The Pride of America: Our National Parks

The United States is home to world’s most extensive system of protected public lands -- the U.S. National Park System. The system includes more than 450 natural, historical, recreational and cultural areas throughout the United States, its territories and island possessions -- over 84.6 million acres in total. Such a vast system of parks, memorials, and monuments requires expertly coordinated management on a national scale.

The National Park System is administered by the federal government under the National Park Service, an agency of the U.S. Department of Interior. The National Park Service employees over 20,000 Americans who are responsible for managing an annual budget of nearly $3 billion, protecting the spectrum of American wildlife (including 400 endangered species), and hosting hundreds of millions of park visitors each year.

To better understand the history and scale of the National Park System and the National Park Service, we worked with UNC-Chapel Hill’s MPA@UNC to put together this visualization to help the public better understand a real national treasure -- Our National Parks: The Pride of America.

In this infographic we cover:

  • A history of the major milestones in development of the National Park System

  • A survey of the National Park System and National Park Service today

  • Highlights of the plethora of natural wonders in the parks

  • Profiles of our most famous parks -- Yosemite, Yellowstone, and Great Smokey Mountains.
Click to Enlarge National Park Infographic