Death Valley National Park can best be described in superlatives: it is both the hottest and driest park in the US and, at 282 feet below sea level, is the lowest point in North America.
Its extreme temperatures make it best visited in the winter, when snow caps the mountains and the low light gives the desert a golden hue. Spring is another good time to visit when over 1,000 species of plants burst into flower bringing the landscape to vivid life. During the height of summer heat creates a shimmering mirage so it is highly recommended that sightseeing takes place just after dawn or before dusk.
The main villages in the park are Stovepipe Wells, located near the Panamint sand dunes, and Furnace Creek, home to the park's visitors' center. The park's most unusual sights are found south of here. These include Artist's Palette, an eroded hillside covered in intensely colored reds, golds, greens and blacks.
Further south lies Devil's Golf Course, a field of salt pinnacles, whilst Badwater is a 30-foot wide pool of water loaded with chloride and sulfates. From the pool two four-mile walks cross the hot valley floor and descend a further two feet to the lowest point in the Western Hemisphere. Dante's View, further on, offers wonderful vistas of the wide parched desert floor and the Panamint Mountains.
Map of Death Valley National Park
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Places near Death Valley National Park
- Sequoia National Park 134 kilometers away
- Kings Canyon National Park 141 kilometers away
- Las Vegas 176 kilometers away
- Yosemite National Park 267 kilometers away
- Los Angeles 295 kilometers away
- Palm Springs 303 kilometers away
- Santa Barbara 333 kilometers away
- Pismo Beach 356 kilometers away
- Zion National Park 374 kilometers away
- Lake Tahoe 389 kilometers away
- San Diego 422 kilometers away
- Big Sur 425 kilometers away
- Monterey 431 kilometers away
- Carmel 434 kilometers away
- Bryce Canyon National Park 452 kilometers away
- Sacramento 453 kilometers away
- Grand Canyon National Park 463 kilometers away
Photos of Death Valley National Park
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Death Valley National Park