SOUTHERN DESERT

With borders touching Mexico to the south and Arizona to the east, this is a land built for adventure. The east side holds Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, with lush palm oases, colorful slot canyons, ancient pictographs and abundant wildlife, including desert bighorn sheep. (“Borrego” is the Spanish word for sheep.) Keep your eyes peeled and you might spy these agile mammals, with fur the color of desert stone, roaming the rocky slopes or drinking at a spring.

The town of Borrego Springs is a relaxed haven for artists and desert rats. Enjoy galleries and shops, lodging and dining ranging from basic to luxurious. East of Borrego Springs is the Salton Sea, a saline inland lake with camping, trails and wildlife, particularly birds—more than 375 species have been recorded in the Salton Sea and surrounding Imperial Valley.

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