Star Wars Filming Locales Pepper Death Valley
They’re Just a Short Drive From The Oasis at Death Valley
Whenever guests watch the first Star Wars movie at The Oasis at Death Valley it inevitably launches tales of when the movie’s director, George Lucas, came here in 1977 to transport people to another galaxy with the scenes he shot in the surrounding desert and mountain national park.
Indeed, Death Valley provided Lucas the perfect landscape of sand dunes and arid canyons for Star Wars: A New Hope. And over the years, past generations of resort employees have shared stories with newer generations of where the movie locations are. Fans can find these shooting spots throughout Death Valley National Park, at 3.3 million square acres, the largest national park in the contiguous United States. They include Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes, where R2-D2 and C-3PO found themselves lost amid the sand dunes of Tatooine; Artist’s Palette, near where a Sandcrawler station was set up featuring R2-D2; Dante’s View; Desolation Canyon; Artist’s Drive and Golden Canyon. They’re all just a 20- to 40-minute drive from the resort.
And lest you fear inhospitable weather akin to that of the desert planet Jakku, from Star Wars: The Force Awakens, the temperature is actually ideal in winter at Death Valley. January highs average 67 degrees; February, 73 degrees; and March, 82 degrees. Even spring and fall are delightful.
While Death Valley may seem like another universe to vacationers, those in the know have found an oasis-like world of its own at the luxurious AAA Four-Diamond historic Inn at Death Valley and the family-friendly Ranch at Death Valley.
After you pay homage to the unearthly movie locations, you can explore the real universe here, too. Death Valley is one of the only gold-tier designated International Dark Sky Parks in the United States where stargazers can actually see the Milky Way with the naked eye. From science fiction to real science, there’s no better place to examine other worlds than in this otherworldly park.