Park visitation is at a record high good for tourism , not so good for peace and quiet. From Acadia to Zion, Bryce Canyon to Yosemite, leading writers and environmentalists share their alternatives to the most popular spots
1 The attraction: Acadia national park, Maine( 3.5 m annual visits)
The alternative: Voyageurs national park, Minnesota( 237,000 visits)
Location: Northern Minnesota, on the Canadian border
Best place to remain: Camping near Kabetogama lake, for the incredible quiet
Best entry point: Start paddling from Ash river visitor center
When you think of stunning waterscapes, places like Acadia national park in Maine and Olympic national park in Washington probably come to mind. Yet Voyageurs national park in Minnesota offers some of the same activities with a fraction of the crowds. Almost half the park is water, with more than 500 islands and 655 miles of undeveloped shoreline. As someone who grew up in the Rockies, lived near the mountains of California and adventured in Alaska, I can tell you that Voyageurs is like no place else.