Fee-Free Days: Here’s When You Can Get Into the National Parks for Free This Year

Some parks will still require reservations.

Photo: Mark Brodkin Photography / Moment via Getty

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Looking to get in a lot of adventure without spending any cash? The National Park Service will waive entrance fees on five days in 2022, allowing hikers, campers, and other visitors to get some much-needed time in America’s most beautiful spots while also sticking to their budget.

The fee-free days for this year are:

  • January 17: Birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr.
  • April 16: First Day of National Park Week
  • August 4: Anniversary of the Great American Outdoors Act
  • September 24: National Public Lands Day
  • November 11: Veterans Day

The schedule mostly matches the NPS’s fee-free calendar for prior years. (Last year featured one extra free day, the National Park Service’s anniversary on August 25.) Unlike most prior years, however, some popular parks may require visitors to have reservations, free day or not. So far, Arches National Park has confirmed that it will require visitors to have a timed-entry pass ($2 including the reservation fee) to drive into the park from April 3 to October 3, while Glacier National Park announced that visitors will need a ticket to drive Going-to-the-Sun Road or visit the North Fork area of the park from May 27 through September 11. Rocky Mountain and Yosemite, which both required visitors to hold timed entry permits in 2021, have not announced whether or not they’ll bring the practice back this year.