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Things to do in Death Valley

11 contributors

The top 4 attractions in Death Valley

Viewpoints in Death Valley
Artists Palette
Located logically enough on the Artist's Drive, here you can view rocks with such a wide variety of colors that they look like a paint palette! It is best to see it at sunrise or sunset, not only because of the stunning colors and shadows, but also because of the lower, and therefore more tolerable, temperatures.
Viewpoints in Death Valley
Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes
This was the last stop we made in Death Valley. Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes is a bit like a desert in the middle of the desert. You'll be driving through the desert for a few hours and then, like a mirage, you'll see these gorgeous dunes in the dsitance! But no, it's real...these sand dunes are real. It was nice to walk around the dunes although I admit that you'll feel like dying if you're not used to the sun and heat. There's even a warning sign! Other places that are worth visiting nearby: Zabriskie Point, Badwater Basin, and Artists Palette.
Roads in Death Valley
CA State Route 190 through Death Valley
This road winds up and down like a roller coaster as you drive through Death Valley National Park. A sign at the beginning tells you to turn off the air con to save energy, and as we went in September, the heat was just about bearable. The hills and dips are intense: the lowest point is 90 m below sea level, the highest 2,000 m, and the scenery changes drastically on the way. In the barrenness, some things stand out like the famous Joshua Tree and the Mammoth Lakes, where you go from heat to cold as you reach a mountain popular with both skiers and bears.
Canyons in Death Valley
Mosaic Canyon
When in Death Valley, Mosaic Canyon is a must-see. If you’re short on time, it’ll be difficult to hike the whole trail. Regardless, it’s worth stopping by because it’s a stunningly beautiful canyon in the area. The earlier part of the trail is relatively easy – it’s flat with a little bit of climbing involved. But the most rewarding part of checking it out is seeing up close where the running water cut through the rock millions and millions of years ago. The road to get to the trailhead is gravel so it’s best to take a four-wheel drive, although you can always use a regular car if you drive really, really slowly.