Hiking Activities for Kids

Historical Trails

History will come alive when kids walk historical trails of famous explorers, pioneers, or early Native Americans. What paths of history are near your hometown?

What You'll Need:

  • Guidebooks to local trails (check your library)
  • Composition book
  • Pencil

Our Historical Trail and Scenic Trail systems began in the 1920s as citizens began piecing together hiking trails on historical routes. It was their vision that led to the National Trail System Act of 1968. All the trails are for foot traffic only, and most of them cross several states.Check the following list to see which Historical Trails are near you. Help your child make a trail notebook so that they can keep a record of the trails they've been on. Include some history of the trails in the book and mark the segments they've hiked. Our trails are:

  • Iditarod National Historic Trail (Alaska)
  • Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail (Mexico and Southwest U.S.)
  • Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail (Missouri to Oregon)
  • Mormon Pioneer National Historic Trail (Illinois to Utah)
  • Nez Perce National Historic Trail (Idaho, Wyoming, Montana)
  • Oregon National Historic Trail (Missouri to Oregon)
  • Overmountain Victory National Historic Trail (Tennessee to North Carolina)
  • Pony Express National Historic Trail (Missouri to California)
  • Santa Fe National Historic Trail (Missouri to Santa Fe, Mexico)
  • Trail of Tears National Historic Trail (Georgia to Oklahoma)

Find ways for you and your hiking buddies to greet fellow hikers on the next page.

Find more summer activities for kids: