Palm Springs Welcome Sign

Palm Springs, California – Funky & Cool

posted in: California Travel | 2

I Didn’t Get It!

The very first time I visited Palm Springs, I didn’t really like it. Honestly! I didn’t get what all the fuss was about and wondered why in the world people visited this desert town for any reason. I really don’t know what it was that didn’t resonate with me on that trip.  

Desert & Dirt

That first visit was around Christmas time over 12 years ago.  My in-laws had just relocated there from San Diego, where they had lived since my husband was in the 6th grade.  When we drove into town that December, all I saw was desert and dirt and all I felt was a hot wind.  The buildings were all low and there was a lot of cactus and palm trees, swaying in the never ending breeze I might add.

Palm Springs golf course viewNo Regrets

I wondered then if my in-laws would regret their move to Palm Springs and pine away for San Diego.  Well, my in-laws are still in Palm Springs and they love it!  And guess what? I do too!

Downtown Palm SpringsGreater Palm Springs

I have visited Palm Springs every year since that first time and sometimes multiple times in a year.  I have come to really love this incredible desert oasis that makes up the Coachella Valley.  Palm Springs, and the outlining towns around it, are like one big spread out metropolis. Palm Springs sits on the west side and the further east you go, you run into the towns of Cathedral City, Rancho Mirage, Palm Desert and onto Indio and Coachella.

Bored? How?

While I am mainly concentrating on Palm Springs, the area as a whole has SO MUCH to offer all visitors. There is always something going on in this vibrant area like festivals, plays, markets, concerts – all the time.  If you are bored in Palm Springs, it’s your own fault.

Palm Springs overlookCommunity & Diversity

With all that the city has going on, community and diversity is what this city has in spades.  The people that live here love their city and it shows.  They participate in the events, while at the same time welcoming the throngs of tourists that are there too.  

Palm Springs statueThat Lovin’ Feeling

From the tourists to the local inhabitants, the representation is of all types of people.  I have rarely visited a town that I truly felt like I fit right in or that didn’t have it’s own type of style.  Palm Springs is every style and everyone fits in.  Whatever you want to be, you can be here and not feel judged.  I love that feeling of inclusion and I think as a whole, our society needs more of that.

Lucille Ball statueHonors & Reinvents

Palm Springs has been hosting tourists and the rich and famous for decades.  It honors its past and reinvents its future. Streets are famously named all around the city and downtown Palm Springs has its own sidewalk of stars to honor those that called the city home and/or helped to make it famous, as so many did.

Hike, Golf, Tram

Young and old visit today to hike the steep mountains surrounding the town, play a round of golf on its incredible number of golf courses, or to take the aerial tram to the top of San Jacinto Peak.  Fun fact – the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway is the largest rotating tramway in the world! It’s quite fun and isn’t to be missed.

Palm Springs aerial tramShopping

Downtown Palm Springs has been rejuvenated over the years and has tons of boutiques and other stores to while away your afternoon.  But don’t discount the myriad of other shopping available in the area from the El Cabazon outlets about 30 minutes west off Interstate 10 to the shopping at El Paseo, a more luxury shopping experience further east in Palm Desert.

S. Palm Canyon DriveEating

The diversity of the restaurants in Palm Springs gives the town a foodie feel.  There are unique and funky little places to more mainstream bigger restaurants.  All have a vibe of their own and you can find just about any type of food that you desire. 

Palm Springs panoramaLocation, Location, Location

What is Palm Springs lacking? I’m not really sure yet. I would say water, but the Southern California beaches are just a couple hours away.  Proximity to big cities is also a plus as Las Vegas and Phoenix are each about a 4 hour drive as well.  

Palm Springs golf course viewsUnique Experience

If you haven’t experienced Palm Springs or the Coachella Valley, you are truly missing something that is one-of-a-kind. I am ever thankful that my in-laws moved to Palm Springs and I always look forward to another visit.

Starbucks downtown Palm SpringsMy Favs

Here is a list of some of my favorite places:

  • LuLu’s
  • Fisherman’s Market & Grill
  • Pinocchio in the Desert
  • Las Casuelas Terraza
  • Walking trail in DeMuth Park
  • Starbucks in downtown P.S.

While you’re here, check out my post on La Jolla, California, if you haven’t already. If you want more information about Palm Springs, click here for their tourism website.

Happy Wandering!

2 Responses

  1. Louise Rahmann

    Thank you so much for sharing the special sights of of our home town. It was great. Love, Louise

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