In order to manage expected high volumes of visitors this summer, there are several US national parks that will require reservations.  Here are all of the US national parks that have reservations requirements or entry permits this summer.  Plus, some insider tips for how to get national park reservations. 

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Which National Parks Require Reservations
US National Parks You Need a Reservation For

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Which National Parks Require Reservations

Glacier National Park
Yosemite National Park
Rocky Mountain National Park
Zion National Park
Acadia National Park
Haleakala National Park
Muir Woods National Monument
Arches National Park
Shenandoah National Park
Tips For Making Reservations


Glacier National Park 

Glacier National Park
All 63 U.S. National Parks x
All 63 U.S. National Parks

Glacier National Park is a breathtaking mix of mirror-like lakes, towering mountains and stunning glacier-carved valleys.   

It has one of the most famous scenic drives in US national parks, the Going to The Sun Road.  This road is an absolute must-do in the park.  Consequently, it is extremely popular and gets very crowded.  In recent years, entry to it has often been closed for several hours a day due to the high volume of visitors.   

To help alleviate this congestion and minimize crowding, the park has limited the number of people who can enter the Going to The Sun Road each day in the busy summer season. 

Here is a summary of the reservation system for Glacier National Park, but for full details, read my detailed Guide to the Glacier National Park Ticketed Entry System

Type of entry tickets/ reservations

Access to:

  1. the Going to the Sun Road at the West Entrance, the Camas Entrance, and once the GTSR is open to Logan pass, at the start of the Rising Sun area, 5 miles west of the St. Mary Entrance. Tickets valid for 3 days.
  2. the North Fork (Polebridge Entrance) between 6:00 am and 4:00 pm. Tickets valid for 1 day.

The Going to the Sun Road and the North Fork reservations are separate from each other.

Period reservations are needed for

Access between May 27 and September 11, 2022. 

How to get entry tickets/ make reservations

1) Most of the tickets are released at 8:00 am Mountain Time each morning 120 days in advance, starting March 2, 2022

2) A small number the tickets are released at 8:00 am Mountain Time the day before, starting May 26. 

Entry tickets are only available online at the NPS reservation system or on the phone.  They will not be available at park entrance stations, visitor centers or park offices. Phone reservations will be available 8:00 am – 10:00 pm MST on 877-444-6777 (toll free); 606-515-6777 (international); or 877-833-6777 (TDD).

Cost of tickets/ reservations

$2 per vehicle 


Yosemite National Park 

Yosemite National Park

Due to its proximity to major urban centers such as San Francisco, and its truly breathtaking scenery, Yosemite National Park is one of the country’s most popular parks.  People flock to the park to enjoy its towering granite peaks, beautiful lakes, stunning waterfalls and even sandy river beaches.   

To help reduce crowding, the park limits the number of people who can visit the park for the day in their busy period. 

Here is a summary of the reservation system for Yosemite National Park, but for full details, read my detailed Guide to the Yosemite National Park Ticketed Entry System. 

Type of entry tickets/ reservations

Access to the national park as a day visitor between 6:00am and 4:00pm.  

Period reservations are needed for

Access between May 20 and September 30, 2022. 

How to get entry tickets/ make reservations 

1) 70% of the tickets for the whole season go on sale at 8:00am Pacific Time on March 23, 2022.

2) A30% of tickets go on sale seven days in advance 

Entry tickets are only available online at the NPS reservation system.  They will not be available at park entrance stations, visitor centers or park offices. 

Cost of tickets/ reservations

$2 per vehicle 


Rocky Mountain National Park 

Rocky Mountain National Park

Rocky Mountain National Park is another of the most popular national parks in the US.  With towering mountain peaks, dozens of stunning lakes, endless vistas and thundering waterfalls, it is an ideal place to get out into nature.  However, plenty of people have the same idea, and the park gets extremely crowded in the summer, with parking lots full by early morning and shuttle buses often crammed.   

In order to thin out the crowds this summer, the park has introduced a timed entry system

Here is a summary of the reservation system for Rocky Mountain National Park, but for full details, read my detailed Guide to the Rocky Mountain National Park Timed Entry System

Type of entry tickets/ reservations 

Timed entry to the national park as a day visitor.  

1)  Access to the whole of the park, including the main Bear Lake Road corridor between 5:00am and 6:00pm. 

2) Access to most of the park but excluding the main Bear Lake Road corridor between 9:00am and 3:00pm.  

Period reservations are needed for 

Access between May 27 and October 1, 2022.  

How to get timed entry tickets/ make reservations 

1) 75% of the tickets are sold at 8:00 am Mountain Time approximately 30 days in advance 

2) 25% of the tickets are sold at 5:00 pm Mountain Time the day before arrival 

Entry tickets are only available online at the NPS reservation system.  They will not be available at park entrance stations, visitor centers or park offices. 

Cost of tickets/ reservations

$2 per vehicle 


Zion National Park 

Angels landing zion

Angel’s Landing is one of the most iconic hikes in the United States and an incredibly popular hike in Zion National Park. The hike includes a very narrow section with steep drop offs n both sides and chains to hold on so you don’t fall. Because the hike is so popular, there has frequently been a long wait time on the trail.

In order to manage numbers and increase safety, the park has introduced a permit system that operates through a lottery. 

Here is a summary of the lottery system for the Angels Landing trail, but for full details, read my detailed Guide to the Angels Landing Lottery System

Type of permits

Permits are issued for a time period, with three different time periods throughout the day. This time period is when you need to start the hike. You can take as long as you like to complete the hike once you’ve started it.

Period reservations are needed for 

All year, starting April 1, 2022.  

How to get permits 

Permits are issued through a lottery system. There are two options:

  1. The seasonal lottery is held four times/ year.
  2. The Day Before lottery is held daily between midnight and 3:oopm MST for permits to hike the following day.

Permits are available online at the NPS reservation system.

Cost of tickets/ reservations

$6 to enter the lottery (for up to six people) plus $3 per person to get the permit if you win the lottery. 


Acadia National Park 

Acadia National Park

Acadia National Park is one of the most popular national parks on the east coast.  The park has miles of rocky shoreline, bays dotted with islands and plenty of wooded peaks to hike. 

The highest peak in the park is Cadillac Mountain.  The views from the top of the mountain over the surrounding seas, islands and forests are stunning.  For several months a year, this is the point at which you can see the earliest sunrise in the country.  Throughout the year, it is a popular place to see the sunrise and enjoy the views throughout the day. 

It is possible to hike to the summit, but there is also a road.  A very popular road.  In order to prevent overcrowding, there is now a timed entry system to access the road (the rest of the park is reservation-free, however, though a park entrance fee applies). 

Here is a summary of the reservation system for Acadia National Park, but for full details, read my detailed Guide to the Acadia Cadillac Mountain Reservation System.  

Type of entry tickets/ reservations 

Vehicle access to Cadillac Summit Road, which goes to the top of Cadillac Mountain.  

1) Sunrise reservations are required for entry in a two-hour window starting between 3:30 am and 5:00 am depending on the month. 

2) Daytime reservations are required for entry in a 30-minute window between 6:30 am and 8:00 pm, varying depending on the month. 

Period reservations are needed for 

Access between May 25 and October 22, 2022. 

How to get entry tickets/ make reservations 

1) 30% of the tickets are released at 10:00 am Eastern Time 90 days in advance of each date.  

2) 70% of the tickets are sold at 10:00 am Eastern Time two days in advance of each date. 

Entry tickets are only available online at the NPS reservation system.   

Cost of reservations

$6 per vehicle 


Haleakala National Park

Haleakala Sunrise

Haleakala National Park has the highest peak in Maui.  After watching the sunrise here, Mark Twain wrote “It was the sublimest spectacle I ever witnessed, and I think the memory of it will remain with me always.” Sunrises have been popular ever since, and to control crowding, the national park has had a reservation system for the sunrise at the summit in place for several years now.

Type of entry tickets/ reservations

Access to the summit entering between 3:00 am and 7:00 am. 

Sunrise occurs (Standard Hawaiian Time) at:

January 1: 6:56 am
January 15: 6:58 am
February 1: 6:55 am
February 15: 6:48 am
March 1: 6:39 am
March 15: 6:27 am
April 1: 6:12 am
April 15: 6:00 am
May 1: 5:50 am
May 15: 5:42 am
June 1: 5:38 am
June 15: 5:38 am
July 1: 5:41 am
July 15: 5:46 am
August 1: 5:52 am
August 15: 5:57 am
September 1: 6:02 am
September 15: 6:0 6am
October 1: 6:10 am
October 15: 6:14 am
November 1: 6:20 am
November 15: 6:28 am
December 1: 6:38 am
December 15: 6:47 am

Note that the summit is about 30 minutes from the park entrance.

This is an entry ticket and not a parking ticket per se. However, the number of tickets issued for each morning matches the number of parking spaces available, so you will get a parking space. There are four parking lots and you will need to park in whichever one you are directed to by a ranger.

Period reservations are needed for

Access all year round

How to get entry tickets/ make reservations

1) Most tickets tickets are released at 7:00 am Standard Hawaiian Time each morning 60 days in advance  

2) The remainder of the tickets are released at 7:00 am Standard Hawaiian Time two days in advance 

Entry tickets are only available online at the NPS reservation system.  They will not be available at park entrance stations, visitor centers or park offices. 

Cost of tickets/ reservations

$1 per vehicle. There is a limit of one reservation per vehicle every three days.


Muir Woods National Monument

Muir Woods

Muir Woods is home to towering redwoods. It’s close to San Francisco, and therefore very convenient to visit for many people, but if you plan to drive, you should be aware of the reservation requirements.

Type of entry tickets/ reservations

Reservations are required for all car parking.

Period reservations are needed for

Access all year round

How to get entry tickets/ make reservations

You can reserve a parking space online here.

Cost of tickets/ reservations

  • $8.50 standard vehicle
  • $30.00 medium vehicle
  • $45.00 large vehicle

Note that this does not include the $15.00 per person park entrance fee, which is extra.


Arches National Park

Arches National Park

Arches National Park is one of Utah’s Big Five parks. Home to more than 2,000 natural arches including the stunning Delicate Arch, it is extremely popular. However, there is just one road through the park and limited parking. The National Park Service (NPS) frequently closes the park, turning people away, when it gets full.

Too alleviate this congestion and avoid park closures, the NPS will be introducing timed entry in 2022.

Here is a summary of the timed entry system for Arches National Park, but for full details, read my detailed Guide to the Arches National Park Timed Entry System

Type of entry tickets/ reservations 

Timed entry to the national park as a day visitor.  It will include all entry between 6:00am and 5:00pm.

Period reservations are needed for 

Access between April 3 and October 3, 2022.  

How to get timed entry tickets/ make reservations 

Timed entry tickets are released in two allotments:

a) 3 months in advance

  • January 3 at 8:00 am MST: April reservations (April 3–30)
  • February 1 at 8:00 am MST: May reservations (May 1–31)
  • March 1 at 8:00 am MST: June reservations (June 1–30)
  • April 1 at 8:00 am MDT: July reservations (July 1–31)
  • May 1 at 8:00 am MDT: August reservations (August 1–31)
  • June 1 at 8:00 am MDT: September reservations (September 1–30)
  • July 1 at 8:00 am MDT: October reservations (October 1–3)

b) The day before

A limited number of tickets will be released at 6:00 pm MDT the day before.

Cost of tickets/ reservations

$2 non-refundable processing fee


Shenandoah National Park

Old rag mountain shenandoah national park

Reservations are now required to hike Old Rag Mountain.

Type of entry tickets/ reservations 

A reservation ticket is required to hike Old Rag Mountain. This is accessed from its own entrance, not the Skyline Drive.

Period reservations are needed for 

Access between March 1 and November 30, 2022 

How to get timed entry tickets/ make reservations 

Buy tickets online or on the phone 877-444-6777. Tickets go on sale 30 days in advance of the day of your visit and are valid for one day only. Each person can buy up to four tickets at a time.

Cost of tickets/ reservations

$1 non-refundable fee (in addition to the park entrance fee).


Tips For Making Reservations at National Parks 

All of these reservations will be extremely popular and will most likely book out in minutes, if not seconds.  Here are some tips to help you get the reservations you want. 

1.  You need to have an account set up on the NPS reservation system in advance.  I strongly recommend creating your account well in advance.  You can do this right now!  You only need to do it once, so if you have previously made a reservation at a national park for a campground or guided hike, for example, you will already have an account.  If you have an account, make sure you remember your login details.

2. Be logged in to your account before the time the tickets go on sale and proceed through as much of the reservation system as possible, so you are just a click away when the tickets go on sale.  Have your credit card handy.  You will have 15 minutes after clicking Book Now to enter all your information and finalize the booking.

3. If you want multiple days/ reservations, be logged in under different browsers on and/or different computers.   

4. If you are traveling with other people, have them be logged into their own accounts and try to reserve at the same time.  Be aware, though, that all of the special entry reservations are non-refundable.  If that is OK with you, you can all try and then if you manage to get more than one, cancel the extra times (you won’t get your money back, but by cancelling, you will make that space available for someone else, so if you do this, it is very important to cancel any unused reservations). 

5. Have a reliable digital clock that shows the exact correct time and at EXACTLY the time the reservations become available, enter the final required information and click Add to Cart. Don’t hesitate or stop to check anything. Those few seconds may make the difference.

6. You now have 15 minutes to enter your payment information and complete your order.

6. If you miss out, try again 15 minutes after the release time.  The system times out for uncompleted bookings then and additional spaces can become available. 

6. If you miss out on advance reservations, check if there is another release a day or two beforehand.  This is the case for some of the parks, and this gives you another chance.  Note, however, that the majority of tickets are sold further in advance, so don’t rely on the last-minute releases. 

7. Have a Plan B in case you miss out.  There are usually plenty of awesome things to do in the areas surrounding the national parks that are usually less crowded.

8. If you get tickets/ permits, make sure you take them with you (plus ID).  Do not rely on having cell service, as it is spotty in many of the parks.  Print it out (the reservations page; not the receipt) or take a screen shot that you can show on your phone without needing cell service or WiFi. 

NOTE: If you are entering a lottery, there is no advantage to entering earlier. As long as you enter within the lottery period, you will have an equal chance of winning, so that takes the stress out of needing to log in as soon as it opens.


Good luck and enjoy the national parks this summer!  

Do you have any other tips for getting tickets for US national parks?  I’d love to hear them.  Join my private Facebook group National Parks Collectors and comment and let me know.    

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US National Parks You Need a Reservation For
Which National Parks Require Reservations
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About the Author 

James Ian Yosemite

James Ian has traveled to 82 countries and all 7 continents.  He has visited all of the main national parks in the United States, as well as many national monuments and state parks.

He has rafted through the Grand Canyon; rappelled down slot canyons near Zion and Arches; hiked among the hoodoos in Bryce and the enormous trees in Sequoia; admired the waterfalls in Yosemite and the colored hot springs in Yellowstone; seen moose in Grand Tetons and seals in the Channel Islands, and much more.

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