A Travel Price Comparison for California Death Valley National Park vs. Los Angeles for Attractions, Food, Hiking, and Families

Should you visit Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles?

Which is cheaper to visit? Which is more expensive for vacation?

Which city is more affordable and which is best for your travel style? If you're trying to figure out where to go next, comparing the travel costs between Death Valley National Park and Los Angeles can help you decide which place is right for you.

Death Valley National Park

Death Valley National Park is a striking, vast, and dramatic national park. It's considered by many to be an absolutely beautiful destination, too. It's also popular because of the hiking.

Los Angeles

Los Angeles is a sprawling, energetic, and dynamic city. Visitors will also find so much to do here because it's a large city with many sights and attractions. Other popular activities here include theater, nightlife, and live music.

Death Valley National Park and Los Angeles: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Good for hiking
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Impressive beauty
Things to Consider
  • Less museums and historical sights
  • Less popular for food
  • Less popular for nightlife
  • Not as many resort options
  • Less popular for shopping
  • Public transit not as usable
  • Less walkable
Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Numerous theater shows
  • Popular for food and cuisine
  • Active nightlife
  • Good music scene
  • Nice resorts
  • Good scuba and snorkeling destination
  • Popular beach
  • Good for hiking
  • Fun shopping
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Good for students
  • Good public transit
  • Very walkable
  • Big city activities
  • Home to Hollywood


Is there more to do in Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles?

Travelers will usually find more to do in Los Angeles. Although Death Valley National Park and Los Angeles are popular destinations, Los Angeles has more sights and attractions for tourists. Los Angeles is very popular for its museums, theatre productions, food, nightlife, music, resorts, scuba diving & snorkeling, beaches, hiking, shopping, and big city activities, while Death Valley National Park attracts visitors for its impressive beauty. Los Angeles is more touristy than Death Valley National Park and is popular for is many A-list celebrities, its world-famous clubs and venues, its glamourous beaches, and being the location of the iconic Hollywood. It is also well known for Hollywood. Death Valley National Park is famous for being the hottest, driest, and lowest national park in the U.S.

How is Death Valley National Park different from Los Angeles?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between Los Angeles and Death Valley National Park. Then, you can decide for yourself which place is better for your next trip.

Are the Museums and Historical Sights Better in Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles?

Death Valley National Park
Los Angeles

Los Angeles is renowned for its sights and museums. However, Death Valley National Park is not a good national park for its museums and history.

You'll find many recognizable landmarks that put Los Angeles on the map. The city has an eclectic list of monuments and museums. Notable landmarks include the famous Hollywood sign, Griffith Observatory, the Getty Center, and the Petersen Automotive Museum.

While most people don't head to Death Valley National Park specifically for the museums and attractions, it does offer a few options. There are ghost towns and visitor centers with informational exhibits, but visitors spend most of their time exploring the outdoor environment.


Is Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles Better for Theater?

Death Valley National Park
Los Angeles

Los Angeles is a well-known place for its shows and theatre. However, Death Valley National Park is not a theatre destination.

Los Angeles has a number of performance venues where you can see a variety of shows. While most people think of Hollywood when they think of LA, the city also has a thriving stage presence. Musicals and plays are popular throughout the city.

Death Valley National Park is not a theatre destination.

Is the Food Better in Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles? Which Destination has the Best Restaurants?

Death Valley National Park
Los Angeles

Los Angeles is renowned for its local cuisine and restaurants. However, Death Valley National Park is not a good national park for its restaurants.

Los Angeles has long been recognized as a culinary destination with great restaurants. As a huge and diverse city, there is no shortage of amazing food options around town. There are a wide range of cuisines represented and many different neighborhoods that specialize in specific types of food. Popular dishes around town include Cobb Salads, Mexican Tacos, and the French Dip Sandwich.

Death Valley National Park offers some easy restaurants to choose from. There are restaurants at Furnace Creek, Stovepipe Wells, and Panamint Springs, but most visitors prefer to bring their own food so that they can enjoy picnicking in a beautiful setting.

Is Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles Better for Nightlife?

Death Valley National Park
Los Angeles

Los Angeles is renowned for its evening party scene. However, Death Valley National Park is not a good national park for nightlife.

Los Angeles is a destination that you simply have to visit at least once for nightlife. The city's nightlife scene is as diverse as the city itself. There are glamorous clubs where you might spot a celebrity, as well as local dives with a more down-to-earth vibe. Some of the most famous clubs in the city include Academy, Avalon, and Boardner's.

Death Valley National Park doesn't offer many options. Beyond stargazing and relaxing around a campfire, there is no real nightlife in the area.


Is Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles Better for Music?

Death Valley National Park
Los Angeles

Los Angeles is renowned for its music scene. However, Death Valley National Park is not a live music destination.

In Los Angeles you'll find nightly musicians performing at a variety of venues. Music, movies, and show business - it's all part of what Los Angeles is known for. Several famous music venues include The Greek Theatre, Whiskey a Go Go, and The Roxy Theatre.

Death Valley National Park is not a live music destination.

Is Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles Better for Resorts?

Death Valley National Park
Los Angeles

Los Angeles is a well-known place for its resorts. However, Death Valley National Park is not a good national park for its luxury resorts.

Vacationers can choose from a number of terrific resorts in Los Angeles. The city is home to a number of high end resorts including The Beverly Hill Hotel, The Langham Huntington Pasadena, and The Ritz-Carlton.

Death Valley National Park has a few resort options worth checking out. There are historical inns and lodges in and around the park. The privately owned Inn at Death Valley is a popular option in Furnace Creek. If you stay outside the park, you can expect long drives to get most places.

Is Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles Better for Scuba Diving and Snorkeling?

Death Valley National Park
Los Angeles

Los Angeles is very good for snorkeling and scuba diving. However, Death Valley National Park is not a scuba or snorkeling destination.

It's worth going snorkeling or scuba diving in Los Angeles. The coastal setting means that there are a number of places where you can put on a mask and hop in the water. Popular snorkeling or diving spots near the city include Santa Catalina Island, Diver's Cove, and Crystal Cove State Park. Many visitors find the water to be a bit chili, but the wildlife is unique and beautiful.

Death Valley National Park is not a scuba or snorkeling destination.


Is Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles Better for Beaches?

Death Valley National Park
Los Angeles

Los Angeles is renowned for the beach. However, Death Valley National Park is not a beach destination.

With world-famous beaches, Los Angeles is a very popular vacation destination. Ranging from beaches with stunning natural beauty to those with glamourous and fun atmospheres, this city has a number of beaches to choose from. There are many fun and high-energy urban beach settings, and there are also beaches that are lined with parks and offer a more natural environment. Some of the most popular are Santa Monica, Malibu, Huntington Beach, and Redondo Beach.

Death Valley National Park is not a beach destination.

Is Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles Better for Hiking?

Death Valley National Park
Los Angeles

Los Angeles is renowned for the nearby hiking options. Also, Death Valley National Park is not as famous, but is still a good national park to visit for its hiking trails.

Many people visit Los Angeles specifically for its hiking. In and around the city you'll find world class urban hiking with views of the mountains and the ocean. Some of the most well-known hikes include the Charlie Turner Trail to Mount Hollywood, Runyon Canyon, and the Sara Wan Trailhead at Corral Canyon.

Many visitors explore the nearby hiking trails while visiting Death Valley National Park. Hikes will take you past desert landscapes, through canyons, and along sand dunes. The views are spectacular and the setting is other-worldly. Hiking is best between the months of November and March, as temperatures can be high other times of the year, particularly during the summer months.

Is the Shopping Better in Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles?

Death Valley National Park
Los Angeles

Los Angeles is renowned for its shopping areas. However, Death Valley National Park is not a good national park for shopping.

Los Angeles is a world class destination for shoppers. Although it's most famous for the high end shopping at Rodeo Drive, there are actually many different shopping venues throughout the city. Other famous shopping areas include Robertson Blvd and the Grove.

Shopping in Death Valley National Park can be found for those interested. There are a couple of general stores where you can pick up items that you may need.


Is Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles Better for Families?

Death Valley National Park
Los Angeles

Los Angeles is renowned for its family-friendly activities. Also, Death Valley National Park is not as famous, but is still a good national park to visit for its kid-friendly activities.

Los Angeles is one of the most popular family destinations. With its many amusement parks, including nearby Disneyland, and its countless family-friendly parks and playgrounds, there is no shortage of things to do with kids around the city. Favorite activities include the amusement parks, exploring Venice Beach, a trip to the California Science Center, and taking a Warner Brothers Studio Tour.

Death Valley National Park is a very family-friendly destination. Kids will love hiking and exploring the vast desert. There are also ghost towns and abandoned mines that will fascinate kids and adults alike. Junior programs, operated by the National Park Service, also offer interesting and educational programming for kids.

Is Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles Better for Couples?

Death Valley National Park
Los Angeles

Los Angeles is renowned for couples. Also, Death Valley National Park is not as famous, but is still a good national park to visit for romance.

For those traveling as a couple, Los Angeles has plenty to offer. It is a large, sprawling city with tucked away romantic scenes that are perfect for a couple's getaway or a dream honeymoon. There are also trendy nightclubs, world-class restaurants, and high-energy beaches that make for iconic date activities.

Death Valley National Park makes for a fun place to visit for a couple. The stunning desert landscape will take your breathe away, particularly during sunrise and sunset, when the colors are dramatic and striking. In the evening, the sky fills with stars and couples can enjoy a bit of stargazing.

Is Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Death Valley National Park
Los Angeles

Death Valley National Park is renowned for backpackers and budget travelers. Also, Los Angeles is not quite as popular, but is fairly good for backpackers.

A large number of backpackers visit Death Valley National Park, as it is a very popular national park for budget travelers. Backpackers will enjoy hiking and camping in a unique desert environment. There are several campgrounds in the area that range from primitive to developed.

Backpackers come from all over to visit Los Angeles. The city is a major travel destination for all types, and backpackers will find no shortage of hostels or budget friendly accommodation around town.


Is Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles Better for Students?

Death Valley National Park
Los Angeles

Los Angeles is renowned for students. However, Death Valley National Park is not popular with students.

Students come from all over the world to visit Los Angeles. International students have long flocked to this for its major universities and diverse setting. Major universities in the area include UCLA, the University of Southern California, and the California Institute of Technology.

Death Valley National Park is not popular with students.

Is Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles Better for Public Transit? Which Is Easier to Get Around Without a Car?

Death Valley National Park
Los Angeles

Los Angeles is very good for its public transit. However, Death Valley National Park is not a good national park for times when you don't have a car.

Los Angeles has a few public transit options. Many of the public transit options are overlooked by visitors for a number of reasons, but options include the subway, light rail, and buses.

Public transit is quite limited in Death Valley National Park. There is no public transportation within the park.

Is Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles a more walkable city?

Death Valley National Park
Los Angeles

Los Angeles is very good for its ease of walking around. However, Death Valley National Park is not a good national park for its walkability.

Los Angeles is a somewhat walkable city. The city is sprawling, but some of the neighborhoods are more walkable than others. Some of the more walkable neighborhoods include Hollywood, Koreatown, Downtown, and MacArthur Park.

Death Valley National Park is not a very walkable national park. This is a huge national park that requires a car to get around.


For even more information, also check out Is Death Valley National Park Worth Visiting? and Is Los Angeles Worth Visiting?.

Should I spend more time in Los Angeles or Death Valley National Park?

How long in Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles?

Both Death Valley National Park and Los Angeles have a number of activities to choose from. With generally more activities and things to do, visitors tend to spend more time in Los Angeles than in Death Valley National Park. Usually, 2-4 days is a good amount of time for Death Valley National Park, and 5-7 days is enough time in Los Angeles.

Families should spend more time in Los Angeles than Death Valley National Park. Because of the many family-friendly attractions and fun things to do for kids in Los Angeles, it's a great place to visit with the whole family.

Couples should spend more time in Los Angeles than Death Valley National Park. You'll find plenty of romantic sights and fun activities in Los Angeles that are perfect for a weekend getaway or a longer couple's trip.

Backpackers and budget travelers should spend more time in Los Angeles than Death Valley National Park if your budget allows for it. With a larger number of budget-friendly sights, good nightlife, and active things to do, anyone traveling on a budget would have a good time in Los Angeles.


  • How many days in Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles? Ideal Length of Stay
    Death Valley National Park 2-4 
    Los Angeles 5-7

One day in Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles?

Visitors enjoy the when visiting the striking national park of Death Valley National Park. Hikers are also drawn to this area. One day is usually not enough time for a trip here as there is plenty to do. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything.

Each neighborhood in Los Angeles has its own distinct appeal, so there are pleny of areas to explore. Take your pick from the many activities offered here. Hikers are also drawn to this area. But since there are so many activities, you'll likely want to spend more than one day exploring.

A weekend in Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles?

Visitors enjoy the when visiting the striking destination of Death Valley National Park. Many visitors also spend a good bit of time hiking. This national park offers something for everyone. Plenty of people spend a weekend in the area when traveling. If you enjoy all that's offered here, then a weekend is just the right amount of time to spend here.

Each neighborhood in Los Angeles has its own distinct appeal, so there are pleny of areas to explore. It's also a relaxing resort destination. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything. With so much to do, a weekend is probably not enough time to see everything.

Five days in Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles?

The striking national park of Death Valley National Park offers . Make sure you spend some time hiking while you're in the area. Five days may feel like too much time unless you plan to do a lot of relaxing. The length of your trip often depends on your style of travel.

Each neighborhood in Los Angeles has its own distinct appeal, so there are pleny of areas to explore. Make sure you spend some time hiking while you're in the area. This is a popular place to visit for five days.Five days is often enough time to do most activities. This city offers something for everyone.


A week in Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles?

Many people enjoy the when visiting Death Valley National Park. Anyone can find something fun to do here. Many travelers plan to spend time hiking while in the area. Most people find that one week is more than enough time to see everything.

Each neighborhood in Los Angeles has its own distinct appeal, so there are pleny of areas to explore. The length of your trip often depends on your style of travel. If you have one week, this city makes for a great vacation. Many travelers plan to spend time hiking while in the area. Because of this, one week is usually enough time for a trip here.


For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best Bicycle Tours in United States of America, Tours for Outdoor and Nature Lovers in United States of America, The Best Coach Bus Tours in United States of America, and The Best Adventure Tours to United States of America.


Which place is cheaper, Los Angeles or Death Valley National Park?

These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.

The average daily cost (per person) in Death Valley National Park is $87, while the average daily cost in Los Angeles is $258. These costs include accommodation (assuming double occupancy, so the traveler is sharing the room), food, transportation, and entertainment. While every person is different, these costs are an average of past travelers in each destination. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Death Valley National Park and Los Angeles in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Death Valley National Park $37
    Los Angeles $140
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Death Valley National Park $74
    Los Angeles $280
Compare Hotels in Death Valley National Park and Los Angeles

Looking for a hotel in Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.

Hotels in Death Valley National Park


Hotels in Los Angeles


Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.


Our Analysis
We've analyzed the average and typical hotel prices based on guest reviews, star ratings, and hotel amenities here: Los Angeles Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Death Valley National Park $41
    Los Angeles $42

Typical Local Transportation Prices in Los Angeles

Here are some examples of typical transportation prices from actual travelers in Los Angeles:


  • Hotel Parking for a Day
    $22
  • Taxi to Airport
    $55

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Los Angeles

Also for Los Angeles, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Private Transfer: Los Angeles Airport (LAX) to LA City Center: $26
  • One Way Transfer: Los Angeles from /to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) : $29
  • Hollywood Private Transfer to/from Universal Studios or Burbank.: $39
  • Private Departure Transfer to Los Angeles Airport LAX: $39
  • Private Arrival Transfer from Burbank Airport (BUR): $40
  • Private Departure Transfer to Burbank Airport (BUR): $40
  • World Cruise Center to Long Beach Airport (LGB) - Departure Private Transfer: $60
  • Private Transfer from Los Angeles City Center to LA Airport (LAX): $62
  • Los Angeles Airport (LAX) to Cruise Terminal/Arrival Transfer : $63
  • Cruise Terminal to Los Angeles Airport (LAX) - Departure Private Transfer: $63
  • Private transfer from Los Angeles airport LAX to Anheim: $67
  • Private transfer from Anaheim to Los Angeles airport LAX: $67

Is it cheaper to fly into Death Valley National Park or Los Angeles?

Prices for flights to both Los Angeles and Death Valley National Park change regularly based on dates and travel demand. We suggest you find the best prices for your next trip on Kayak, because you can compare the cost of flights across multiple airlines for your prefered dates.





Food
  • Food Meals for one day
    Death Valley National Park $20
    Los Angeles $60

Typical Food Prices in Los Angeles

For Los Angeles, here are some examples of average food and meal prices for travelers:


  • Mexican Dinner (family of 4)
    $32
  • Burritos for Two
    $15
  • Coffee and Danish
    $7.70

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Los Angeles

For Los Angeles, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:

  • Venice Beach Food Tour with Tastings: $75
  • Santa Monica Delicious Donut Adventure & Walking Food Tour: $82
  • 3-Hour Secret Food Tour: $87
  • Venice Beach LA Food Tour: $89
  • Downtown Los Angeles Food Tour: $89
  • West Hollywood Food Tour: $89
  • Downtown Food Tour: $89
  • Venice Beach Food Tour: $89
  • LA Venice Beach Walking Food Tour With Secret Food Tours: $99
  • Night Cruise in Marina del Rey with Dinner: $124
  • Vegan African Dinner Party in Playa Del Ray: $132
  • Marina del Rey: Mother's Day Brunch or Dinner Harbor Cruise: $134

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Death Valley National Park $36
    Los Angeles $82

Tours and Activities in Death Valley National Park

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Death Valley National Park are as follows:

  • Death Valley Self Guided Audio Driving Tour: $15

Typical Entertainment Prices in Los Angeles

Below are a few sample prices from actual travelers for Los Angeles's activities, tours, and tickets:


  • Santa Monica Pier Rides (family of 4)
    $37
  • Bowling
    $13
  • Hollywood Tour for Two
    $30
  • Six Flags for 2
    $96

Tours and Activities in Los Angeles

For Los Angeles, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:

  • Los Ángeles self-guided tour App - multilingual AudioGuide: $4.26
  • Gambling Built the Sunset Strip: A Self-Guided Audio Tour: $4.99
  • Hollywood Secrets: In App Audio Tour at the Famous District: $5.00
  • Chinatown Self-Guided Audio Tour (ENG): $5.40
  • The Heart of Los Angeles’ Dreamland: A Self-Guide Tour in Culver City: $5.99
  • LA: Broad Museum & Downtown Walk In-App Audio Tour: $7.00
  • Pacific Coast Hwy (LA Santa Maria): Smartphone Audio Tour: $7.25
  • Lost Souls of Hollywood Smartphone Ghost Tour: $7.25
  • LA Little Tokyo to Olvera St Smartphone (App/GPS) Walking Tour: $7.50
  • Beverly Hills Walking In-App Audio Tour: $9.00
  • Getty Center In-App Audio Tour (ENG, ES): $9.00
  • Unique Scavenger Hunt Experience in Pasadena by Wacky Walks: $10

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Death Valley National Park $8.57
    Los Angeles $15

Sample the Local Flavors in Los Angeles

Here are a few nightlife and alcohol tours and activities from local tour providers in Los Angeles:

  • LA Ghosts Boos and Booze Haunted Pub Crawl: $40
  • Salsa Lesson, Burlesque and Mojitos : $149
  • Salsa Lesson and Burlesque Show: $149
  • Malibu: Vintage VW Sightseeing Tour and Wine Tasting: $195


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Death Valley National Park and Los Angeles, we can see that Los Angeles is more expensive. And not only is Death Valley National Park much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Death Valley National Park would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Death Valley National Park and be able to afford a more luxurious travel style by staying in nicer hotels, eating at more expensive restaurants, taking tours, and experiencing more activities. The same level of travel in Los Angeles would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Los Angeles than you might in Death Valley National Park.

If you're trying to decide if either of these two destinations are within your price range, also see Is Death Valley National Park Expensive? and Is Los Angeles Expensive?.