Government shutdown travel plans for your family

PHOENIX - The shutdown of the federal government has closed all 401 national parks, including 38 Arizona national parks and monuments. As Arizona schools approach fall break, these closures are impacting many travel plans.

As a full-service travel agency, AAA suggests the following alternatives for Arizona families who are being forced to re-route their travel plans as a result of the government shutdown:

-- Arizona State Parks: Arizona is home to 27 state parks that remain open despite the shutdown. Nine of these parks, including Lost Dutchman State Park, Red Rock State Park and Tonto National Bridge State Park are within 120 miles, or two hours, from Phoenix. Entrance fees vary by park, but are generally $10 per vehicle or less.

--V erde Canyon Rail: The remote wilderness of the Verde Canyon is renowned for its towering red rock pinnacles and clean waters. In October and November, the rail offers a Fall Color Tour, which showcases Arizona's vibrant Autumn colors. The depot is located just two hours north of Phoenix. AAA members can save 10 percent on train tickets.

-- Amusement parks: Arizona's proximity to California means that some of the best amusement parks in the country are a road trip away. But don't leave home without the tickets! AAA offers discounted tickets online and in offices. Save $10 per person on a 2-day Disneyland Park Hopper Ticket that also includes free parking (up to $15 value per day) or almost $24 per person on Six Flags tickets.

-- Local attractions: From the Arizona Science Museum to the Wildlife World Zoo, the Phoenix metropolitan area boasts a variety of local attractions. If you're looking to entertain -- or be entertained -- over fall break, visit AAA's Discount page to learn about which of these attractions also offer a discount.

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