.Joshua Tree, California is a pretty unique place. Located in the desert between Los Angeles and Las Vegas, it’s famous for gorgeous scenery, hiking, camping, and an eclectic arts scene. So it should be no surprise that you can find places to stay near Joshua Tree that incorporate each of those things (and sometimes a combo of all of them!)
Although it isn’t near a big city, there are still lots of great places to stay near Joshua Tree, from boutique hotels to Airbnb cabins to rustic campsites. I’m sure there will be something on this list for everyone.
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Which Area To Stay In?
Most visitors to Joshua Tree National Park stay in or near the towns of Joshua Tree and Twentynine Palms along Highway 62 on the northern border of Joshua Tree National Park. The town of Joshua Tree is close to the West Entrance Station and the town of Twentynine Palms is close to the North Entrance Station.
Some visitors also enter the park from the south entrance about an hour from Palm Springs. However, it’s a long drive from that area, so in this post, I’ll focus on where to stay near Joshua Tree and Twentynine Palms.
Best Hotels Near Joshua Tree
If you’re looking for the convenience of a hotel or motel, you’ll find lots in the Joshua Tree area. Most are clustered along Highway 62 in Joshua Tree and Twentynine Palms. Here are my picks for the best hotels near Joshua Tree.
Best Themed Hotel Near Joshua Tree
The Pioneertown Motel was originally built in the 1940s to house movie stars shooting western films. Today it’s been updated to have all the modern conveniences, but still looks every bit like a vintage western movie set. Yeehaw! It’s one of the most popular places to stay near Joshua Tree
Best Budget Hotel Near Joshua Tree
The El Rancho Dolores Motel in Twentynine Palms is a retro Spanish-style motel located near the North Entrance to Joshua Tree National Park. Its budget-friendly rooms have fridges, microwaves, A/C, wifi, and tile floors that stay cool in the heat. Reviews say they are very clean. There’s also a great pool to cool off in.
Best Joshua Tree Hotel for Families
The suite-style rooms at the Fairfield Inn & Suites in Twentynine Palms are a great choice for families. Each one sleeps four to six people on a combo of beds and sofa beds. There’s a separate seating area too. Kids will love the outdoor pool and parents will enjoy the ease of the included breakfast buffet.
Best Vacation Rentals near Joshua Tree
The Joshua Tree area is known for an eclectic collection of vacation rental homes, cabins, yurts, domes, glamping tents, and more. Most are on quiet desert roads a short drive from the highway. Here are my picks for the best vacation rentals near Joshua Tree.
Stargazing Bubble Tent Near Joshua Tree
Talk about a bucket list experience! Sleep in the unique Marbella Lane bubble tent and watch the stars light up the desert from the comfort of your heated bed. It has a hot tub and barbecue too. It’s a short drive to the town of Joshua Tree and the North Entrance to Joshua Tree National Park.
Coolest Private Villa with a Pool near Joshua Tree
Known as The Invisible House, this is one of the coolest places to stay in Joshua Tree. It’s been described as a 22-story skyscraper laid on its side. It has a fully mirrored exterior that makes it disappear into the desert. With three bedrooms, a 100-foot indoor swimming pool, and 90 acres of land, there’s plenty of space to spread out and chill out.
Instagrammable Dome House Near Joshua Tree
The airy Serenity Dome House is a great boho-style getaway. Chill out in hammocks by the pool, soak in the hot tub, get cozy at the fire pit, or pose for photos in front of the murals on the property. At night, stargaze through the skylights.
Best Cottage Right Next to the Entrance to Joshua Tree National Park
The cute Clever Rabbit cottage is less than 1/4 mile from the West Entrance to Joshua Tree National Park – you hike directly into the park from your front door. It’s a cozy and rustic little house with a fully equipped kitchen, a fire pit, and an awesome hammock hang-out zone. The Clever Rabbit is definitely one of the most convenient places to stay near Joshua Tree.
Best Family-Friendly Rental Home Near Joshua Tree
If you’re heading to Joshua Tree with kids, book the Comfy Boho Cottage. It sleeps six and has a fully equipped kitchen. There’s even an adorable single-serving pancake maker. Kids will love exploring the backyard yurt and roasting marshmallows on the firepit.
Best Pet-Friendly Rental Home Near Joshua Tree
Located in the desert a few minutes’ drive from the town of Twentynine Palms, the Flying Point Homestead is a great Joshua Tree rental home option if you’re travelling with your dog. Pets are welcome at no extra charge and the yard is fully fenced.
Best Places to Camp Near Joshua Tree
If you love nature and don’t mind a bit of roughing it, I would recommend camping inside Joshua Tree National Park. That way you can experience the desert landscape 24 hours a day and go for hikes right from your tent door. Most of the campgrounds are less than a 30-minute drive to the village of Joshua Tree, so it’s easy to go get groceries or go to a restaurant.
Best Reservable Campgrounds in Joshua Tree National Park
Five of the campgrounds in Joshua Tree National Park accept reservations. Since getting a first-come, first-served campsite in the park can be tough, making a reservation is a great idea. You can make reservations online up to six months in advance through recreation.gov.
Ryan Campground is small and rustic, with just 31 campsites. It has a great central location that is popular with rock climbers. There’s no water here so you’ll have to bring your own.
Jumbo Rocks Campground is also centrally located and with 124 sites, it’s the largest campground in Joshua Tree National Park. However, it doesn’t feel too crowded because huge boulders between most of the sites provide privacy. Bring your own water.
Indian Cove is located on the northern border of the park close to Twentynine Palms, which is convenient. However, there is no direct access to park roads so you’ll have to drive into town, then around into the park. This campground has 101 sites and no water.
Black Rock Campground: Located near Yucca Valley on the western side of the park, this campground is a bit of a drive to get to the park’s main roads. But it has running water and you can hike right from your campsite.
Cottonwood Campground: This campground is in the far southern part of the park near the Coachella Valley. It’s at a lower elevation, making it warmer in winter (good) but also warmer in summer (bad). It’s a long drive to the rest of the park from here, but that makes the campground a bit quieter.
Best First-Come, First-Served Campgrounds in Joshua Tree National Park
If you can’t get a reservation, Joshua Tree National Park has three first-come, first-served campgrounds. However, it is very difficult to get a site. They are fully by Friday night for most weekends between September and May and are full all week during the spring.
Check-out is at noon but many people leave before that so it’s a good idea to start checking early in the morning. You may also be able to talk to people who are packing up and ask if you can move into their campsite once they leave.
On my March trip, we stayed outside the park on our first night, then drove to the park early in the morning on a Wednesday. We managed to get one of the last sites available at Hidden Valley Campground – we actually had to wait for the previous campers to leave.
Hidden Valley Campground is the most popular campground in the park. It has a central location near lots of climbing crags. You can also hike right from the campground. The campground has a gorgeous setting near lots of cool rock formations. It has 44 sites and no water.
White Tank Campground is small with only 15 sites. It’s close to the north entrance, but also really central. You can hike from your campsite to Arch Rock, one of the park’s most popular locations. No water.
Belle Campground is another small campground near the north entrance. It has 18 sites and tends to be a bit quieter. It also has no water.
Best Joshua Tree National Park Campgrounds for RVs
None of the campgrounds in Joshua Tree National Park have RV hookups. However, a few of the campgrounds do have RV-friendly features.
Black Rock Campground near the town of Yucca Valley has RV-accessible potable water and a dump station. The maximum length for RVs is 35 feet. Make reservations up to six months in advance for one of the 99 sites.
Cottonwood Campground in the southern part of the Joshua Tree National Park has a dump station and RV-accessible potable water. Most sites will fit RVs up to 35 feet. All 62 sites can be reserved up to six months in advance.
If you’re looking for even more options for places to stay near Joshua Tree, have a look on Booking.com or VRBO as there is so much out there, with new and adorable places popping up regularly. Have you stayed somewhere amazing that you’d recommend? Tell me in the comments.