The Top 7 Best Places to See Wildlife in the USA

Written by Nixza Gonzalez
Published: December 20, 2023
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The United States is a massive country and one of the most beautiful in the world. With the country’s size, you can find a little bit of everything. There are mountains, deep glacial lakes, stunning emerald beaches, thick swamps, old tree forests, and more. Depending on your location in the United States, you can spot wildlife like hummingbirdswild turkeyspolar bearsmountain lions, and American alligators. But where can you find some of these animals? Follow along to discover the top 7 best places to see wildlife in the USA.

1. Yellowstone National Park

A herd of bison moves quickly along the Firehole River in Yellowstone National Park (near Midway Geyser Basin).

Yellowstone National Park is one of the best places in the USA to view wildlife.

©YegoroV/Shutterstock.com

There was no way the most well-known national park wasn’t making our list. Yellowstone National Park is gorgeous. It’s in Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho. So many animals call this stunning national park home, including around 300 bird species. Some animals in Yellowstone National Park are common ravens, elk, moose, bison, and pronghorn.

2. Acadia National Park

Acadia National Park

Previously, Acadia National Park was Lafayette National Park and Sieur de Monts National Monument.

©Harry Collins/iStock via Getty Images

The next best wildlife viewing spot on our list is Acadia National Park in Maine. This national park covers about half Mount Desert Island, a popular Maine island. Acadia National Park was established on January 19, 1929. Before this, the park was called Lafayette National Park and Sieur de Monts National Monument. You can see a lot of different wildlife in the national park, including whitetail deer, groundhogs, long-tailed weasels, silver-haired bats, bullfrogs, and even humpback whales.

3. Olympic National Park

Marmot atop Hurricane Hill, Olympic National Park, Washington

Olympic National Park has about 60 miles of coastline.

©Paul A Smith/Shutterstock.com

Third on our list of the best places to see wildlife in the USA is Olympic National Park in Washington State. This park has a surface area of 922,650 acres. Nearly 2.5 million people visit this national park every year. With about 60 miles of coastline, there is much to do and see. Some animals in Olympic National Park are sea lions, mountain lions, Canadian lynxes, red crossbills, and northern pygmy owls.

4. Katmai National Park and Preserve

Fourpeaked Mountain, also known as Fourpeaked Volcano, is an active stratovolcano located in the U.S. state of Alaska within Katmai National Park & Preserve.

In Alaska, you can visit Katmai National Park and Preserve.

©

Katmai National Park and Preserve is another great place to see wildlife in the United States. This gorgeous park is in southern Alaska. The surface area of Katmai National Park and Preserve is 4,093,077 acres. It was established on December 2, 1980. So, what animals may you see here? Some animals that call this park and preserve home include bald eagles, moose, snowshoe hares, beluga whales, sea otters, and brown bears. You don’t have to visit the park either to view wildlife. You can find live webcams on this website, which may feature bears, salmon, and more. The webcams operate from June through October.

5. Everglades National Park

USA, Florida, Herd of crocodiles enjoying the sun in everglades national park

A popular activity in Everglades National Park is taking an airboat tour.

©Simon Dux/iStock via Getty Images

One of the best places to see wildlife in the county is Everglades National Park in Florida. This stunning park is known for its incredible American alligator and crocodile populations. Over a million people visit this park every year, walking the hiking trails and taking scenic and educational airboat tours. From alligators and crocodiles, visitors may also see roseate spoonbills, eastern diamondback rattlesnakes, Florida panthers, Florida black bears, and more.

6. Point Reyes National Seashore

Sculptured Beach Cliffs of the Pacific Ocean in Point Reyes National Seashore

Within Point Reyes National Seashore are over 1500 species of plants and animals.

©iStock.com/yhelfman

Sixth on our list of the best places to see wildlife in the United States is Point Reyes National Seashore in California. This national seashore has a surface area of 71,028 acres. It’s gorgeous, and there are so many animals to see! If lucky, you may see western snowy plovers, tule elk, and gray whales. There are over 1500 species of plants and animals within Point Reyes National Seashore.

7. Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge

prairie dog in burrow

The

prairie dog

is an animal you can find in Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge.

©iStock.com/Jon Marshall

Last is the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge in Colorado. This wildlife refuge has a surface area of nearly 16,000 acres. It’s been a national wildlife refuge since 1992. Within this wildlife refuge, there are over 300 animal species. Although not as popular as other spots on our list, it’s worth visiting. It’s free to visit and is home to animals like bald eagles, bison, deer, coyotes, prairie dogs, and more. 

A great way to learn more about the area and see animals is to visit the Visitor Center. The Visitor Center is open from 9 am to 4 pm, Wednesday through Sunday. You don’t have to leave your car either to see wildlife. A popular activity in the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge is to drive the 11-mile Wildlife Drive auto tour.

The photo featured at the top of this post is © Cavan Images/iStock via Getty Images


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About the Author

Nixza Gonzalez is a writer at A-Z Animals primarily covering topics like travel, geography, plants, and marine animals. She has over six years of experience as a content writer and holds an Associate of Arts Degree. A resident of Florida, Nixza loves spending time outdoors exploring state parks and tending to her container garden.

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