Washington Park Arboretum: Not sure you have time for a getaway to a national park? For a quick fix of outdoorphins, this is the place to be. You only need a few hours to explore the natural beauty all around you here, including the Japanese Garden featuring 3.5 acres of formal gardens.

6) Hoh Rainforest: While you’re in the Northwest, be sure to stop by and see one of the best remaining temperate rainforests on the planet. Coniferous and deciduous species abound here, and mosses and ferns blanket the surface around you.

7) Northerly Island: A great way to escape the cityscape of Chicago, this 91-acre peninsula is natural perfection. Complete with a phenomenal view of the lake and the city from afar, it’s the perfect place to bring a picnic basket full of snacks and a bottle of Natura organic wine!

8) Blackbeard Island National Wildlife Refuge: Accessible only by boat, this is the ideal spot for bird watching, marsh life, and perfect beach habitats.

9) Volcanoes National Park: Nature is just as destructive as it is beautiful, and this is the perfect place to see both sides of the equation. Explore the area through great day-hikes or drive the 11-mile road that encircles the park.

10) The Black Hills: A beautiful Northern mountain range, here you can see beautiful rivers, fantastic rock formations, and some of the largest bison herds in the United States.

The great outdoors awaits. Where will you visit?