Day 3: U.S. National Park UNESCO sites

Welcome to Day 3 of our 12 Days of National Parks. By now, I am sure you are all knee deep in holiday celebrations. So far we have looked at the Top 5 Most Popular National Parks, and the 4 States with the most National Parks. Today we are looking into National Park UNESCO sites. UNESCO stands for United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization. This agency is under the auspices of the United Nations and designates landmarks that are judged important to the collective interests of humanity. These UNESCO World Heritage sites can be significant for their cultural, historical, scientific or natural impact on the world.

Let’s Go! Learn Things about National Park UNESCO sites…

Statue of Liberty National Monument

Statue of Liberty National Park UNESCO site
Statue of Liberty in New York, NY Photo credit NPS

The first two landmarks we will look at are designated for their cultural significance. Of course, the Statue of Liberty has been an icon of the United States since 1876. This huge sculpture honors the France/U.S. alliance that helped America obtain her independence. It also represents values these two countries share, such as democracy, freedom, and opportunity.

Chaco Culture National Historical Park

Chaco Canyon National Park UNESCO site
Chetro Ketl Kiva in Chaco Canyon Photo credit NPS

Chaco Canyon is in Northwestern New Mexico. This site encompasses the Aztec Ruins National Monument, Chaco Canyon and five Chaco Culture Archaeological Protection Sites. The Chacoan people inhabited the Four Corners region from 850-1250. Ruins sites graphically illustrate the architectural and engineering achievements of the Chacoan people. This culture learned to overcame and thrive in the harsh southwestern United States.

Mammoth Cave National Park

Mammoth Cave National Park UNESCO site
Mammoth Cave, near the cave’s Frozen Niagara area. Photo credit NPS

The next three UNESCO sites are important for their natural resources. Mammoth Cave in Kentucky is the longest cave system in the world. It has greatly informed humanities understanding of geology, evolution and caverniculous wildlife. There are unique examples of cave formations, flora and fauna that exist only in this labyrinth.

Waterton Glacier International Peace Park

This International Peace Park is a one-of-a-kind collaboration between two National Park systems. Waterton Lakes National Park a Canadian national park and Glacier National Park is managed by the United States. At the northern border of Glacier NP in Montana and the southern border of Waterton Lakes NP in Alberta the Waterton Glacier International Peace Park honors the value of countries working together to preserve and protect an invaluable natural wilderness.

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park UNESCO site
Photo credit NPS

Similar to the Mammoth Cave system, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is a worldwide educational resource. With two of the world’s most active volcanoes, Mauna Loa and Kilauea, scientists extensively study the islands. The volcano Mauna Loa, measured from the ocean floor, is the greatest volcanic mass on earth. It is fascinating to explore this belching park. Since they are active volcanoes (remember Kilauea in the spring of 2018) the landscape of the park is very dynamic.

Learn More: There are many other National Park UNESCO sites in the U.S. and of course all around the world. Whenever possible I make sure to add these to my itinerary for any destination I am visiting.

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