Central Desert visitors will discover endless opportunities for fun and adventure, recreation and relaxation. A Joshua Tree National Park excursion is a must on any nature lover’s itinerary, and there are plenty of ways to experience this magnificent preserve, a paradise for hikers, bikers, photographers, rock climbers and campers. Once you’ve left the park, see the Old West come alive as you wander the dusty main street of Pioneertown, a “living, breathing” 1880s themed movie set, or soak up extraterrestrial lore and harmonic vibrations at the white-domed Integratron in Landers. Quirky attractions to visit include The World Famous Crochet Museum and Noah Purifoy Joshua Tree Outdoor Museum featuring fascinating exhibits of assemblage art.
When it comes to what to do and see in Greater Palm Springs, the sky’s the limit so why not start there? Float over lush country clubs and date groves in a hot air balloon, soar above Greater Palm Springs in a vintage biplane or take a family excursion on the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway ascending 8,500 above the desert floor into the towering pine tree forests of Mount San Jacinto State Park. More family-friendly attractions like The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens, Palm Springs Indian Canyons, Palm Springs Air Museum, Children’s Discovery Museum, and resort waterparks make for an unforgettable kid-friendly vacation.
Natural mineral springs, luxe spas and abundant outdoor recreation enhance Greater Palms Springs’ reputation as a leading destination for health and wellness. The area boasts more than 100 scenic hiking trails at various levels of difficulty and distance along with golf, tennis, swimming, biking, equestrian sports, and several competitive events, such as the Annual Tram Road Challenge—a unique valley tradition—Ironman 70.3 Indian Wells–La Quinta, and Tour de Palm Springs.
The Greater Palm Springs cultural calendar is packed nearly year-round with several world-class signature events and festivals — from the star-studded Palm Springs International Film Festival and Modernism Week celebrating the area’s renowned midcentury modern architecture to equestrian polo, BNP Paribas Open tennis championship, epic music festivals Coachella and Stagecoach, Indio’s International Tamale Festival, and many more exciting festivities.