Palm Springs

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Palm Springs

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Palm Springs [33] 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. Rain is scarce, so the weather is often very nice and dry.

Palm Springs is also a favorite for gay travelers and naturist communities.


Palm Springs has an arid climate. Summertime and autumn are the sunniest, hottest months out of the year, with daytime temperatures climbing into the 90s and 100s F. Winter and spring are much cooler, with nighttime temperatures around freezing.

Get in

By plane

  • Palm Springs International Airport (IATA: PSP), [34]. 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 [35] and Desert Jet [36] provide private aircraft charter services from this airport.

  • LA/Ontario International Airport [37] 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.

By train

  • Amtrak Station, 300 North Indian Canyon Drive (.6 mi south of Interstate 10), 1-800-USA-RAIL (872-7245), [38]. 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).

By car

From Los Angeles, take Interstate 10 East towards Phoenix. Palm Springs is about a two hour drive from most Southern California destination if there is not much traffic.

Get around

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.

By car

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 drags are Highway 111 and S. Palm Canyon Drive. Highway 111 runs east-west along the mountain 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 on Interstate 10. S. Palm Drive is always busy and is hard to find a parking place on the weekends and at night. You should try to park on one of the side roads if possible. Most of the major car rental companies are represented at the airport.

By Bus/Limo/car

  • Sun Bus, +1-800-347-8628, [39]. Run by the city, it has routes around the town and to some neighboring resort cities. Doesn't work with Google Maps as of March 2011.
  • My Chauffeur [40]. 760-321-4001 Bus, Limousine, and Town Car Service.
  • 'Cardiff Limousine' [41]. 800-699-0355 Luxury Limos, Bus Charters, SUV's, Sedans, Prevost Buses & Luxury Mini Coaches.

By bike

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, 760 325-1391, [42]. 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, 1 Tramway Rd, 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.
  • The Indian Canyons. Tahquitz Canyon, Palm Canyon, Andreas Canyon and Murray Canyon, were sacred Native sites, now open to the public for hiking. [43]
  • Historic Plaza Theatre, 128 South Palm Canyon Dr, 760 327-0225, [44]. The home of the 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 Drive, 760 325-7186, [45]. 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 Trl, 760 778-6262, [46]. Nice place to go to if you have half a day to spare. Home to great condition WWII airplanes and more.
  • Palm Springs International Film Festival, [47]. 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, [48]. 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. Held Aug 23-29th, 2007.
  • Agua Caliente Cultural Museum 219 S. Palm Canyon Dr., 760 778-1079. The history and culture of the Agua Caliente Tribe is on display. Admission is free.


January – March

  • Palm Springs International Film Festival
  • Modernism Week
  • Desert Concours d’Elegance
  • Festival of Native Film & Culture
  • Tour de Palm Springs

April – June

  • Arthur Lyons’ Film Noir Festival
  • Restaurant Week
  • Girls Weekend (formerly Dinah Shore Weekend)
  • White Party


  • Palm Springs International Festival of Short Films
  • 4th of July Celebration
  • Cinema Diverse Gay and Lesbian Films

October – December

  • 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 [49]. 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 [50]


  • Spa Resort Casino, 401 E. Amado Rd, 760 883-1000, [51]. Offers live entertainmant, 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, [52]. Large outlet mall with over 100 stores.


The annual Palm Springs Desert Resorts Restaurant Week [53] offers an opportunity to try a number of restaurants at a discounted rate.

  • Tylers Burgers, 149 South Indian Canyon Dr. This small hamburger joint, famous for their sliders, has the best hamburgers in all of Palm Springs. Only open for lunch. Be sure to get there early or be prepared to wait because this is where all the locals eat.
  • Kaiser Grille, 205 S. Palm Canyon Dr, 760 323-1003, [54]. Good American food right in the middle of downtown Palm Springs.
  • The Chop House, 262 S. Palm Canyon Dr, 760 320-4500. Steakhouse along the main drag of Palm Springs.
  • Le Vallauris, 385 W. Tahquitz Canyon Way, 760 325-5059, [55]. 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.
  • Cipollini Osteria, 1260 S. Palm Canyon Dr. Some of the best Italian food in the desert. Live entertainment nightly.
  • 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, (760) 325-9177, Toll-free: (800) 222-4678, Fax: (760) 325-9177, [56]. Best Western Inn offers 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 Drive, (760) 325-4372, Toll-free: 1 800-346-5714, Fax: (760) 320-1371, [57].
  • Cambridge Inn, 1277 South Palm Canyon Drive, [58]. 66 rooms, many with private patios, and the heated pool and Jacuzzi spa.
  • El Rancho Lodge, 1330 E Palm Canyon Dr., 760 327-1339, fax 760 327-7689 [59]. Small motels 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.
  • Motel 6 Downtown, 660 South Palm Canyon Drive, 760 327-4200, Fax: (760) 320-9827, [60]
  • Motel 6 East-E Palm Canyon, 595 East Palm Canyon Drive, 760 325-6129, Fax: (760) 320-9304, [61]


  • Desert Sun Resort, 1533 N. Chaparral Rd. Palm Springs, California 92262, A nudist resort in the heart of downtown Palm Springs offering hotel rooms and villas. There are three pools, spa service, a restaurant and bar and nightclub. 760 322-5800, Toll-free: 800-960-4786, [62]
  • 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.), (800) 485-2808, [1]. checkin: 3:00pm; checkout: 12:00am. Where the romance of the 50’s comes alive! With brilliant colors and great themes this fabulous bed and breakfast is an experience, not just another place to stay. From our scrumptious breakfast, luxurious massages, heated pool, and gorgeous courtyard, to our complimentary cocktail hour we pamper you all along the way. All rooms feature a King bed, Flat Screen TV, DVD & CD players, Mini-fridge, Microwave, and eight of our rooms have two-person whirlpool tubs. For a romantic trip to the desert there is no other choice! Check out our website at $160-240.
  • Chase Hotel, 200 West Arenas Road, toll free: 1 888-320-8867, [63].
  • Courtyard Palm Springs, 1300 Tahquitz Canyon Way, 760 322-6100, Toll-free: 800-321-2211 (Fax: 760 322-6091), [64]
  • Days Inn 1983 N. Palm Canyon Dr., 760-416-2333 [65] Offers comfortable rooms at affordable prices.
  • Terra Cotta Inn Clothing Optional Resort and Spa, 2388 E. Racquet Club Rd. 800-786-6938 [66]. Considered a "mainstream" nudist resort.
  • Villa Royale Inn, 1620 Indian Trail, 760 327-2314, fax 760 322-3794, [67] Features spacious guestrooms, an award-winning restaurant for breakfast and dinner, two heated pools, and exquisitely landscaped grounds framed with panoramic mountain views.
  • Old Ranch Inn, 220 South Patencio Road, +1-877-565-3726, [2]. checkin: 3PM; checkout: 11AM. The Old Ranch Inn is located in the exclusive Historic Tennis Club District and in the heart of the Downtown Village. The Old Ranch Inn is a quaint, intimate hotel with an informal, relaxed atmosphere. Its 8-poolside Suites range in size from large charming, well-appointed Full-Suites to a 1-Bedroom Luxury Apartment with fireplace. $169 ~ $219 USD.
  • Holiday Inn, 1800 E. Palm Canyon Drive, 760-323-1711, [3]. Holiday Inn Hotel voted Holiday Inn's property of the year.
  • Vagabond Inn Palm Springs, 1699 South Palm Canyon Drive, Palm Springs, CA 92264, 760-325-7211, [4]. checkin: 4:00pm; checkout: 12:00pm. Vagabond Inn Palm Springs offers pet friendly rooms, complimentary continental breakfast, family suites, heated swimming pool, spa, cable TV, free WiFi, and other services. (33.801476,-116.5457)


  • Alexander Inn, 1425 S. Via Soledad, +1 (760) 327-4970 (), [5]. The Alexander Inn is a private secluded retreat with lush gardens, dramatic mountain views and spacious one and two bedroom villas with separate living/dining areas and fully equipped kitchens. Relax poolside, play bocce ball in the garden, hike in nearby Tahquitz Canyon, or walk to downtown Palm Springs.
  • Colony Palms Hotel, 572 N. Indian Canyon Dr, [6]. Recently overhauled, this Moroccan themed hotel is comfortable and charming, and staff are welcoming and helpful. Accommodation ranges from simple king rooms, to jr suites and casitas with outdoor patios and tubs. The Purple Palm restaurant/bar sits at the edge of the pool, and is a busy but not too raucous scene on the weekends. Free wifi and self parking for guests, valet available on weekends. From $199.
  • Le Parker Méridien, 4200 East Palm Canyon Drive, +1 (760) 770-5000, [7]. A fancy boutique hotel with quirky art and fun modern design. Norma's is a "five-star diner with a twist", is popular and tasty. $285-615.
  • Renaissance Palm Springs, 888 E Tahquitz Canyon Way, +1 (760) 322-6000 (fax: +1 (760) 322-5351), [8]. Formerly the Wyndham, a good hotel for business or pleasure. Located three blocks from fashionable Palm Canyon Drive and directly linked to the Convention Center.
  • The Willows Historic Palm Springs Inn, 412 W. Tahquitz Canyon Way, +1 (760) 320-0771, [9]. One of Palm Springs’ 10 oldest sites. Hollywood history with modern comforts. AAA Four-Diamond Award. From $275.


  • All Worlds Resorts, 526 Warm Sands Drive, +1 (760) 699-7641, [10]. Clothing optional gay resort located in the heart of the popular Warm Sands area. Two sparkling pools are the centerpieces of our courtyard gardens with their mountain vistas. We also have a steam room and sauna.
  • Bearfoot Inn, 888 N. Indian Canyon Drive, +1 (760) 699-7641, [11]. Clothing optional gay resort geared towards the bear community, but welcomes everyone. The only gay resort in the historic Movie Colony, located within walking distance to great restaurants and Palm Springs’ gay district.
  • Camp Palm Springs, 1466 N. Palm Canyon Drive, +1 (800) 793-0063, [12]. Camp Palm Springs has been designed with the gay man in mind. The atmosphere of a luxury boot camp complex with a wide array of amenities and activities.
  • Canyon Club Hotel, 960 N. Palm Canyon Drive, +1 (760) 778-8042, [13]. Within walking distance to the many shops and restaurants on Palm Canyon Drive. 32 roooms surround the sun-drenched courtyard. Eight of the suites have fully-equipped kitchens, eight have private patios.
  • Casitas Laquita, 450 E. Palm Canyon Drive, +1 (760) 416-9999, [14]. 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.
  • Century Palm Springs, 598 Grenfall Road, +1 (800) 475-5188, [15]. A service oriented boutique resort.
  • Chaps Inn, 312 Camino Monte Vista, +1 (800) 445-8916, [16]. Chaps Inn offers a secluded environment with a broad range of amenities. Heated pool and steam room. Clothing is not required.
  • Chestnutz, 641 East San Lorenzo Road, +1 (800) 621-6973, [17]. Award winning hotel for men who want to be pampered. Revel in the views and gardens.
  • Desert Eclipse, 537 Grenfall Road, +1 (760) 325-0655, [18]. A plush gay men's clothing optional resort.
  • Desert Paradise Resort Hotel, 615 Warm Sands Drive, +1 (800) 342-7635, [19]. The award winning - clothing optional gay men's resort. The very center of GAY Warm Sands.
  • East Canyon Hotel & Spa, 288 East Caminno Monte Vista, +1 (877) 324-6835, [20].
  • El Mirasol Villas, 525 Warm Sands Drive, +1 (800) 327-2985, [21]. Walled and gated, the resort is in the Warm Sands area.
  • Hacienda at Warm Sands, 586 Warm Sands Drive, +1 (800) 359-2007, [22]. The Hacienda at Warm Sands is a member of the World's Foremost Gay Hotels.
  • Helios-A Men's Resort, 280 East Mel Avenue, +000, [23]. This gay Eden has breathtaking views, lavishly appointed guest rooms, sexy gay men from around the world, and an eager but unobtrusive staff that cater to your (almost) every need.
  • Inn Exile, 545 Warm Sands Drive, +1 (800) 962-0186, [24]. Enter through the gates into a new world! Private gay men's clothing optional resort.
  • Inndulge, 601 Grenfall Road, +1 (800) 833-5675, [25]. INNdulge is a legendary award-winning gay men's resort located in the heart of Warm Sands.
  • La Dolce Vita Resort & Spa, 1491 S. Via Soledad, +1 (877) 644-4111, [26]. La Dolce Vita Resort, "The Sweet Life" is inspired by the beauty of the Tuscany region in Italy. Offers 20 elegant guest rooms and suites.
  • Queen of Hearts, 435 Avenida Olancha, +1 (888) 275-9903, [27]. 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 Road, +1 (800) 710-7729, [28]. Santiago Resort is an intimate 24 room luxury resort, marketed primarily to the Gay male community.
  • Tortuga del Sol, 715 East San Lorenzo Road, +1 (888) 541-3777, [29]. An inviting owner operated clothing optional resorts catering to gay male singles and couples.
  • Triangle Inn, 555 East San Lorenzo Road, +1 (800) 732-7555, [30]. Romantic and relaxing or fun and frisky.
  • Vista Grande Resort, 571 Warm Sands Drive, +1 (800) 669-1069, [31]. The multi-level gardens, blue lagoon, waterfalls with ring of fire, lively steam room have made this spectacular Mega Resort a legend.
  • Warm Sands Villas, 555 Warm Sands Drive, +1 (800) 357-5695, [32]. Warm Sands Villas offers charming Spanish architecture with modern amenities.

Get out

  • 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.

Other nearby desert resort cities include Cathedral City, Desert Hot Springs, Rancho Mirage, Palm Desert, Indian Wells, La Quinta and Indio.

Routes through Palm Springs
San BernardinoDesert Hot Springs  W noframe E  Cathedral CityIndio

This is a usable article. It has information for getting in as well as some complete entries for restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please plunge forward and help it grow!