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Discovering Oatman Ghost Town: A Hidden Gem Near Laughlin

Nestled in the Black Mountains of Arizona, just a short jaunt from Laughlin lies the charming and historic Oatman Ghost Town. This former mining town turned tourist attraction is a must-visit for anyone looking to experience the Wild West in all its glory. In this article, we’ll explore the history of Oatman and provide all the information you need to plan your visit.

History of Oatman

In the early 1900s, Oatman was a bustling mining town, producing over 1.8 million ounces of gold. However, after the mines closed in the 1940s, the town was nearly abandoned. In the 1960s, Oatman was revived as a tourist attraction, with its historic buildings and Wild West charm drawing in visitors from all over.

How Far is Oatman Ghost Town from Laughlin?

a truck is parked on the side of a building

by Robert Walton

Oatman Ghost Town is located just 28 miles southeast of Laughlin, making it a perfect day trip destination. The drive takes approximately 45 minutes and offers stunning views of the surrounding desert landscape. Visitors can also take a multi-experience tour with Desert Wonder Tours along the historic Route 66 to Oatman.

Things to Do in Oatman

There is no shortage of things to do in Oatman Ghost Town. Visitors can take a stroll down the main street, lined with historic buildings and an old-fashioned saloon. You can also watch a reenactment of a Wild West shootout, visit the Oatman Hotel (rumored to be haunted by the ghost of Clark Gable and Oatie), or feed the town’s famous wild burros.

Oatman’s Wild Burros

a group of sheep standing on top of a dirt road

by Robert Walton

One of the main attractions in Oatman is the wild burros that roam freely throughout the town. These friendly creatures are descendants of the burros used by miners in the early 1900s. Visitors can purchase bags of alfalfa cubes to feed the burros, but be warned, they can be quite persistent and may even stick their heads in your car window!

Where to Eat in Oatman

After exploring the town, visitors can grab a bite to eat at the Oatman Hotel, a unique restaurant with dollar bills stapled to the walls and ceiling. The Oatman Hotel offers a delicious lunch menu from burgers to their famous homemade fudge.

Oatman’s Annual Events

Oatman hosts several annual events that are worth planning your visit around. In July, the town celebrates its heritage with the Oatman Sidewalk Egg Fry, where eggs are cooked on the hot pavement. In September, Oatman hosts the Burro Biscuit Toss, a quirky competition where participants try to toss a burro biscuit (poop) the farthest.


If you’re looking for a unique and historic destination near Laughlin, Oatman Ghost Town is the perfect choice. With its Wild West charm, friendly burros, and annual events, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. So pack your bags, hit the road, or take a tour with Desert Wonder Tours and discover the hidden gem of Oatman, Arizona.