Rugged mountains, gold mining ruins, desert plains dotted with oddball trees—Joshua Tree National Park is a unique and wonderful place. The park lies at an ecological crossroads, where the high Mojave Desert meets the low Colorado Desert. That marriage results in amazing desert flora, including those distinctive namesake trees. The beauty here shines around the clock, with vibrant sunsets melting into nights filled with uncountable stars perfect for stargazing.
Joshua Tree National Park is a destination for hiking, exploring, bouldering and rock climbing. All just 45 minutes from Azure Palm Hot Springs. Hike and explore during the day, soak in hot mineral springs in the evening, and relax in comfort at night at Azure Palm Hot Springs.
There are three main area of the park: The more popular west entrance near the Joshua Tree Visitors Center, the north entrance near the Oasis Visitors Center in Twentynine Palms, and a south entrance, near the intersection of Box Canyon Road and Interstate 10, which leads to the Cottonwood Visitors Center.
Here are some highlights of the park, but check out the resources below to learn more:
Explore Indian Cove Nature Trail
The walking trail at Indian Cove is one of the best places to enjoy the park’s namesake flora. Its official name is Yucca brevifolia, but it’s better known as the Joshua tree. Accessible from the east end, this 0.6-mile path is surrounded by boulder formations. Keep an eye out for wildlife, including bighorn sheep and desert tortoises.
Rock climb at Echo Cove
With more than 8,000 known climbs and 400 unique formations, it’s little wonder Joshua Tree is a climber’s paradise. Echo Cove has plenty of routes great for first-timers and advanced climbers alike. BYO gear or rent everything from shoes to chalk at Nomad Ventures. The friendly local shop has been in business since 1980.
Hike among giant boulders on Arch Rock Trail
Millennia of whipping winds and rushing water have served to sculpt some incredible designs throughout these deserts. One of the most miraculous, the 30-foot-tall Arch Rock, is easily accessible thanks to a 0.5-mile out-and-back trail starting just outside White Tank Campground and the Twin Tanks parking area. There is no parking for the trail inside the campground.
Walk among cacti in Cholla Cactus Garden
Mother Nature’s majesty and her mischief are both on full display in this organically occurring cacti grove. Stay the course on this 0.25-mile loop and you’ll be treated to one of the world’s densest concentrations of the lovely-but-dangerous cholla cactus.