Palm Springs Getaway: The Ultimate Travel Guide
We loooove Palm Springs. Seriously, we’re head over heels, totally obsessed.
Palm trees, mid-century modern architecture, boutiques, hiking trails… what’s not to love?!
Whether you’re planning on visiting this sunny locale from across the country or you’re a SoCal native who’s itching for a getaway, we’ve got you covered. This is our ultimate travel guide for a fun-filled Palm Springs getaway!
Palm Springs Facts
Palm Springs lies in the Colorado Desert of California, within the Coachella Valley (yes, that Coachella). The vast desert landscape is interrupted by Mount San Jacinto, Southern California’s highest peak.
With about 44,500 people calling Palm Springs their year-round home, Palm Springs is best known as a resort town, located about two hours away from the hub city of Los Angeles. This made it the perfect getaway for the Hollywood elite in the 1950s (and us in the 2020s).
Why is Palm Springs so alluring? Well, fabulous weather, for starters! Average high temperatures in Palm Springs rarely dip below 70 degrees, making it the perfect place for poolside loungin’. Break out your Flower Power Plunge One Piece in the middle of winter, and get your tan on. How awesome is that?!
The best time to visit this Southern California gem is actually January through May and October through December. Summertime in the Colorado Desert can get hot, but TBH, a lil summer heat doesn’t keep many people away!
The desert oasis of Palm Springs made it a celebrity playground back in the day, and for good reason. This glamorous resort town has no shortage of recreation options.
Things To Do in Palm Springs
What do you look forward to most while on vacation? Maybe being outdoors and exploring the trails is your vibe. Perhaps laying out in the sunshine and recharging is more your scene, or you’re a part of the shopping and dining crowd. There’s truly something for everyone in Palm Springs.
Palm Springs Aerial Tram
A trip to Palm Springs should always include the aerial tramway. The Palm Springs Aerial Tramway opened in 1963 to the delight of tourists and locals alike. Since then, millions of people have taken the ride from the Coachella Valley floor up the side of Mount San Jacinto!
Once you’ve made the 10-minute journey up the mountain (and marveled at the gorgeous views along the way), there are a ton of activities to explore! With over 50 miles of trails, dining experiences high above the clouds, and fun in the winter snow, you never know what delights await you at the top. Wait, what? Snow?! You heard it here babes — the weather at the top of the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway is usually about 30 to 40 degrees colder than the valley floor. Brrrr!
Did you plan your Palm Springs trip during the winter months? Your suitcase may end up carrying both your Psychedelic Zebra Bandeau One Piece and a snow jacket. Get yourself a vacation locale that can do both.
Downtown Palm Springs
Cruising around downtown Palm Springs is our idea of the quintessential vacation lifestyle. Do you have your wide-brimmed sun hat and Sito Seduction Sunnies ready?
Downtown Palm Springs truly has it all: Mom and pop shops sit in between fine dining destinations and high-end shopping opportunities. Palm Canyon Drive, the main thoroughfare downtown, is dotted with boutiques and cute spots to pop into and check out.
You can practically spend a whole day roaming around downtown Palm Springs, grabbing brunch at a hip restaurant, shopping along Palm Canyon Drive, and ducking into one of Palm Springs’ many notable art galleries along the way.
Don’t miss Palm Springs’ Walk of the Stars as you tour downtown. It’s like a mini version of the Hollywood Walk of Fame! See if you can spot your faves.
Are your sandals not up to the task of walking back to your hotel? Rent a bike and watch the colorful sights of downtown fly by. It’ll be quicker to head slightly north, check out The Shops at 1345, and grab some accessories to complement your Palm Springs-bound swimsuit.
Speaking of downtown Palm Springs, will your desert vacation take you there on a Thursday? Village Fest is a must during your trip.
This darling street fair boasts a diverse variety of vendors selling artwork, produce, jewelry, and everything in between. We love a lil farmer’s market vibe, that’s for sure!
This event takes place on Thursday nights, giving us a little taste of the community nightlife that Palm Springs has to offer.
Moorten Botanical Garden
The Moorten Botanical Garden has been a Palm Springs staple since 1938, and we can definitely see why. This cactarium (okay, what a cute name!) displays thousands of types of desert-dwelling plants. If you have room in your luggage, they even sell little cacti and succulent cuties. What a darling souvenir to take home with you!
Wander around the quaint and tranquil space, learning about the plants that surround you.
Bonus: the picturesque greenhouse at the Moorten Botanical Garden makes for the perfect Insta photo op. What a drool-worthy spot to model your In a Trance Tropical Kimono.
Palm Springs Art Museum
You’ll for sure want to add the Palm Springs Art Museum to your agenda while checking out downtown!
The Palm Springs Art Museum has both rotating exhibits and permanent displays to brag about, and they place an emphasis on Southern California artists. Even the museum’s grounds and buildings are works of art, leaning into that contemporary desert feel we all know and love.
The Tennis Club
You can drive or walk around the famous Tennis Club District of Palm Springs, which is just a short distance from downtown.
The Tennis Club Neighborhood encompasses what comes to mind when we think of Palm Springs. Mid-century modern homes dazzle with their gorgeous architecture, while exclusive cars are parked in the driveways. It’s a ton of fun to gaze at the one-of-a-kind houses that line these palm tree-studded streets.
If you know where to look, you just might catch a glimpse of Robolights, a quirky art installation in a neighborhood yard.
Craving some bonding time with nature while vacationing in Palm Springs? You totally have to experience Indian Canyons! Located a short drive from downtown Palm Springs, Indian Canyons is the definition of a desert oasis.
Indian Canyons comprises multiple hiking trails at various difficulty levels. We are partial to Andreas Canyon for something a little lowkey, and Murray Canyon when we are feeling like breaking a sweat. If you’re lucky, you may even catch a glimpse of the mountain goats that call this area home. SO cute!
Places to Stay in Palm Springs
Boutique hotels and unique Airbnbs are a part of what has put Palm Springs on the map. What kind of space are you seeking to lay your head? Chances are that if you can dream it, Palm Springs has it.
- The Colony Palms Hotel is a luxury experience, close to Indian Canyons. Enjoy the mid-century modern touches adorning the hotel rooms, common areas, and bungalows.
- If you’re after a party atmosphere in the middle of downtown, Hotel Zoso in Palm Springs offers that in spades. Think of the cuties you can woo in our Retro Rainbow Banded Triangle Top and matching Bottoms, as you hang out at the cabanas.
- The Ace Hotel and Swim Club boasts minimalist, desert-centric style AND live music! Live it up in the desert with this classically Palm Springs hotel.
- If your Palm Springs getaway has you vacationing with your honey, the Ingleside Inn is our pick for you two lovebirds. Spanish-style red tile roofs and world-class dining await you!
- The Saguaro is probably one of the most fun hotel experiences in Palm Springs. You’ll be feelin’ like an Instagram superstar with photo ops around every corner. We bet our Wanderlust Solids Over the Shoulder One Piece in black will absolutely spellbind onlookers when you’re posing against the vibrant colors of The Saguaro.
Exploring the Palm Springs Area
Don’t get us wrong: Palm Springs is a destination in and of itself! If you’re looking to venture a little further around the area, you can find some incredible adventures during your Palm Springs getaway.
- Want to know one of our favorite places near Palm Springs? It has to be Joshua Tree National Park. Fun fact: Joshua trees aren’t actually trees, but a species of Yucca. Joshua trees are super unique in that the majority of the world’s Joshua trees are located in the national park itself!
- Located about 10 miles east of Palm Springs is the stunning Coachella Valley Preserve. Trails, views, and rare wildlife are abundant in this protected space.
If you’re looking for an experience that will make your online friends jelly, the Coachella Valley Preserve has just the thing. Peep the glorious Thousand Palms Oasis, where water seeping from the San Andreas Fault lets these palm trees thrive.
- Have you ever heard of Pioneertown? This kitschy Old West-inspired mining town is hidden in the hills about 30 minutes north of Palm Springs.
Even though 1800s history seeps from Pioneertown, this spot wasn’t actually established that long ago! Pioneertown was born in 1946, specifically for shooting movies in the 1940s and 1950s. Westerns may not be made here anymore, but you can still feel like you’re a part of this era while visiting Pioneertown’s main drag.
- Heading back to LA to catch your flight home? Stopping at the Desert Hills Premium Outlets provides a “shop ‘til you drop” experience. If you’re bummed about leaving desert magic behind, you can catch a bit of retail therapy perusing the many shops and stores.
Palm Springs Outfit Ideas
Your Palm Springs itinerary is shaping up, and you’ve got your bags (almost) packed. That’s where we come in! Strut the streets of Palm Springs looking trendy with these outfit ideas.
Look effortlessly chic and oh-so fab in our New Wave Bandeau Bikini Top and New Wave High Waist Bottoms. These bold color ripples fit in naturally against a backdrop of cacti and California Tropicana. Don some Sito Cult Vision Sunglasses to protect your eyes from the glare of the Ace Hotel pool! Don’t forget your Hippie Chic Kimono when you want to grab a fruity drink from the bar.
You’ll be looking sweeter than a cupcake wearing our Groovy Swirl Over the Shoulder One Piece. This swimsuit simply belongs at one of Palm Springs’ exclusive resorts. The darling faux belt buckle calls to the old Hollywood atmosphere that calls Palm Springs home.
We think our Zodiac Cutout One Shoulder Swimsuit is a style your Palm Springs getaway can’t go without. The constellations on this pretty swimsuit mimic the dark night skies of Joshua Tree National Park, while the sexy cutout lets you KNOW you’re on vacation. Sito Good Life Sunglasses, anyone? Make Palm Springs your oyster with this ultimate vacay swimsuit look.
If there’s a city that truly encompasses the aura of Sunshine 79, Palm Springs is a strong contender. This ultimate travel guide to this California desert treasure reminds us of why we adore it so much!
Palm Springs allows you to live your best vacation life! Whether that includes the retro glamor of hanging out at a chic hotel pool, bohemian vibes while touring art galleries, or channeling your inner trail guide out at Indian Canyons.
You’re going to have a blast during your Palm Springs getaway, and we’ll help you look good doing it, too.
Palm Springs | US Census Bureau
Palm Springs Weather | US Climate Data
Coachella Valley Preserve | Bureau of Land Management
Indian Canyons and Palm Canyon | Indian Canyons