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Sunrise shot of Zabriskie Point in Death Valley
Death Valley National Park
Death Valley National Park/Facebook

Where to Eat When Visiting Death Valley National Park

The best restaurants inside and outside the sprawling desert park

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Death Valley National Park
| Death Valley National Park/Facebook

Traveling from Las Vegas to the heart of the Mojave Desert feels like leaving civilization for Mars (there’s a reason why Star Wars was shot in Death Valley). It may only be a two-hour drive from Las Vegas, but Death Valley National Park’s undulating badlands, golden sand dunes, and windswept mountains that soar more than 11,000 feet above the white salt flats below give the 3.4 million-acre park an otherworldly feel. While a trip to the desert wilderness feels far out both literally and figuratively, there’s no need for travelers to subsist on trail mix alone. In true desert oasis fashion, these restaurants in and around Death Valley offer cold beers and hearty meals to the weary desert traveler — and none of them are mirages.

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Panamint Springs

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Located in Death Valley’s remote western edge, this tiny desert outpost offers outdoor seating with views of the distant Panamint sand dunes and a surprisingly huge craft beer selection. The menu typically features burgers, pizza, and salads, but is subject to change.

Restaurant exterior with sign reading Restaurant Burgers Salads
Panamint Springs Resort
Louiie Victa

Badwater Saloon

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In the era of the California Gold Rush, stomping into a saloon in cowboy boots made sense after a long day. The Badwater Saloon, located at Stovepipe Wells in the heart of the park, hearkens back to that time with dim lighting, a mirrored bar, and an oftentimes lively crowd. Diners can sip prickly pear-infused margaritas and eat goat cheese-stuffed dates, pulled pork quesadillas with lime crema and burgers topped with chili.

Exterior signage on old western building reading Badwater Saloon
Badwater Saloon
Stovepipe Wells/Facebook

Last Kind Words Saloon & Steakhouse

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In 2018, the Ranch at Death Valley (formerly the Furnace Creek Ranch) got a glitzy makeover, and with it came The Last Kind Words Saloon. Longtime Death Valley visitors will recognize this as the location of the former Corkscrew Saloon, a dive bar that was known more for its pizza than its ambiance. This new incarnation feels more like the set of Westworld — think taxidermy, wooden accents, and antique guns. The menu includes steak, ribs, prickly pear-glazed salmon, chili, burgers, and plenty of whiskey to go around.

Dimly-lit western saloon interior
Last Kind Words Saloon
Oasis at Death Valley/Facebook

The 19th Hole

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Death Valley is home to lots of surprises, but perhaps most surprising of all is one unique resort amenity at the Oasis at Death Valley: a golf course. The lowest golf course in the world isn’t just a great place to practice one’s swing, it’s also the site of The 19th Hole, a seasonal outdoor restaurant serving burgers, beers, and excellent views of coyotes stealing balls on the golf course.

Golf course with mountains in background
The Furnace Creek Golf Course
Oasis at Death Valley/Facebook

Coffee & Cream

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This casual restaurant at the Oasis at Death Valley serves a small menu containing salads, wraps, wings, pizza, and a few barbecue items. This is an ideal place for takeout after a long day of hiking in the desert. Diners should note that the hours here are limited and subject to change based on the season, as is often the case with restaurants inside the national park.

Gateway to desert resort with signage reading The Ranch at Death Valley
The Ranch at Death Valley
Oasis at Death Valley/Facebook

1849 Restaurant

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The 1849 Restaurant, which is a reference to the California settlers who crossed the harsh desert to seek gold in 1849, is located at the Oasis at Death Valley amid the charming Western village of the ranch portion of the resort. This casual spot is open for breakfast and dinner. It offers breakfast staples — baked goods, eggs, and bacon — and a salad bar and carving station in the evening.

Ranch style resort at sunset
The Ranch at Death Valley
Oasis at Death Valley/Facebook

The Inn Dining Room

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The Inn at Death Valley (formerly known as the Furnace Creek Inn) exudes Old Hollywood glamour from its perch on a desert slope. Located inside the 1930s treasure, The Inn Dining Room serves as a retreat from the rugged surroundings, where Death Valley explorers can savor an evening of fine dining and California wine. The menu features classic American fare for breakfast, lunch, and dinner with a focus on desert-inspired ingredients such as dates, prickly pear and fresh avocado.

Exterior of palm tree studded resort in the desert
The Inn at Death Valley
Oasis at Death Valley/Facebook

Happy Burro Chili & Beer

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The Death Valley gateway town of Beatty surprises with wild burros wandering the streets and whiskey drank out of a Mason jar. To experience it at its most authentic, desert connoisseurs should spend some time at the Happy Burro Chili & Beer. True to its name, the cash-only saloon serves spicy chili and cold beer along with burgers, hot dogs, and plenty of conversation.

Sign outside of building reading Happy Burro Chili and Beer
Happy Burro Chili & Beer
Happy Burro Chili & Beer/Facebook

Tecopa Brewing Co.

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Just east of the national park (though it may feel quite a bit further than that given the dizzying effect of remote desert travel on twisting roads with low speed limits), the tiny town of Tecopa draws travelers in with hot springs, palm trees, and a surprising number of restaurant options. One highlight: Tecopa Brewing Co. Located at Delight’s Hot Spring Resort, Tecopa Brewing Co. has the ideal desert trifeca: barbecue, beer, and outdoor seating. After a day of hiking or a long desert drive, there’s nothing like a soak in natural hot springs followed by pork ribs, beef brisket, and homemade ice cream for dessert.

Exterior of restaurant Tecopa Brewing Company with sign reading Brewery BBQ in red lettering
Tecopa Brewing Co.
Tecopa Brewing Co./Facebook

Panamint Springs

Located in Death Valley’s remote western edge, this tiny desert outpost offers outdoor seating with views of the distant Panamint sand dunes and a surprisingly huge craft beer selection. The menu typically features burgers, pizza, and salads, but is subject to change.

Restaurant exterior with sign reading Restaurant Burgers Salads
Panamint Springs Resort
Louiie Victa

Badwater Saloon

In the era of the California Gold Rush, stomping into a saloon in cowboy boots made sense after a long day. The Badwater Saloon, located at Stovepipe Wells in the heart of the park, hearkens back to that time with dim lighting, a mirrored bar, and an oftentimes lively crowd. Diners can sip prickly pear-infused margaritas and eat goat cheese-stuffed dates, pulled pork quesadillas with lime crema and burgers topped with chili.

Exterior signage on old western building reading Badwater Saloon
Badwater Saloon
Stovepipe Wells/Facebook

Last Kind Words Saloon & Steakhouse

In 2018, the Ranch at Death Valley (formerly the Furnace Creek Ranch) got a glitzy makeover, and with it came The Last Kind Words Saloon. Longtime Death Valley visitors will recognize this as the location of the former Corkscrew Saloon, a dive bar that was known more for its pizza than its ambiance. This new incarnation feels more like the set of Westworld — think taxidermy, wooden accents, and antique guns. The menu includes steak, ribs, prickly pear-glazed salmon, chili, burgers, and plenty of whiskey to go around.

Dimly-lit western saloon interior
Last Kind Words Saloon
Oasis at Death Valley/Facebook

The 19th Hole

Death Valley is home to lots of surprises, but perhaps most surprising of all is one unique resort amenity at the Oasis at Death Valley: a golf course. The lowest golf course in the world isn’t just a great place to practice one’s swing, it’s also the site of The 19th Hole, a seasonal outdoor restaurant serving burgers, beers, and excellent views of coyotes stealing balls on the golf course.

Golf course with mountains in background
The Furnace Creek Golf Course
Oasis at Death Valley/Facebook

Coffee & Cream

This casual restaurant at the Oasis at Death Valley serves a small menu containing salads, wraps, wings, pizza, and a few barbecue items. This is an ideal place for takeout after a long day of hiking in the desert. Diners should note that the hours here are limited and subject to change based on the season, as is often the case with restaurants inside the national park.

Gateway to desert resort with signage reading The Ranch at Death Valley
The Ranch at Death Valley
Oasis at Death Valley/Facebook

1849 Restaurant

The 1849 Restaurant, which is a reference to the California settlers who crossed the harsh desert to seek gold in 1849, is located at the Oasis at Death Valley amid the charming Western village of the ranch portion of the resort. This casual spot is open for breakfast and dinner. It offers breakfast staples — baked goods, eggs, and bacon — and a salad bar and carving station in the evening.

Ranch style resort at sunset
The Ranch at Death Valley
Oasis at Death Valley/Facebook

The Inn Dining Room

The Inn at Death Valley (formerly known as the Furnace Creek Inn) exudes Old Hollywood glamour from its perch on a desert slope. Located inside the 1930s treasure, The Inn Dining Room serves as a retreat from the rugged surroundings, where Death Valley explorers can savor an evening of fine dining and California wine. The menu features classic American fare for breakfast, lunch, and dinner with a focus on desert-inspired ingredients such as dates, prickly pear and fresh avocado.

Exterior of palm tree studded resort in the desert
The Inn at Death Valley
Oasis at Death Valley/Facebook

Happy Burro Chili & Beer

The Death Valley gateway town of Beatty surprises with wild burros wandering the streets and whiskey drank out of a Mason jar. To experience it at its most authentic, desert connoisseurs should spend some time at the Happy Burro Chili & Beer. True to its name, the cash-only saloon serves spicy chili and cold beer along with burgers, hot dogs, and plenty of conversation.

Sign outside of building reading Happy Burro Chili and Beer
Happy Burro Chili & Beer
Happy Burro Chili & Beer/Facebook

Tecopa Brewing Co.

Just east of the national park (though it may feel quite a bit further than that given the dizzying effect of remote desert travel on twisting roads with low speed limits), the tiny town of Tecopa draws travelers in with hot springs, palm trees, and a surprising number of restaurant options. One highlight: Tecopa Brewing Co. Located at Delight’s Hot Spring Resort, Tecopa Brewing Co. has the ideal desert trifeca: barbecue, beer, and outdoor seating. After a day of hiking or a long desert drive, there’s nothing like a soak in natural hot springs followed by pork ribs, beef brisket, and homemade ice cream for dessert.

Exterior of restaurant Tecopa Brewing Company with sign reading Brewery BBQ in red lettering
Tecopa Brewing Co.
Tecopa Brewing Co./Facebook

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