If you’ve ever driven on Interstate 15 south of Las Vegas, maybe you’ve seen colorful stacks of rocks standing in the desert off in the distance. Or, you’ve probably seen freeway signs letting you know to exit for Seven Magic Mountains. In this article, we will take a look at the unique art attraction that is a fun but quick stop in Southern Nevada.
What is Seven Magic Mountains?
Seven Magic Mountains is a large desert art installation consisting of seven towers made of colorful boulders stacked more than thirty feet high. There are a total of 33 brightly colored boulders between the seven towers that weigh an average of 40,000 lbs each. It has been called one of the most Instagrammable places in the world.
The exhibition was opened to the public on May 11, 2016, and was initially scheduled to be on view for two years. Due to its popularity, Seven Magic Mountains was given a three-year extension by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) lasting through 2021. Another extension was requested in 2021 that would allow the exhibit to remain through the end of 2026. Restoration was done on the exhibition in May 2021 as well.
How Much Does it Cost to Visit Seven Magic Mountains?
Nothing. There is no admission cost or any cost for parking; Seven Magic Mountains is absolutely free to visit. It is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year as well.
Pets are allowed as well. Just be sure to pick up after them. There are trash dumpsters in the parking area.
What to Do at Seven Magic Mountains
Take pictures and admire the art. There isn’t a whole lot more you can do as there are no services or facilities. The nearest restroom or store is about five miles away in Jean.
Seven Magic Mountains does have a free cell phone audio tour available. When you get to the site, call (702) 381-5182, and it will take you through a tour where you learn about the artist, the Seven Magic Mountains, and the history of land art in Southern Nevada.
While you are there, you can also look for your own rocks and start your own mini-Seven Magic Mountains, which seems to be a popular activity at the site.
The one thing you can’t do, which should go without saying, is climb on the art pieces.
Getting to Seven Magic Mountains
Seven Magic Mountains is located near Jean Dry Lake in the Mojave Desert, approximately ten miles south of Las Vegas. It is easily visible from Interstate 15.
To get to Seven Magic Mountains from Las Vegas, take Interstate 15 south to Sloan Rd. (exit #25). Make a left to get on Las Vegas Blvd. Drive south for approximately seven miles, and the art installation and a dirt parking lot will be on your left.
From the Las Vegas Strip, it takes about 20-30 minutes to reach Seven Magic Mountains, depending on the traffic. If you want to really take your time getting to the art pieces, you don’t even have to get on the freeway and can just take Las Vegas Blvd. the entire way, but it will likely double your driving time.
If you are coming from the south, take Interstate 15 to Jean, NV (exit #12) and make a right on NV-161 toward Las Vegas Blvd. After driving approximately 5 miles north on Las Vegas Blvd., the dirt parking lot and towers will be on your right.
The parking lot is about 350 feet or so from the base of the towers, and it is an easy flat walk on an unpaved trail to get there.
A car is the only option for getting to Seven Magic Mountains as there is no public transportation that stops anywhere near there.
Tours of Seven Magic Mountains
I’ve seen a couple of tour companies in Las Vegas offering stops at Seven Magic Mountains, but if you have access to a car, you are better off just going on your own. The site is free to visit, and they even offer a free cell phone audio tour that will probably tell you anything a tour company will.
If you do decide to take a tour, make sure they don’t try and add on a charge for parking or anything like that. There are some less than reputable tour companies in Las Vegas, so be sure to read reviews in advance.
When to Visit Seven Magic Mountains
Because Seven Magic Mountains is outside and completely exposed, the best time of year to visit is March to May and from September to November, when the temperatures are relatively moderate. Summers in the area can be brutal, with temperatures frequently exceeding 120 degrees (48°C). On the opposite end, winters in the area can get pretty chilly.
The best time of day to visit Seven Magic Mountains is probably in the morning. The angled light makes for nice pictures, and the crowds tend to be much smaller then. Really though, any time of day is good to visit. Because you can walk around the towers, you can easily find a good angle at any time of the day.
Since Seven Magic Mountains is located in an open desert, if it is windy, it can lead to a lot of dust in the air. On one of our visits, there was so much dirt flying around it was almost painful to get a picture and our clothes were filthy after visiting. We didn’t even notice the wind in Las Vegas 30 minutes earlier.
Seven Magic Mountains is a great place to stop, take some photos, and spend 30 minutes when traveling south of Las Vegas. Plus, since it’s one of the few places near Vegas where there is little chance you’ll lose any money!