Slab City


Slab City is located in unincorporated Imperial County in the Sonoran desert. It’s known for its artistic residents and its bohemian lifestyle that contradicts ordinary society. The city took its name from concrete slabs that remained after the World War II Marine Corps Camp Dunlap training base was torn down.  A visit to Slab City makes for a good day or overnight trip for any van lifer who wants to see a unique community with many personalities. 


The Slab, what the locals call Slab City, is a very interesting and unique place for van lifers to visit while in the Sonoran desert. Take a drive-thru the city to explore all the interesting artwork or hire a local to give you a tour. It’s well worth your time to explore the history and the interesting personalities that call The Slab home.  

The main attraction is Salvation Mountain which is located at the entrance to Slab City.  It’s a small hill approximately three stories tall and entirely covered in latex paint, concrete and adobe, and festooned with Bible verses. It was a project built over two decades by Leonard Knight. 

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Salton Sea State Recreation Area

The Salton Sea State Recreation Area (SRA) is a good place to camp or visit any nomad. The area covers 14 miles of the Salton Sea’s northeastern shore and has long been a popular site for campers, boaters, and anglers. Varner Harbor within the SRA provides easy access to the sea for boating and water skiing. The main activities at SRA are kayaking, camping, and birdwatching. The SRA is a great retreat for any van dweller looking to explore the desert.

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Imperial Sand Dunes

The Imperial Sand Dunes, or Glamis, as the locals call it, is worth a visit for any van or RV nomad looking to explore one of SoCal’s greatest natural attractions. The dunes are the largest mass of dunes in California. The dune system extends more than 40 miles long and averages 5 miles wide and often reaches 300 feet above the desert floor.

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