Joshua Tree National Park Association

Visiting Joshua Tree National Park in Spring 2024

Rangers share great ways to enjoy this beautiful desert park.

Ranger speaks to a group of people in Joshua Tree National Park
Joshua Tree park ranger speaking to a group of visitors
Ranger with a beard with arms full of rolls of toilet paper in front of a restroom near the entrance to Joshua Tree National Park
Ranger holds a comically large stack of toilet paper in front of an NPS restroom facility

News Release Date: February 22, 2024

Contact: JOTR_Public_Affairs@nps.gov

Twentynine Palms, CA – March and April are traditionally the busiest months of the year at Joshua Tree National Park. The park expects high visitation during spring 2024 based on recent trends. A typical spring day includes limited parking, full campgrounds, and lines to get into the park. While no day is exactly the same, the three best ways to prepare for any day visiting Joshua Tree are: 

  • Plan mid-week trips – Joshua Tree is busiest on weekends and holidays, which can mean significant traffic congestion.
  • Buy a digital pass – Buy your pass ahead of time by logging onto recreation.gov.
    This pass can provide a smoother, quicker entry into the park.
  • Arrive before 10 am – Avoid entering the park between 10 am and 2 pm and avoid exiting the park around sunset. 

Other tips to prepare for your park visit:

  • Download the official National Park Service app before your visit. Search for National Park Service and select Joshua Tree once downloaded. Choose the tab that allows you to “Download for offline use”. This will give you access to information about Joshua Tree beforehand and allows use in the park where there is no internet or cell reception. 
  • Visit responsibly and leave no trace.
  • Consider a night visit and enjoy cooler temperatures and beautiful dark skies.
  • Remember to respect the park’s wildflowers by taking only photos. Please walk on designated trails and never crush vegetation to protect future blooms for years to come.
  • Be considerate of any park wildlife you encounter and provide them with adequate space. Please do not feed any park wildlife.
  • The park may become drive-through only as the parking lots reach maximum capacity during times of extreme visitation. Visitors may be turned away from popular parking areas.     
  • Be flexible with plans. The best hike for you may be one where parking is available.  Hike smart!
  • Vault toilets are available inside the park, but food and water are not. Bring all the food and water you need for your visit.  
  • Visitors can park along many, but not all, roadsides. Never drive over a curb or onto vegetation to make a new parking space. Be mindful of curbs painted red.    
  • Make a reservation at recreation.gov for one of the 350 reservable campsites in the park. If there are no reservation sites available, there likely will not be first-come, first-served sites available when you arrive. Look to one of the private campgrounds adjacent to the park.   
  • Many campgrounds intersect with hiking trails. Campers can choose to hike trails that are close to or even connect to their campground to avoid busy parking lots.  
  • Find a new favorite spot to explore in the park. There is no one best campsite, trail, or sunset spot.   

 

Thank you all for your continued stewardship and love of Joshua Tree National Park. We are so happy to meet you!    

 

The data – Joshua Tree National Park’s off-season visitation was up 12.8% between June 2023 to October 2023. Final visitation numbers for 2023 are 3,282,575 visits, an overall 7% increase over 2022, and another record-breaking year.   

About Joshua Tree National Park: Dark night skies, a rich cultural history, and surreal geologic features add to this vast wilderness in southern California.

Learn more at nps.gov/jotr and on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube .

 

The Milky Way above the silhouette of a Joshua Tree
The Milky Way above the silhouette of a Joshua tree

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Visiting Joshua Tree National Park in Spring 2024 – Joshua Tree National Park Association
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