After the United States launched the national park movement in 1872 with the creation of Yellowstone National Park, many countries built on the movement. Germany has more than a dozen national parks, ranging from coastal parks to parks that claim high alpine terrain and scenery. Here's a quick primer on those parks.
Two national parks with high, alpine terrain, one in the United States, and one in Germany, have signed a sister park agreement to work together to better understand these environments.
Canada’s Point Pelee National Park is for the birds, literally. Established in 1918, the park was created to protect some of the last remaining wild marsh and forest habitat along the north shore of Lake Erie. Bird fanciers, both those who watched them and those who hunted them, spearheaded the drive to protect the land. Duck hunting is no more at Point Pelee, but the bird watching remains, and this curious spit of land continues to enjoy the guarantee of preservation from Parks Canada.
Cyclists, both those who prefer pavement and those seeking a single-track adventure, are invited to Banff National Park in Alberta, Canada, this summer.
“Pirates used to hide in these keys,” Carlos, our guide, tells us as our boat swings behind a small, steep-sided island. Numerous forested islets dot the shoreline like floating haystacks. “English and French pirates hid in Samaná Bay to ambush Spanish gold ships leaving Santa Domingo. The 58 cays and inlets made perfect hiding places.”
It turns out that scrambling out of a bouncing Zodiac and climbing 160 sodden, wooden stairs are the easiest challenges of the day. At the crest of the cliff, the trail stretches across the grassy, rolling hilltop of the southernmost inhabited island on the planet.
Vlado Vancura, Conservation Manager for Europe's pro-wilderness PAN Parks organization, says, "Large carnivores are essential for landscape-level ecological restoration as well as for the restoration of other highly interactive species and the dynamism of natural processes. Large predators are critically important elements of wilderness."
Parks Beyond Borders / Video Feature: Nuuksio National Park—The Best Of Finland's Parks Just Minutes From Helsinki
Natural England has proposed changes to the boundaries of Lake District and Yorkshire Dales national parks that have triggered a review of the proposal. And Yorkshire farmers may net a £1bn if a plan is approved to mine the world's largest deposit of potash in the North York Moors national park.
Parks Beyond Borders / Video Feature: Peterson Cay National Park, Just One Of Many Parks In The Bahamas
Check out this short video about a trip to Peterson Cay National Park in the Bahamas. If you’re a cruiser and haven’t scoured the excursion list for the chance to visit a national park somewhere in the world—definitely start looking. It’s a best-kept-secret option as I found out with a kayak trip to the smallest of the twenty-seven parks in the 900-island nation.