America’s Best Idea — our national parks — is even better when admission is free! Mark your calendar now for entrance fee-free dates for the coming year. On these dates, FREE entrance is available to 133 National Parks across the country that normally charge a fee. During the fee-free days, the parks waive entrance fees, commercial tour fees and transportation entrance fees. Other fees such as reservations, camping, tours, concessions and fees collected by third parties are not included in this promotion.
2018 National Parks entrance fee-free dates
- January 15: Birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr.
- April 21: First day of National Park Week
- September 22: National Public Lands Day
- November 11: Veterans Day
April 21 is also National Junior Ranger Day. On this day kids can take part in the Junior Ranger program. Participating parks provide a FREE booklet that describes all sorts of age-appropriate activities in the park. When they’ve completed the tasks, they are awarded an official Junior Ranger badge.
Here are the Baltimore area National Parks where you can enjoy free admission on these days:
- Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine — 2400 East Fort Avenue, Baltimore
Visit Fort McHenry and learn more about the War of 1812, attend a program about the writing of ‘The Star-Spangled Banner,’ walk the scenic grounds, or assist a park ranger in changing the morning or evening flag. Park is open 9am – 5pm.
- Hampton National Historic Site — 535 Hampton Lane, Towson, MD
The Hampton estate was created and evolved through the actions of enslaved African Americans, European indentured servants and the Ridgely family within a nation struggling to define its own concept of freedom. Note: Hampton is free year-round.
See a listing of other national parks in the Maryland and Washington, DC areas here.
Find a Park by going to the National Park Service website and using the search tool or interactive map. You can search for parks in your state or parks that feature activities you like, such as camping, fishing or hiking, as well as educational programs and historic sites.
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