The Ultimate Guide for your campervan trip to Death Valley

Death Valley National Park Ultimate Winter Getaway in a Campervan

Dreaming of an outdoor escape? Plan your winter getaway and hit the road with a campervan to explore Death Valley National Park! Let’s go on the ultimate adventure together.

campervan driving down the road in Death Valley during the winter

Despite its intimidating name, Death Valley is quite spectacular in terms of its remarkable landscape, where earth seemingly meets sky! Death Valley is anything but the meaning of “death.” Unless you are unprepared, then the scorching summertime heat has taken a few lives that weren’t properly prepared.

The best time to visit Death Valley is winter for the ultimate getaway! The weather is ideal between October-April. We chose to visit Death Valley in December because it has pleasant winter weather and comfortable temperatures, making it the perfect time to visit. We loved exploring Death Valley for our winter getaway in our Native Campervan. Be aware though that conditions can change quickly and unexpectedly. It’s important to check the current weather reports at the visitor centers before or during your trip in order to plan accordingly and prepare for any potential inclement weather.

Death Valley National Park

Death Valley National Park is the largest national park in the lower 48 states, covering over 3 million acres. It contains more than 1,000 miles of trails and features numerous sand dunes, canyons, and mountain ranges. It is also home to Badwater Basin—the lowest point in North America at 282 feet below sea level! Along with its spectacular landscape and desert beauty, Death Valley showcases interesting natural wonders such as the Racetrack Playa where rocks move in mysterious ways!

Check out my blog for the best places to elope in the USA!

Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes at Sunrise with the Panamint Mountains in the distance

Native Land

The Timbisha Shoshone are the native people who call Death Valley their ancestral homeland. As guests in this land, it’s important to act out of respect and reverence to honor the traditional owners and all they have shared with us.

Death Valley is home to the Timbisha Shoshone as their ancestral homeland. Heiroglyphics on the red rocks

How Much Does a Campervan Cost?

Native Campervans offers the perfect rental experience with their “Biggie” campervan. This campervan is spacious enough for up to two people, complete with a standing height of 6 feet and all the amenities needed, such as a kitchen and stove, refrigerator, sink, potable water and comfortable bed. To top it off, you can even rent heaters if desired! You’ll have plenty of storage room for all of your outdoor activities, too. Plus, it comes fully equipped with dishes, utensils, propane for cooking and potable water. Best yet – driving the Promaster is a breeze!

For 3 nights and 4 days, renting a Biggie campervan will cost you about $900 including collision coverage. You can even bring your dog and rent a tent, heater and boulder pad for all you serious adventurers!

See our campervan adventure in the Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming for more beautiful destinations to explore in a Native Campervan!

man in a campervan
Campervan in Death Valley
Native Campervans in Las Vegas

Best Places to Camp in Death Valley

Exploring Death Valley is best done via your campervan as it lets you see as much of the area as possible. Furnace Creek Campground ($22 a night) is a great place to start and gives you access to bathrooms with running water. Wildrose Campground in offers free camping and worth the drive up the Panamint Mountains for incredible views of Death Valley. We spent our last night in Sunset Campground (first come, first serve, $14 a night) also centrally located within the park. You can also camp out at Stovepipe Wells Campground, that is first come first serve.

Free camping, First Come, First Serve Camping at Wildrose Campground

Death Valley Travel Itinerary

If you’re planning a trip to Death Valley National Park and are looking for the best places to visit, look no further! We visited Death Valley this past winter for our getaway and had a fantastic 3 night/4 day itinerary packed with outdoor adventures. Despite the size of the park, it’s relatively easy to get between places with lots of campgrounds available along the way. Our favorite parts were definitely Badwater Basin at sunset or a sunrise hike up the Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes. To beat the heat, consider visiting during winter and be sure to bring plenty of water and food if you go on longer hikes!

Day 1

🚗 Pick-up Native Campervans in Vegas

🚗 2 hour Drive to Death Valley

🥾 Hike Zabriske Point

🌄 Scenic drive to Badwater Basin to catch the sunset

⛺️Check-in to Furnace Creek Campground

Day 2

🌄 Sunrise at Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes – get their early before dawn to hike to a more desolate area (it get’s crowded)

🥾 Morning hike at Mosaic Canyon with winding narrows

⛺️ Scenic drive to Wildrose Campground in the mountains

🌄 Sunset hike in the mountains

Day 3

🥾Sunrise hike – wildrose peak

🚗 Drive to Zabriske Point

⛰️ noon – engagement photoshoot at Zabriske point

🥾Mid-afternoon – Artists Palette engagement photoshoot + charcuterie lunch

🌄 Sunset engagement photoshoot at Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes

🍔Dinner with couple at Badwater Saloon with Deanna + Casey

⛺️Campout at Sunset Campground

Day 4

🥾Hike golden canyon trail

🚗 Drive to Vegas

🚗 Return Van

✈️ Fly Home

photographer in sand dunes
sand dunes
mosaic canyon in Death Valley
Best Place to see the sunset in Death Valley
Best Places to see in Death Valley
best hikes in Death Valley

Best Places to See in Death Valley

Visiting Death Valley is a great way to experience some of the Earth’s most spectacular landscapes. Top places to see and hike in Death Valley include Zabriskie Point, Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes, Badwater Basin, and Artists Palette. Each of these locations has something unique to offer, so be sure to check one or all out when exploring this area!

Check out What to Know on my blog for, Preparing for an Engagement in Death Valley

Death Valley Engagement Session

Best hiking trails and elopement locations in Death Valley!

Best hikes in Death Valley
Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes
Mosaic Canyon hiking trail

Death Valley National Park Fee

If you are planning a trip to Death Valley National Park, you can enjoy the park by paying an entrance fee of $30 per vehicle. Alternatively, you can get an annual U.S. Park pass for $80, which allows access to all national parks in the United States for one year from the date of purchase. Make sure you stop by the Visitor Center to learn more about the land and ask a ranger valuable questions. You can download a FREE Visitor Guide here!

How much does it cost to get into Death Valley National Park?

Things to Know Before You Go to Death Valley

Before embarking on a visit to Death Valley, there are a few essential things you should know. First off, due to its remote location, there is no cell phone service here. As such, it’s important that you download or purchase a map and plan your trip ahead of time. Furthermore, remember to bring plenty of food, water and fuel for your car. You can pass up at Furnace Creek and Stovepipe Wells as well as Pahrump in Nevada before entering Death Valley – this is the last town you’ll pass through on your journey in and could be conveniently used to pick up groceries if needed. Make sure to let family or friends know the location of your travels so they can keep tabs on where you are and always make sure not to hike alone!

man in a native campervan

Places to Stay in Death Valley that Don’t Require Camping

If you’re looking for a few places to stay in Death Valley without camping, Furnace Creek and Stovepipe Wells are the perfect spots. Both have resorts and hotels that accommodate a variety of needs – from comfortable rooms to luxurious suites. Enjoy a relaxing vacation in this desert paradise without having to pitch a tent!  Death Valley is the largest national park in the U.S. and this is why we still prefer to camp out in a Native Campervan to give us the freedom to travel without having to rent a car and a hotel.

The Inn at Death Valley – $189 night – Furnace Creek

The Ranch at Death Valley – $189 night – Furnace Creek

Stovepipe Wells Hotel + Restaurant – $231 night – Stovepipe Wells

Best Places to see the sunrise in Death Valley

Getting to Death Valley National Park

Death Valley National park is one of the best winter getaways during the winter months and very close to Los Angeles, CA (only 2.5 hours to the western entrance) and Las Vegas, NV (only 2 hours to the main visitor center). Pick up your Campervan in Los Angeles, CA or Las Vegas, NV for your next winter destination.

Los Angeles Native Campervans

Las Vegas Native Campervans

Speaking of Las Vegas, check out my Las Vegas Elopement Guide! There a plenty of places to elope near Las Vegas within 20 minutes to one hour away!

man driving a campervan in Death Valley national park
campervan driving through artists way
couple at zabriske point
woman in a campervan
campervan on the road in the panamint mountains

Save This Death Valley Itinerary

Are you interested in eloping at Death Valley National Park? Save this itinerary to plan your trip! Why not consider a Native Campervans for your journey? As an experienced adventure elopement photographer, I can help make your dream come true by showing you all the best spots for your ceremony and photographs.

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