I have to be honest, I was never too excited about Great Smoky Mountain National Park until after I did this trail. By far my favorite hike and most certainly the best view in the park.
You’ll get a nearly 360 degree view here that you can’t get anywhere else in the park. Check out the LeConte Lodge to stay overnight and catch the sunrise and sunset from here!
Death is never a beautiful thing; unless it’s Death Valley. This is another vista that you don’t have to hike to, in fact I don’t think you even want to.
However, I would encourage you to take a small walk up or down one of the side trails to get away from people for a nice lunch up here as it’s going to be the coolest (or realistically least hot) part of the park.
My visit to Zion National Park was in January, so we decided to visit Observation Point. Expect a fairly strenuous hike up, but to be rewarded at the end. You’ll get an unobstructed view of the entire canyon. Take notice of where Angel’s Landing is when you arrive, and you’ll notice how much of a better view you have than from there!
I know when you visit Denali National Park, you are thinking of Denali itself. Well, I say go get your view of Denali, but make sure you do this as well.
As you continue climbing to the top, the view continues to get better. We have all seen the postcards of Alaska with the vast green and snow covered mountains in the distance, but trust me it is better in person.
Yosemite is magical any way you slice it–from Yosemite Valley to the Redwood forest. But Glacier Point is a vista that you can’t see anywhere else in the world.
What is best about this vista is anyone no matter what kind of shape you are in can enjoy it due to the many ways of accessing it. The first being DRIVE! On your own time you can take the drive from the valley approximately 45 minutes up to enjoy the view.
The next way is what we did when we visited. You can take a one-way bus from the Yosemite Lodge up to the top of the mountain or you can do a roundtrip ticket. We did the one way, so that we could take the Panorama Trail back down to the valley (highly advised, but beware of difficulty).
The last way to the top is only for those feeling extra adventurous. You can take the four mile trail up from the valley floor, then connect to the Panorama Trail on the way down. Or you could even do it in reverse.