Palm Springs is a resort city in the California desert. It became a destination during the 1950s and 1960s when Hollywood movie stars flocked there in droves. Nowadays, the area offers entertainment for all ages, although the most common demographics consists of retirees. Palm Springs offers a wealth of indoor and outdoor activities. Known for its hiking, mid-century modern architecture, stunning natural beauty and sparkling pools, Palm Springs has the perfect blend of outdoor activities and casual relaxation.
Palm Springs is also a favorite for gay travelers and naturist communities.
|Daily highs (°F)||71||74||80||88||96||104||108||107||102||91||79||69|
|Nightly lows (°F)||45||48||52||57||64||71||78||78||72||62||52||44|
Data from NOAA (1981-2010)
- Palm Springs International Airport (IATA: PSP). Located right in the heart of Palm Springs. Scheduled daily flight connections with major cities throughout the United States and Canada. Served by Westjet and all major US airlines except Southwest. Palm Springs International Airport is also popular for general aviation and business jet travelers. Air taxi and aircraft charter companies such as Air Royale International and Desert Jet provide private aircraft charter services from this airport. You can take Palm Springs bus number 24 to go from the airport to downtown Palm Springs. The bus does not stop right at the terminal; you'll need to catch the bus one block west of the airport at Civic Drive and East Tahquitz Canyon Way.
- LA/Ontario International Airport in Ontario, about 70 miles to the west of Palm Springs, has many more flight connections and is the closest airport served by Southwest Airlines.
- Amtrak has a station at 300 North Indian Canyon Drive (.6 mi south of Interstate 10), 1-800-USA-RAIL (872-7245). Amtrak's Sunset Limited route connects Palm Springs with Los Angeles and with Arizona and points eastward with three westbound and three eastbound trains per week (arriving Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday). Amtrak also provides Palm Springs with connections to and from the San Joaquins trains, which run up California's Central Valley to the Bay Area and Sacramento, via multiple daily Amtrak Thruway motorcoach runs to and from Bakersfield. Be aware that there are no rental car agencies that provide shuttles to the Amtrak station in Palm Springs and there is no public transportation available there. The "station" is really just an open platform without any building. Taxis from the Palm Springs Amtrak to the Palm Springs airport (where the rental cars are available) is about $30 (2008). The Amtrak bus station is at 200 E Taquitz Canyon Road, and is the preferred method to get to Palm Springs via Amtrak. The LA/Orange County line runs through Fullerton and has only one stop between there and Palm Springs, at downtown Riverside.
- Another option is to take the Surfliner train to Fullerton. Then, take an Amtrak motorcoach to Palm Springs Airport or downtown Palm Springs. The Amtrak bus stop is at 190 North Indian Canyon Drive.
From Los Angeles take Interstate 10 or Route 60 East towards Phoenix – 2 hours. From San Diego take Interstate 215 north to Route 60 East – 2 hours. From Phoenix take Interstate 10 West to Indian Canyon South – 4 hours. From Las Vegas take Interstate 15 South to Interstate 10 East (in San Bernardino) – 4 hours.
Palm Springs has a pedestrian friendly downtown. Visitors can enjoy the palm tree lined streets along Palm Canyon Drive and Indian Canyon Drive. Many boutique shops, outdoor restaurant and art galleries line the streets.
Rent a car at the airport, or if you want to splurge, numerous limousine services are available, including West Coast Transportation, Cardiff Limousine and A-1 Sahara Limo.
The main thoroughfares through downtown are one-way only between Alejo and Ramon. Palm Canyon Drive is the southern route, and the home to most restaurants, hotels, and entertainment venues. Indian Canyon Drive runs north, and also has many, though fewer, attractions. Highway 111 runs south from I-10, then east-west along the hill side and connects all the cities in the Palm Springs area. This road has lights and lots of traffic, so if you are going far, you should drive out and hop onto Interstate 10. S.
Palm Canyon Drive is usually busy and can be hard to find a parking place on the weekends and at night. There is ample free parking in the many city owned parking lots and garages, except for Thursday through Saturday nights.
Most of the major car rental companies are represented at the airport.
- Sun Bus, +1-800-347-8628, run by the city, has routes around the town and to some neighboring resort cities. Fares for one ride are: $1.00 for adults 18-59, 85¢ for youths 5-17, 50¢ for seniors 60+, with medicaid and disabled. A transfer that allows unlimited rides for two hours costs 25¢. A day pass for unlimited rides costs $3.00 for adults, $2.00 for youths between 5 and 17 years old, and $1.50 for seniors 60 years and older with a medicare card, DMV Driver License, Senior ID card, SunLine Half-Fare ID card. A 10-ride pass costs $10.00 for adults, $8.50 for youths and $5 for seniors.
Route 111 serves downtown Palm Springs south of Vista Chino. Route 24 servers the northern part of downtown Palm Springs (north of East Tachevah Drive)
- [Windsor Limousine Service http://www.WindsorLimoService.com], +1 855-313-6080. Executive Limousine and Town Car Service.
- [Limo Palm Springs http://www.limopalmsprings.com], +1 760-832-7500. Executive Limousine Service
Palm Springs and the surrounding environs are mostly flat and dry and can make for good cycling during the cooler months. Numerous rental facilities can be found around town.
- Palm Springs Aerial Tramway, 1 Tramway Rd, ☎ +1 760 325-1391. The "one" thing to do in Palm Springs if you only have a limited amount of time, and a good place to go to get away from the heat. Incredible views at night, and snow in the winter. Beware that the official address, is the address of the Visitor Center. To get to the tram car base station, you need to drive 10 minutes or walk about 2 hours. There is no shuttle.
- Indian Canyons. Tahquitz Canyon, Palm Canyon, Andreas Canyon and Murray Canyon, were sacred Native sites, now open to the public for hiking.
- Historic Plaza Theatre, 128 South Palm Canyon Dr, ☎ +1 760 327-0225. The home of The Fabulous Palm Springs Follies, featuring talented and energetic seniors singing and dancing. Matinee at 1:30PM and evening show at 7PM.
- Palm Springs Art Museum, 101 Museum Dr, ☎ +1 760 325-7186. Founded in 1933, the museum hosts special exhibits and work from its permanent collection which includes Ruscha, Robert Arneson, Nathan, Charles Russell, Frederic Remington and Native American and Mesoamerican Art.
- Palm Springs Air Museum, 745 N. Gene Autry Trail, ☎ +1 760 778-6262. Nice place to go to if you have half a day to spare. Home to great condition WWII airplanes, etc.
- Palm Springs International Film Festival. Held the first two weeks of January. One of the largest film festivals in North America. A star-studded black tie gala, it is open to public with the purchase of gala tickets.
- Palm Springs International Festival of Short Films. Largest short film festival in North America; second largest in the world. An Academy sanctioned festival. Fifty of the short films screened at this festival have been nominated for Academy Awards. The public can meet up-and-coming directors and actors at special parties.
- Agua Caliente Cultural Museum, 219 S. Palm Canyon Dr, ☎ +1 760 778-1079. The history and culture of the Agua Caliente Tribe is on display. Admission is free.
- Thursdays – Thursday Street Fair, downtown with craft and food booths, and during the spring season live music
- Saturdays - Farmers Market, 8AM–12:30PM adjacent to the Camelot Theatres at 2300 E. Baristo Road (2 miles from downtown)
and a Saturday Flea Market in nearby Palm Desert
- Palm Springs International Film Festival
- Modernism Week
- Desert Concours d’Elegance
- Festival of Native Film & Culture
- Tour de Palm Springs
- Arthur Lyons’ Film Noir Festival
- Restaurant Week
- ANA Inspiration – One of the five major championships of women's golf, held at Mission Hills Country Club and ending on the first Sunday of April.
- Girls Weekend (formerly Dinah Shore Weekend) – An annual gathering of lesbians (and those who sympathize with LGBT causes) that coincides with the ANA Inspiration. (The former name of "Dinah Shore Weekend" honors the late entertainer, who founded the golf tournament that once bore her name.)
- White Party
- Palm Springs International Festival of Short Films
- 4 July Celebration
- Cinema Diverse Gay and Lesbian Films
- American Heat Bike Show
- Exotic Car Show and Auction
- Greater Palm Springs Pride
- Festival of Lights Parade
- Veterans Day Parade
- Walk of the Inns
- Tree Lighting Ceremony at Aerial Tramway
- Tahquitz Creek Golf Resort. Consists of two spectacular 18-hole golf courses, both offer gorgeous views. Golf Digest recently rated Tahquitz Creek Golf Resort as "one of the best places to play"
- Indian Canyons Golf Resort.
- Spa Resort Casino, 401 E. Amado Rd, ☎ +1 760 883-1000. Offers live entertainment, restaurants, a players club, and over 1000 slot machines.
- Art. Palm Springs has more than a dozen art galleries featuring local artists and desert themes.
- Desert Hills Premium Outlets in Cabazon. Large outlet mall with over 100 stores.
The annual Palm Springs Desert Resorts Restaurant Week offers an opportunity to try a number of restaurants at a discounted rate.
- Rainbow Bar & Grill, 216 S. Indian Canyon Ave. The best Sunday brunch downtown.
- Tylers Burgers, 149 South Indian Canyon Dr. This small hamburger joint, famous for their sliders, is considered by locals to have the best hamburgers in Palm Springs. Only open for lunch. Be sure to get there early or be prepared to wait.
- Kaiser Grille, 205 S. Palm Canyon Dr, ☎ +1 760 323-1003. Good American food right in the middle of downtown Palm Springs.
- The Chop House, 262 S. Palm Canyon Dr, ☎ +1 760 320-4500. Steakhouse along the main drag of Palm Springs.
- Le Vallauris, 385 W. Tahquitz Canyon Way, ☎ +1 760 325-5059. Expensive, but good French food off of S. Palm Canyon Drive.
- Riccio's Steak & Seafood, 495 N Palm Canyon Dr. Steak and seafood from an iconic restaurant family. Patio dining on Palm Canyon Drive.
- El Mirasol, 1450 E. Palm Canyon Dr. Voted the best Mexican food in the desert by the readers of Palm Springs Life.
- Melvyn's, 200 W. Ramon Rd. Old world style featured on "Lifestyles of the Rich & Famous. Live entertainment and happening bar scene.
- Margarita's, 1000 E/ Tahquitz Canyon. Eclectic menu from Mexican to Steak and Sushi. Live entertainment.
- Blue Guitar, 120 S. Palm Canyon Dr. This blues and jazz bar is located on the second story in downtown Palm Springs. Featuring a live band on the weekends for $10, the music will get you up and going. The drinks are bit pricey, but the atmosphere is well worth it.
- Best Western Inn at Palm Springs, 1633 South Palm Canyon, ☎ +1 760 325-9177, toll-free: +1-800-222-4678, fax: +1 760 325-9177. Renovated guestrooms with features like a 24-hour outdoor pool, spa, and sundeck, and wireless broadband Internet access.
- Best Western Las Brisas, 222 S Indian Canyon Dr, ☎ +1 760 325-4372, toll-free: +1-800-346-5714, fax: +1 760 320-1371.
- Cambridge Inn, 1277 South Palm Canyon Dr. 66 rooms, many with private patios, and the heated pool and Jacuzzi spa.
- El Rancho Lodge, 1330 E Palm Canyon Dr, ☎ +1 760 327-1339, fax: +1 760 327-7689. Small motel with some nice features A great library of books and DVDs and DVD players in every room, friendly owners/managers, nice pool and hot tub in the courtyard and Louise, the resident dog will win over your heart.
- Los Arboles Hotel & El Mirasol Restaurant, 266 Via Altamira (I-10 to Highway 111, left on Vista Chino, right on Indian Canyon Dr., left at Via Altamira.), ☎ +1 760 459-3605. Check-in: 3PM, check-out: 11AM. A charming boutique hotel near downtown, built in the 1930’s with a distinctive Spanish Colonial style, Los Arboles was renovated in 2011. Has a heated pool, Jacuzzi, free Wi-Fi and indoor and outdoor special event space. On-site Mexican restaurant. $120–259.
- Desert Sun Resort, 1533 N. Chaparral Rd, ☎ +1 760 322-5800, toll-free: +1-800-960-4786. PA nudist resort in the heart of downtown, offering hotel rooms and villas. There are three pools, spa service, a restaurant and bar and nightclub.
- Rendezvous Bed & Breakfast, 1420 N. Indian Canyon Dr (From Hwy 111, Turn L on Vista Chino, Turn R on Indian Canyon Dr., L at Stevens. Located on the corner of Stevens and Indian Canyon Dr.), toll-free: +1-800-485-2808. Check-in: 3PM, check-out: 12AM. Has a pool. All rooms feature a King bed, TV, DVD & CD players, mini-fridge and microwave. Some rooms have whirlpool tubs. $160–240.
- Courtyard, 1300 Tahquitz Canyon Way, ☎ +1 760 322-6100, toll-free: +1-800-321-2211, fax: +1 760 322-6091.
- Terra Cotta Inn Clothing Optional Resort and Spa, 2388 E. Racquet Club Rd, toll-free: +1-800-786-6938. Considered a "mainstream" nudist resort.
- Villa Royale Inn, 1620 Indian Trail, ☎ +1 760 327-2314, fax: +1 760 322-3794. Features spacious guestrooms, a restaurant, two heated pools, and landscaped grounds with panoramic mountain views.
- Old Ranch Inn, 220 South Patencio Rd, toll-free: +1-877-565-3726. Check-in: 3PM, check-out: 11AM. Located in the Historic Tennis Club District, which is in the heart of the Downtown Village. $169 ~ $219 USD.
- Vagabond Inn Palm Springs, 1699 South Palm Canyon Dr, ☎ +1 760 325-7211, fax: +1 760 322-9269. Check-in: 4PM, check-out: 12PM.
- Alexander Inn, 1425 S. Via Soledad, ☎ +1 760 327-4970, e-mail: email@example.com. A secluded retreat with lush gardens, mountain views and one & two bedroom villas with separate living/dining areas and kitchens.
- Colony Palms Hotel, 572 N. Indian Canyon Dr. Recently overhauled, this is Moroccan themed hotel. Accommodation ranges from simple king rooms to jr suites and casitas with outdoor patios and tubs. The Purple Palm restaurant/bar is at the edge of the pool. Free Wi-Fi and self parking for guests, valet available on weekends. From $199.
- Le Parker Méridien, 4200 East Palm Canyon Dr, ☎ +1 760 770-5000. A fancy boutique hotel with quirky art and fun modern design. Norma's is a five-star diner with a twist. $285–615.
- Renaissance Palm Springs, 888 E Tahquitz Canyon Way (3 blocks from Palm Canyon Drive and directly linked to the Convention Center), ☎ +1 760 322-6000, fax: +1 760 322-5351.
- The Willows Historic Palm Springs Inn, 412 W. Tahquitz Canyon Way, ☎ +1 760 320-0771. One of Palm Springs’ 10 oldest sites. Hollywood history with modern comforts. AAA Four-Diamond Award. From $275.
- Del Marcos Hotel, 225 w. Baristo Road, toll-free: +1-800-676-1214, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Check-in: 3:00, check-out: 11:00. A 17 room boutique hotel that has been modernized and restored. Originally built in 1947 out of native stone and redwood, surrounding a shimmering pool, featuring a U-shape plan which encourages socializing among guests. Designed by the world famous, William F. Cody, the Del Marcos is one of the most photographed hotels in Palm Springs. Walking distance to downtown Palm Springs and nestled up against the majestic San Jacinto Mountains. The hotel features standard rooms to suites with full kitchens and private patios. Complimentary breakfast, happy hour, bikes, parking and wi-fi. $119-$299.
- All Worlds Resorts, 526 Warm Sands Dr, ☎ +1 760 323-7505. Clothing-optional gay resort in the heart of the Warm Sands area. Two sparkling pools are the centerpieces of their courtyard gardens with mountain vistas. Has a steam room and sauna.
- Canyon Club Hotel, 960 N. Palm Canyon Dr, ☎ +1 760 778-8042. 32 rooms surround the sun-drenched courtyard. Eight of the suites have fully-equipped kitchens, eight have private patios.
- Casitas Laquita, 450 E. Palm Canyon Dr, ☎ +1 760 416-9999. Fifteen rooms and suites. Single-story building resembling Spanish casitas style. Romance Suite with private yard and jacuzzi. All rooms have full kitchens and some with fireplaces. Adult-only property. Lesbian-friendly hotel.
- Chaps Inn, 312 Camino Monte Vista, toll-free: +1-800-445-8916. Secluded environment with a broad range of amenities. Heated pool and steam room. Clothing is not required.
- Chestnutz, 641 East San Lorenzo Rd, toll-free: +1-800-621-6973. Hotel for men who want to be pampered.
- Desert Paradise Resort Hotel, 615 Warm Sands Dr, toll-free: +1-800-342-7635. Clothing-optional gay men's resort at the center of gay Warm Sands.
- El Mirasol Villas, 525 Warm Sands Dr, toll-free: +1-800-327-2985. Walled and gated, the resort is in the Warm Sands area.
- Hacienda at Warm Sands, 586 Warm Sands Dr, toll-free: +1-800-359-2007. The Hacienda at Warm Sands is a member of the World's Foremost Gay Hotels.
- Helios – A Men's Resort, 280 East Mel Ave.
- La Joya Inn (Inn Exile), 545 Warm Sands Dr, ☎ +1 760 327-6413, toll-free: +1-800-962-0186, e-mail: info@Lajoyainn.com. Private gay men's clothing-optional resort in the heart of Palm Springs. $89–169.
- La Dolce Vita Resort & Spa, 1491 S. Via Soledad, toll-free: +1-877-644-4111. La Dolce Vita Resort, "The Sweet Life" is inspired by the beauty of the Tuscany region in Italy. Has 20 guest rooms and suites.
- Queen of Hearts, 435 Avenida Olancha, toll-free: +1-888-275-9903. Palm Springs' first very lesbian friendly hotel is located in the quiet Deepwell neighborhood, just two blocks from East Palm Canyon.
- Santiago Resort, 650 San Lorenzo Rd, toll-free: +1-800-710-7729. Santiago Resort is a 24-room resort, marketed primarily to the gay male community.
- Tortuga del Sol, 715 East San Lorenzo Rd, toll-free: +1-888-541-3777. An owner-operated clothing-optional resort catering to gay male singles and couples.
- Triangle Inn, 555 East San Lorenzo Rd, toll-free: +1-800-732-7555. Romantic and relaxing or fun and frisky.
- Vista Grande Resort, 571 Warm Sands Dr, toll-free: +1-800-669-1069. Has multi-level gardens, blue lagoon, waterfalls with ring of fire and a lively steam room.
- Warm Sands Villas, 555 Warm Sands Dr, ☎ +1 760 323-3005, toll-free: +1-800-357-5695, e-mail: email@example.com. Intimate gay men's resort, close to downtown.
- Joshua Tree National Park. This desert park is a great day trip to take while at Palm Springs. You can get there in less than an hour by going north on route 62. Take a minimum of four hours to do the loop from the north through the south of the park. Camping is allowed as well as rock climbing.
- Idyllwild is a mountain resort approximately 45 minutes drive away on the beautiful Palms to Pines highway. It can also be reached by a scenic 10 mile hike from the top of the Palm Springs Tramway.
|Routes through Palm Springs|
|Los Angeles ← Ontario ←||W E||→ Yuma → Tucson|
|San Bernardino ← Desert Hot Springs ←||W E||→ Cathedral City → Indio|
|END ←||N S||→ Cathedral City → El Centro|