Free entry to US national parks

birds fly over the open gate

birds fly over the open gateIf you're thinking of taking the kids to America for a family holiday next year, but are wary of the budgeting, a new US government initiative could help you enjoy the some of the world's best scenery - for absolutely free!

The US National Park Service announced that entry to all parks will be free on certain days next year, meaning you and your family will be able to marvel at such wondrous sights as the Florida Everglades and Yellowstone Park without having to pay a penny.

Of course, many of the parks are already free 24/7, but those that do charge will also be free on 17 separate days next year - including Martin Luther King Jr Weekend and Veterans Day.

The announcement came from US secretary of the interior Ken Salazar, and it could help end debate in many homes over the destination of next year's family break.

Salazar said the parks ""tell the story of America, from the beauty of our land to our struggle for freedom and justice".

The Everglades currently attract around one million tourists every year, with people keen to see for real the crocodiles and alligators they'd previously only observed on the TV with a running commentary from David Attenborough.