If you’re visiting Las Vegas on holiday and looking for a day trip with kids, head over to the Valley Of Fire and be enthralled by the natural rock formations there! If I thought that Red Rock Canyon (opens in new tab) was impressive (which I did) I was even more mesmerised by the rock formations and their glorious colours at The Valley of Fire and I’m sure you will be too.
Just to think that we almost didn’t go, but as fate had it, we went and had an amazing time!
We Almost Didn’t Go…. Don’t Make That Mistake
We only had a short time in America (before we had to be in Mexico) and we ran out of time to do everything we had bookmarked to do in Nevada. Four days in Nevada goes really quickly, so make sure you only visit the things you absolutely must see!
Originally it was a toss up between The Grand Canyon (west rim entrance) and The Valley of Fire. The Grand Canyon won (of course) but upon further research the West Rim Grand Canyon was going to cost us a ridiculous amount of money, more than $500/€406/£360 minimum and six hours of driving… just to get there and back.
My gut feeling told me that we would be disappointed by the west rim (too many tourists, lack of access, lack of photos etc) and the experience would be an anti-climax so The Valley of Fire was back on the agenda and I was happy!
If you only have a few days in Las Vegas we definitely recommend adding this to your Las Vegas Itinerary.
See How Much Cheap Flights To America Are With Kiwi
How Much Does The Valley of Fire cost?
America is expensive but we were so surprised by how cheap the national parks were.
The entrance fee is $10/£7 for a car
Camping costs $20/night plus $10/night for utility hook-ups ($2/night discount Nevada resident)
An annual Entrance Permit costs $75
It cost us $10 for a day trip! A little bit less than the west rim grand canyon. The only problem was, we overslept and didn’t make it there until 1pm. After that it was a mad rush to try and see everything super quickly before the sun set. We didn’t get to see everything so I’d love to go back.
We really enjoyed this park. Way more than the Red Rock Canyon in some respects as it was quieter and more authentic and the trail hikes were quite small distances – and there was enough to see and be busy with to keep the kids entertained.
Where is it?
There are two entrances; east and west, technically described as north and south though.
The hours of opening are: 8:30 AM-4:30 PM daily and the park is open all year round too.
I am pretty sure that payment is cash only.
The Valley of Fire is Nevada’s oldest state park
The Valley of Fire is Nevada’s oldest and largest national park as it was first dedicated back in 1935.
It derives its name from the red sandstone formations which glow vibrantly as the sun is setting. Ancient trees and early man are represented throughout the park by areas of petrified wood and Indian petroglyphs. What we loved about this park is that everything is really easily visible, no hunting around and being disappointed. Perfect for children.
Perfect As A Day Trip From Vegas
The Valley of Fire is located in the Mojave Desert approximately 58 miles north-east of the Las Vegas Strip. It took us about an hour to get there from LV as we stopped off en route to buy water.
The park covers an area of approximately 35,000 acres of sandstone formations that were formed from shifting sand dunes more than 150 million years ago during the Mesozoic Era. These brilliant sandstone formations can appear to be on fire when reflecting the sun’s rays. Other important rock formations include limestone, shale and conglomerates.
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As a small child my favourite book was 'People of the World' which featured Inuits from Alaska, children from China and farmers from Peru. It was a glimpse into another world that would inspire me to wander the globe in search of something special.
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