American Southwest: 4 Otherworldly National Parks

Have you ever dreamed of visiting outer space? Many consider a trip to another planet to be the ultimate vacation destination, but who says you have to leave the atmosphere to have an out-of-this-world experience?

Enter the American Southwest — the home of red rocks, natural wonders, and mind blowing formations. While patiently awaiting the days of intergalactic travel, consider a trip to one of these spellbinding national parks that lie just beyond your doorstep.

Arches, Utah

A mere 10-minute drive from The Moab Resort, WorldMark Associate lies Arches National Park — one of Utah’s many selling points. With hundreds of natural arches, It’s no secret how this fascinating region got its name. Make your way through the sandstone wonderland to the park’s most notable landmark: Delicate Arch. Look familiar? It may be because it has become a symbol of the great state of Utah, adorning postage stamps, state licence plates, and countless t-shirts. For the cherry on top, don’t forget to hit the nearby Colorado River on your way out.

Joshua Tree, California

Joshua Tree National Park: If it isn’t on your list already, it should be. Named after its distinct Yucca Brevifolia, or “Joshua Trees,” Joshua Tree National Park plays an integral role in the Mojave Desert ecosystem. By booking your stay at Club Wyndham Indio or WorldMark Palm Springs, this world of whimsy is just under an hour away. Otherworldly sights can sometimes bring otherworldly temperatures, so plan your day trip to Joshua Tree accordingly or opt for an evening under the park’s famous starry sky instead.

Grand Canyon, Arizona

Fancy checking a drive along one of the most famous highways in America and a visit to a wonder of the world off your bucket list? Just north of the iconic Route 66 you’ll find Grand Canyon National Park, a true must-see. With views so scenic you’ll think you’re looking at a painting, The Grand Canyon is the perfect pitstop before settling into Club Wyndham Flagstaff. Take a stroll alongside the rim, or for those in the market for a more immersive experience, plan a hike down into the canyon itself. Looking for an extra thrill? Journey out onto The Skywalk where you’ll find unparalleled views courtesy of the glass bridge beneath your long as you don’t mind hanging out at 4,000 feet.

Bryce Canyon, Utah

There are few places on Earth as breathtaking as Bryce Canyon. Known for its signature Hoodoos — tall, thin rock spires sometimes referred to as “Fair Chimneys” — Bryce Canyon National Park gives planet Mars a run for its money. Here, you’ll find the greatest number of Hoodoos on Earth — which makes for some seriously spectacular views. Make the journey from WorldMark St. George or WorldMark Estancia, stop to take in the eyeful that is Bryce Amphitheater, then continue along the Southern Scenic Drive to find more overlooks that capture the park’s beauty — each from a new vantage point. From the sky-high spires to the Ponderosa Pines, a trip to Bryce Canyon never disappoints.

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