Yellowstone National Park is one of the largest national parks in America and is an excellent destination for travelling by road. From Los Angeles you will cross several states and encounter all kinds of tourist attractions along the way.

The journey from Los Angeles to Yellowstone National Park takes about 15 hours and 30 minutes non-stop. If you divide the trip into 2 or 3 days, you can visit Fire State Valley Park and Zion or enjoy the nightlife in Las Vegas and Salt Lake City.

With so many great places to explore, read below to find out more about your route and the best stops along the way.

How far is Yellowstone National Park of Los Angeles and how long does it take to get there?

The easiest route between Los Angeles and Yellowstone National Park is about 1,000 miles, which takes about 15 hours and 30 minutes without a break.

Route Distance Driving time
Route
(via I-15 N)
1,000 miles 15 hours 30 minutes
Alternative route
(via I-10 E and I-15 N)
1,340 miles 22 hours and 40 minutes

Even if you leave early and only stop to eat and refuel, you will still arrive quite late and have neither the time nor the energy to do anything until the next day.

It is best to make at least a few stops for the night and use these stops as viewpoints for sightseeing along the way. This road technically crosses six states, so there’s a lot to see on the road to Yellowstone.

Ideally, you should spend about 5 days a week on this route, which will not only greatly reduce your daily driving skills, but also give you the chance to really see the many fantastic places this route has to offer.

Best route from Los Angeles to Yellowstone National Park

The fastest and most stable tourist route from Los Angeles to Yellowstone National Park mainly follows Highway I-15 and passes through or near several major cities, which is ideal for short stops or overnight stays.

Directions from Los Angeles to Yellowstone National Park Route

Take the I-15 from Los Angeles, between the Angeles and San Bernardino National Forests, past Mojave National Park on your right and Death Valley on your left to Las Vegas. If you don’t want to explore, it’s a good idea to at least orient yourself here, as the route will be quite picturesque.

Continue on the Interstate Route, past Lake Mead and the National Monument of Parachuting Grand Canyon (a short jump in Arizona) before reaching St. George, Utah. From here you can drive past the beautiful Zion National Park and the Dixie and Fishlake National Forests to Salt Lake City and finally to Idaho.

From Pocatello, if you have time, you can take the I-86 and 84 west to Twin Falls to visit some of the sites. Or take the US-20 to Idaho Falls and you will see the vast Caribou-Targa forest on your right. Drive through Harriman State Park and turn right at Henry Lake State Park and follow the East-West Highway to West Yellowstone.

The winding I-15, which runs along the Virgin River with mountains on both sides and on which several cars drive.
Enjoy a ride on the I-15 along the Virgin River to Yellowstone National Park.

Huntington/Shutterstock.com

Best stops between Los Angeles and Yellowstone National Park

If you go along this road you will miss some beautiful places, so don’t forget to make a few night stops. As the major cities on this route are fairly well distributed, it shouldn’t be a problem to find good accommodation all the way to Yellowstone. Here are some of the best examples.

Enjoy Las Vegas Resort Venice

If you have explored the Mojave National Reserve or Death Valley and still have a few days left, it makes sense to spend a night in Las Vegas. There are plenty of great hotels to choose from, but one of them must be Venetian.

As a preliminary remark: The hotel may not be cheap, but the value for money is unbelievable: a stay in Las Vegas (with the exception of the presidential suites and others) is usually relatively affordable to attract visitors, because the big hotels make the most money on gambling and entertainment.

This beautiful Venetian resort is a marvel of architecture and design. The rooms are very spacious and comfortable, but that goes without saying – a few dozen restaurants on the hotel grounds give you the feeling that you are in a European (and very extravagant) resort, and you have access to Jacuzzis, outdoor pools, a spa, fitness classes and much more.

Enjoy a wonderful night on the Canal Grande in the Casino of the Venetian Hotel in Las Vegas with its Venetian baroque buildings surrounded by a river.
Relax as you watch the beauty of the Grand Canal at the Hotel Casino Venetian.

Diego Grandi/Shutterstock.com

A stay in Las Vegas wouldn’t be complete without a hotel-casino, and this is no exception, so let the bike do its thing if you’re lucky. If that’s not your theme, visit the Grand Canal Shoppes (with over 150 shops!) or take a gondola ride indoors or outdoors to explore Italian themes.

Finally, being on the Las Vegas Strip means being in the middle of the storm when it comes to local events and attractions. After a long day in the desert there is nothing better than staying in one of the best hotels in Las Vegas!

Comfortable holiday in Salt Lake City

Salt Lake City is definitely a great place to spend the night on the road to Yellowstone. With incredible monuments such as Temple Square and the Salt Lake Tabernacle, as well as the beautiful scenery of Red Ass Garden and Sugar House Park, you could easily spend a few days alone in this city.

Salt Lake City has many great places to stay, but thanks to its excellent service and convenient location, Grand Hotel America is probably the best place to buy money.

The spacious and comfortable rooms are full of character and offer stunning views of Salt Lake City and the distant mountains. There’s so much to do to relax after a long trip – relax in the pool or jacuzzi, work out at the gym, visit the incredible spa or enjoy a delicious meal at the Garden Café.

The hotel is located in the centre of Salt Lake City, so all the city centre attractions are within walking distance – if you need to get anywhere by car, the car park is right next door. It’s a pretty expensive trip, but it’s worth it if you can afford it.

A photo of Temple Square, the Salt Lake Temple, the office building of the LDS Church in downtown Salt Lake City, Utah, against a clear, bright sky.
The center of Salt Lake City with its beautiful attractions, including Temple Square.

Wangkun Jia/Shutterstock.com

Sightseeing on a trip from Los Angeles to Yellowstone National Park

Because it is a relatively long journey, you can expect a lot of beauty on the way from Los Angeles to Yellowstone. It’s impossible to list everything, so take a few days to at least see these highlights:

  1. Mojave National Park – This reserve includes the Marlberg Mountains, the ghost town of Kelso and the legendary Yeshua trees.
  2. Death Valley National Park – Death Valley is not only one of the warmest places in the world, but also has a dam basin and large mountain ranges.
  3. Red Rock Canyon National Park – is characterized by the formation of red cliffs and is visited by several million tourists and climbers every year.
  4. Las Vegas – Nevada’s largest city needs no introduction – its reputation as the entertainment capital of the world speaks volumes.
  5. Lake Mead National Recreation Area – The elusive combination of red rock and crystal blue lake water attracts millions of visitors to walk, swim and explore.
  6. State Park Fire Valley – The characteristic Aztec sandstones in the park give the impression of burning in the sun.
  7. Zion National Park – with its mountains, forests, rivers and the iconic Zion Canyon is one of the most beautiful and geologically diverse parks in America.
  8. Grand Staircase – National Monument Escalante – This monument is the last part of America ever mapped and is full of canyons, monoliths and fossils of prehistoric vertebrates.
  9. St. George’s – part of Salt Lake Forest – long series of forests giving some color to the second half of the route.
  10. Salt Lake City – The capital of the state of Utah is a vibrant metropolis with a rich art scene and beautiful natural and architectural aesthetics.
  11. The Twin Fallsare worth a visit, although it’s only a short detour, thanks to nearby attractions such as the Perrina Memorial Bridge and Showstone Falls.
  12. Crater of the Moon National Monument and Reserve – created by a long series of volcanic eruptions thousands of years ago, nowhere else in the United States is there such a place as here.
  13. Idaho Falls – A beautiful and unique city on the Snake River, known for its walking route and charming centre.
  14. Caribou-Targi National Forest – with beautiful green flowers and Kamaza as far as the eye can see, this forest should not be missed.

An aerial view of the upper waterfall in Yellowstone National Park.
The highest waterfall in Yellowstone National Park is definitely worth it from Los Angeles.

And_Ant/Shutterstock.com

Best driving time from Los Angeles to Yellowstone National Park

The special thing about this route from Los Angeles to Yellowstone is that, apart from the section between Los Angeles and the desert of Las Vegas, most of the route consists of beautiful natural areas and forests that look beautiful in every season. In this context, do not forget that some forest roads have to be closed in case of heavy snowfall.

There is not really a good time to visit Yellowstone National Park, but it is best to do so in late spring (April or May) or autumn (September or October) because there are not too many tourists and the weather is very suitable.

Of course, Yellowstone is ideal for summer visits, but it’s also the park’s high season – although it covers more than 2 million hectares, most of the 3-4 million visitors come every summer, and there’s no guarantee you can avoid the hustle and bustle.

In winter, it can be difficult to travel in Yellowstone, because most roads in the park will be closed (skyscrapers are already closed in October or November!). Access to the roads will be limited to the beginning to the middle of spring, but by June all roads will be in use.

If you don’t mind it being extremely cold or if you can’t ski or snowboard in the park, grab a pair of skis or a snowboard and visit the park like few other visitors. In addition, you can always stay in West Yellowstone and drive your snowmobile through the park.

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