The City of Barstow is located in the Inland Empire North region of San Bernardino County, midway between Los Angeles and Las Vegas. Barstow is centrally located in the western Mojave at the entrance to the Mojave National Preserve and is home to the U.S. Army National Training Center at Ft. Irwin; Marine Corps Logistics Base, Barstow; NASA's Goldstone Deep Space Network; Veterans Home of California, Barstow; and BNSF's classification yard.

With Interstates 15 and 40, and highways 58 and 247 all converging in Barstow, the city is a major transportation corridor with more than 60 million people in 19 million vehicles traveling through Barstow each year. The city is home to an Amtrak depot at its Historic Harvey House.

Catering to the tourists is Barstow Outlet and Tanger Outlet Center which together boasts more than 100 outlet stores. Barstow offers all the major conveniences of small town living with the resources of major metropolitan areas only a short drive away.