Petrified Forest National Park

Home of the Painted Desert

Location/Maps - Description - Things To Do - Camping Lodging - Nearby

 Petrified Forest National Park sign

Petrified Forest National Park in northeastern Arizona features one of the world's largest and most colorful concentrations of petrified wood. Also included in the Park's 93,533 acres are the multi-hued badlands of the Painted Desert, archeological sites and displays of 225 million-year-old fossils.

Panted Desert

General Information

Rates & Fees

Entrance Fee: $10 per private vehicle and $5 for walk-ins and bicyclists.

Seasons / Hours

  • Petrified Forest National Park is open year round except Christmas Day. Park hours are from 7:30 AM to 5 PM, with longer hours during the summer. Hours may change without notice, so call before arriving.
  • The park is locked at night. Visitors must be in their cars and driving toward an exit at closing time.
  • The park will close when the road is unsafe due to snow or ice.
  • Note: Arizona does not observe Daylight Savings Time.

Visitor Centers

Painted Desert Visitor Center (north end): Features a 17-minute film on how wood is petrified.
Rainbow Forest Museum (south end): Features exhibits of petrified wood and of the area's geological story and human history.



  • North Entrance (Interstate 40):
    Painted Desert Visitor Center provides information, shows the Park's orientation film, and sells books, postcards, posters, maps, slides and videos. A U.S. Post Office is located adjacent to the Visitor Center.
    Painted Desert Oasis next to the Visitor Center, has a gift store, cafe and a gas station/travel store. Telephone: 520-524-3756. Address: Painted Desert Oasis P.O. Box 2247 Petrified Forest National Park, AZ 86028
    Painted Desert Inn National Historic Landmark is two miles north of the entrance. It has historically served as a trading post, an inn and restaurant. Today it is a museum with exhibits and book sales. At various times Native American artisans demonstrate rug weaving and silver smithing. Call the park for more information
  • South Entrance (U. S. 180):
    Rainbow Forest Museum has exhibits of early reptiles, dinosaurs, petrified wood and a book sales area. Rainbow Forest Store has a gift shop and snack bar/soda fountain. Telephone: 520-524-3138.

Programs & Events

  • Ranger talks and tours are scheduled mostly during the summer months. With advanced notice the park has several programs for school groups. Call for additional information.
  • March: Archeology Month.
  • Summer Solstice: Watch an ancient solar calendar at work. Programs are presented at Puerco Pueblo for a 2-week period around June 21, at 8:30 AM.

The Cougar Cafe and a gas station featuring a store with travel items are located at the north end of the Park. The Rainbow Forest Store, at the south end of the park, has packaged foods and a soda fountain.

The Visitor Centers are wheelchair accessible.

Camping & Lodging

There are no campgrounds or lodging facilities in the Park but they are available in nearby communities. There are hotels and motels in Holbrook, Winslow and Chambers with something for every taste and price range. For more information and a complete list. Click on city for Rates, availability and reservations online

Overnight backpacking is allowed in the Painted Desert wilderness. A free permit must be obtained for overnight wilderness camping. Permits are available at the Painted Desert Visitor Center or the Rainbow Forest Museum.

Precautions, Rules, Regulations

It is the visitor's responsibility to know and obey park rules. Regulations are designed for visitors' protection and to protect natural resources.

The removal of petrified wood or other features of the park is prohibited by law. Gift shops sell petrified wood that comes from private land, outside the park. No petrified wood is removed legally from the park.

Location/Maps - Description - Things To Do - Camping Lodging - Nearby


P.O. Box 2217
Petrified Forest National Park, AZ 86028

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