Just 120 miles northwest of Las Vegas, is the historic desert town of Beatty. This area of Nevada was once home to people of the Western Shoshone before miners came in search of gold. Everywhere you look in Beatty, is a reminder of the town’s rich mining history. Right on Nevada Highway 95, Beatty is a fascinating road trip stop or could even be planned as a day trip from Las Vegas. Even with a population of less than 1200 people, there are plenty of fun things to do in Beatty, Nevada.
Visit Death Valley National Park
One of the most popular things to do in Beatty, Nevada is visit Death Valley National Park. Only 7 miles away, Beatty is known “Gateway to Death Valley National Park”. Because it is so close, it’s the ideal for a day trip, if you are only passing through, but it’s also an affordable option for visitors looking to stay longer and avoid the higher priced hotels inside the park.
Even if you don’t have a lot of time to visit Death Valley, Beatty is close enough skim a few sites in the Furnace Creek area or even drive through Titus Canyon or visit Chloride City, if you have a high clearance vehicle. And if you don’t, there’s still plenty of things to do in Death Valley National Park without a 4×4.
Gamble at the Stagecoach Casino
Beatty may not be Vegas but If you came to Nevada to gamble, you can certainly do that at The Stagecoach Hotel + Casino. It’s not a huge casino but they do have poker and slots. The hotel is less than 20 miles from the entrance to Death Valley National Park and the desert drive there is beautiful. The Stagecoach is a good place to cool off after a long hot day in the park since they have a pool and two 24 hour restaurants. Plus you can walk to just about anywhere in town.
The Stagecoach Hotel + Casino
Beatty, NV 89003
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Buy Lots of Candy
Another one of the fun – and delicious -things to do in Beatty is to drool over, then buy – and promptly devour – all the candy from Nevada’s largest candy store, Death Valley Nut & Candy. Hands down this is one of my favorite Nevada road trip stops now.
Located in the same building that the Stagecoach Casino is in, they have pretty much any kind of candy your heart desires. You name it, they have it. Fudge, peanut brittle, chocolate covered nuts, jelly beans, lollipops, every flavor of gummy rings imaginable and so much more.
Just try to buy only one bag. I bet you won’t be able to.
Death Valley Nut + Candy
Beatty, NV 89003
Wander Through Rhyolite
A little over a hundred years ago, when people came to Nevada in search of gold, the town of Rhyolite had one of the most productive mines in the region. By 1907, Rhyolite was was a bustling, thriving mining town full of modern conveniences. In it’s heyday, there were banks, multiple grocery stores, a hospital. over 50 saloons, electricity and running water. The mines even produced enough product and and generated enough business for a stock exchange in town.
Sadly, in less than a decade, it was all over. The mines were depleted. As work dwindled, people had no choice but to look for work elsewhere.
Just 6 miles from Beatty, the Bureau of Land Management, now manages Rhyolite. Visitors to the site have the opportunity to walk through the streets of and see some of those left over buildings that still remain. There’s the beautiful train station, that brought thousands to the area, the jail, one of the banks and a small cemetery.
Don’t miss the one of a kind, Tom Kelly house, that’s built with 51k beer bottles.
328 Greenland Blvd
Death Valley, CA 92328
Southerner Says: in Rhyolite, stop to see the quirky art and sculptures at the Goldwell Open Air Museum.
Look For Donkeys
As the highest producer of gold, silver and barite in the US, there are approximately 200k mines in the state of Nevada. When the mines were active, workers relied heavily on burros to help them work the mines. Many of these burros, or donkeys, were left behind once the mines ran out and the miners moved on. The descendants of some of these burros still roam Nevada. It’s not unusual to see some of them in Beatty or even in Rhyolite if you are lucky.
Beatty’s warm desert climate is the perfect location for the burros to live all year long so they don’t wander far. If you happen to spot them and stop to take photos, be warned, they are very curious and friendly. In fact, they’ll come right up to the car.
Which means visitors are probably feeding them. Even though it’s tempting, that’s not the best thing to do since they are wild animals. From time to time the Bureau of Land Management steps and takes some of the burros to adoptions centers throughout the western states. So if you’ve ever wanted to own a wild donkey from Nevada, here’s your chance.
How to Get to Beatty, Nevada
Beatty, Nevada is 120 miles northwest of Las Vegas on Hwy 95 and just 7 miles from from Death Valley National Park. From the park, turn onto Hwy 374 at Beatty Junction and travel directly into Beatty.
Where to Eat in Beatty, Nevada
Happy Burro Chili & Beer serves a secret family chili recipe on a patio that was constructed out of one of the buildings moved over from Rhyolite. You can’t get more western than that.
100 Main St,
Beatty, NV 89003
Gema’s Cafe has Mexican inspired cuisine and is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Look for Gema’s taco truck outside on the weekends too
101 S 2nd St
Beatty, NV 89003
Next time you plan a road trip through The Silver State, make sure to include Beatty. There’s nothing better than experiencing a piece of Nevada’s old west.