A couple adorned in Christmas sweaters and Santa hats having fun in their RV.

How to Spend a Quirky Christmas in Quartzsite

Where you spend Christmas and who you spend it with are important decisions for those who celebrate it. However, changing things up and trying something new can sometimes be fun. A quirky Christmas might be exactly what you and your fellow travelers need to experience the holiday season in a new way.

Today, we’re sharing how you can spend a quirky Christmas in Quartzsite. Let’s take a look!

Where Is Quartzsite, Ariz.?

Quartzsite, Ariz., is a tiny southern town of 3,600 people that sits approximately 20 miles from the California/Arizona border. This small town sits about two hours west of Phoenix and an hour and 20 minutes north of Yuma.

If you’re traveling along I-10, it’s an easy place to stop for the night. However, you may adjust your schedule because you want to stay longer.

What Is Quartzsite, Ariz., Famous For?

This tiny town has earned quite a reputation amongst the RV community. Its remote location and wide-open spaces make it a nearly perfect spot for boondocking. Quartzsite has earned the title as being the RV boondocking capital of the world.

Quartzsite hosts several major events each year for all kinds of RVers and other nomads. The Quartzsite RV Show touts itself as the largest gathering of RVers in the world.

In addition, the town also hosts the Quartzsite’s Annual Mineral Show and Swap Meet. If you love RVing or rockhounding, you don’t want to miss either of these shows!

When Should I Go to Quartzsite?

The best time to visit Quartzsite is during winter, specifically January and February. During this time of year, visitors can expect cooler temperatures and clear skies. The intense summer heat gets replaced with mild temperatures and chilly desert nights.

However, it’s important to remember that this is also the time of year when many RVers and nomads head to Quartzsite. If you expect to have space for yourself, it’s better to lower your expectations. The area welcomes an estimated 750,000 to 1,000,000 people each year, most of which visit during the winter.

You’ll find all kinds of people visiting Quartzsite during this time of year. Some will stretch you out of your comfort zone, and others will feel like you’ve been friends with them your entire life. It’s just one of the many things people love about this quirky town.

Can You Camp for Free in Quartzsite?

Quartzsite offers all kinds of opportunities for camping. No matter what camping style you enjoy, you’ll find it in Quartzsite. Even if free camping is what you prefer, you can find it there.

There’s no shortage of free camping spots in and around Quartzsite. The Bureau of Land Management manages some of this land, and campers can stay for 14 consecutive days in a 28-day period for free. 

While it’s not free, La Posa Long-Term Visitor Area is inexpensive. Visitors can camp from September 15 to April 15 for $180. That’s 212 nights of camping, which equates to approximately $.85 per night. That’s quite a deal!

What Makes Christmas in Quartzsite Quirky?

Quartzsite attracts a variety of people from all walks of life. When you pack all these people into a tiny town, you can expect some quirkiness. It doesn’t disappear during the holidays, either.

Getting to experience new holiday traditions, foods, and events can be a new way of experiencing Christmas. If you give it a chance, you may discover that a quirky Christmas is your favorite kind of Christmas.

How to Spend a Quirky Christmas in Quartzsite

Once the desert temperature subsides, Quartzsite comes alive with many events. While they’re not going to have a white Christmas, they sure do know how to celebrate it. Let’s look at a few quirky Christmas events you should consider adding to your calendar!

Boondock With Other Desert-Goers

Boondocking is one of the most popular activities in Quartzsite. It allows you to rub elbows with different types of people from all walks of life. With so many people, there will most likely be travelers similar to you. But embracing a quirky Christmas in Quartzsite means stepping outside your comfort zone.

You’ll find desert-goers boondocking in all types of situations: individuals car camping, couples in massive Class A motorhomes, and families in fifth wheels with bunkhouses. There’s no telling who you’ll run into while in Quartzsite.

An RV boondocking in the desert on a sunny afternoon.

Enjoy the Holiday Lights

While there may be a small number of permanent residents in Quartzsite, some do exist. Many individuals and business owners celebrate the holidays by decorating with Christmas lights.

Driving around the town and looking at the lights can be a fun and exciting way to enjoy the town’s quirkiness during Christmas.

Shop at Craft Fairs

There’s no shortage of craft fairs and opportunities for locals and travelers to sell their creations. Because of this, there’s practically always a craft fair taking place somewhere in the town.

You can find unique and quirky crafts to spice up your holiday decorations. Since the artist’s creativity only limits the craft items, you never know what you’ll find at these craft fairs.

A woman shops at a craft fair table, admiring beadwork.

Attend the Annual Soup and Chowder Contest Fundraiser

The Quartzsite Food Bank has been presenting the Soup and Chowder Contest Fundraiser since 2014. This event raises funds for the Friends of the Quartzsite Food Bank, which helps provide food to individuals and families in need. 

This tremendous organization helps feed over 100 disabled individuals, 50 families, and over 70 veterans every month. In addition, they serve 350 people over the age of 50 and 85 who are under 18. By attending this fundraiser, you’re helping them to have a huge impact on their local community.

Head Out to the Desert Bar for Live Music

There’s no better way to celebrate the holidays than having a delicious meal or drink with your loved ones or your newest friends. The Desert Bar is a short drive north into Parker, Ariz. Bring cash with you because this remote bar doesn’t accept credit cards, and there’s no ATM. 

The 5-mile drive off the road to this bar can be an adventure, but the entire experience is worth it!

Friends driving out through the desert in a convertible looking for fun.

Is It Worth Spending Christmas in Quartzsite?

If you’re looking to change things up and find a unique place to spend Christmas, Quartzsite is one place you should consider. Not only is Quartzsite a budget-friendly place to stay, but it’s full of culture.

It’s the perfect spot to embrace diversity and enjoy the nearly infinite possibilities of how to celebrate Christmas. You never know; it may become your favorite place to spend Christmas.

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