EXTREME SUMMER HEAT
Expect high temperatures of 100 to 120 degrees F on your summer visit to Death Valley. Heat related illness is a real possibility. Drink plenty of water and carry extra. Avoid activity in the heat. Travel prepared to survive. Watch for signs of trouble. More »
Furnace Creek Visitor Center hours to change for Summer 2013
To better serve summer visitors, the Furnace Creek Visitor Center will be open from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm beginning June 16 through October 7, 2013.
Furnace Creek Campground Temporary Closure
Furnace Creek Campground will be CLOSED for construction starting April 16, 2013. Texas Springs Campground will remain open for summer camping in the Furnace Creek Area. More »
NOTICE: Scotty's Castle will be closed July 15, 2013 through August 9, 2013. The Scotty's Castle grounds and visitor center will be closed, and tours will be cancelled. Park maintenance staff will be working on several projects during that time, including grading and repaving walkways to reduce persistent safety problems. We apologize for the inconvenience.
Hidden in the green oasis of Grapevine Canyon in far northern Death Valley, the Death Valley Ranch, or Scotty's Castle as it is more commonly known, is a window into the life and times of the Roaring '20s and Depression '30s. It was and is an engineer's dream home, a wealthy matron's vacation home and a man-of-mystery's hideout and getaway.
Walter Scott, Death Valley Scotty, convinced everyone that he had built the castle with money from his rich secret mines in the area. Albert Mussey Johnson actually built the house as a vacation getaway for himself and his wife Bessie. Scotty was the mystery, the cowboy, and the entertainer, but he was also a friend. Albert was the brains and the money. Two men as different as night and day, from different worlds and with different visions - who shared a dream.
Scotty's Castle the fantasy house and Scotty's Castle the story are available every day. Take a living history tour and step back into 1939.
"Moonlight anywhere is a delight. But there's no moonlight in the world that can compare with the moonlight in Grapevine Canyon, our desert canyon, where the Castle stands."
Scotty's Castle Tours
Ranger-guided tours are the only way to see the interior of Scotty's Castle. Same-day tour tickets are sold at the Scotty's Castle Visitor Center, first-come, first-served. Avoid long waits by making reservations at Recreation.gov or by calling 877-444-6777 at least one day in advance.
House Tours visit both floors of Scotty's Castle. See original furnishings, and learn about the castle's original residents.
Underground Tours visit the basement and tunnels under Scotty's Castle. Learn about innovative uses of technology that allowed Scotty's Castle to be nearly self-sufficient.
The Lower Vine Hike visits Scotty's actual house at the Lower Vine Ranch. Learn about Albert Johnson's use of this land and how Scotty's humble residence compared to his great personality.
Scotty's Castle is a day-use area only. The castle grounds are open daily from 7:00 am to 5:30 pm. The grounds are closed to all vehicles and pedestrians after hours. Overnight camping is prohibited.
The Scotty's Castle Visitor Center is open daily. The visitor center should be your first stop to inquire about touring Scotty's Castle. You can explore exhibits about the castle's buildings and the people involved in its construction. The Death Valley Natural History Association operates a bookstore and sells snacks, sandwiches and drinks.
No gasoline is available at Scotty's Castle. The nearest fuel is available at Stovepipe Wells (45 miles), Furnace Creek (53 miles), Beatty, Nevada (60 miles) and Tonopah, Nevada (88 miles).
Did You Know?
Badwater Basin, in Death Valley National Park, is the lowest place in North America and one of the lowest places in the world at 282 feet below sea level. The Dead Sea, between Israel and Jordan, is the lowest at 1371 feet below sea level.