Figuring out where to stay near National Parks is rough. If you're a camper, it's a no-brainer to try to find a campground. But those are often booked well in advance. And you might often travel far enough that hauling your camping gear just isn't feasible. We bring so much photography equipment with us for Kelly that bringing our tent, etc, just isn't going to happen. And also, I really like showering.
There are two towns on the north side of Joshua Tree National Park that have some limited hotel options. Nothing fancy, but a room near a National Park is always a hot commodity. These towns are Joshua Tree and Twentynine Palms. We saw more hotels in Joshua Tree but more resources (i.e., a real grocery store) in Twentynine Palms.
If you're like us, you like a little more space and a kitchen for light cooking. When traveling we spend so much time out in the parks that we don't waste too much time in restaurants, except maybe for a midday ‘linner.’ Instead, simple meals that we can prep while we take turns cleaning up after the day make more sense. Michelle often preps dinner and food for the next day while Kelly processes his images and charges his gear.
We've only rented near Joshua Tree once but we really loved the property at Indian Cove and wanted to share it here! The owners were great, the views were great, and the outdoor spaces would be awesome for people who want to chill a bit at their rental. During the superbloom, their property was full of colorful desert flowers. They had gorgeous gardens, hammocks, and an outdoor fire pit. We had a late night red-eye return flight the last day of our trip, and the owners let us linger around the property well past checkout, which cut down on our waiting time in the airport. This particular rental worked great for 2 people. For a group of four, it might have been manageable with the pull-out in the living room.
**Note that this is not a sponsored post. We just loved our experience renting with Susan and wanted you to know about this hidden gem. If you’re a rental owner near a National Park and would like to sponsor a post, be in touch and we can talk about whether that might be a possibility.