There are over 300 Native American Reservations in the United States. With such an extensive variety of locales to choose from, deciding which of them possesses the most alluring beauty can end up being quite the challenge.
Whether we’re talking about scenic beaches in New Jersey or tranquil everglades in Arizona, reservations are home to some of America’s most breathtaking landscapes. With that in mind, here are our top picks for the five most beautiful Native American reservations.
Covering an area roughly double the size of Delaware, Blackfeet Indian Reservation extends from Glacier National Park all the way to Yellowstone National Park, giving it the privilege of lying between two of the most awe-inspiring nature preservations in the US.
Being enveloped by such a wealth of natural beauty is probably why the area is home to tens of thousands of Blackfeet Tribe members. Collectively they thrive in a multitude of different biomes, including mountains, canyons, rivers, and lakes.
Respect for the delicate balance of nature is reflected in every tradition. The locals are more than willing to share over 10,000 years of oral history via tours and annual events, like the North American Indian Days festival, for example.
Like most reservations, Blackfeet requires visitors to obtain a permit prior to entry. A little red tape is worth it, though, as this is one reservation vacation you don’t want to miss; an idyllic location that holds all the right ingredients for a perfect getaway.
Havasupai Indian Reservation is unlike any of the other reservations on our list. For starters, it’s one of the most remote destinations, with an isolated ecosystem that sits entirely within the boundaries of the Grand Canyon National Park.
Another caveat that sets it apart from other reservations is the fact that every inch of the land is considered sacred by its people. However, tourism is a major component of the area’s economy, so it’s a good thing that the Havasupai people welcome visitors.
After garnering attention on social media for its magnificent waterfalls, the reservation has quickly grown into a favored sightseeing destination. The waterfalls are nothing short of phenomenal, with aquamarine water that’s surrounded by lush vegetation.
Despite its remote location, the value of a trip to Havasupai is clearly worth it for a growing number of tourists. If you plan on visiting this prime example of nature in all its splendor, ensure that you make a reservation with the tribe to hike or camp in the area.
Home of the Miccosukee tribe, Miccosukee Indian Reservation is one of the smallest of its kind at just over 120 square miles. Don’t let its size fool you, though, as this is one of the most visited reservations in the US.
Being situated in and around Miami means that Miccosukee shares borders with one of the most popular holiday destinations in the US. Combine the prime location with a tourist-friendly atmosphere, and it’s easy to see why so many people visit the area.
There are numerous activities to pursue on the reservation, some of the highlights being Alligator Alley and the Miccosukee Indian Museum. There’s also an annual wintertime festival that honors the tribe’s traditions, providing insight into its unique culture.
If you’re in the mood for something other than trails and guided tours, you’ll be glad to know that Miccosukee also boasts several modern conveniences, such as restaurants, resort accommodation, and gaming entertainment.
Navajo Nation, Arizona
The Navajo Nation, or Navajoland, is a shining example of preserved heritage and natural beauty. It’s one of the most diverse reservations in the world, with over 27,000 square miles of US countryside situated within its borders.
In terms of both population and land area, Navajo Nation is by far the largest reservation in America. It’s almost double the size of Wyoming and surpasses multiple state borders, including Utah and New Mexico.
Established under the Navajo Treaty of 1868, the original reservation has expanded significantly over time. Nowadays, it’s a tourist hotspot with popular attractions like Antelope Canyon, the Hubbell Trading Post, and Monument Valley Park.
From museums and monuments to guided tours and hiking trails, nearly every corner of the Navajo Nation provides the opportunity for a memorable experience. There’s an abundance of wildlife, no hotels or resorts, and a rich cultural heritage to explore.
Big Cypress, Florida
Whether you’re witnessing sunlit vistas aboard an airboat or listening to the fireside stories of a village elder, a feast for the senses is never too far away in the Big Cypress Indian Reservation.
Big Cypress is the largest of six reservations held in trust for the Seminole tribe. Tourism is vital to the reservation’s economy, evidenced by the development of a state-of-the-art museum and a major entertainment complex.
Stepping off the beaten track is highly recommended. The sights and sounds of the reservation’s well-developed infrastructure are excellent distractions, but they pale in comparison to the raw beauty that defines every inch of the natural landscape.
Because it’s situated on the Atlantic coastal plain, the climate of Big Cypress is warm for most of the year. Sightseers take full advantage of the moderate temperatures on a regular basis, and the reservation is well-known for hosting big New Year’s celebrations.