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Climate and Environment

Ready For A Nature Break? National Parks To Waive Entrance Fees Saturday

The outdoor entrance sign to Joshua Tree National Park.
Take in nature at your leisure for free on Saturday
(Mario Tama
Getty Images)
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If you’re not at Coachella this weekend and still need plans, you’re in luck: the best time to explore the outdoors is tomorrow, Saturday April 16.

That’s because the National Parks Service is kicking off National Parks Week by waiving entrance fees at national parks for just one day, Saturday, making it a free chance to see the natural sights up close.

The agency teams up with the National Park Foundation yearly to encourage everyone to enjoy parks across the United States. This year there are nine days of events and digital experiences under the “sPark Connections” theme.

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Each day has a different focus, such as health of the environment and preservation. Saturday starts it off with “sPark Discovery” to prompt visitors to find someplace new.

Los Angeles’ closest national parks include Joshua Tree and the Channel Islands, which are around two to five hours away. The largest of the islands is Santa Cruz, which has 15 hiking trails for various ability levels and a spartan campground.

If you’re in the mood for a longer drive, you can also head to Sequoia National Park, Kings Canyonand Death Valley in about five hours.

Don’t forget only the entrance fees are waived — not parking fees — so save yourself some time and secure a parking pass before making the drive.

National Parks Week continues through next Sunday, April 24.

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