Yellowstone, Yosemite, and other national parks are spectacular, no doubt about it. But in my opinion, they're all ho-hum compared to this one: Here, nothing less than the miracle of creation is the daily attraction.
Founded in 1916, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is Hawaii's premier natural attraction. Visiting the park is a yin/yang experience. It's the only park that's home to an active volcano. Most people drive through the park (it has 50 miles of good roads, some of them often covered by lava flows) and call it a day. But it takes at least 3 days to explore the whole park, including such oddities as Halemaumau Crater, a still-fuming pit of steam and sulfur; the intestinal-looking Thurston Lava Tube; Devastation Trail, a short hike through a desolated area destroyed by lava, right next to an Eden-like rain forest; and finally, the end of Chain of Craters Road, where lava regularly spills across the man-made two-lane blacktop to create its own red-hot freeway to the sea. In addition to some of the world's weirdest landscape, the park also has hiking trails, rain forests, campgrounds, a historic old hotel on a crater's rim, and that spectacular, still-erupting volcano.