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“After 30 years its just as good” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Indian Cove

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Indian Cove
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13 miles east of Joshua Tree Village, 10 miles west of Twentynine Palms, Joshua Tree National Park, CA 92277   |  
Hotel amenities
San Diego, California
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
“After 30 years its just as good”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 weeks ago

As nearly the only campground where you can reserve a spot Indian cove is key if you want to visit Joshua Tree Nat. Park and can't risk not landing the coveted Hidden Valley campsite.

I've been camping here on and off for 30+ years. Its familiar and unchanged... although when the park went from Nat. Monument to actual Nat. Park the additional funding did improve the bathrooms.

There is a HIGH rate of no shows... people pay for the reservation, but because the reservations are so cheap a lot never show or take more coveted sites that are first come first serve in Hidden Valley or Ryan. This actually is nice because you have a good chance your neighbor will not show up and you will have more peace and quiet.

Indian Cove is not in the core of the park... and you can not access the core from Indian Cove... you have to drive around. There is no water so bring your own and bring your own firewood.

Hard to beat Mother Nature - the place is beautiful.

This trip was my first with my kids (I've been camping/climbing here for 29 years!) and we had a great time. One plus of Indian cove is its proximity to Joshua Tree (the Town) ... it means you can go in for dinner which is nice when you have kids and its cold out... I'm all for camping and cooking out but its nice to have the option.

The down side is you can see the lights from Twenty Nine Palms at night so you don't feel as "out there" as you do from the interior.

Night Sky - folks, of the maybe 200 nights I've camped in Joshua Tree I've slept in a tent for maybe 4 of them... Sleep out and watch the stars... its the best show on Earth.

Room Tip: If traveling with kids resole there sneakers with climbing rubber (dot tread C-4 by Five10)... this...
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  • Stayed December 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
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21 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (3)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 weeks ago

The campsites at Indian Cove are beautiful. Each is nestled amongst the rocks, giving privacy and providing some shade. During the high seasons, the fact that you can reserve sites online gives peace of mind that you will have somewhere to stay. However, there is no directly car entrance to the park from Indian Cove, so you will find yourself driving back to the highway and through town to the West or North entrance. Because of this, I prefer trying to get a first come first serve site at one of the campgrounds inside the park. During the low seasons, finding a site inside is easy. But during the high seasons, it can be a struggle.

As for the facilities at Indian Cove, they are quite basic. Vault toilets, no running water. Can get especially smelly in the heat, another reason to look for a site further from the restrooms.

My favorite site is #39, it is furthest from the trash and restrooms, and only has a neighbor on one side, giving lots of privacy.

  • Stayed May 2014
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Clarkdale, Arizona
Top Contributor
78 reviews 78 reviews
32 hotel reviews
Reviews in 46 cities Reviews in 46 cities
116 helpful votes 116 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 17, 2014

Indian Cove is a wonderful campground! Easy access from Highway 62 and both Joshua Tree and Twentynine Palms (it's about in the middle of the two towns), it's a short drive to the amazing conglomeration of scenic Monzogranite boulders. Reservations online are easy and efficient. We were able to select our site online and this exact site was marked with our name when we arrived. Easy check-in with ranger at the entrance office. Campground felt very secure and supervised. The ranger patrolled a couple times a day.

Winter midweek Indian Cove was nearly empty. Besides us there were only two other sites occupied, neither anywhere nearby us--Which is good because maybe if it were crowded we'd have been too noisy for others and vice-versa. Sounds echo off all of the rock.

We spent two nights at Indian Cove, nestled into the boulders, serenaded by coyotes every evening. No Joshua Trees at this elevation, but abundant yucca and cholla. Rock climbers with ropes and harnesses were seen at several formations within Indian Cove during our stay.

No drinking water available except for a couple of miles away, back at the ranger station entrance. Outhouses tidy. Garbage dumpsters and recycling station available within campground. Fire pit and concrete table very thoughtfully placed near the rocky outcropping made our site very cozy and picturesque. Bring your own firewood (Illegal to burn any native fallen wood scraps. Firewood is not available at the ranger station, but may be purchased at various gas stations in town or Stater Bros. grocery story.)

Campground does not connect to the park directly. It's like it's own island. You have to head to Joshua Tree or Twentynine Palms to enter the park.

Great campground! We will be back. The National Park Service RULES!

Stayed December 2014, traveled as a couple
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Newport Beach, California
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 9, 2014

Reservations only for this campground. Great experience over Thanksgiving holiday 2014. Stayed in campsite 26 which butted up to great rock climbing and bouldering. Staff at ranger station were friendly and check in took only a minute. Campsite are close together. Sound travels far! Lots of campers are asleep by 7-8pm, but quiet time is 6am-10pm. Only 10 minutes to main highway and 15 minutes to town. Spotty cell service depending on location in campground. Lots of rock climbers. Cool spot, but no access to Joshua Tree National Park (except via Boy Scout Trail). Every spot has picnic table and fire pit (bring lots of wood).

  • Stayed November 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Summerville, South Carolina
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 7, 2014

Great views, beautifully maintained campsites. Climbing right from campsites. Lots of toilets and recycling bins. Easy to drive to with parking on campsites. Paved road most of the way with campsites just off the paved road on well marked sand roads. Small store at the bottom.

Stayed December 2014, traveled solo
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chatsworth, California, United States
Senior Contributor
48 reviews 48 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 2, 2014

This is a great campground for those loving the Joshua Tree nature. Many spots are at the base of beautiful boulders and is one of the reason why so many rock climbers are in and near the campground.

There are only vault toilets so depending on weather you may want to pick a spot a bit further away from the stations.

It is also worthwhile to take into account the sun when picking your spot as it could mean that you will have sun in the morning (nice in fall, winter and perhaps spring) or shade (nice in the summer). There are some spots which provide more vistas than others,

All in all, I recommend this campground for those into basic camping liking nature.

Stayed November 2014, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Klamath Falls, Oregon
Senior Contributor
44 reviews 44 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 12, 2014

The camp sites are spectacular and well maintained. The national park staff maintain and patrol the campground thoroughly so sites are clean and secure. We stayed in site #5 and the sites surrounding this section had wonderful views of the rock formations and the campfire backdrop was a large formation making an wonderful evening memory. I believe that many of the sites are equally as great, but that is the only part that I saw. If you are there to climb then you will appreciate the large number of high quality climbs within a short walk of your site and parking area. There are no showers and the toilet is simple. If you must have a shower the sites are close to a town 15 minutes away.

Stayed October 2014, traveled with friends
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Indian Cove

Address: 13 miles east of Joshua Tree Village, 10 miles west of Twentynine Palms, Joshua Tree National Park, CA 92277
Location: United States > California > Joshua Tree National Park
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 5 Specialty Lodging in Joshua Tree National Park
Number of rooms: 104
Also Known As:
Indian Cove Hotel Joshua Tree National Park

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