Want to visit Death Valley from Las Vegas? And now wondering how to get to Death Valley from Las Vegas? Stay calm. I have visited Death Valley from Las Vegas on my epic California-Arizona-Nevada road trip and I can help you with planning your trip from Las Vegas to Death Valley .
- HOW TO VISIT DEATH VALLEY FROM LAS VEGAS
- What is Death Valley?
- Where is Death Valley located?
- What is the closest airport to Death Valley?
- How far is Death Valley from Las Vegas?
- How to get to Death Valley from Las Vegas?
- WHAT TO SEE IN DEATH VALLEY NATIONAL PARK
- WHERE TO STAY IN DEATH VALLEY
- TIPS FOR VISITING DEATH VALLEY FROM LAS VEGAS
- BEST TIME TO VISIT DEATH VALLEY
HOW TO VISIT DEATH VALLEY FROM LAS VEGAS
Like good planners always do, let’s start by pointing Death Valley National Park and Las Vegas on the map of the USA. But, first of all, let me explain in a few sentences what Death Valley is.
What is Death Valley?
Death Valley is a desert valley, a structural depression and a graben between two mountain ranges in the USA. It was formed by block faulting of Earth’s crust about 30 million years ago.
About 50.000 years ago water filled up the valley and formed a lake. Between 2.000 and 5.000 years ago the lake evaporated and formed the salt pan. Furthermore, during the time volcanic activity, wind, alluviation… formed unique landforms of the Death Valley.
Death Valley is known as the the lowest, hottest, and driest place in North America.
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Where is Death Valley located?
Death Valley is located mainly in Inyo County in eastern California, between Sierra Nevada mountains and Nevada state.
Death Valley National Park is mostly in California, and partially in Nevada.
What is the closest airport to Death Valley?
McCarren International Airport in Las Vegas is the nearest airport to Death Valley. Death Valley NP is located only about 130 miles from the McCarren Airport.
Las Vegas McCarren International Airport is one of the busiest airports in the US served by the majority of US airline companies.
➱ Check flights to Las Vegas McCarren Airport on Skyscanner.com.
You might also want to know that another airport near Death Valley is Bob Hope Airport in Burbank in Los Angeles county. The Burbank Bob Hope Airport is located 160 miles from Death Valley NP. The airport is served by the majority of US airline companies.
How far is Death Valley from Las Vegas?
Distance from Las Vegas to Death Valley is about 140 miles.
Or more precisely, the distance between Las Vegas Downtown and Death Valley Vistors Center is 142 miles. In other words, Las Vegas to Death Valley drive takes about 2 hours.
Therefore, visiting Death Valley from Las Vegas is a popular day trip from Las Vegas.
How to get to Death Valley from Las Vegas?
1. Death Valley from Las Vegas by car
Researching for my road trip, I’ve found out five road routes to Death Valley from Las Vegas:
1.1 DEATH VALLEY FROM LAS VEGAS via NV-160 W (toward Mountain Springs, Pahrump and Death Valley Junction)
A map of the fastest route from Las Vegas to Death Valley with must-see Death Valley attractions
This is the shortest route, the fastest route and the dullest Las Vegas-Death Valley route.
The distance between Las Vegas and Death Valley Furnace Creek Vistors Center taking NV-160 W is about 125 miles. The driving distance is about 2 hours and 10 min.
This is the quickest route from Las Vegas to Death Valley. But also this is the least interesting route as there are no exciting views along this route. The scenery is pretty much dull.
1.2 DEATH VALLEY FROM LAS VEGAS via NV-160 W and CA-127 and CA-178 (toward Mountain Springs, Pahrump and Ashford Junction)
A map of the scenic route from Las Vegas to Death Valley with top Death Valley attractions
This is Las Vegas to Death Valley scenic route.
The distance between Las Vegas and Death Valley Furnace Creek Vistors Center taking this route is about 165 miles. The driving distance is about 4 hours.
This is the longest route, also called ‘Vegas to Death Valley scenic route‘. Unarguably this is the best route from Las Vegas to Death Valley to enjoy the breathtaking scenery and many photo opportunities.
A map of the scenic route from Las Vegas to Death Valley with top Death Valley attractions
1.3 DEATH VALLEY FROM LAS VEGAS via US-95 (toward Indian Springs and Amargosa Valley and Death Valley Junction)
A map of the easiest route from Las Vegas to Death Valley with driving directions from Las Vegas to Death Valley and top Death Valley attractions
This the easiest route, but with some speed traps along the way.
The distance between Las Vegas and Death Valley Furnace Creek Vistors Center taking US-95 is about 140 miles. The driving distance is also about 2 hours and 10 min. Actually, this route is similar by the driving time to the first route (the fastest route from Las Vegas to Death Valley), but there are some speed traps along this route. So, if you want to keep your money in your pocket, I would recommend avoiding this route. Although this is the easiest route.
1.4 DEATH VALLEY FROM LAS VEGAS via US-95 N and NV-374 S (toward Indian Springs, Amargosa Valley, Beatty, Rhyolite and Beatty Junction)
A map of the Death Valley-Las Vegas Ghost Town Route with top Death Valley attractions
This is called the Ghost Town Route.
The distance between Las Vegas and Death Valley Furnace Creek Vistors Center via US-95 N and NV-374 S is about 160 miles. The driving distance is about 2 hours and a half.
This route takes you to Beatty, the nearest town to Death Valley National Park. Remember, Death Valley has limited and somewhat pricey accommodation. In case you would like to spend some more time in Death Valley and if you are for a reasonably priced stay near Death Valley, Beatty is the place to go. Also, this route takes through Rhyolite, a ghost town near Beatty, worth of visiting.
Popular Death Valley from Las Vegas tours usually takes this route with stops in Rhyolite ghost town, and stops with the views of Ubehebe Crater, and views of Scotty’s Castle, toward the Badwater.
1.5 DEATH VALLEY FROM LAS VEGAS via US-95 and CA-267 (toward Indian Springs, Amargosa Valley, Beatty, Bonnie Claire, Grapevine Peak, and Beatty Junction)
A map of the Death Valley -Las Vegas Adventurer Route with top Death Valley attractions
This is Las Vegas -Death Valley off-the beaten route for adventurers.
This is the adventurer route for visitors who want to see Death Valley off-the-beaten-path. Unfortunately, this route is currently closed because of the flooding. Check out National Park Service official site to see if and when it will be reopened.
Check out the most popular routes from Las Vegas to Death Valley on this printable PDF
2. Death Valley from Las Vegas tour
If you have limited time for your trip to Death Valley from Las Vegas, especially if you are visiting Death Valley from Las Vegas in one day only, please take into account that you will need to drive back from Death Valley to Las Vegas.
Time-wise and energy-wise, I would recommend taking a tour from Las Vegas to Death Valley.
If you favor a tour from Las Vegas to Las Vegas instead of driving from Las Vegas to Death Valley, here are some amazing Death Valley from Las Vegas tours for an unforgettable day trip from Las Vegas to Death Valley.
Amazing tours from Las Vegas to Death Valley:
This Death Valley tour from Las Vegas goes to Badwater, Artists Pallete, stunning Dantes Point, Zabriskie Point, Death Valley visitor center, the Devils Golf Course, Salt Flats, and Mule Team Canyon
This Death Valley tour goes to Rhyolite Ghost Town, the Badwater, the Zabriskie’s Point, the Devil’s Golf Course, the Furnace Creek Museum, the Salt Lake, the Sand Dunes and the Artists Pallete.
The Tour Trekker tour with 10 seats goes to bizarre Area 51 Alien Center Rhyolite Ghost Town, and the majority of Death Valley attractions like the Badwater, the Zabriskie Point, and some additional hidden treasures.
If you prefer a private guided tour this tour might suit your taste. The tour goes to the Badwater Basin, the Badwater Salt Flats, the Borax Museum at Furnace Creek Ranch., the Artist Palette, the Zabriskie Point, with the views of 20 Mule Team Canyon, and the Funeral and Black Mountain Ranges and the Amargosa Opera House and Hotel at Death Valley Junction.
3. Las Vegas to Death Valley bus
Bundu Bus operates 2 times a week on the route from Las Vegas to Yosemite NP and 2 times a week from Yosemite to Las Vegas. On the route, it goes through Death Valley.
In other words, it goes 4 times a week through Death Valley. The bus makes many stops and photo opportunities. You can take a Bundu bus to reach Death Valley from Las Vegas. And you can enjoy in some stops and photo opportunities on your way. But if you would like to explore more of Death Valley on your own, this could be limited.
WHAT TO SEE IN DEATH VALLEY NATIONAL PARK
Here I am only listing famous Death Valley must-see sites. But if you want to learn more about Death Valley attractions, head to my post: Death Valley Must-Sees
Death Valley must see sites:
➱ Zabriskie Point – famous Death Valley viewpoint
➱ Devil’s Golf Course – a famous Death Valley site and a reminiscent of a lake that had existed a hundred years ago
➱ Badwater Basin – one of the most famous Death Valley places and the lowest point in North America
➱ Artist Palette – Famous Death Valley vista with pastel-colored volcanic and sedimentary rocks
➱ Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes – famous Death Valley sand dunes
➱ Harmoy Borax Works – a famous place in Death Valley where once borax was mined and the Harmoy Plant stood
➱ Dantes View – a spectacular Death Valley viewpoint with impressive views of the Badwater Basin
➱ Ubehebe Crater – a several thousand of years old volcanic crater
➱ Racetrack Playa – Death Valley flat dry lake where mysterious ‘sailing stones’ phenomenon occurs.
➱ Golden Canyon – a famous Death Valley canyon with a popular 1-mile long Golden Canyon trail
➱ Tweny Mule Team Canyon – a 2.7-mile road used daily by 20 mule team carrying the borax in the 1880s
➱ Scotty’s Castle – a historical landmark of California featuring a Spanish Colonial Revival style villa from Roaring ’20s and Depression ’30s
➱ Rhyolite Ghost Town – an interesting abondend mining town from 1904-1916
➱ Father Crowly Point – a famous Death Valley viewpoint for watching US fighter jets testing their skills
WHERE TO STAY IN DEATH VALLEY
- The Ranch At Death Valley – This 4-star hotel is top located within Death Valley National Park with a swimming pool and sports facilities.
- The Inn at Death Valley – This beautiful 5-start hotel is a great option especially for a family with kids and couples who prefer having a first-class service.
- Death Valley Inn & RV Park – This pet-friendly motel is located 8 mi (13 km) from the entrance to Death Valley NP and offers a good value for money.
A list of Death Valley campsites with their location on a map you can find on my post Top Must See Sites in Death Valley
TIPS FOR VISITING DEATH VALLEY FROM LAS VEGAS
- If driving from Las Vegas to Death Valley, please keep your gas tank full. There are gas stations at the Ranch at Death Valley, Stovepipe Wells, and Panamint Springs but the gasoline prices are significantly higher than outside the park. If you want to be extra savvy, tank your car in Pahrump on your way from Las Vegas to Death Valley NP. The gasoline prices are more reasonable in Pahrump than in Las Vegas and certainly far more reasonable than in Death Valley.
- Death Valley NP is the hottest place on Earth. Don’t forget to take a portable bottle of water to stay well-hydrated in Death Valley!
- Hot Death Valley comes with hot sand! So, forget sandals for your trip to Death Valley National Park and take good hiking shoes or at least good sneakers!
- Places like Death Valley seak for light clothing. Good lightweight cargo pants with many large patch pockets on the side are outdoor perfect trousers!
- Protect yourself against the heat. Take a good hat and good sunscreen!
- There is no doubt, you will want to take as many photos as possible. A good camera is one of those must-have traveling accessories in Death Valley!
BEST TIME TO VISIT DEATH VALLEY
The best time to go to Death Valley is from mid-October to mid-May.
And, December and January are the best months for visiting Death Valley.
Death Valey in November can be great too as watching Leonid meteor showers can be spectacular during nights in the desert.
The most popular season to visit Death Valley is spring because of the pleasant weather, but also because of the wildflowers blooming. Death Valley Super Bloom is a rare and unique event when the desert gets covered with thousands of wildflowers.