This handy, practical, extensively illustrated and mapped guidebook offers comprehensive information to the crown jewels of the national park system, the 58 scenic national parks - including the new Congree National Park in South Carolina. The guide helps design a trip with detailed background and planning information and shows visitors how to see the sights once they arrive. "National Geographic" writers have extensively toured each park; their recommendations are personal, useful, and informative. The book opens with an essay by Yellowstone writer Paul Schullery, a section on how to use this guide, and a national locator map. The parks are presented region by region; each region is introduced by a map and a geographical profile, followed by the parks in alphabetical order. An Information and Activities page and suggested excursions - each illustrated - ends the park chapter.