Sweltering and swanky. Hippie chic. Mid-century modern. Retro bougie. Desert paradise. Weirdo heaven. If there is a singular identity of Palm Springs, we have yet to define the most befitting term. Palm Springs is located just over 100 miles from downtown Los Angeles, and to the surprise of absolutely no one who’s been
stuck in 5 o’clock traffic anywhere near LA, is a wildly popular weekend playground for those seeking a little poolside refuge from the chaos of life in the “City of Angels.”
Fly into Palm Springs International Airport for the easiest commute, or Ontario International Airport—located 75 miles away—for a slightly longer journey into this dusty, desert oasis.
Consisting of nine compact cities, the Greater Palm Springs area first became a popular resort destination in the early 20th century. Throughout the decades, it earned additional fame as the favored home base of stars like Liberace and Frank Sinatra; and eventually attracted thousands of retirees in the 70s, cementing its reputation as a former seasonal getaway to a year-round community.
Keeping it Weird, Palm Springs Style
Maybe it’s the remote location, the wide open landscapes, or the fact that it takes a special kind of appreciation to build a community in the middle of nowhere, but there is definitely something about the desert that beckons the quirky.
Curious travelers intrigued by the oddities of Palm Springs can enjoy a variety of local attractions while in the area, including the 2-acre Robolights Sculpture Garden, a unique and sustainable light and art display defined as a series of "Why-not world in a why world?" by artist, Kenny Irwin.
Alternatively, you can wander the wild grounds of world’s first cactarium at Moorten Botanical Garden, open since 1938. Architecture fans will love the space age digs of the Palm Springs Visitor Center—originally opened as a gas station in the mid 1960s—while would-be paleontologists can relive their childhood wonder at the Cabazón Dinosaurs and Creationist Museum.
Jonesing to paint the town red? Head over to the Ace Hotel & Swim Club for Fabulous Bingo with Shirley Claire, a former member of the local dance and musical revue: The Fabulous Palm Springs Follies. Organize your own bar crawl with a seat aboard the Social Cycle party bike, a 16 person bicycle that doubles as a perfect place to meet fellow travelers
If you are feeling particularly uninhibited, take a walk across the Lee R. Baxandall Bridge—also known as the “Bridge of Thighs”—which allows local nudists to cross the street as five-foot tall privacy panels block the view for other pedestrians.
Where to Stay & Play in Palm Springs
It could be argued that the most popular thing to do in Palm Springs, especially in sweltering summer months, when the smallest of tasks feels like a personal punishment from the sun, is swim and lounge by your pool accommodation. Fortunately, our Trading Places International timeshare properties offer plenty of space to splash, sunbathe, and soak up the warmth.
Our Palm Springs Tennis Club property is located just outside of Tahquitz Canyon, and includes indulgent amenities like pools, a hot tub, tennis court, BBQ area, and last but certainly not least, air conditioning.
Additionally, timeshare exchange guests can choose to stay at Four Seasons at Desert Breezes, a resort condominium community situated around a landscaped pond. Spend your day swapping between the three onsite pools, eleven spas, tennis court, horseshoe pit, putting green, hot tub, and BBQ grills; or enjoy the views from your private balcony or patio before treating yourself to some air conditioned indoor lounging.
Book your ideal timeshare exchange through our easy-to-use online portal, and contact our team of seasoned travel professionals for booking assistance.
Palm Springs Restaurant & Bar Guide
If drinking and dining are on your desert agenda, be sure to head to the funky Counter Reformation at the Parker Palm Springs for a memorable wine bar experience in an intimate, wood-carved confessional.
Buddy up and meet the locals during a meal at the communal-dining gem of Sparrows Lodge for Chicken Wednesdays and Steak Saturdays. Reserve a table at the sophisticated Mr. Lyons Grand Salon retro steakhouse, or feast on fancy farm-to-table eats at Workshop Kitchen + Bar.
If you’re more interested in opulent selfies and a trendy scene, you have to dine at the sparkling and buzzworthy LULU California Bistro. For a locally-loved daytime dessert option, try a date shake mixed with vanilla ice cream at the 175-acre Oasis Date Gardens.
Show off your late night ping pong, bocce ball, and corn hole skills at the Bootlegger Tiki bar, formerly the site of the legendary Don the Beachcomber, or listen to comedy shows and live music at the Amigo Room at the Ace Hotel & Swim Club.
Experience the Outdoors in Palm Springs
For the best views of Coachella Valley, hit the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway to ascend 2-and-a-half miles up the Chino Canyon cliffs on the world’s largest rotating tramcar. Once you’re at the top, hike into the San Jacinto Mountains or visit one of the many summit activities:
- A natural history museum
- Documentary theaters
- Cute gift shop
- Observation deck
- Two restaurants.
Bring the SPF and photo gear for a 2-mile round-trip hike to the scenic 50-foot waterfall in Tahquitz Canyon, located within the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indian Reservation. Hike the Palm Springs Museum Trail, rent an ATV, or knock off a bucket list item by taking a day trip to the nearby Joshua Tree National Park.
Celebrate sunrise in a hot air balloon ride with stunning views of the valley below, hit the trails on horseback or bike, or feed the giraffes at the Living Desert Zoo & Gardens.
For a more leisurely outdoor activity, head to one of Greater Palm Springs’ 100 renowned golf courses, drive through the San Gorgonio Wind Farm Park, or participate in desert stargazing on Saturday nights at The Ritz Carlton Rancho Mirage.
Culture, Souvenir Shopping & More
Known for its abundance of mid-century modern decor, we highly recommend driving through areas like Araby Cove and Tennis Club to view mid-century modern architecture like the Edris House, Del Marcos Hotel, and Elvis’ honeymoon hideaway.
Souvenir shop and browse antiques at the eccentric Antique Galleries of Palm Springs store, or splurge at the sophisticated shops of El Paseo, Palm Springs’ own version of Rodeo Drive. Find your next staple furniture piece—or wistfully window shop after checking shipping prices—at the shops on Palm Canyon Drive, and browse the Allan Pitchko Art Galleries and Ruddy’s General Store Museum for memorable stops along the way.
Keep an eye on local Palm Springs event calendars for events at the McCallum Theatre and annual events like Modernism Week, or visit cultural attractions like the Palm Springs Art Museum, Palm Springs Air Museum, or the legendary Presidential getaway and former Annenberg estate: Sunnylands, a 200-acre property in Rancho Mirage.
Vacation have you feeling lucky? Hit the Agua Caliente Casino to gamble to your heart’s—or wallet’s—desire.