Death Valley National Park

Death Valley National Park by View Apart via Shutterstock.

Death Valley National Park, straddling California and Nevada, is North America’s hottest, driest, and lowest national park. Its vast desert, salt flats, and mountains offer a dramatic landscape of extremes.

🔗 Website | 🐦 Twitter | 📸 Instagram

Fast Facts

State(s): California and Nevada
Area: 3,373,063 acres (13,650.30 sq km) – 6th largest national park of 63
Highest Elevation: Telescope Peak – 11,049 ft (3,367.74 m)
Lowest Elevation: Badwater – -282 ft (-85.95 m)
Date Established: February 11, 1933 (as a national monument); October 31, 1994 (as a national park)
Annual Visitors: 1,128,862 visitors in 2022
Nearest Town: Beatty, Nevada

Recommended Day Hikes

Park Tracker considers a “day hike” to be a hike under 10 miles. Below we provide our top five recommendations inside the park, along with AllTrails links to the hikes.

  1. Badwater Basin Salt Flats (1 mi, Easy) – The lowest point in North America, featuring vast salt flats.
  2. Zabriskie Point (0.5 mi, Easy) – Offers iconic sunrise and sunset views of the golden colored badlands.
  3. Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes (2 mi, Easy) – Explore vast sand dunes easily accessible from the parking area.
  4. Dante’s View (1 mi, Easy) – Provides one of the most breathtaking panoramic views of Death Valley.
  5. Golden Canyon to Red Cathedral (3 mi, Moderate) – A scenic hike through colorful canyons with a dramatic conclusion.

🧗🏻‍♂️ Popular Activities in Death Valley National Park

Death Valley is about more than just hiking. See below for some of the best non-hiking activities to do in Death Valley National Park.

  1. Watching sunrise at Zabriskie Point
  2. Driving through the scenic Artist’s Drive
  3. Exploring the Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes
  4. Viewing wildflower blooms in spring (in specific years)
  5. Stargazing in this renowned International Dark Sky Park

🛎️ Where to Stay Near Death Valley National Park

While there are ample camping and vacation rental options near most US national parks, I personally highly prefer staying at Hilton-branded properties when traveling to national parks. As such, below are the five closest Hilton properties to Death Valley National Park.

  1. Hotel Location – X mi from park
  2. Hotel Location – X mi from park
  3. Hotel Location – X mi from park
  4. Hotel Location – X mi from park
  5. Hotel Location – X mi from park

🍔 What to Eat Near Death Valley National Park

After hiking and exploring Death Valley National Park, odds are high you’re going to be hungry. Here are five of the best restaurant options within and near the park.

  1. Restaurant (Food Type) – X mi from park
  2. Restaurant (Food Type) – X mi from park
  3. Restaurant (Food Type) – X mi from park
  4. Restaurant (Food Type) – X mi from park
  5. Restaurant (Food Type) – X mi from park