Most people know that the National Park Service cares for national parks, a network of over 427 natural, cultural and recreational sites across the nation. The treasures in this system – the first of its kind in the world –have been set aside by the American people to preserve, protect, and share the legacies of this land.
People from all around the world visit national parks to experience America's story, marvel at the natural wonders, and have fun. Places like the Grand Canyon, the Statue of Liberty, and Gettysburg are popular destinations, but so too are the hundreds of lesser known yet equally meaningful gems like Rosie the Riveter in California, Boston Harbor Islands in Massachusetts, and Russell Cave in Alabama.
The American system of national parks was the first of its kind in the world, and provides a living model for other nations wishing to establish and manage their own protected areas. The park service actively consults with these Nations, sharing what we've learned, and gaining knowledge from the experience of others.
Beyond national parks, the National Park Service helps communities across America preserve and enhance important local heritage and close-to-home recreational opportunities. Grants and assistance are offered to register, record and save historic places; create community parks and local recreation facilities; conserve rivers and streams, and develop trails and greenways.