(Greater Palm Springs, CA) – August 17, 2016 – Stepping outside of the usual and experiencing something new to even the quirkiest soul is what traveling is all about. From the odd to the eccentric, these can’t- miss, curious attractions are celebrated for keeping Greater Palm Springs and the surrounding California desert region utterly unique.
Run wild with the world's biggest dinosaurs
Visible from Interstate 10, Dinny the Dinosaur, a 150-ton building shaped like a larger-than-life-sized Brontosaurus, and Mr. Rex, a 100-ton Tyrannosaurus Rex structure are located just 30 minutes from downtown Palm Springs. Since the 1980s, the Cabazon Dinosaurs have greeted visitors driving to the destination. However, they were made famous by the T-Rex cameo in the cult classic “Pee Wee’s Big Adventure,” and are now unarguably a top highlight on all road tripping adventures. Visitors can pan for gemstones and fossils, climb inside to the top of Mr. Rex's mouth and take an amazing photo through his bright new shiny teeth.
Travel back in time with old-fashion favorites
Once you’ve hit downtown Palm Springs, you'll find true nostalgia when you step into Ruddy's 1930 General Store Museum. The museum had been the collection of a Depression-Era liquidator who had kept his pick of the finest store fixtures and merchandise in his basement for 40 years. The result is one of the largest complete displays of unused general store merchandise in the country.
Enter into a post-apocalypse appliance world of lights
Just around the corner from Frank Sinatra’s old Twin Palms Estate, three towering multi-colored robots made of old appliances, lawn furniture and wood scraps stand several feet tall by artist Kenny Irwin Jr. Inside its gate, amid the palm trees and bushes, a world of aliens, mutant Christmas elves and reimagined carousels made of discards cover the four-acre property. During the holidays, Robolights is the largest residential light display in the country. With over 8.4 million lights, it’s the craziest Sci-Fi Christmas wonderland you’ll ever see.
Do Greater Palm Springs Sinatra’s way
For the Rat Pack enthusiast, head to Desert Memorial Park in Cathedral City where Sinatra was laid to rest. After passing away at the age of 82 in 1998, Sinatra was buried here with a bottle of Jack Daniels and a pack of Camel cigarettes tucked into his suit. The cemetery is also home to Sonny Bono, one of Palm Springs’ best celebrity mayors.
Have a date with a knight in shining armor
For over 80 years, the large knight outside of Shields Date Gardens has been attracting curious travelers on Highway 111 as they make their way to the east part of the valley. Shields’ famous date groves provide a yummy assortment of dates, as well as their famous date shakes. A biblical garden path winds through the 17-acre date farm, and the café patio offers date delectables.
Drive someone up the wall
Discover a surprising outdoor art gallery in Coachella. The ‘Coachella Walls’ mural project, located in Coachella's downtown Historic Pueblo Viejo District, is dedicated to the farmworker. Six artists from around the world are participating in the ongoing mural project. While you are there, check out the City of Coachella walking tour. Palm Springs, Desert Hot Springs, La Quinta and Indio are other Greater Palm Springs areas who have embraced murals as important public art.
There’s no other place in the world you can get a potassium fill like the International Banana Museum. In Fact, Guinness Book of World Records appointed it the largest museum dedicated to a single fruit. With more than 17,000 banana-related items, banana lovers will, well…. go bananas over this oddball attraction that takes obsession to a whole other level! Make sure to stop by, dressed in a banana suit, and get yourself a banana soda ice cream float.
Climb to the top of the mountain of love
Colors truly pop in the desert landscape at Salvation Mountain. No, it’s not a mirage but a manmade mountain painted over in a beautiful palette of eye-engaging art. It’s crowned with a message in red and pink letters “God is Love” (hence the “salvation”), and intrigues visitors from all over the world. Salvation Mountain is such an anomaly that it’s been featured in TV shows like “Ripley’s Believe it or Not” and on the Discovery Channel. Nearby, don’t forget to check out Slab City, the concrete slab community that originated from the abandoned World War II Marine Corps barracks of Camp Dunlap, and East Jesus, an experimental, sustainable, educational art installation.
Explore a desert with a 350-foot-long fanciful serpent
Around the tiny town of Borrego Springs, you’ll discover a surprising outdoor “art gallery” scattered on open lots and around corners. The 130 bigger-than-life metal sculptures by artist Richard Breceda were commissioned by the late Dennis Avery, heir to the label fortune. Take a bike tour of the unusual art installment, Galleta Meadows, which was inspired by creatures that roamed this same desert millions of years ago.
Provoke your inner creativity with another man’s treasure
Noah’s Purifoy’s Desert Art Museum is truly oddball inspiring, luring visitors obsessed with outside-the-box, larger-than-life art. Outside the town of Joshua Tree, this randomly located, outdoor art museum was eighteen years in the making by artist Noah Purify. Dozens of art installations can be viewed in this open-desert “gallery,” containing artistic creations made with recycled objects, from mannequins and old TVs to lots of toilets.
Turn heads with an unBEElievable retro do
At the ageless Beauty Bubble Salon and Museum, you can discover more than 3,000 objects related to American beauty history. It’s as if time has stopped in Joshua Tree. Ask the hair stylists for a beehive or pompadour hairstyle, so that you can blend in with the vintage, pastel-colored surroundings.
Gunfight in the Wild, Wild, West
If you find yourself driving along Route 62 in California's Yucca Valley, take a brief 4-mile detour to Pioneertown. Pioneertown is a secluded yet bustling little world that takes you back to the days of the Wild West — or at least perfectly captures the rugged and rowdy feel of the good ol’ days with re-enacted cowboy gunfights on Mane Street and left-over movie sets. Stop by the famous Pappy & Harriet’s saloon for a down-home meal you won’t soon forget.
Become insta-famous at the World Famous Crochet Museum
The World Famous Crochet Museum is unlike any other art museum. Located in an old one-hour photo hut in Yucca Valley, Shari Elf’s collection of crocheted animals and characters is not to be missed.
Make contact with aliens from the planet Venus
Built in the 1950’s under the direction of UFOs, the Integratron, a white-domed structure in the Mojave Desert, is considered to be the only all-wood, acoustically perfect sound chamber in the U.S. Take part in the Integratron’s Sound Bath, a 60-minute sonic healing session to rejuvenate your mind, body, and soul.
For images, visit Barberstock.com/GreaterPalmSprings
About Greater Palm Springs, California
Greater Palm Springs is Southern California’s premier resort and golf destination. Discover a place of many experiences and surprises in nine distinctive cities: Palm Springs, Desert Hot Springs, Cathedral City, Rancho Mirage, Palm Desert, Indian Wells, La Quinta, Indio and Coachella. As a respite for mind, body and spirit, Greater Palm Springs is ready to provide you with an unparalleled sense of escape, adventure, recreation, relaxation and your own unique way to play--anytime of the year. For more information on Greater Palm Springs, visit www.visitgreaterpalmsprings.com.
About California Desert Region
Unlike anywhere else in California, the desert region, just a short road trip away from Greater Palm Springs, invites visitors to elevations of thousands of feet above to more than 280 feet/85 below sea level, offer parks filled with scenic, rugged beauty and recreation, as well as rich history and explorations, from gold mines to ghost towns. To explore the individual regions of the California deserts, visit www.visitgreaterpalmsprings.com/visit/california-deserts
Nicky Faeth, Communications Manager