THING TO DO

Visit Badwater Basin

A large flat, salt-covered area, with distant desert mountains.
Visitors on the boardwalk at Badwater Basin.

NPS photo

A visit to Badwater Basin is an otherworldly experience! This large salt flat is home to the lowest elevation in North America, at - 282 feet (-86 m) below sea level. Enjoy the view from your vehicle during the summer, or during cooler months, take a walk out onto the salt flat. A short 1/4 mile (400 m) walk will bring you to the salt polygons that Death Valley is famous for. These large salt formations, in the shape of a large polygon, form a unique landscape that appears to stretch on forever.
Details
Badwater Basin is located 30 minutes south of the Furnace Creek Visitor Center. Most visitors will choose to drive to Badwater, view or hike on the salt flat, and then return north on Badwater Road the way they drove in. This would require the minimum time of one hour. If you are interested in hiking longer, just add the amount of time you would like to spend on the salt flat. 
Pets are only permitted along roads, to campgrounds, picnic areas, and other developed areas of the park, but they must be restrained or kept on a leash no longer than 6 feet at all times.

Other than service animals, pets are not allowed inside most buildings or on trails (including to Zabriskie Point), but you also can not leave them in your car while you are away. Most pet owners find that both their pets and themselves are happier if the pets are left at home or in a kennel.
Included with entrance fee into Death Valley or approved pass. 
From Highway 190 at Furnace Creek, travel 17 miles south on Badwater Road to the Badwater Basin parking area. 
Visiting in the summer means mostly staying in your vehicle and enjoying the view of the salt flat. We do not recommend being outside of your airconditioned vehicle for longer than 15 minutes. 
Accessibility Information
Badwater Basin can be viewed from your vehicle in the parking area. Exiting your vehicle and accessing the wooden boardwalk can be done by a short, paved ramp. The wooden boardwalk is older wood, so it is not entirely level. Beyond the short wooden boardwalk, the salt flat has been flattened like hard packed sand for 1/4 mile. 

Last updated: July 2, 2018