State park entrance fees across the nation. How does Pa. stack up? | The Numbers Racket

As of April 2018, the average fee to enter a state park was $5.48

By: - March 14, 2022 6:30 am

(c) grape_vein –

As daylight hours grow longer and the weather begins to warm again, one – or more – of Pennsylvania’s 121 state parks might be among your first springtime destinations. 

 Did you know that there are 10,336 state park areas across all 50 states?

And while Pennsylvania’s state parks are free to visitors, did you know that just nine states have completely fee-free state parks?

Check out the map below for more information!

As you can see, state park entrance fees - or the lack thereof - can vary greatly by state, but as of April 2018, the average fee to enter a state park was $5.48, according to Ballotpedia. That figure excludes states that do not charge a fee.

Pa. parks need $1.4B for infrastructure repairs, improvements, DCNR says

Nine states - Pennsylvania, Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, Missouri, Illinois, Iowa, Oklahoma and Hawaii - all have state parks that are free to visit. 

Connecticut state parks are free, but only to state residents. 

Likewise, two Arkansas parks charge entrance fees, but the others remain free. 

California and Washington log the highest entrance fee at $10. 

Not far behind is Michigan and Massachusetts at $9. 

On the lower side of park entrance fees, four states - Arizona, Louisiana, South Carolina and West Virginia - charge $2.

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Cassie Miller
Cassie Miller

A native Pennsylvanian, Cassie Miller worked for various publications across the Midstate before joining the team at the Pennsylvania Capital-Star. In her previous roles, she has covered everything from local sports to the financial services industry.