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America’s best idea comes to China—plans for a new national park system

Great Wall of China

In 2016, more than 330 million people visited national parks across the United States, setting a record. In fact, the number of visitors is slightly more than the entire population of the country (of course, many of these visitors were from overseas). Encompassing more than 84 million acres, US national parks still cover approximately 3.5% of all land in the United States

The national park system is often called America’s best idea and, indeed, it has served as models for national park systems around the world. While Yellowstone was the first dedicated national park in 1872, the government entity that currently manages the national park system was not created until 1916. The National Park Service regularly stands at or near the top of federal agencies in public satisfaction surveys, but that standing does not necessarily translate into sufficient budgets.

But US national parks are not the only ones popular with visitors. In Japan, national parks received a record 5 million+ visitors in 2016, and visitation is expected to double to 10 million visitors by the year 2020. Now China is getting in on the act, with a new plan for national park system, “aiming mainly to protect China's large natural ecosystems” in addition to popular historic sites such as the Great Wall.


China reveals overall plan for national park system

Xiang Bo

Xinhua Net

September 26, 2017

Also see

“Saving the spirit of these places is also essential”—overcrowding at America’s national parks

By International Heritage Network News

August 3, 2017

Proposed budget cuts for national parks may lead to more privatization of visitor services

By International Heritage News Network

June 27, 2017

US National Parks continue expansive contribution to US economy

By International Heritage News Network

April 23, 2017

US National Parks are not the only popular ones [Japan’s national parks are popular too]

By International Heritage News Network

February 13, 2017

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