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Budget Travel Tip: The Benefits of Owning an America the Beautiful National Parks Pass

The United States is blessed with a diverse and stunning array of natural landscapes, from towering mountain ranges to expansive deserts, lush forests, and picturesque coastlines. Exploring these wonders often involves entrance fees, but savvy adventurers have discovered a key to unlocking the nation's treasures—the America the Beautiful National Parks Pass. This pass not only simplifies your outdoor adventures but also offers a range of benefits that make it a must-have for any nature enthusiast. As someone who regularly frequents national parks, this is a budget travel tip worth sharing!

Access to 2,000+ Federal Recreation Sites:

One of the primary advantages of the America the Beautiful National Parks Pass is its all-encompassing access to over 2,000 federal recreation sites. This includes national parks, monuments, wildlife refuges, forests, and grasslands. These include lands that are managed by the following agencies:

  • National Park Service

  • Bureau of Land Management

  • Bureau of Reclamation

  • USDA Forest Service

  • Fish and Wildlife Service

  • US Army Corps of Engineers

While this is definitely a huge cost saver for anyone looking to explore remote dive destinations, it is important to note that the pass doesn't cover other expenses in the park like campsites, tours, or boat launches. It also doesn't allow access to state parks or parks not managed by the above agencies. Whether you're planning a road trip through multiple parks or just want to explore a local recreation area, this pass opens the door to a wealth of natural wonders.

Cost-Effective for a Car Full of Hike n' Divers:

For frequent travelers and outdoor enthusiasts, the pass offers exceptional value for money. In parks where entry fees are charged by the vehicle, the America the Beautiful pass covers the driver and all passengers inside the vehicle! Only one person in the car needs to have the pass. In places where entry is charged per person, this pass will cover up to four adults. Priced at $80 a year, it quickly pays for itself after just four visits to national parks or recreation sites. Below are some national parks with potential dive sites of interest:

  • Alaska: Denali, Glacier Bay

  • California: Channel Islands, Yosemite

  • Colorado: Rocky Mountain

  • Montana: Glacier

  • Nevada: Lake Mead National Recreation Area

  • Washington: Mount Baker, Mount Rainier, North Cascades, Olympic

Not only is this a cost effective option, but an America the Beautiful pass streamlines the entry process to national parks and other federal recreation sites. Rather than fumbling for cash or waiting in long lines, pass holders can simply present their card and photo ID and proceed to their destination!


If you want to explore inland dive sites that are breathtaking both above and underwater (no pun intended), definitely consider purchasing an America the Beautiful pass. It is an amazing way to contribute to the preservation of our nation's national recreation areas, while saving you money so you can purchase that brand new set of freediving fins you've been eyeing.

Disclaimer: The content provided on this website is intended for informational purposes only. While we strive to offer accurate and up-to-date information on outdoor recreation activities, including hiking and freediving, it is essential to recognize that engaging in these activities carries inherent risks. Articles on this website do not replace the need for proper training, certification, and guidance from qualified professionals. By accessing and utilizing the information provided on this website, you acknowledge and accept that you do so at your own risk. We are not liable for any injuries, accidents, or damages that may occur as a result of applying the information presented here. Always prioritize safety, never dive without a trained and competent freediving buddy, adhere to regulations, and seek guidance from experienced professionals when participating in outdoor activities.



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