2024 National Park Stamp Travel Plan

There is a saying that goes, a goal without a plan is just a wish.  Well, we want to do better than just hope we get to some National Park sites this year, we want to set a plan in place to make it happen.  There is only so much you can afford to do with the constraints of time and money, so I am going to share our 2024 National Park Stamp Travel Plan. We learned from last year the value of grouping our National Park site visits. Check out our successes with our Tennessee Road Trip and our epic GO West trip. Based on that success we are going after that same approach this year.

First, I was initially working on an epic trip up to the Artic Circle in the Summer to hit the big six parks up there (Cape Krusenstern NM, Noatak N Pres, Bering Land Bridge N Pres, Kobuk Valley NP, Gates of the Artic NP  & Pres).  Unfortunately, the plan fell through.  The cost of these trips is not low, as you can’t just rent a car and ‘drive around’ as these parks are very remote. You have to use/charter bush planes to fly into remote areas so you can see, and touchdown int the parks. Given the cost of this trip is deferred until 2025 or later, that opened up some additional opportunities. I look definitely want to pull together a planning guide on Alaska cancellations stamps in the future!

So, our first big but brief trip is later in January.  Leveraging a few admin days in the school schedule we are turning a long four-day weekend into a visit to Florida’s southern National Parks.  We are going to visit some of the most epic National Parks (Everglades, and Biscayne); however, the keystone for this trip is Dry Tortugas National Park.  We have booked a seaplane flight out to a remote fort in the middle of the Gulf of Mexico for a half day visit of snorkeling and sun through Key West Seaplane Charters. It will be epic! 

Key Tip: Pick a few ‘pillars’ or keystones that are must-dos on your trip. You can then add optional activities that are take-it or leave-it. Note, only pick a hand full of must-do activities, though! If everything is a ‘must-do’ then it can easily turn into a trudge of list-checking work!

The second, in no particular order, is our summer vacation back to Florida.  We promised a Disney vacation to the younger child when she got older, and so we are teaming up with some friends go during the ‘hot as the surface of the sun’ period in the sunshine state. We are driving, which allows us to take a page from our previous National Park Road trip game plan and apply it on this trip. There are no less than seven National Park Sites along the Atlantic coast in southern Georgia and North/East Florida. As we build out our plan, we look forward to scoping out these areas this summer.

Then there is spring break.  As we did last year, we are looking to a road trip west but this time through Pennsylvania and into Ohio. We have family along this trek which will provide a number of opportunities. The main focus will be Cuyahoga Valley National Park, but several locations along the route will make perfect sites for shorts visits: Flight 93 National Memorial, Johnstown Flood National Memorial, and the First Ladies NHS.

Tip: Many National Park Sites can be visited in just an hour or two, making a great way to break up a long leg of a road trip. We have had great visits at stopovers a number of Historic Houses, National Memorials and National Historic Sites. This gets you out of the car, let the kids run around, and you can get your Cancellation Stamp!

And then there are ‘one-off’ park visits. We have our eyes on several that we want to try and explore.  (Outer banks, Eastern shore, West Virginia, etc.) All told, I am working to add at least 20 to the total National Park total visits this year and get past the 100-site visit mark as we march toward seeing all 428(+)!

Below is our location target list. I broke it down into sites that we are defiantly going to make an effort to see, and a second section for the optional sites on the ‘maybe’ list.

Main Target SitesTarget DateStatus
Everglades National ParkJan 2024 Visited
Big Cypress National PreserveJan 2024 Visited
Biscayne National ParkJan 2024 Visited
Dry Tortugas National ParkJan 2024 Visited
Fort Caroline National MemorialAug 2024 
Castillo de San Marcos National MonumentAug 2024 
Fort Frederica National MonumentAug 2024 
Castillo de San Marcos National MonumentAug 2024 
Fort Matanzas National MonumentAug 2024 
Target Sites for 2024
Secondary SitesTarget DateStatus
Monocacy National BattlefieldApr 2024 
Antietam National BattlefieldApr 2024 
Flight 93 National MemorialApr 2024 
Allegheny Portage Railroad NHSApr 2024 
Johnstown Flood National MemorialApr 2024 
First Ladies NHSApr 2024 
Cuyahoga Valley National ParkApr 2024 
James A. Garfield NHSApr 2024 
Harpers Ferry NHPApr 2024 
Cape Lookout National SeashoreJul 2024 
Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad NHPJul 2024 
Cumberland Island National SeashoreAug 2024 
Canaveral National SeashoreAug 2024 
Secondary Sites for 2024

That is a wrap on our 2024 National Park Stamp Travel Plan. I will return and update as we move along our journey this year. I look forward to sharing our trip plans and tips. Make sure you go out and get some adventure in 2024 as well!

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