This Moorish-style mansion, begun in 1924 and never completed, takes its name from Walter Scott, better known as Death Valley Scotty. An ex-cowboy, prospector, and performer in Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show, Scotty always told people the castle was his, financed by gold from a secret mine. In reality, there was no mine, and the house belonged to a Chicago millionaire named Albert Johnson, whom Scott had finagled into investing in the fictitious mine. Despite the con, Johnson and Scott became great friends. The house functioned for a while as a hotel and still contains works of art, imported carpets, handmade European furniture, and a tremendous pipe organ. To see both floors of the house, you must book a tour—purchase tickets in advance to reserve a space during holidays and some weekends. Park rangers dressed in period attire re-create life at the castle circa 1939. Check out the Underground Tour (separate admission ticket required), which takes you through a ¼-mile tunnel in the castle basement.
Scotty's Castle Rd. (Hwy. 267), 53 miles north of Salt Creek Interpretive Trail, Death Valley National Park, California, 92328, United States