Looking for the best National Parks to visit in June? Here are the ones to visit this June.

June is an ideal time to visit the national parks to go stargazing, watch the Synchronous Fireflies, or hunt for wildflowers.

best national parks to visit in june

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Last Updated: June 1, 2024

Before we get into it, we want to remind everyone to explore the parks responsibly using the 7 Leave No Trace Principles. Have a plan, stay on established trails, carry out anything you carry in, leave what you find, minimize campfire impact, respect wildlife, and be considerate of others.

About the National Park by Month Series

To put together this list, we’ve combined our personal experiences and tips we gathered from locals and cross-referenced them with the weather, accessibility, local forums, seasonal attractions like fall foliage or wildflowers, and special events happening in the area. We also considered any unique adventures only offered at certain times of the year to find the most optimal months to visit each National Park. Phew! That was a lot!

It took me a whole week of research, but since I’m a maximizer, it was completely worth having a year-round calendar of adventures (publishing that soon!). Also, check out our complete list of all the national parks and all national park units that include soon-to-be national parks.

We also chose not to include the hardest-to-access national parks in Alaska and the ones in U.S. territories in this series.

National Parks By Month: Jan | Feb | Mar | Apr | May | Jun | Jul | Aug | Sep | Oct | Nov | Dec

Is June a Good Time to Visit National Parks?

June is a great time to visit National Parks for a few reasons.

  • It’s Milky Way season, and many parks hold stargazing events or astronomy festivals.
  • Some parks are just starting to open after the snow melts.
  • Wildlife is more active earlier in the summer.
  • You’ll also see wildflowers in higher-elevation parks.
  • Longer days give you more time to explore.

However, June is the start of tourist season for most parks, meaning they will be more crowded. Lodging and parking will also be more difficult to find and cost more. High-altitude parks will still have snow, too, so all the trails might not be open yet.

Plan on visiting more than two national parks this year? Pick up an America the Beautiful annual pass to save money (entrance fees to each park are, on average, $30-35 per vehicle). Plus, you are helping support the Parks that always need funding.

5 Best National Parks to Visit in June

1. Bryce Canyon National Park UT for the Astronomy Festival →

UT-63, Bryce Canyon City, UT 84764, map

Average Temperatures: 40° F / 74° F
Average Sunrise / Sunset Times: 5:52 AM / 8:52 PM

Why Visit: Bryce Canyon hosts an Astronomy Festival annually in June, and we can’t wait to go this year! They are offering free astrophotography workshops, telescope stargazing sites, and even a star shuttle (sign up early since space is limited). If you’re not here for the stars, it has comfortable daytime temperatures for hiking.

Best For / Top Activities: Hiking, Viewpoints, Stargazing, Photography

Don’t Miss:

See More: 15 Amazing Things to Do in Bryce Canyon National Park

2. Congaree National Park SC for Fireflies →

100 National Park Rd, Hopkins, SC 29061, map

Average Temperatures: 68° F / 89° F
Average Sunrise / Sunset Times: 6:15 AM / 8:35 PM

Why Visit: Congaree is also one of the best national parks to visit in June. The synchronous fireflies occur every year between mid-May and mid-June, where the fireflies search for their mates and synchronize their flashes. It’s a truly magical natural phenomenon. When we visited, we tried to time it correctly but missed it by two days.

Best For / Top Activities: Hiking, Canoeing, Kayaking, Fishing, Camping

Don’t Miss:

  • To Do – Boardwalk Loop Trail, Canoe or Kayak, Bluff Trail
  • Wildlife – Bobcats, Deer, Feral Pigs, Coyotes, Armadillos, Otters
  • How many days do you need? 1-2

Pro Tip: Other places to see synchronous fireflies include Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Rainbow Falls in TN, Rocky Fork State Park in TN, Cataloochee Valley in NC, and Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest in NC.

See More: 11 Unique Things to Do in Congaree National Park

3. Dry Tortugas National Park for the Sea Turtles

281 Trumbo Rd, Key West, FL 33040, map

Average Temperatures: 77°F / 90°F
Average Sunrise / Sunset Times: 5:37 AM / 8:17 PM

Why Visit: June is a great time to visit Dry Tortugas National Park if you want to spend time in the water. The warm days make it perfect for snorkeling and diving, and you will find the greatest concentration of sea turtles in the area in June.

Best For / Top Activities: Snorkel, Fishing, Boating, Paddle Sports, Diving

Don’t Miss:

  • To Do – Bush Key, Fort Jefferson, Snorkel, Garden Key, Kayak Tour
  • Wildlife – Nurse Sharks, Reef Fish, Sea Turtles, ~300 Species of Birds
  • How many days do you need? 1-3

Pro Tip: Start planning early. You will need to book a way to get to the park and keep in mind that parts of the park may be closed to protect natural resources.

See More: 7+ Remarkable Things to Do in Key West Florida

dry tortugas day trip

4. Grand Canyon National Park for a Star Party →

36.0591278,-112.1114996, map

Average Temperatures: 59° F / 93° F
Average Sunrise / Sunset Times: 5:15 AM / 7:52 PM

Why Visit: Grand Canyon National Park is also another great destination to stargaze in June. They hold a free Star Party every year (you must pay an entrance fee into the park), with telescopes to help you see the stars closer, astronomers to help answer questions, and more. Programs are at both the South Rim and North Rim. Check the schedule of events here.

Best For / Top Activities: Hiking, Wildlife Viewing, Scenic Drives, Stargazing

Don’t Miss:

  • To Do – Trail Ridge Road, Sprague Lake, Bear Lake Road, Alpine Ridge Trail, Emerald Lakes, Alberta Falls
  • Wildlife – Desert Bighorn Sheep, Mule Deer, Mountain Lions, Coyotes, Gray Fox
  • How many days do you need? 1-3

Local Tip: Don’t forget to use a red flashlight or headlamp during your visit if you are stargazing.

See More: 17 Breathtaking Things to Do at the Grand Canyon National Park

5. Rocky Mountain National Park for the Wildflowers

1000 US-36, Estes Park, CO 80517, map

Average Temperatures: 39° F / 63° F
Average Sunrise / Sunset Times: 5:35 AM / 8:35 PM

Why Visit: Rocky Mountain National Park’s snow melts in June, opening up higher-elevation hiking trails. The park’s meadows also explode with colorful wildflowers. The Trail Ridge Road typically opens in June and is one of the highest paved roads in North America, but check current road conditions.

Best For / Top Activities: Hikers / Backpackers, Wildlife Viewing, Scenic Drives, Stargazing

Don’t Miss:

  • To Do – Trail Ridge Road, Sprague Lake, Bear Lake Road, Alpine Ridge Trail, Emerald Lakes, Alberta Falls
  • Wildlife – Elk, Moose, Bighorn Sheep, Mountain Lions, Deer, Bears, Bobcats
  • How many days do you need? 2-4

Local Tip: If you want to explore Bear Lake Road, you must get a permit.

rocky mountain wildflowers

Map of the Best National Parks to Visit in June

More National Parks to Visit in June

Tips for Visiting National Parks in June

  • Use the Leave No Trace principles. Have a plan, stay on established trails, carry out anything you carry in, leave what you find, minimize campfire impact, respect wildlife, and be considerate of others.
  • Pick up the National Park Annual Pass if you plan on visiting multiple parks within the year. It saves you a lot of money.
  • Want to see wildflowers? Climate change and droughts can make timing unpredictable. We typically scroll through Instagram or TikTok and look for non-influencers posting the day of.
  • Packing layers is always a good idea when traveling. Some parks drastically change temperatures from day to night. Pay attention to the elevation change. A general rule is that it’s 5 degrees cooler for every 1000 ft elevation.
  • You may need a reservation. See national parks that now require reservations here.
  • Closures – Always check the park’s site and Visitors Center for the most up-to-date information on closures.
  • Remember that wildlife is wild. Be familiar with how to interact with animals and how much space you should have between you and them. Generally, you should stay 25 yards from most wildlife and 100 yards from predators, but each park has different rules.
Moose Wilson Road Wyoming - One of your best chances of spotting Moose in Grand Teton National Park // Local Adventurer

What to Pack

How you pack depends on the parks and activities, but here are the general items we always pack.

Planning Checklist

Recap of the 5 Best National Parks to Visit in June

May is a great time to explore the National parks. Here is a list of parks we recommend visiting.

  1. Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah
  2. Congaree National Park, South Carolina
  3. Dry Tortugas National Park, Florida
  4. Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona
  5. Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado

National Parks By Month: Jan | Feb | Mar | Apr | May | Jun | Jul | Aug | Sep | Oct | Nov | Dec

Can you think of others that belong on this list of best National Parks to visit in June? Which ones are we missing?

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Esther and Jacob

Esther + Jacob

Esther and Jacob are the founders of Local Adventurer, one of the top 5 travel blogs in the US. They believe that adventure can be found near and far and hope to inspire others to explore locally. They explore a new city in depth every year and currently base themselves in Las Vegas.

Follow on Instagram (E + J), YouTube, TikTok, and Pinterest.

The post 5 Best National Parks to Visit in June 2024 appeared first on Local Adventurer » Travel Adventures in Las Vegas + World Wide.


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