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National Treasures That Are Not National Parks

The National Parks Service manages famous National Parks like the Grand Canyon or Yellowstone, but NPS also manages parks that are not parks. Check out a few National Monuments, Seashores, Lakeshores, or Scenic Trails, managed by the National Park Service. ~ "Point Reyes National Seashore, California

All you really need to know about Point Reyes National Seashore is that it’s in Marin County and you’ll probably already be packing your bags. This stupendous stretch of California coast dazzles visitors with some 80 miles of shoreline. Stroll along its 150 miles of hiking trails through wildflower meadows and grasslands while the waves thunder against the cliffs below, take to the sandy beaches for a walk or picnic or seek shade in the forest. The seashore is also an important wildlife reserve for grazing elk and raptors as well as marine life like whales and seals.

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Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, Michigan

There are few summer activities more quintessential than heading to the lake, and few lakes more startlingly beautiful than Lake Superior. This Lakeshore protects the southern shore of Lake Superior in the Upper Peninsula and is famous for its multicolored cliffs. Rent a kayak and cruise around the fascinating sandstone rock formations around the park’s headlands, or get your hiking shoes on and explore the forest trails from Twelvemile Beach.

Dinosaur National Monument, Colorado and Utah

While many of the sites on this list make attractive alternatives to popular National Parks, Dinosaur National Monument is a unique adventure for geologists, paleontologists and hikers alike. This sprawling, wild landscape sits largely in northwest Colorado, with a portion that extends into northeast Utah, an area that was once home to dinosaurs like the Allosaurus, Deinonychus and Abydosaurus." ~

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