Discover Death Valley National Park

Situated in the Mojave Desert of California, Death Valley is renowned as the hottest, driest, and lowest national park in the United States. Spanning over 3.4 million acres, this vast expanse of desert wilderness offers a diverse array of geological formations, breathtaking vistas, and unique ecosystems waiting to be discovered.

Death Valley National Park is a land of extremes, where scorching temperatures can soar well above 100 degrees Fahrenheit during the summer months, earning it the reputation as one of the hottest places on Earth. Despite its harsh environment, the park is teeming with life, from resilient desert plants and wildflowers to elusive desert wildlife such as bighorn sheep, coyotes, and kit foxes.

One of the park’s most iconic features is Badwater Basin, the lowest point in North America at 282 feet below sea level. Here, vast salt flats stretch for miles, creating a surreal landscape of shimmering white against the backdrop of towering mountains. Visitors can also marvel at the otherworldly beauty of the Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes, hike through colorful canyons like Golden Canyon and Mosaic Canyon, or witness the striking geological formations of Zabriskie Point and Artist’s Palette.

In addition to its natural wonders, Death Valley National Park is steeped in history and cultural significance, with remnants of ancient Native American settlements, mining ghost towns, and historic sites scattered throughout the desert landscape. Whether you’re an avid hiker, photographer, history buff, or simply seeking an unforgettable adventure, Death Valley offers an unparalleled opportunity to explore the extremes of nature and immerse yourself in the awe-inspiring beauty of the desert. Join us as we embark on a journey to uncover the secrets of this remarkable national park.


Top 3 Facts About Death Valley National Park


Hottest Recorded Temperature on Earth

Death Valley holds the record for the highest reliably recorded air temperature on Earth, with a scorching high of 134 degrees Fahrenheit (56.7 degrees Celsius) recorded on July 10, 1913, at Furnace Creek Ranch. The extreme heat is a defining characteristic of the park’s climate.


Lowest Point in North America

Badwater Basin, located within Death Valley National Park, is the lowest point in North America, sitting at 282 feet (86 meters) below sea level. It is marked by vast salt flats and is a popular destination for visitors to experience the surreal landscape of the lowest elevation on the continent.


Vast Size

Death Valley National Park covers a vast area of approximately 3.4 million acres (over 13,600 square kilometers). Despite its name, the park is not just a valley but also encompasses mountains, sand dunes, canyons, salt flats, and other diverse geological features.

Camping and transportation in Death Valley National Park

info_iconBackcountry camping permits required for wilderness camping opportunities.

How to Get to Death Valley National Park

Getting to Death Valley National Park typically involves traveling by car due to its remote location and limited public transportation options. Here are some common ways to get to the park:

  • By Car: The most common way to reach Death Valley National Park is by car. The park is accessible via several major highways, including California State Route 190 from the west and east, and Nevada State Route 374 from the north.
    From Las Vegas: If you’re traveling from Las Vegas, Nevada, you can take US-95 northbound to Nevada State Route 373, which leads into Death Valley National Park from the east. This route provides scenic views as you descend into the valley.
    From Los Angeles: From Los Angeles, California, you can take Interstate 15 northbound to Baker, then head west on California State Route 127 to enter the park from the south. Alternatively, you can take Interstate 10 eastbound to California State Route 62, then head north on California State Route 247 to enter the park from the west.
    From Fresno: If you’re coming from the north, you can take State Route 99 southbound to Bakersfield, then head east on State Route 58 and continue onto State Route 178, which leads into Death Valley National Park from the west.
  • By Air: While there are no airports within Death Valley National Park, the closest major airports are McCarran International Airport (LAS) in Las Vegas, Nevada, and Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) in Los Angeles, California. From these airports, you can rent a car and drive to the park.

Places to Stay Near Death Valley National Park

There are several campgrounds near Death Valley National Park that provide options for both tent camping and RV camping. Here are some places to camp near the park:

  • Furnace Creek Campground: Located within Death Valley National Park, Furnace Creek Campground offers tent and RV camping with access to amenities such as picnic tables, fire pits, and flush toilets. Reservations are recommended during the peak season (October to April), as the campground can fill up quickly.
  • Sunset Campground: Also situated within Death Valley National Park, Sunset Campground offers tent and RV camping with similar amenities to Furnace Creek Campground. Like Furnace Creek, reservations are recommended during the peak season.
  • Texas Springs Campground: Another campground within Death Valley National Park, Texas Springs Campground offers tent and RV camping near Furnace Creek. It provides basic amenities such as picnic tables, fire pits, and pit toilets. Reservations are recommended during the peak season.
  • Mesquite Springs Campground: Situated on the western edge of Death Valley National Park, Mesquite Springs Campground offers tent camping with fewer amenities compared to campgrounds in the central part of the park. It provides vault toilets but no water, so be sure to bring your own.
  • Private Campgrounds and RV Parks: There are also private campgrounds and RV parks located outside the park boundaries, such as Stovepipe Wells RV Park, Panamint Springs RV Park, and Beatty RV Park, offering additional options for camping near Death Valley National Park.
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Best Time to Go to Death Valley National Park



Summer in Death Valley National Park is characterized by scorching temperatures and extreme heat, with daytime highs often exceeding 100 degrees Fahrenheit (38 degrees Celsius) or more.

While the summer months from June to August may not be the most comfortable time to visit due to the intense heat, it’s still possible to explore the park’s attractions early in the morning or late in the evening when temperatures are cooler. Summer also offers the opportunity to experience the park’s unique night skies, with clear, star-filled nights perfect for stargazing and astrophotography.



Winter is an ideal time to visit Death Valley National Park for those seeking cooler temperatures and quieter surroundings.

From December to February, daytime temperatures are mild, ranging from the 60s to 70s Fahrenheit (15 to 20 degrees Celsius), making it comfortable for outdoor activities such as hiking, sightseeing, and photography. Winter also offers the chance to witness seasonal attractions such as snow-capped peaks in the nearby Panamint Range and migrating birds at Furnace Creek Ranch. Additionally, with fewer visitors during the winter months, it’s easier to find solitude and enjoy the park’s natural beauty in peace.



Spring is one of the best times to visit Death Valley National Park, as the weather is mild and wildflowers bloom across the desert landscape.

From late February to April, the valley comes alive with a colorful display of wildflowers, including desert gold, verbena, and poppies. Temperatures are comfortable, making it ideal for outdoor activities such as hiking, photography, and wildlife viewing. Spring also brings the annual Super Bloom, a rare event where vast areas of the desert are carpeted with vibrant wildflowers, creating a stunning spectacle that attracts visitors from around the world.

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Must-See Attractions

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Badwater Basin

Visit the lowest point in North America, located at 282 feet (86 meters) below sea level. Explore the vast salt flats and take in the surreal landscape of this iconic destination.

Zabriskie Point

Marvel at the panoramic views of the park’s colorful badlands, eroded by wind and water over millions of years. Zabriskie Point offers some of the most stunning vistas in Death Valley, especially during sunrise and sunset.

Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes

Immerse yourself in the otherworldly beauty of these iconic sand dunes, which rise and fall against rugged mountains. Explore the dunes at sunrise or sunset for the best photography opportunities.

Helpful Tips: Making the Most of Your Adventure to Death Valley National Park

Plan Ahead

Check the Weather

Death Valley is known for its extreme temperatures, especially during the summer months when temperatures can exceed 120°F (49°C). Check the weather forecast before your visit and plan your activities accordingly.

Pack Appropriately

Pack Essentials

In addition to water, pack essentials such as snacks, a first aid kit, a map, a compass or GPS device, and a fully charged cell phone. Cell phone reception may be limited in certain areas of the park, so it’s essential to have alternate means of navigation and communication.

Respect Wildlife

Be Wildlife Aware

Death Valley is home to a variety of desert wildlife, including rattlesnakes, scorpions, and coyotes. Be cautious and keep a safe distance from wildlife. Never approach or feed wild animals, and store food securely to prevent attracting them to your campsite.

Stay Informed

Know Your Limits

Be aware of your physical limits and don’t overexert yourself, especially during the hottest part of the day. Take frequent breaks, seek shade when necessary, and listen to your body’s cues. Avoid strenuous activities during peak heat hours (usually between 10 am and 4 pm).

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Frequently Asked Questions about Death Valley National Park

Death Valley National Park is generally safe to visit, but visitors should be prepared for the extreme desert environment. It’s essential to stay hydrated, protect yourself from the sun, and be aware of your physical limits, especially during hot weather.

The best time to visit Death Valley National Park is during the cooler months of fall, winter, and spring (October to April) when temperatures are more moderate. Summer temperatures can be dangerously high, exceeding 120°F (49°C) in some areas.

Yes, Death Valley National Park has entrance fees for vehicles and individuals entering the park. The fees vary depending on the type of vehicle and the length of stay. Annual passes and America the Beautiful passes are also accepted.

Some of the main attractions in Death Valley National Park include Badwater Basin, Zabriskie Point, Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes, Dante’s View, and Artist’s Palette, among others. These attractions showcase the park’s diverse landscapes, geological formations, and scenic viewpoints.

Yes, Death Valley National Park offers several campgrounds for tent and RV camping, including Furnace Creek Campground, Sunset Campground, and Texas Springs Campground, among others. Campground reservations are recommended, especially during the peak season.

Death Valley National Park is home to a variety of desert wildlife, including bighorn sheep, coyotes, roadrunners, and various reptiles and birds. Visitors may also encounter smaller mammals such as kangaroo rats and kit foxes.

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