When you buy through our links, Insider may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more.
- A desert offers a dreamy backdrop for a secluded getaway amid nature, hiking, and stargazing.
- Airbnb lists many unique homes in remote deserts and towns in Arizona, Nevada, and other states.
- From Joshua Tree to Sedona, we rounded up the best Enhanced Clean Airbnbs near deserts under $600.
Think of the last time you looked up and saw a pitch-black sky speckled with stars. If a recent evening doesn’t come to mind, you’re due for a stay in a remote desert where stargazing and solitude are a nightly spectacle.
Desert landscapes also offer unrivaled hikes, historical landmarks, artisanal shops, and a crop of cool Airbnbs to add to your must-visit list.
I’ve driven across the country (twice), watching the trees become cacti and grassy terrain turn to sand, making stops in towns like Marfa, Texas; Palm Springs, California; Las Vegas, Nevada; and Sedona, Arizona, where I even stayed at an Airbnb on this list.
Though fall through spring is the best time to visit the desert, you can find cheaper prices during the summer if you’re willing to face the hot temperatures.
Browse all the best Airbnb homes in the desert below, or jump directly to a specific area here:
- New Mexico
- FAQ: Staying in the desert
- More remote places to stay on Airbnb
These are the best Airbnbs in desert towns, sorted by state and price.
Colorful oasis in Palm Springs
While Coachella is not until next year, you can still enjoy a trip to Palm Springs, which is about a two-hour drive from Los Angeles.
Within the Colorado Desert, this colorful abode is located close to the main downtown area and is a vibrant, plant-filled oasis. Pop art and vintage books pay homage to celebrities who owned homes in Palm Springs, like Marilyn Monroe and Dean Martin.
Bright orange and teal colors cover the walls underneath vaulted ceilings, alongside an open-concept kitchen with funky, colorful appliances. The bedroom includes a Queen-size, memory foam bed, couch, TV, as well as a workspace.
A spacious bathroom with a walk-in shower leads to the backyard with a heated, private pool and hot tub bordered by mod lounge furniture, a grill, bikes, and mountain views framed by cacti.
Artist’s loft in Joshua Tree
Joshua Tree National Park, named for the spiny, palm-like botanical tree that grows here, is where two deserts converge: the Mojave Desert and the Colorado Desert. With no light pollution, you’ll be able to spend evenings admiring the stars and days hiking 100-plus miles of trails — just beware of extreme heat warnings and pack more water than you think you’ll need.
This art-infused loft is a creator’s dream haven and is located just north of a few eclectic restaurants and the national park’s entrance on Park Boulevard. The remote home boasts floor-to-ceiling windows to soak up desert views, as well as a fully equipped kitchen, two bedrooms with Queen-size beds, two bathrooms, and open-concept studio space.
Work on large projects that can be spread across a work table on casters, surrounded by six bar stools. Art supplies are stored in a desk that spans 22 feet, and a vintage Dutch typewriter awaits poetic inspiration. A chalkboard wall also makes sharing ideas easy, while music from a record player provides the score for artistic sessions.
When you’re not working, dangle from a transparent hanging bubble chair or peruse provided books about art, design, travel, and photography. In the backyard, find a hot tub, fire pit, lounge area, bocce ball court, and a custom cabana inspired by a 2006 Burning Man bamboo sculpture.
Off-the-grid house in Pioneertown
Unlike lively Palm Springs or hiker-laden Joshua Tree, Pioneertown offers total remoteness. Out of sight in the California high desert, this sequestered refuge is a 10-minute drive from local favorites like Pappy & Harriet’s, a quirky bar, restaurant, and music venue that’s hosted musicians like Paul McCartney to Diplo.
There are no TVs in this industrial home, only satellite Wi-Fi for emergency communication. Guests are meant to instead soak in views of the desert with floor-to-ceiling windows in almost every room. Not only is the architecture stunning, but the property is eco-conscious, powering energy and hot water entirely using solar panels.
The modern and minimalist design also includes a petite kitchen island next to an expansive dining table and a living room with a hanging fireplace that serves as a focal point. A shaded outdoor patio is set between this part of the home and two bedrooms, one with a King-size and one with a Queen-size Casper mattress, where you can enjoy panoramic views from bed.
Desert home near Death Valley National Park
Set on 80 acres of land north of Las Vegas, this home is seemingly in the middle of nowhere, with the closest landmark being Death Valley National Park, 20 miles away. Designed by lauded architect Peter Strzebniok, the home was featured in The New York Times for its remoteness.
The 1,200-square-foot marvel appears to be floating thanks to a concrete plinth that elevates the structure. There are two bathrooms and three bedrooms; the master has a Queen-size bed below a skylight for nighttime stargazing. In the office, a writer’s desk is set flush against floor-to-ceiling windows with desert views.
The all-white kitchen, with pops of red from light pendants, is an open concept that flows to the dining and living rooms with a coffered ceiling. Glass doors slide open to a 900-square-foot deck with a sunken hot tub.
‘Desert rose’ house in Las Vegas
A 10-minute drive from the Las Vegas Strip, this hacienda-style home in a residential neighborhood is nicknamed the “Desert Rose.”
Stay in one of the master bedrooms and you’ll step out of a four-poster, King-size bed and onto cool ceramic floor tiles that lead to an en suite with two vanities, two shower heads, and a therapeutic copper bathtub.
In the living room, a zebra rug and western throw pillows support a southwestern aesthetic, and the gourmet kitchen includes an expansive bar and two slot machines as a reminder of the home’s close proximity to casinos.
Outside, the large private backyard is an oasis with a garden veranda with barbecue grills and a picnic table. There is also a spa and pool with a water slide, chaise lounges by a Kiva fireplace, fire pits, and various seating arrangements. Finally, a tepee large enough to cover two rustic couches is an unexpected touch that makes this home stand out.
Desert townhome in Southwestern Moab
This townhome is a 15-minute drive from Arches National Park with its gorgeous natural sandstone arches, and a 10-minute drive from downtown Moab with restaurants, shops, and galleries.
The color scheme incorporates orange and beige shades inspired by the surrounding desert, as well as a green velvet couch complemented by a spiral Peruvian cactus. In the dining room, a rattan light fixture hangs above a sustainably sourced mango wood table, and a fully stocked kitchen has stools for additional seating. In the master, a Pendleton Escalante duvet is spread across a King-size bed under a clay and cholla cactus wall hanging. There’s also a bunk room with four twin beds.
The front patio features a striped beach chair surrounded by desert plants, and on the back patio, a grill, accent chairs, and a hammock are set in front of expansive views.
Cowboy bunkhouse in Scottsdale
Scottsdale, nicknamed “The West’s Most Western Town,” is east of Phoenix, in the Sonoran Desert. While the area is known for upscale shops and dining, you’ll also find Frontier Town, which celebrates the city’s history with old-fashioned saloons, museums, and even gun show reenactments, which could have inspired the theme of this Airbnb dubbed the “Cowboy Bunkhouse.”
The kitschy-cool, pueblo-style home takes design cues from the city’s heritage with wood-beamed ceilings and rustic, vintage furnishings. Decor includes cowboy hats and painted hanging bull horns, a painting of a cow, and barrel chairs with lattice woven bases.
In the master, buzzard statues perch atop a tree-branch headboard and in the guest bedroom, two bunk beds are stacked below cowboy dangling boots.
Outside, mariachi wire sculptures are set near a round dining table by a Kiva fireplace and a metal swing hanging from two trees.
Yucca Room at JTH Tucson
The Yucca Room is a lower-level unit in the JTH Tucson, a five-suite inn on the outskirts of Saguaro National Park, near Tucson. The compound is set on 40 acres of the Sonoran Desert, peppered with cacti and native plants.
The one-bedroom accommodations include a King-size bed below an exposed-beam ceiling and Tulum-inspired rattan light fixtures. Two rustic leather barrel chairs face a mustard-colored Kiva fireplace to create a comfy seating area, and on a private, shaded patio, twin chaise lounges and chairs also invite relaxation. There is also a bathroom, kitchenette, and a light breakfast of tea, coffee, granola, and fruit, served daily.
To take full advantage of the property’s remoteness, be sure to stock up on groceries before arriving. Other common areas include a swimming pool surrounded by rock formations, a rooftop lounge, a yoga room, a fire pit, and a living room with a projector for movie nights.
Mountain-top getaway in Sedona
Located in Arizona’s high desert, Sedona is surrounded by red rock mountains said to be where healing energies are palpable. I can’t attest to whether that’s true, but I can personally vouch for this property.
I stayed here during a recent trip to Sedona, a small town where psychics and crystal shops line the streets. Inside, a desk is set up in the foyer between two bedrooms, one with a fireplace and King-size bed, and another with two Queen-size beds. A shared bathroom is tucked behind a staircase that leads to the open-concept kitchen with mint green cabinets stocked with organic tea, coffee, and oatmeal.
You’ll spot Buddha statues and quotes sprinkled throughout the house, a callback to the destination’s alleged spirituality, and an additional room that includes a pull-out couch for more guests. A full bathroom is attached to the living room, where a dark gray sectional and ottoman face a media console displaying guide books and board games.
Best of all is the wraparound balcony with unobstructed views of red rock formations that turn bright orange as the sun sets. There are plenty of seats, including a dining table, plastic chairs, and a daybed, and the porch wraps around to more seating. At the back of the house, a gate leads to the National Forest that connects to Airport Mesa Trail, one of the 100-plus hikes to check out during your stay.
Resort-like adobe in Grand Junction
See the Colorado National Monument, Colorado Grand Mesa, and The Book Cliffs formation all from this adobe-style home. The southeast patio has rocking chairs for reclining while taking in views, while an expansive patio with a pizza oven, grill, and fireplace is optimal for watching the sunset.
A well-lit master suite is outfitted with a King-size bed, sling-style leather seat, a hide rug, and ensuite bath with a tub and walk-in shower. Bed configurations include a Queen-size bed, a twin and double bunk, and a Murphy double bed in the office.
There is also a full kitchen with a coffee station and margarita machine, a dining room, and a living room framed by bookshelves showcasing eclectic art and maracas.
Casita de cacti in Albuquerque
New Mexico’s largest city in the high desert state is home to this townhouse, nicknamed “Casita de Cacti,” filled with cacti and other desert plants. Red clay concrete floors, a gray stone fireplace, and natural woods are also incorporated to mimic the local landscape.
On the lower level of this two-bedroom, two-bathroom property an all-white, full kitchen opens up to the living room, which includes a contemporary couch upholstered in an orange-red velvet that faces accent chairs, a round pouf, and a transparent coffee table. The dining room flows nicely to the patio, where guests can relax on two circular lounge chairs.
The master bedroom has a Queen-size bed, ensuite bathroom, and a balcony that overlooks the backyard with a colorful mural.
Secluded home near Santa Fe
Ojo Caliente is north of Santa Fe and is a natural spa destination, known for its concentration of hot springs. Between wellness experiences, retreat to this home with a King-size, four-poster bed that looks out into the living room with a wood-burning fireplace.
A four-person dining table is set behind the couch, and the marble-topped kitchen comes equipped with stainless steel appliances.
The bathroom includes a walk-in marble shower and plush Frette linens, and the covered backyard patio features a gas grill and chairs facing the mountains.
Modern house in Taos
Home to a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, Taos preserves a pueblo with the only living Native American community in the U.S. The high desert area on the outskirts of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains experiences scorching hot summers and snowy winters, making it a ski destination.
Whether you prefer the heat or cold, this off-the-grid luxury home is far enough away to feel totally secluded yet close to haunts like the Taos Mesa Brewery Mothership that’s just two miles away.
The 1,250-square-foot home has two bedrooms with King-size beds, two bathrooms, and a Queen-size sofa bed to comfortably accommodate up to six. In the living room, a brown leather couch and Papasan chair are arranged around royal blue ottomans in a modern, industrial setting. The kitchen includes a hand-polished concrete island and expands to the dining room table, which was custom-built to also function as a ping pong table.
The home runs on rainwater and solar power, which is possible because Taos experiences 283 sunny days on average per year.
Corte del Norte in Marfa
The western Texas city of Marfa is an unexpected art hub. It draws travelers to pose in front of Prada Marfa, an art installation by artists Elmgreen and Dragset that depicts a life-size designer store replica in the middle of the Chihuahuan Desert.
Part of a three-home compound called Corte del Norte, “The Love House” accommodates up to six guests in an eclectic setting. Find Big Bend Coffee Roasters coffee in the kitchen’s vintage cabinets, and in the dining room, rustic blue walls complement an expansive wooden table. A TV room is complete with a large couch, cowhide rug, and marble coffee table.
One bathroom stocked with Marfa brand soap is shared by two bedrooms with Queen-size beds and one daybed. The accommodations are quirky with accents by local artists, including a Woody Farris painting and a striped armchair by Constance Holt Garza.
Luxury yurt in Terlingua
You’ll find this luxury yurt near the entrance to Big Bend National Park in southwest Texas, which is part of the Chihuahuan Desert. Encompassing 573 square feet, this circular, permanent structure is sealed to protect from extreme winds or rain, and provides both electricity and running water during your stay.
The home boasts a King-size bed, a designer lounge chair and pouf, as well as a wood-burning fireplace and telescope. There’s also room for a dining table with four chairs, and a full bathroom with a walk-in shower.
Outside, plush Stori Modern furniture is set up on the deck for unobstructed, 360-degree views of the desert and mountains. Beyond is an outdoor campfire ring with two rocking chairs.
FAQ: Staying in the desert
When is the best time to visit a desert?
Plan a trip to the desert during the fall through spring in order to avoid extreme heat warnings. In summer, temperatures skyrocket well over 100 degrees Fahrenheit. In winter, temperatures can still dip low enough to spot snow on the mountains, too. No matter the time of year, evenings can feel brisk after the sun sets, so be sure to pack a jacket.
How much does it cost to stay in the desert?
Prices for Airbnb rentals in the desert will vary based on the location, the number of guests, and the time of year you plan to visit. During the off season in the summer, rentals can run cheaper than the more desirable months to visit in fall through spring.
What is the best desert town to visit?
When deciding which North American desert — Great Basin, Mohave, Chihuahuan, and Sonoran — to visit, choose to stay in a town that caters to your agenda: Joshua Tree, California, is an ideal hiking destination for the active traveler; Sedona, Arizona, is a retreat for the wellness-minded; Marfa, Texas, is perfect for the art enthusiast; and Taos, New Mexico, is attractive to those who want to go totally off-the-grid or ski.
Why vacation in the desert?
Deserts offer stunning scenery and secluded stays, but there’s also plenty to do beyond relaxing and disconnecting. When visiting a US desert, you can visit hiking trails, holistic spas, historic landmarks, art colonies, quaint downtowns, artisan shops, and so much more. Plus, you can enjoy stargazing at night without any light pollution in the sky.
Is Airbnb safe?
The CDC says fully vaccinated people can safely travel in the US.
Additionally, medical experts say that private Airbnbs are safe, perhaps even more so than hotels because they minimize interactions with other people. Plus, Airbnb hosts are required to follow enhanced cleaning procedures.
What should you look for in an Airbnb?
When choosing an Airbnb, similar to the criteria we set above, look for a listing by a Superhost with a high rating and positive reviews, participation in the Enhanced Clean program and the amenities you may need during your stay, like access to Wi-Fi, a washer and dryer, parking, a full kitchen, and more.
When specifically looking for desert Airbnbs, think about booking close to a grocery store, or plan on stocking up on food and water prior to your arrival in order to enjoy the remoteness of the property. Also, be sure to ask your host about whether the property has air conditioning and how strong the cell service is before booking.
What is Airbnb‘s cancellation policy?
Each Airbnb property has a cancellation policy that’s been implemented by the individual host, causing stipulations to differ from home to home. To learn more about Airbnb’s cancellation policies, click here.
More remote places to stay on Airbnb