Tips for visiting Palm Springs...

Palm Springs Travel Blog

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bedroom

Here are my tips for people thinking or planning a trip to Palm Spring, California.

 

1.      Best time to visit is “the season” unless you like it very hot!

  • The “season” is winter, with the peak time running from January through to May. Prices at this time ramp up with hotels costing much more, and I suspect other things too. It is very hot in summer, with a minimum of around 26 degrees Celsius up to about 40 and above (that is up to 110 Fahrenheit). It is a dry heat and so although sizzling not too uncomfortable.
  • The season does have the advantage that the place will buzz and there is much more going on, as it shows and various artists visit. One show worth making sure you get to is the famous “Palm Springs Follies” which is a 3 hour show running from November to May – and every performer is aged from 53 to 83 and has very well-known guest artists.
    view from the road

2.      Guest Houses are the best places to stay

  • These can be found either through searching on the internet, or visiting the many sites on Palm Springs. It is quite remarkable how many sites there are on the city – almost more it seems that major cities! The other good place to look is Tripavisor.com (which is how I found the Movie Colony where I stayed). The advantage of using a site like tripadvisor.com is that you can check the reviews and see visitor pics to check that the place is of the standard you want as there is a huge variance in quality. There is though an official “palm rating” system that is given to guesthouses and so you can also check these when looking for a guesthouse.
  • Another reason to check is that there are a lot of gay and lesbian guesthouses. Some of them even cater for specialists interests. There are over 40 gay guest houses and you don’t want to find yourself arriving at the leather and rubber special interests guesthouse with your grandmother and kids!
  • When looking at the prices remember that most of the guesthouses include breakfasts, parking, wireless internet and evening drinks and so offer a good deal versus hotels.
    bikes for use

3.      Have a car

  • You need a car to get around as you will find cabs expensive and not that plentiful, and there is a limited public transport system. It is also hot and although the main shopping and eating areas are fairly concentrated it can be just too hot to walk too far!
  • Listening to people who did not have a car they seemed to spend as much as hiring a car by the time they added up to and from airport and getting to and from some of the attractions.

4.      Do the celebrity tour!

  • With over 500 celebrities having called Palm Springs home, there are a lot of stories and houses where they lived or live to see.
    the gardens
    The best tour called not surprisingly “celebrity tours” started in 1963. They have a 2.5 tour and a 1 hour tour which goes twice a day, and details can be found at celebrity-tours.com
  • They take you to about 100 celebrity homes on the 1 hour tour and double that number on the longer tour.
  • It is a good tour to do early on as you not only get a good feel for the city and layout but also for the history and glamour that made Palm Springs what it is.

5.      Go up the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway

  • This is a very long cable car that rises over 6000 feet to give you a stunning view of the valley. The cable cars are apparently the world’s largest and take 80 people at a time, and runs about every half hour (one going up and one coming down).
  • At the top you are in the Mount San Jacinto State park and can go hiking.
    sinatra suite lounge
    There is a restaurant up there with terrible food as well!
  • The temperature at the top is usually around 30 degrees Fahrenheit lower and so even if scorching down below, most people take something warm to wear just in case. At the top it is alpine like and in winter you can even do cross country skiing!
  • You can get more details at pstramway.com

6.      Try and be there on a Thursday and visit the evening fair

  • There a street fair that seems to be something of a long standing tradition when the main shopping area road (Palm Canyon) gets closed off and up to 170 independent stall holders sell all sorts of food, art, jewellery and trinkets until 10pm. The fair gets packed and is popular with locals and visitors.
  • Personally I am not sure that there was that much great stuff, it was really good fun and worth visiting.
    the pool
    The city comes alive from Thursday through to Sunday when the
    California weekenders arrive.

7.      Palm Springs Air Museum is worth a visit

  • This is situated at the airport on Gene Autry Trail and is well worth a visit. This immaculately maintained museum is dedicated to the Second World War with one large hanger focusing on the Pacific and one on Europe. They have a great collection of planes and cars from the era, and as the museum is staffed by volunteers – many who were in the 2nd World War – they are not only welcoming but have many stories and anecdotes about the planes and the museum.
  • Many of the planes are still in airworthy condition!
  • You can find out more at palmspringsairmuseum.org

8.      If you can pull yourself away from lying by the pool, try the tour of the wind farm

  • The farm was built from 1980s onwards and the tour takes you around the farm, and to a power station and lets you know why and how the farm was built. The tour can be you hit of education while soaking up the sun and the celebrity world of Palm Springs!
  • You can find out more at bestofthebesttours.com

9.      Palm Springs Art Museum has some great art worth checking out

  • The museum is in a very attractive mid-century style building and has mostly 20th Century modern and contemporary art with some Indian art. There are usually some touring exhibitions as well. It is right in the centre of Palm Springs in the easy to identify Museum Dive! Check out the people watching some of the paintings – as they are not people they are artworks watching artworks.

10.  If you can cope with the heat, get into some of the outdoor fun too

  • There are many great outdoor activities like the Knott’s Soak City water park with the new and thrilling Pacific Spin. More Gold Clubs than you can imagine and then tours out into the Joshua Tree Park and Indian Canyons.
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Further to my review of the hotel, here are mroe pictures
bedroom
bedroom
view from the road
view from the road
bikes for use
bikes for use
the gardens
the gardens
sinatra suite lounge
sinatra suite lounge
the pool
the pool
Palm Springs Hotels & Accommodations review
This is a small “boutique” style hotel that has18 rooms. This style of hotel / guest house seems to be the approach that is offered as the norm in… read entire review
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photo by: Sunflower300