It is a gift. It is a sacrifice. It is a duty of many, taken up by few. This site is dedicated to the men and women of the American military, past and present. The National Park Service preserves and shares the stories of the American military over the last three centuries. We also provide opportunities for our military community to connect to the beautiful landscapes and important history they defend.

National parks and the military have strong ties going back to the establishment of Yellowstone as the world's first national park in 1872. The U.S. Cavalry watched over America's national parks and did double duty, serving as the first park rangers until the National Park Service was created 44 years later. During World War II, many parks were set aside for the training and care of military personnel. Today, dozens of national parks commemorate military battles and achievements.

Discover the people who have protected our freedom. Learn about the places that shaped our military history and culture. Explore opportunities for active-duty military, veterans, and their families.

Ranger talking to a World War II veteran
Passes for Veterans & Gold Star Families

A pass program grants U.S. military veterans and Gold Star Families free access to national parks is available online.

A map shows Veterans Administration and Military locations near national parks.
Visiting DoD or VA? Find Parks Nearby

With over 400 units you can find a national park wherever you are.

Two aged hands rubber stamp an NPS passport book
Saluting Veterans

Discover all the ways we honor Veterans for their service.

World War II Tuskegee Airmen standing in front of plane.
75 Years Since The End of WWII

Discover the impact WWII had on soldiers, civilians, at home, and around the world.

Columns of white granite with brass wreaths are silohetted against a pink sunrise.
Visit World War II Parks

Like no American war fought before or since. Visit these national parks to discover how Americans came together to restore freedom.

Hundreds of soldiers on platform boarding trains.
WWII Veterans

Recognizing the service and sacrifice of World War II Veterans

Last updated: May 26, 2023