Finding Relaxation in California’s Desert

Palm Springs

Palm Springs

Palm Springs is one desert city that is once again making a name for itself in the travel world. Rightly so.  A popular hotspot for Hollywood celebs in the 1900s, visitors are now returning to this scorching town, located mere hours from Los Angeles. While many travelers yearn for the hustle and bustle of city life, others crave a few days of relaxation and a chance to unwind. Why not consider getting out of Hollywood and staying somewhere a little bit different? It really is worth it.

Palm Springs

Whether you’re traveling for some much-needed rest or simply to explore a new locale, Palm Springs has it all: stunning mid-century modern architecture, trendy new restaurants and an endless amount of spas. So put down your gadgets and get exploring!. These seven experiences are some of the best for relaxation. Let’s go!

1. Spas and Wellness Centers

The biggest allure of the desert oasis that is Palm Springs is the vast amount of spas in the area. They really are a treat and maybe it’s time you treated yourself to a little indulgence.

Palm Springs

You’re worth it. Whether you stick to the town itself or wander to nearby cities like Indian Wells, Desert Hot Springs, La Quinta or Palm Desert, local spas offer a variety of treatments. From Swedish and couples massages to facials, they have it all. Some also offer yoga classes too. If you’re lucky, you may even find a spot that offers complimentary Champagne—let the relaxation begin!

2. Swimming Pools

Palm Springs

Palm Springs is definitely a hot area, but sometimes spending the day indoors isn’t what the doctor ordered. Instead, beat the heat while still resting. Go poolside and you’ll be winning at life. Because the temperatures are so high during summertime, many resorts, inns, and rentals have stellar pools. Really, really good ones! Whether you sip wine in the sun, go for a dip or read a book, it’s the perfect way to spend the day whilst keeping cool. If you want to work out, this is a perfect way to do it too.

3. Private Vacation Homes

While local resorts have got relaxation down to a T, with stunning pools and calming spas, nothing beats the privacy you’ll get with your own space. California vacation rentals are one of the best ways to enjoy some time alone—either solo, with friends or with your loved one. Many of them also offer some of the same amenities as a hotel! Sometimes having some alone time is unbeatable and having your own place to call home is a real treat that you should consider.

4. Hiking

There’s nothing like a little fitness to relieve some stress and bring about a new outlook on life. Here in Palm Springs, the chance to hike is on your doorstep. Even if it isn’t your first choice of activity, we recommend it. Add some positivity to your life with some fresh air and a little desert hike.

Palm Springs

Out in the Palm Springs area, visitors can find trails that range from quiet and restful to rugged and sweat inducing. Whatever your level, there is a trail for you here. Wander within California’s famous palm trees at the Palm Canyon Trail, find tranquility along the Andreas Canyon Trail or make your way to a 40-foot waterfall in Tahquitz Canyon.

5. Hot Springs

Palm Springs

The only aquifer of mineral spring water in Southern California is in nearby Desert Hot Springs; an area filled with boutique hotels that utilize the water. The natural water is said to have healing properties, which can be incredibly restful—physically, emotionally and spiritually. Whether you soak in the hot mineral waters or undergo spa treatments, there’s nothing like it anywhere else in the California desert. Are you convinced that you should go yet?!

6. Musical Festivals

Okay. If hot springs aren’t your thing, maybe a really good music festival is! Being surrounded by thousands at Indio’s famed Coachella, Stagecoach and Desert Trip festivals may not sound like a relaxing way to spend a weekend, but that couldn’t be more wrong. With colorful sunsets, distant rising mountain peaks, endless live music, a Ferris wheel, sunshine and cold drinks, these festivals offer a chance to unwind and enjoy yourself. Who knows—you may even make some new friends while you’re at it in Palm Springs.

7. Aerial Tramway

Palm Springs

One last place in California desert to whet your appetite and see how amazing Palm Springs is! The Palm Springs Aerial Tramway is the largest rotating aerial tram in the world. Climb aboard to take a ride more than 8000 feet up the mountainside to Mt. San Jacinto State Park. The two-and-a-half mile journey offers a relaxing opportunity to see more of the region from a new perspective. Once you reach the top, enjoy picturesque views and a few observation decks along with restaurants, a natural history museum, documentary theaters and miles and miles of hiking trails. Beautiful!

As you can see, there are plenty of options to relax and enjoy in California’s desert – Palm Springs. Palm Springs, a desert city in California has made a name in the travel world. It has stunning modern architecture, trendy restaurants and lots of spas.

Now that you’ve been to Palm Springs, why not check out all the things to do in LA, which is only an hour away!

What is your type of relaxation? Let us know through your comments.


Palm Springs

Palm Springs    Palm Springs


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93 thoughts on “Finding Relaxation in California’s Desert

  1. Joanna Reply

    Palm Springs sounds like a great destination for the entire family. I would love to go hiking and then relax in the hot springs, but also enjoy a cocktail in one of the infinity pools, after a day at the spa. The aerial tram sounds like a lot of fun as well.

  2. Stella the Travelerette Reply

    This was great to read because I am going to Palm Springs in October. I knew about the spas and swimming pools but not about the aerial tramway or hiking. I look forward to following these tips and enjoying my trip even more.

  3. Rika Reply

    I do hope to travel to this place. We can learn a lot while traveling. At the same time, should enjoy myself, treat myself to a holiday.

  4. Candy Reply

    I have been to Palm Springs several times and had no idea that they had a hot springs. I have been to several hot springs in Japan, but never in the states. I also saw the Aerial Tramway the last time I went, but didn’t get a chance to ride on it. Will have to bookmark this for my next Palm Springs trip. PS. I love your photos!

  5. Claire Reply

    Oh yes, I want to win at life in that pool!! I would never have thought to go out into the dessert from LA but it seems there is plenty to keep you occupied – not just sand 😀

  6. Tamanna Reply

    The serenity of California tho… wanna visit there so badly! Specially I want to drive on the long roads there surrounded by the desert 🌵
    The hot spring sounds interesting as well!

  7. mark wyld Reply

    Looks like a very relaxing and peaceful place to visit away from the hustle and bustle of LA. I think it would be great to go hiking on some of the desert trails. the landscape looks amazing

  8. Chris Reply

    Those landscapes are simply stunning and who hasn’t heard of Coachella?!


    That said, I’m not sure how I think about hot springs in scorching desert temperatures! lol

  9. Anita Reply

    I love California, but haven’t been to Palm Springs. It sounds like a great place to visit. I especially would like to try stellar pools and aerial tramway. Thanks for sharing!

  10. Kate and Kris Reply

    I’ve not spent much time in the desert, but it looks really interesting, if hot! Love the picture of the lizard by the way.

  11. Tamara - @ Girlswanderlust Reply

    What a beautiful pictures! This looks like Paradise. I think it’s definitely worth to combine a trip to LA with a few days in Palm Springs. I love to read about the possibilities for hiking in Palm Springs, because that’s absolutely one of my favorite activities during the holidays. Would love to experience the many hot springs as well!

  12. Stephanie Reply

    AS soon as I find a travel buddy, I want to get out West and do some serious hiking. The US has so many beautiful destinations I haven’t visited yet. I would love to try that Palm Springs tramway too!

  13. neha Reply

    Palm Spring sounds like one complete package in itself. Spa, hot springs, hiking, swimming and so many other adventures are possible here!! I will definitely check this out when I visit California next

  14. Claudia Reply

    I was going to say that the pool looked amazing, but then all the other activities do too. I’d love to visit, go for a hike, then soak in the hot springs with the gorgeous surroundings and totally relax. When can I go?

  15. Cat Reply

    I’ve seen Palm Springs popping up a lot recently! Thank you for showing me what there is to do in this desert city. I’d love to try desert hot springs as I’ve not seen anything like that before 🙂

  16. Gina Reply

    I’m there like yesterday. Holy moly this looks great! I didn’t know there were hot springs there and the pools make it look super enticing. Mineral water is so good for your skin and cleaning toxins from your body. No wonder so many boutique hotels utilize it.

  17. Travel Cracker Reply

    I’ve great desire of going to a desert, though I didn’t go to any desert. Your post made me more inspired to find on. Thanks a lot for your post.

  18. you.theworld.wandering Reply

    Palm Springs would be an amazing destination to experience a wellness retreat! I’ve been to LA but never thought of going here. Thanks for the idea for next trip!
    Kristie (you.theworld.wandering)

  19. Brian Reply

    The last three look like fun. I’ve been to the golden state five times but never made it to Palm Springs. That hot spring looks like torture!

  20. Tatum Skipper Reply

    The Spas would be the perfect girls weekend getaway in California!! I am obsessed with spas! Also, the hot springs are where it’s at! I have been to some across the US but never in Cali. I know Coachella is coming up soon I wish I could go! I need to explore more of the west coast!

  21. Swati & Sam (The tales of a traveler ) Reply

    Hot Springs and Aetial Tramway looks so inviting. Most of my friends work in CA so we are planning a trip there soon. It seems there is so much to do in California, even my friend living there has no clue. Bookmarked your post for the trip 🙂

  22. Swati & Sam (The tales of a traveler ) Reply

    Hot Springs and Aerial Tramway looks so inviting. Most of my friends work in CA so we are planning a trip there soon. It seems there is so much to do in California, even my friend living there has no clue. Bookmarked your post for the trip 🙂

  23. Hannah Reply

    Palm spring is just picture perfect! A well written piece. Thank you for sharing! I’d be lucky if I ever get to go!

  24. Jesper, The Biveros Effect Reply

    Interesting to hear what Palm Springs actually has to offer. I have heard the city being mentioned so many times, but I have never thought about what’s actually there. Hiking would probably be one of my first choice if ever going. 🙂

  25. Gabor Reply

    Palms Springs look like an awesome destination if you want to get away from the busy city life. I love the landscape on your photos, I would be happy to do a hike around there and visit those springs too. Also the Aerial Tramway looks interesting too. Thanks for this post.

  26. Sherianne Reply

    I go to Palm Springs often and LOVE the Thursday night street fair… and date shakes! I didn’t know there is a waterfall, I need to check it now that the droughts over!

  27. Roxanne Bamboat Reply

    I’ve never been to Palm Springs but it looks like there is plenty to do. Those swimming pools look incredibly inviting but I think the Spa is my idea of relaxation more than anything else 😉

  28. Megan Indoe Reply

    Palm Springs is one of our favorite weekend getaways in Southern California! We love the retro vibe the downtown area has and that aerial tramway is awesome! Where was that first picture taken?! We have yet to experience sand like that and would love to see it for ourselves!

  29. Michal Reply

    Great pictures! The place which you are showing looks incredible. Need to add it to my destinations list 🙂


  30. Iuliana Marchian Reply

    I’m passionate about deserts. The sand dunes are my favorite place to go, but I must admit that I’ve never thought of going to a spa in a desert. Thanks or sharing this tips about Palm Springs. pretty good ideas for future trips.

  31. Cori Reply

    I’m not big on spas or relaxation, but I loved Palm Springs for the architecture! It’s worth a detour on the way between LA and Joshua Tree.

  32. Patricia Reply

    I can’t believe I haven’t been to Palm Springs yet! I’ve been around it, but haven’t managed to actually spend any real time there. I’d love to try one of their famous spas, and I’m a huge fan of hot springs so Desert Hot Springs would definitely get a visit from us! Plus, Andy loves hiking, and we here there are many gorgeous spots in the area. The tramway looks like an amazing way to get an overview of the area!! Time to get myself to Palm Springs! Is that first photo of Kelso Dunes?

  33. Tony (tonyandkimoutdooradventures) Reply

    Thanks for the read. California is one place on the cards shortly. Good to have some ideas other than the strip. I loved the desert photos.

  34. The Travel Ninjas Reply

    This really makes me want to get back to California. When I lived in LA, I visited the desert many times. I loved the haunting desert landscapes. I never took the cable car though. That looks like a great way to taken the view.

  35. Paige W Reply

    I could totally relax in that Desert Hot Springs pool. It looks fantastic! I love that rock formation that looks like two lovers snuggling. So beautiful! I really want to get to Hot Springs now!

  36. Anne Reply

    You had me at the first photo but if spas, wellness and swimming pools are on the age too, I want some. Think there might be even be Flights direct for me!

  37. Izzy Reply

    The only real memories I have of living in California as a child was going to Palm Springs during the weekends with my family. My dad had an obsession with the hot springs and my favorite time was when we did the mud bath! To this day, I still carry an obsession for hot springs and would love to revisit Palm Springs as an adult. This post has absolutely inspired a trip!

  38. elaine therese Reply

    Great read! I’ve heard a lot about Palm Springs but never really know what’s in there. I wanna visit California soon, and this is really inviting! 🙂

  39. Punita Malhotra Reply

    The curvy road is so wonderful to go on a drive there. And I think those stone mountains resemble the shape of humans. Great pictures.

  40. Becky Angell Reply

    Wow so much to do, I am not really a sit and relax kinda girl but the Hiking and hot springs look amazing. Defintely something to add to the bucket list 🙂

  41. Christie Reply

    Palm Springs looks like a great place to visit. I love how there is such a variety of things to do. The spa looks so relaxing, and the hiking looks gorgeous.

  42. Melissa Reply

    Looking at the first photo, I wouldn’t have even guessed it was in the US. Palm Springs looks like it has an awesome combination of natural beauty, hiking, and hot springs. I’d never even considered visiting before, but now I’m dying to go!

  43. Ami Bhat Reply

    Now I know why Palm springs is such a Hollywood place. It is gorgeous and quite rugged and yet luxurious. How expensive is it though?

  44. Kavey at Kavey Eats Reply

    I’ve never really thought of Palm Springs as a dsetination even though I’ve been to CA a few times. I’m particularly interested to learn about the hot springs (don’t know why I didn’t realise about those) and also the Aerial tram.

  45. Rashmi and Chalukya Reply

    Wow, we had no idea there is so much to do in the Palm Springs. Trekking around Palm Canyon Trail sound like fun and so does the aerial tramway. And we would definitely want to visit the 40-foot waterfall in Tahquitz Canyon. Thanks for this informative post.

  46. Rebecca Reply

    I love Palm Springs. It’s one of the easiest and best sunny destination getaways from Seattle. I was at the airport yesterday talking to a woman who was going to Palm Springs because she needed an escape from our rainy/dreary winter.

  47. Rhonda Albom Reply

    That spa is calling my name right now. And just before I relax, I want to spend a bit of time enjoying the ruggedness. Maybe a short hike, then a message. I haven’t been to Palm Springs, although I did live in California for 15 years. Now, I want to go.

  48. Evie Reply

    Love love love! Palm Springs has been on my list for so many years and now you’ve made me even more keen! This is such an awesome list of things to do…going to share on my FB too!

  49. Ryazan Reply

    WOW!! Palm Spring is calling. I’ve always wanted to visit California and this definitely made me want to consider visiting Palm Spring. Thanks for sharing this! Would be so cool to try that aerial tramway. 🙂

  50. Barb Reply

    This post just proved me once again that California is such an amazing naturally diverse state. I visited the deserts in Nevada, in Arizona and Utah but yet to see the desert in Cali

  51. Megan Jerrard Reply

    We love Palm Springs – as outdoor enthusiasts my favorite way to spend a day is with a morning swim, hiking in the afternoon followed by an evening hot springs 😀

  52. Lara Dunning Reply

    I never new Palm Springs had a tram and hot springs! Now I am rethinking it. I’ll have to stay tuned to flight deals there.

  53. Clare Reply

    It looks like a great area to visit and so much to do. I never made it that far west when i did my 2 month trip around the US, but I will be back and I will go to this area. Would love to do some hiking, relax in the spa, see the hot springs, relax by the pool!!

  54. Fábio Inácio Reply

    It looks an amazing place with everything that we need. Exercise and relax together in a calm place full of beautiful landscapes.

  55. Indrani Reply

    Wow! Very impressive! And the scenes you got to see… I am jealous!
    Hope I get to set foot there some day.

  56. Nisha Reply

    I have fallen in love with your photos. The one of the road seemingly merging into the clouds is spectacular. This is a nice little guide on Palm Springs and hope to use it if and when I visit California.

  57. Suruchi Reply

    I never knew there is so much to do in Palm Springs. Your pictures are beautiful. I would love to explore those trails as well as soothe myself with those hot springs. And that tramway views also looks exciting. Hope to visit this place some day.

  58. Emily Reply

    Something for everyone in Palm Springs. I would be straight to the spa. The hiking in those red mountains looks like a great experience, as does the cable car. My kids would love the hot springs!

  59. Where Monica Goes Reply

    You make me want to visit California ASAP! First, let me commend you for your wonderful and breathtaking photos! I especially like the palm springs featured photo. It would be nice to go hiking and see that wonderful canyon over there and try the hot springs, too. Truly, there are many things to do to unwind in California

  60. Wanderlust Vegans Reply

    We would love to go to Coachella music fesitival. It looks like one of the best music festivals out there in the US. Palm Springs looks like a beautiful place with lots of stuff to do.

  61. Ana Ojha Reply

    I’d be traveling to the California by the end of this year! Can’t wait to explore Palm Springs! Thanks for the recommendation!

  62. Dane Reply

    I’ve never been but the californian desert has always looked so amazing. Your photos show just how diverse it is. I have been planning a trip there for this year and I had no idea about the hot springs so I am deffs going to check that out!!

  63. Jitaditya Narzary Reply

    Loved all the sights. The lizard reminded me of the film Rango. Apart from that, I think my favourite views include the smooth roads with mountains on the horizon and the aerial tramway.

  64. Parnashree Devi Reply

    Palm Springs looks absolutely amazing. I can see why this is one of the favorite places for people who wants to be away from the hustle and bustle of a chaotic city. I am pretty much in love with the spa options and swimming pools. Loved your pictures.

  65. Elisa Reply

    I had heard of Palm Springs on some movies but I did not have any predefined idea about what this location was. Don’t think I will go to California in the near future but if it happens now I know that Palm Spring has many things which deserve a little detour. Thanks!

  66. Soumya Nambiar Reply

    I haven’t been to Palm springs yet but it seems like an ideal place to just relax. I wouldn’t get out of the pool only but I would love to try the Tramway at least once to see the views. Or I would relax at one of the Spas.

  67. Jetsetter Jenn Reply

    Okay, I’m from Southern California and have yet to visit Palm Springs! Don’t ask me why! It seems like my kind of staycation. Bookmarking for the future, thanks for sharing 🙂

  68. Elizabeth Neas Reply

    I’ve never been to California (other than changing planes in different airports on the way to Hawaii). The idea of the Hot Springs is most tempting. I can close my eyes and imagine how relaxing and restorative they would be. My husband and I are very very fair, so we can’t handle much, as far as outdoor activities, go, but staying in a luxury hotel with great views (with a few spa amenities) would be a wonderful long weekend getaway.

  69. Lian Wright Reply

    I have never been to the west coast of North America and have heard nothing but good things about Palm Springs. I really enjoyed the photos you shared of the lizard and the desert rock formations. They were gorgeous! I also like that there are plenty of spas visitors can get away to for some much needed rest and relaxation. This will have to be a place to visit when I finally make it out west!

  70. Lisa Favre Reply

    California is just a wonderful place to visit. I have only been once but I remember loving it oh-so very much! Those hot springs seem like the perfect getaway… would not mind doing that!

  71. Melanie Reply

    I have never been to Palm Springs but have always wanted to visit. I would like to go hiking and see the outdoor nature aspects of Palm Springs. I would definitely have to check out a spa or two, though!

  72. Bites for Foodies Reply

    I’ve never been to Palm Springs before however, I’m going away on a girls weekend in May, and this post has me so excited! I cannot wait to chill at the beach and spend time with my girlfriends!

  73. Betty Reply

    Haha what great timing for this post! We are heading to Palm Spring in a couple of weeks for vacation. I am excited to see the big swimming pools and hiking areas. Can’t wait to go with the family!

  74. Mommy Hates Cooking Reply

    What a beautiful view! When I think of California, I always envision sky scrapers and people…everywhere. It is hard for me to think of it a serene destination. I think I need to add Palm Springs to my bucket list! Healing hot springs have always intrigued me!

  75. Debra Hawkins Reply

    These photos make me want to go to Palm Springs so badly! I have always heard of it, but have never researched it very closely. You have me convinced! It is our next vacation destination!

  76. Allison Judkins Reply

    I love Palm Springs. Living in Las Vegas I am between LA and Palm Springs. I can say I escape there at least once or twice a year for hiking and of course Coachella Music Festival. Apart from all that, Palm Springs has a certain style to it that makes it so charming. I love the ranch style homes and pops of desert color you see everywhere.

  77. Erica M Poyaua Reply

    So many things t do there! My favorite and what I’d love to experience is the hot spring in the desert.. maybe it is great in winter? Or does it snow in the desert? I feel like I sound stupid >_< Anyway, I could be in Palm Springs if I could afford! I'd love to go there!

  78. Paula - Gone with the Wine Reply

    So much going on in California! I have been here for 6 years now, and I still keep finding new and interesting places to go to. We just finished a road trip and drove around the Palm Springs too.

  79. Tonya Reply

    Palm Springs has long been on my list of places to visit. I’ve been to California a number of times and each time I leave with a list of more destinations and attractions to see within the state.

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