National parks free days in 2024: Here's how much you can save in Arizona

Michael Salerno
Arizona Republic
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If seeing America's natural and cultural wonders is part of your 2024 travel plans, now you can plan a visit around the days when entry fees are waived.

The National Park Service recently announced its six free-admission days for 2024, including one new free day.

The free admission days fall on significant milestone dates or days when volunteer service at the parks is part of the tradition.

On these days, entrance fees are waived at the 423 national parks, monuments, recreation areas and other locations nationwide that charge them. Keep in mind you'll still have to pay for activities like camping and launching boats, as well as activities offered by a concessionaire, like mule rides at Grand Canyon National Park.

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Free national park days 2024

Monday, Jan. 15: Admission is free in celebration of Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Many people take the day to participate in community service, such as projects at national parks, to honor the legacy of the late civil rights leader.

Saturday, April 20: Entry fees are waived to celebrate the first day of National Park Week, an annual observance highlighting the history and culture of National Park Service sites. National Park Week is April 20-28, 2024.

Wednesday, June 19: New in 2024, admission fees will be waived in honor of Juneteenth National Independence Day, which celebrates the abolition of slavery. Juneteenth, which marks the day in 1865 when enslaved Black people in Galveston, Texas, first learned of their freedom from slavery, became a federal holiday in 2021.

Sunday, Aug. 4: This date marks the fourth anniversary of the signing of the Great American Outdoors Act. Passed in 2020, the legislation funds up to $1.9 billion in national parks and forests annually for five years. The park service considers it a "landmark legislation," in part because it enables them to upgrade infrastructure and improve the visitor experience.

Saturday, Sept. 28: National Public Lands Day is the nation's largest single-day volunteer effort supporting public lands like national and state parks. It's observed on the fourth Saturday of September. Many parks honor the occasion by organizing volunteer projects such as planting native plant species and removing invasive plants.

Monday, Nov, 11: All visitors get free admission on Veterans Day to honor the military members who served our country. Offering free access on Veterans Day highlights many park service sites' connections to the military, such as Fort Bowie National Historic Site in southern Arizona.

Arizona national parks with free days in 2024

Arizona has 22 National Park Service sites, including three national parks. Fourteen of them waive entry fees on free admission days.

Here are the parks that normally charge admission fees. The cost is per vehicle and good for seven days unless otherwise noted.

  • Glen Canyon National Recreation Area: $30.
  • Grand Canyon National Park: $35..
  • Lake Mead National Recreation Area: $25.
  • Montezuma Castle National Monument: $10 per person.
  • Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument: $25.
  • Petrified Forest National Park: $25.
  • Pipe Spring National Monument: $10 per person.
  • Saguaro National Park: $25.
  • Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument: $25.
  • Tonto National Monument: $10 per person.
  • Tumacácori National Historical Park: $10 per person.
  • Tuzigoot National Monument: $10 per person.
  • Walnut Canyon National Monument: $25.
  • Wupatki National Monument: $25.

Arizona national parks that are always free

Eight of Arizona's National Park Service sites are free to visit every day:

  • Casa Grande Ruins National Monument.
  • Chiricahua National Monument.
  • Coronado National Memorial.
  • Fort Bowie National Historic Site.
  • Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument.
  • Canyon de Chelly National Monument.
  • Hubbell Trading Post National Historic Site.
  • Navajo National Monument.

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Reach Michael Salerno at Follow him on X, formerly Twitter: @salerno_phx.

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