October 1st, 2017 marked an unprecedented tragedy for Las Vegas. However, the support of the community and the public has been strong, summed up by the social media hash tag #VegasStrong. The tragedy is still fresh in the minds of many, but the healing may have started to begin. Many tourist are now seeing their visit to Las Vegas to have more meaning and are starting to see the city in a new light. In this light, we found it appropriate to give people thinking of visiting Vegas post 10/1/2017 a great way to make the 4 hour drive to the strip from the Coachella Valley a fun adventure.
When planning to drive to Las Vegas no matter which route you take you will need to plan for at least 4 hours to get to the strip. There are really 3 ways to get to Las Vegas from East Coachella Valley. These 3 routes all take nearly the same amount of time to travel (within 20 minutes of each other).
>> To See the Routes to Las Vegas Click Here.
So what is the best route to Vegas?
Of the 3 Routes outlined on the map the fastest, most scenic and least stressful drive passes through Twentynine Palms via Highway 62. This route will lead from the Interstate 10 to past Joshua Tree National Park and through the Mojave National Preserve.
Once you reach the 62 (Twentynine Palms Highway) and start to make your way up the towards Joshua Tree you will make your way past Morongo Valley to Yucca Valley where there is the opportunity to visit a piece of Hollywood history at Pioneertown. This interesting stop may well be worth the extra 15- 20 minutes of drive time it adds to the trip for the opportunity to see a mock gun fight, grab a bite to eat or see the location where Annie Oakley (1957) was filmed. This little stop is the perfect break for small children to get out of the car and stretch. If you are not travelling with small children be sure to visit the world famous Pappy & Harriet’s. This rustic venue is a hub for the music scene and has hosted everyone from local bands to Sir Paul McCartney with live performances almost daily (plan to wait up to 2 hours to if you plan to eat here – it is very popular).
The next major stop along the 62 is Joshua Tree. A quaint small city located in the high desert is the gateway to Joshua Tree National Park. Famous for beautiful vistas a unique biodiversity and majestic hiking trails, this National Treasure is sure to delight the outdoorsy types and nature lovers alike!
Still following Highway 62 you will reach Twentynine Palms home of Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center. This base is closed to the public and serves as a barracks and training ground for US Marine Corps. This town has plenty of hotels if you plan to make a two-day road trip on your way to Vegas.
Don’t miss the Turn!
Approximately 5½ miles past Twentynine Palms you will need to make a left turn on Godwin Road. This turn could be easy to miss and is located just on the other side of the Twentynine Palms Airport. You will drive on Godwin Road for about 7 ½ miles until you turn right on Amboy Road. Amboy Road will then take you all the way up to National Trails Highway (HWY 66). Travel on this road until Kelbaker Road where you make a left turn to go north on this scenic road.
Mojave National Preserve
Kelbaker Road will lead you right into heart of the Mojave National Preserve where this scenic journey is really a driver’s delight. Take in the beautiful desert vistas and feel happy you are not fighting traffic on a major highway. While driving in the preserve you will need to make a right turn onto Kelso Cima Road. Kelso Cima Road will turn into Morning Star Mine Road. From Morning Star Mine Road turn left on Ivanpah Road then left on Nipton Road, which will take you to the Interstate 15 (I-15).
Once on the I-15, there is one more possible stop to consider. If you enjoy shopping, or a thrilling ride on a roller-coaster, then a stop in Primm might be right up your alley. Located right on the I-15 on the Nevada border this stop has one of the Country’s tallest roller coasters located at Buffalo Bill’s Casino. There is also a massive mall aptly named ‘Fashion Outlets of Las Vegas’. As a primer to Las Vegas proper, Primm is a fun and exciting stop near the end of a long drive. After a taste of indulgence in Primm, take the I-15 all the way to the Las Vegas strip.
Here I Come Vegas!
Your journey is complete and you have managed to avoid most the major highways, saved time, gas, took in some amazing desert landscapes and possibly had an adventure along the way! Now all that is left is to explore all that Vegas has to offer, by no means a small task! Good Luck and happy journeys and be sure to make your next trip to Vegas a great one!