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Indiana Dunes State Park…or National Park? Take the Test!

With the recent news of the Indiana Dunes National Park pass, many people are scratching their heads and asking questions. I thought I already had a pass? What pass do I need now? What is the State Park and what is the National Park?

Lots of people are confused. Don't feel bad! We all know this area is called the “dunes” and there are lots of cool trails, beautiful beaches and the lake, but beyond that, it's hard to understand which is which.

Take this quick test and see where you stand. Click on the answer page to learn a bit more and you will be a pro!

  1. True or False. The Indiana Dunes State Park is the area that runs along the beach and shoreline, while the Indiana Dunes National Park is inland.

  2. You can cross country ski in the a) state park b) national park c) both

  3. You can camp in the a) state park b) national park c) both

  4. The Indiana Dunes State Park has ____ trails

  5. True or False. The Indiana Dunes National Park consists of West Beach in Gary, Cowles Bog in Dune Acres, Pinhook Bog in Michigan City, Heron Rookery in Chesterton & Michigan City, Porter Beach, Portage Lakefront and many other trails and beaches in-between.

  6. The Saw Whet Owl banding that takes place in October and November is put on by the a) national park b) state park

  7. True or False. Both parks have an entrance fee.

  8. True or False. The Three Dunes Challenges is in the Indiana Dunes State Park

  9. There are ____ trail systems in the National Park covering _____ miles of trails.

  10. True or False. The Dig the Dunes Trail Stop is in the National Park.

BONUS: True or False: Shirley Heinze Land Trust Properties are part of the Indiana Dunes National Park.

How did you do? If you answered 8+ correct you’re a true duner! 5-8 correct, you are doing good but need to go explore a little more. Under 5, start doing your research on !

Photo: The Dunes near Porter Beach (Indiana Dunes National Park). Just to the East of this is the pavilion which is part of the Indiana Dunes State park. Yes, confusing! Now, which pass do you need? Check out this article from Indiana Dunes Tourism.


Read a couple more of our articles about the pass here: Senior Pass and What Beaches are in the National Park.

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