GPS Coordinates: 36.46178, -116.86661 (36°27’42.4″N 116°51’59.8″W)
If you are visiting Death Valley National park, the first place you should stop by is the Furnace Creek and the Visitors Center. The Visitors Center is open between 8 AM to 5 PM except on national holidays. Here you can pick up the information brochure and purchase your park tickets and souvenirs if you haven’t done so.
You can chat with one of the Park Rangers to get some information about the current conditions, places, the road closures, the weather and best time to visit a particular spot. The park rangers are more knowledgeable about the ins and outs of Death Valley at that moment more than the internet.
There is a small exhibit about the various landscapes Death Valley has to offer. Also be sure to watch the 20-minute informational video in the auditorium. There is a small bookstore where you can buy maps and other park-related books. Here you can also purchase sandwiches, water, and snacks.
Adjacent to the Furnace Creek Visitors Center is the Furnace Creek Campground and the Ranch. The Furnace Creek Ranch Golf Course (formally the Death Valley Golf Course) is the located at 214 feet below sea level This is interesting because this is the lowest point where you can find a golf course in the entire world.
You can get some good food from the Date Grove Diner. Pick up either a pre-packaged sandwich to go or from their menu to find the best meal for you.
You can rent a Jeep at the Farabee’s Jeep Rental and tours if you are planning to visit remote areas in Death Valley. You can find more information at here.
If you are exploring yourself, always check with the Park Rangers about the road condition. Things can change without any notice. Take a look at an example from the flash flood damage caused during the 2015 flood near Scotty’s castle and the road leading to it.
You can visit all year during the business hours. This location is more of information gathering and a quick stop you can make for some downtime during your visit. The Furnace Creek Visitors center is open all day between 8 AM to 5 PM except during national holidays. The other business entities nearby have their own schedules.
The Visitors Center
Furnace Creek Golf Course
Borax Museum at Furnace Creek
Best Time to Photograph
Since this is just a visitor center, the best time to visit or take photographs is anytime during business hours.
Be sure to take a picture of yourself in front of the big thermometer outside the Visitors Center when you get there.
Recommended Camera Gear
- Digital Camera with Normal to Mid-Range Zoom Lens
- Cable shutter release or Remote Shutter Release
- Steady Tripod for group pictures
How to get there
Take HWY 190 towards the Indian Village.
Place to Stay
There are plenty of campsites in and around Furnace Creek all available in a first come first serve basis. You can book your campsite at the Visitors Center or use the Campsite Kiosk. You have Furnace Creek Campground, Texas Springs Campground and Sunset Campground with decent facilities.
Pictorial Highlights from this place…