Trip to Death Valley National Park
i have a question about death valley national park. going there in a few days. any suggestions on: 1) best place to see wildflowers 2) any other areas you think are worth visiting 3) any not expensive restaurants you had a good meal at? thanks
Hey, Good to hear about your trip to the Death Valley National Park. According to the official website of Death Valley National Park and many travel forums too, this is the best time to visit as you'll be able to do most of the activities. Lets take up your questions one by one.
There are more than 1000 species of plants in the park. You will also see Endemics which are the plants seen only in this park. Flowers are in full bloom throughout the month of April. At this time, you can particularly see flowers at the valley foot and some elevated parts which lie between 2000 to 4000 ft. The best areas to see the flowers at the foot of the valley are : Jubilee Pass, Highway 190 near the Furnace Creek Inn and base of Daylight Pass. The species that you will see here are : desert star, blazing star, desert gold, mimulus, encelia, poppies, verbena, evening primrose, phacelia, and various species of cacti.
The wildflowers in the elevated areas can be best viewed from Panamint Mountains. The species which are dominant in these areas are paintbrush, Mojave desert rue, lupine, Joshua tree, bear poppy, cacti and Panamint daisies. You can read more details about the flowers and the different species here.
Here are some pictures of the flowers that you will see :
Source for the information on wildflowers : http://www.death.valley.national-park.com/
Coming to the next question regarding the other places, here are your choices. There are numerous activities which you can do in different areas of the park. I will be able to help you more if you let me know your interests. To get an idea of what you should see, I suggest that you read this very informative wikipedia page. I really like this writeup by Frommer's which gives you an insight on what to do in the national park. If you don't mind a little adventure, then you have many choices which include biking, hiking, mountaineering and more. You can visit the official website to know more about these.
Let me now help you with the restaurants in the Death Valley National Park. There are a couple of restaurants in the National Park and an average meal for two at all these restaurants will cost you anything between 10 to 40 USD. Here are the details :
- Furnace Creek Inn : It is a slightly upscale place for dining. A meal for two will cost around 30 to 40 $. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are served here. You will need to have prior reservations for dinner and the Sunday brunch. You can call on 760-786-2345 for reservations. Visit this website for more details and read reviews here. People who have been here have some recommendations. Here is a snippet of a review I found on TripAdvisor :
Had lunch here on 1/3/09. They have some special items: Fig and Prosciutto Pizza wih baby spinich with vinegrette ($14.95) was excellent. Chicken tortilla soup ($6.95) was hot and nice, parmesan bread was yummy, cobb salad uses fine ingredients ($12.95??). Everything was quite perfect with Sinatra playing in the backgroun and views of the national park through the nicest windows.
- Forty Niner Cafe : Located in the Furnace Creek Ranch and is less upscale. The entrees to dinner start from 10$. The best part is that you don't need reservations here for any meal of the day. They are particular about timings. Breakfast is served from 7 a.m. to 10;30 a.m. and lunch and dinner starts from 11:30 in the morning till late in the night. Liquor is also served Visit this website for more details on the menu and location and read reviews here.
- Wrangler Steakhouse : Head to this place for the best steaks ever. This place is open only for dinner. Visit this website for more details on the menu and timing and read reviews here.
- Wrangler Buffet : Eat as much as you can for prices which are good for your pocket. This is a great breakfast and lunch buffet place which serves a mix of hot and cold entrees. Breakfast is served from 6 to 9 a.m. and lunch from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Visit this website for more details.
The visits and activities in the Death Valley National Park are largely controlled by the climate conditions throughout the year. Also, there are some 'Stay out Stay alive areas which you might want to know. The visitors guide for 2010 has all of this information and more which you will need to plan your trip. I suggest you go through it once to have a smooth and safe trip.
Hope this information was helpful. Please do write back if you want more details on these.
Did you know that there are some fantastic places to plan your stay inside the National Park? So if you haven't decided on the hotels yet, you can ask your next question right away and I shall help you with the same.
Finally, here's a set of some interesting pictures which you might want to see :
Regarding our pricing: When we say that the first question is free, it exactly means that this question will be answered for free. If you wish to ask another question after this, that will be charged and you will have to make a payment to get the answer.
Have a fun trip!