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Day Trips – A Locals Guide

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If you have any questions, or just want ideas for things to do while visiting the desert (restaurants, golf, tennis, biking, architecture, shopping, Salton Sea or winery tours, photo safaris, etc.) please feel free to contact us as we can provide both general and ‘off the beaten path’ suggestions. Down town Palm Springs is about 20 minutes by car as are casinos, while the El Paseo shopping district is about 40 minutes. The massive Factory Outlet Mall is a 20-minute drive and Joshua Tree State Park is an easy (paved roads) 40-minute drive and is worth the trip if you have never visited the park.

Aerial Tramway: Since 1963, over 20 million people have traveled the 10-minute, 2.5-mile ride, which begins at the Valley Station (elevation 2,643 feet) and ends at the Mountain Station (elevation 8,516 feet). For more information click here.

Architectural Tours: Experience Palm Springs’ world-famous collection of midcentury modern architecture on TripAdvisor’s top-rated architecture tour. Join Trevor O’Donnell, one of California’s most knowledgeable and accommodating architectural tour professionals, for a fascinating and entertaining exploration of the city’s unique collection of modernist homes and buildings. Learn about a remarkable group of architects, builders and Hollywood celebrity clients, and listen to the back stories that add life, humor, intrigue and awe to Palm Springs’ extraordinary modernist legacy. For more information click here.

Bi-Plane Tours: One or two person tours of the Valley in an authentic open cockpit Stearman Bi-Plane. A must for any aviation aficionado! Climb into our 1940 Stearman Biplane with your favorite friend and enjoy an unparalleled view of the Coachella Valley! For more information click here.

Cabot’s Pueblo: Cabot’s Pueblo is marvel of engineering and design. The home was built beginning in 1941 and was always intended to be a museum in addition to the residence for Cabot and Portia Yerxa. The Hopi-inspired building is hand-made and created from reclaimed and found materials from throughout the Coachella Valley. Cabot used recovered lumber from his original homestead built in 1925 on the other end of Miracle Hill. Additionally, he purchased abandoned cabins and dismantled them to use the materials for the Pueblo, going so far as to straighten out used nails. Much of the Pueblo is made from adobe-style and sun-dried bricks Cabot made himself in the courtyard. Filled with Native American art and artifacts, souvenirs of Cabot’s travels around the world, displays on Native American Rights, and Cabot’s own works of art, the Pueblo Museum officially opened to the public in 1949. The Pueblo has four stories, is 5,000 square feet and includes 35 rooms, 150 windows, 30 rooflines, and 65 doors. For more information click here.

Cannabis Tours. As an intrical member of the Desert Hot Springs business community we are able to offer personalized, exclusive insider tours of some of the world’s largest and most sophisticated cannabis production facilities. If you are interested in seeing a burgeoning and sophisticated industry at its inception (it’s fascinating! And inspirational), Prices and availability for this varies depending on growing season and group size, but start at $150 an hour, not including product samples, and advanced reservations are required. For more information please contact Rick at +1 213.361.8496.

Desert Hills Premium Outlets: The largest collection of luxury outlets in California, located just 15 minutes west of the Spa. The outdoor shopping center features 180 designer stores including Alexander McQueen, Burberry, Coach, Michael Kors, Prada, Roberto Cavalli, Saint Laurent Paris and Tom Ford. There are several dining options at Desert Hills Premium Outlets such as Blaze Pizza, Five Guys Burgers & Fries, and Jody Maroni’s Sausage Kingdom. Several restaurants are located nearby, Ruby’s Diner, The Morongo Casino Resort and Spa and more. For more information click here.

Integratron: This historical structure is a resonant tabernacle and energy machine sited on a powerful geomagnetic vortex in the magical Mojave Desert. The Integratron is located in Landers, California, 20 miles north of Joshua Tree National Park. Its creator, George Van Tassel (1910-1978), claimed that the structure is based on the design of Moses’ Tabernacle, the writings of Nikola Tesla and telepathic directions from extraterrestrials. This one-of-a-kind 38-foot high, 55-foot diameter, all wood dome was designed to be an electrostatic generator for the purpose of rejuvenation and time travel. “It’s kindergarten nap time for grown-ups in a sound sphere”. This is an unforgettable sound experience for those who seek deep relaxation, rejuvenation, and introspection. All Sound Baths are 60-minute sonic healing sessions that consist of 25 minutes of crystal bowls played live and the balance of the hour to integrate the sound and relax in the sound chamber to recorded music. For more information click here.

Joshua Tree: Two distinct desert ecosystems, the Mojave and the Colorado, come together in Joshua Tree National Park. A fascinating variety of plants and animals make their homes in a land sculpted by strong winds and occasional torrents of rain. Dark night skies, a rich cultural history, and surreal geologic features add to the wonder of this vast wilderness in southern California. For more information click here.

Off Road Desert Tours. Adventure Hummer off road desert tours are available for both large and small groups and are the #1 tour of choice among Palm Springs best resorts. For more information click here.

Palm Springs Air Museum: There is always something new at the Palm Springs Air Museum, where history comes alive and visitors can get close to the vintage World War II and Korea/Vietnam era aircraft. Named in 2014 as one of the top 14 aviation museums in the world by CNN Travel, 59 flyable and static planes are on display inside four climate-controlled hangars totaling 86,000 square feet inside with more outside on the tarmac. Many of the Museum docents actually flew these planes and served on the ships. For more information click here.

Pappy & Harriet’s: Pappy & Harriet’s Pioneer town Palace, a honky-tonk in the High Desert, is perched at the edge of a dusty town that was originally constructed to be an Old West movie set. Some places are awarded Michelin stars, but Pappy & Harriet’s has something even better — desert stars, a zillion of them studding the sky every night. There are no tricks here — just a bar, some knotty beams, and glass bottles. The kitchen serves up the best bowl of smoky, spicy chili you’ll ever order, and the mesquite grill out back is covered with fat steaks and slabs of ribs. The wooden floor is uneven, but it works just fine for dancing. And the people? They hail from all walks of life, forming a gumbo of a crowd. Cowboys and bikers, old-timers and artists, musicians just passing through, locals seeking a bit of conversation. Performers who have appeared at Pappy & Harriet’s over the years include Paul McCartney, Eric Burdon, Eagles of Death Metal, Queens of the Stone Age, Rufus Wainwright,  The Donnas, Grizzly Bear, Neko Case, Spiritualized, Lucinda Williams, Leon Russell, Arctic Monkeys, Daniel Lanois, Band of Horses, Sean Lennon, Billy Corgan and the Spirits in the Sky, Vampire Weekend, Wanda Jackson, Ricki Lee Jones, Lorde, and so many more. For more information click here.

Salton Sea/Slab City/Salvation Mountain: Surrounded by sand, the Salton Sea glistens like a jewel in California’s crown. Less than an hour’s drive from Greater Palm Springs, this huge body of water was actually born accidentally in 1905. It was even once meant to be the Riviera of the Americas, but Mother Nature had other plans. For more information click here.

Thrift Stores: For a complete directory of the area’s best thrift store click here.

Windmill Tours: Personalized tours of one of the largest renewable energy producing windmill farms in the world with the most knowledgeable and experienced guide in town. For more information click here.

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