Banff National Park was established in 1885 as Rocky Mountains Park of Canada. In 1930, the Canadian National Parks Act gave the park its current name. The park contains several large glaciers and icefields including the Columbia Icefield, the largest uninterrupted glacial mass in the Rockies.
The park is home to two important historical sites, the Jamestown Settlement and the Yorktown Battlefield. In 1607, the Jamestown Colony became the first succesful English settlement in North America. Just 174 years later, the British would surrendor here to the American Continental Army acknowleding the United States independence.
Saxon Switzerland National Park, established in 1990, is located south of Dresden. The park is split into two areas in the Elbe Sandstone Mountains. Its rocky canyon landscape rises up quickly from the Elbe river in the valley to its peaks reaching up to 556 meters above sea level.
Europe is home to some of the most striking scenery in the world. These five parks ranging from the northern glaciers in Iceland to the unique sandstone rock formations and caves in Turkey, take you through the diverse landscape you'll encounter as you explore the continent.
Here are 5 national parks in Iceland, Austria, Croatia, Germany, and Turkey that you should visit along with our recommendation for what you should not miss while exploring each of the parks.
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Plitvice Lakes National Park is one of the oldest and largest national parks in Croatia. The most popular feature of the park are its 16 lakes connected by caves and waterfalls. Their distinctive colors of blue, green, and grey change based on the minerals in the water and the angle of the sun making it a unique experience.
Vatnajökull National Park is dominated by the the Vatnajökull glacier. It is Europe’s largest glacier outside of the arctic, covering a massive 8,100 km . Its thickness is about 400 to 600 meters helping it to conceal valleys, mountains, and active volcanoes. The glaciers icecaps rise to over 2000 m above sea level.
The Terracotta Army is a collection of soldiers, chariots, and cavalry horses buried with Qin Shi Huang, the first Emperor of China, in 210-209 BCE. The statues represent the army of the emporer and are sized according to their importance - generals being the tallest . The terracotta sculptures were discoved by local farmers in 1974.
HMS Belfast is a light cruiser built for the Royal Navy in 1936. It was the fist ship in the Royal Navy to be named after the capital city of Northern Ireland. Commissioned in 1939, it was part of the Battle of North Cape and supported the Normandy landings during World War II. Since 1971, its been open to the public as a museum ship.
The Musée de la Reddition is located northwest of the Reims train station. It is here, on May 7, 1945, that high officers from the German army met with officers from the Allied forces to surrender. Their signed declaration of unconditional surrender ended World War II in Europe.
More WWII historical sites...
Built beneath the Treasury bulding in London, the Cabinet War Rooms went in to operation in 1939, just weeks before Britian declared war on Germany. During the war the rooms were in constant use as intelligence was gathered and plans were made to defeat Nazi Germany. Today, the rooms are a museum and open to the public
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Chris Wills, founder and developer of the Duckwyn Travel Passport, a travel app for parents and kids to explore and document their travel adventures.