I’ve already written a post about a four-day itinerary to Death Valley National Park and published a short photo essay. Now, I’d like to zoom in on what I think are the five best Death Valley attractions.
All of the following highlights are located in the heart of the national park. They lie conveniently around Stovepipe Wells and Furnace Creek, the two main—although small—tourist hubs in Death Valley National Park. Let’s get to it!
5 Best Death Valley Attractions
5. Devil’s Golf Course
The Devil’s Golf Course may not be among the most spectacular Death Valley attractions, but it’s definitely unique. A large salt pan filled with hundreds of salt formations, it’s particularly beautiful just before sunset. You can get to the Devil’s Golf Course on a gravel road off Badwater Road, just south of Furnace Creek.
4. Dante’s View
In my opinion the greatest viewpoint in Death Valley, Dante’s View towers more than 5,000 feet above the salt flats. It’s a superb spot to cool off when it gets too hot down in the valley—and believe me, it will. The drive from Furnace Creek takes under an hour and is pretty nice. Additionally, if you like sunsets, this would be the place to go.
3. Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes
The Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes is the only place on this list that’s near Stovepipe Wells Village. Resembling the sand dunes of the Sahara, these dunes reach heights of 100 feet (30 meters). They’re incredibly fun to explore. There are no designated hiking trails, though. You’re free to wander around as you please. The dunes are at their most photogenic around sunrise and sunset. Under a full moon, they’re nothing short of magical.
2. Badwater Basin
Home to the lowest point in North America, 282 feet below sea level, Badwater Basin is one of the top Death Valley attractions. The parking lot lies about fifteen miles south of Furnace Creek. From there, you can walk on a boardwalk to the saltwater pool that gave the basin its name. The actual lowest point is reached after a short walk across the salt plain. Make sure to slop on sunscreen and wear a hat. It gets ridiculously hot out there.
1. Zabriskie Point
The view from Zabriskie Point is one of the most famous landscapes in Death Valley. It’s at its most stunning early in the morning. This landscape of yellow- and ochre-colored badlands is incredible to look at, but even more impressive when you walk through it. Consider hiking the Badlands Loop to really appreciate the view you saw from the viewpoint.