How to choose a National or State Park cabin

While you might think that camping is the ultimate way to get back to nature when visiting a national or state park, a cabin or chalet will do the trick just as nicely, with a few more added home comforts, too. Most vacation rental homes have a rustic appearance and are made of wood or clapboard; and they sit either within their own tranquil grounds or in a peaceful patch of wilderness with a few other cabins. Many also come with wood burning stoves and outdoor firepits, so you can bolster the cozy atmosphere when the weather gets chilly.

Renting Bryce Canyon cabins

Bryce Canyon cabin rentals put you close to both Bryce Canyon National Park and the adjoining Zion National Park. A true geological marvel, Bryce Canyon has an otherworldly landscape of rust red, spiral-shaped pinnacles known as hoodoos. But there are also pine forests, a rushing river, and cool pools of bright green water. Zion, meanwhile, is is an eye-popping patchwork of cliffs, waterfalls, and meadows, with dramatic Zion Canyon at its heart. Both offer opportunities for hiking, horseback riding, biking, and climbing, and there's a wide choice of vacation rental homes both in and around the parks, from cozy log cabins to sprawling clapboard homes.

Renting Grand Teton cabins

The magical mix of thick forests, shimmering lakes, and snow-dusted peaks that make up Grand Teton National Park draws visitors from across the United States, many of whom claim the park is more spectacular than its celebrated neighbour, Yellowstone. You could choose to rent a cabin in the wilderness or in the chic surrounds of the town of Jackson. Either way, you'll have access to all the outdoor activities you could wish for, from hiking and fishing to checking out a local dude ranch. In the winter, skiing and snowboarding are also on the cards.

Cabin rentals in Yellowstone National Park

America's first National Park, Yellowstone is 3,500 sq miles of wild landscapes including canyons, plains, mountains, forests, and steaming, bubbling lakes—the park sits on top of a dormant volcano and is home to more geysers and hot springs than any other place on earth. The wildlife is pretty spectacular too, with wolves, grizzly bears, elk, moose, and herds of bison all found here. It's hugely popular and can get crowded in peak summer and winter seasons—but that ensures that there's a diverse choice of vacation rental homes here, including cabins both swish and rustic.

Booking a Keystone cabin

Keystone cabin rentals are all about getting close to the water. Set in Pennsylvania, Keystone State Park's 1,200 acres are centered around an expansive lake, where leisure time is all about boating, fishing, and swimming from the lakeside beach. There are hiking trails here too, for those that don't want to get their feet wet, as well as rich marshland, where you can view beavers and waterbirds. While there are no private cabin rentals within the park itself, you'll find plenty of accommodation nearby, whether you're looking for a cabin rental for 2 or a villa rental for a large family group.

Olympic National Park cabins

Set in the windswept landscapes of the Pacific Northwest, Olympic National Park has been designated both an international biosphere reserve and a World Heritage site by UNESCO. It's home to 3 distinct ecosystems—glaciated mountains, lush temperate forests, and rugged coastline, of which there is 73 miles. This diverse wilderness is home to an equally diverse cast of birds and animals, including sea otters, whales, bears, and golden eagles. Cabin rentals will get you close to the park's spectacular coastal and mountain trails, and come wintertime, you'll be able to head out into the frozen landscape to test out your skis or snowshoes.

Yosemite National Park cabins

Soaring mountains, mirror lakes, waterfalls, and thick forests are the perfect backdrop to your rental cabin in Yosemite National Park. Not that you'll be spending much time inside when there's so much to entice you out. Hiking, biking, and horseback riding can all be enjoyed on the park's many trails in summer, while winter brings cross-country and downhill skiing. Vacation rental homes here come in many guises, from compact to expansive, but what they all have in common is plenty of atmosphere, outdoor space, and scenic views.

Sequoia National Park rentals

Set in the southern reaches of California's Sierra Nevada mountains, and next to Kings Canyon National Park, this forested beauty is known for its soaring mountains and deep canyons, but most of all for the cathedral like splendour of its massive sequoia trees, which number over 8,000. Spend time in one of the area's quaint getaway cabins, and you'll be able to pay a visit to the revered General Sherman. The largest living single-stem tree on the planet, it stands at 275 ft and is estimated to be between 2,300 and 2,700 years old.