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Top Travel News Stories of 2012

Top Travel News Stories of 2012: decreased national park travel

David Kukin

National Parks Slumped

Defying conventional wisdom that recessions inspire an uptick in visits to National Parks, the NPS reports that visits are down by 10 million people since 1998. Worse yet, these national treasures are on the edge of the fiscal cliff and at risk of huge cuts, and funded only up until late March 2013—if the budget crisis is not resolved. The upside: parks that are lesser known to international visitors (such as Great Smoky Mountains and Grand Teton) are great bets. The lighter crowds are also a good excuse to dig into the parks’ Civil War history: the NPS has launched a site that invites you to explore the most important sites during the Civil War’s ongoing 150th anniversary.

See more Best of 2012 coverage.

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