Some of the destinations and events mentioned on this post were complimentary or a media rate was extended. As usual all grammatical errors, typos, and opinions are my own.
When my family told me they were going to come to visit for the holidays I knew I needed to plan a few staycations to keep us entertained and show them a new side of California. They have always see what most of the tourists that come from outside the country see, theme parks and museums, but I know California has so much more to offer.
Spending a weekend getaway in Palm Spring is like finding an oasis in the desert. It is a magical weekend with so many cool things to do during the day and with plenty of time to relax at thing and rest.
Palm Springs is a beautiful destination located in southern California in Coachella Valley. It created its fame when it was known as the playground for the movie stars, and it rapidly became a popular destination for the rich and famous. I remember watching 92010 and the episode with the gang took a spring break trip to Palm Springs. It had always been a dream to come and see it in person.
Palm Springs is a great place to spend a long weekend; it has plenty of activities for adults and for kids as well. Palm Spring has a lot of stylish boutique hotels, and numerous recreational activities, which makes it perfect to take a staycation with the family.
Just a few hours by car from Los Angeles, Palm Springs would make it prefect for a day trip if you do not want to spend the night, although I recommend making it a weekend experience so you can visit all the amazing places we visited.
On your way to Palm Springs from Los Angeles make sure to stop by Cabazon Dinosaurs. You can take a free pictures with the big dinosaurs out, or you can pay a fee to discover the Dinosaur Park.
Then I recommend stopping by the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway, which is the world’s largest rotating tram car—travel that over two-and-one-half miles along the breathtaking cliffs of Chino Canyon, transporting passengers to the pristine wilderness of the Mt. San Jacinto State Park. During your approximately ten-minute journey, tram cars rotate slowly, offering picturesque and spectacular vistas of the valley floor below. Once you reach the Mountain Station—elevation 8,516 feet—enjoy two restaurants, observation decks, natural history museum, two documentary theaters, gift shop and over 50 miles of hiking trails.
By now it is getting late and you probably want to check in at your hotel and rest for the night or spend some time by the pool maybe drinking some adult beverages. You can read about our hotel Margaritaville here.
Once you have rested and wake up feeling like new, I recommend leaving early your hotel after grabbing some breakfast so you can visit the Palm Springs Air Museum where you can get close to the vintage World War II and Korea/Vietnam era aircrafts. Named in 2014 as one of the top 14 aviation museums in the world by CNN Travel, over 70 flyable and static aircraft are on display inside and outside the four climate-controlled hangars totaling 86,000 square feet, with an additional 40,000 square feet outside on the tarmac.
After the air museum you can stop by Sunnylands Center & Gardens. Entry is free at the time of this post and the gardens are just so beautiful. You can buy food at their cafe (mostly wraps and sandwiches) or you can take your own and eat a picnic in one of the tables provided.
Now I think you should head towards the Living Desert Zoo & Gardens, that was rated as one of the 10 best zoos in the U.S. by Conde Nast Traveler and one of the top family-friendly attractions in Greater Palm Springs, the Living Desert Zoo & Gardens invites little ones (and the young at heart) to explore the wonderfully wild creatures of the world’s deserts all in one place. Exhibits range from the grasslands and plains of Africa to the rocky terrain and canyons of North America and feature more than 1,600 species of plants and 140 species of animals. Some of the friendly faces you’ll see include:
To end the day well, choose one of the local restaurants for dinner or have dinner at your hotel. We decided to visit Mario's Italian Cafe and then headed over the hotel for some s'mores by the fire pit and relaxing time at the jacuzzi.
After a good night of sleep we were ready to have some breakfast and then head to the last of our adventures. So far our time at Palm Springs has been very entertained and full of educational experiences for the kids.
Next in our adventure was exploring Indian Canyons - Palm Canyon. Indian Canyons in Palm Springs consists of Palm Canyon, Andreas Canyon and Murray Canyon. Palm Canyon offers hikers a moderately graded foot path that leads down to a stream perfect for picnicking. Be sure to visit the Trading Post for hiking maps, refreshments and souvenirs. Andreas Canyon offers a more serene, scenic route perfect for photography and bird watching. Murray Canyon is an easy to moderate hike boasting abundant wildlife encounters and is less visited, so tends to be more secluded. Indian Canyons is open daily from October through June and weekends only July through September.
Before you head home, make sure to stop by the Shields Date Garden and get some dates ice cream or dates shake. They also have a cafe in case you want to eat there, and after enjoying the shakes, take a stroll by the beautiful gardens.
There are so many cool places to explore that this weekend wasn't enough, so I will be back with my son soon to get to see more cool places at Palm Springs, because I still think I can find more oasis in this beautiful desert city.