If you’re looking forward to exploring Palm Springs this winter, then there are some really interesting activities that you should try. Be it outdoors or indoors, the city is filled with countless attractive events, locations, adventures, and scenic beauty.
The landscape draws tourists from all over the world to the city throughout the year. And the majority of tourists have chosen the late winters to be the best time of the visit to this oasis.
Among the many widespread options, we have handpicked the top 10 palm springs winter activities for you to try out in and around the city.
Why You Should Visit Palm Springs During Winter?
Visiting the city during the winter is special for a couple of reasons.
- It’s the perfect winter getaway, as the overall temperature is of a comfortable range of 50-70°F. But according to the locals, winter in Palm Springs is warmer compared to the other regions.
- Even though it gets chilly to up to 45°F (7°C), the weather during day time is mostly sunny.
- Unlike most of the vacation spots in the US, it doesn’t snow all winter long. Therefore, it’s perfect for all the outdoor activities you have planned with your family.
- The desert-winter brings about countless open-air markets to shop along with exciting winter festivals to partake.
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Three Things to Know before Visiting Palm Springs
Let me share with you 3 important info before you hit the city.
- The official language and currency of Palm Springs are English and dollars, respectively.
- Palm Springs is about a two-hour drive from Los Angeles. You may book a flight from your nearest airport to Palm Springs International Airport as well.
- Winter in Palm Springs generally begins in late December and ends in mid-March. February is the coldest month, with an average high of 71°F (22°C). The most popular time of visit during the winter is during December and January.
The Top 10 Plam Winter Activities for You to Enjoy Here
While compiling this list of selections, we had to carefully consider several things, such as the popularity, uniqueness, and visitor experience.
Dive right in to get a clearer idea of what the land of Palm Springs has to offer.
1. Palm Springs Aerial Tramway
The world’s largest rotating tramcar system takes you on a 10-minute ride to the destination. Not to mention the rotating tram car that offers you a 360° view of the picturesque wilderness underneath.
Your destination is the mountain station situated 8500 ft from the ground. Accommodated with several restaurants, observation decks, natural history museum, two documentary theaters, and a gift shop, it’s the perfect place to enjoy the mountain view of the valley.
Just in case if you’re in the mood for some hiking, there are up to 50 miles of hiking trails of various predetermined difficulties for you to choose as well.
Address: 1 Tram Way, Palm Springs, CA 92262.
2. Visit the Famous Interesting Parks and Zoos
Take a look at the destinations below:
The Living Desert Zoo
Formerly known as the Living Desert Museum, this place has both a botanical garden and an interactive zoo for you and your family to enjoy during the winter. The zoo’s motto is to focus on conservation. Therefore, they tend to encourage visitors to interact with their animals.
Just in case you’re wondering how interactive this visit may get, we are talking about feeding giraffes and petting kraals.
Address: 47900 Portola Avenue, Palm Desert, CA 92260.
Moorten Botanical Garden
If you’re feeling like staying inside for the cold winter weather, then consider visiting the Moorten Botanical Garden ‘Cactarium’ for an all-natural indoor experience.
Moorten’s Botanical Garden is technically Instagram famous among the visitors of Palm Springs. Cactus lovers consider this as heaven as it is nothing but a vast and unique collection of cacti. The garden is laid throughout an acre of land.
Address: 1701 S Palm Canyon Dr, Palm Springs, CA 92264.
Joshua Tree National Park
Famous for being very accessible, Joshua Park has two distinct desert ecosystems. As a result, it attracts quite a lot of visitors all over California and beyond.
Rich in cultural history and accessible mines, the park is also home to many animals. Make sure to pay a visit to explore this alluring camping location if you are visiting Palm Springs this winter. Don’t forget to pay attention to the strange rock formations and clear night sky appropriate for stargazing.
3. Go for a Hike
We have selected several hiking options suitable for your winter trek. All of the trails mentioned here are convenient due to their sunny nature, even during the coldest of winter. If you’re an outdoor fanatic, this section is for you.
If you’re looking for hikes to go on, Homestead Trail hikes have to be one of your top three trails to choose from. The trail takes you on a 3-mile hike (round-trip). Upon reaching the top of the trail, there’s a large metal cross waiting for you that’s even more gorgeously lit during the night.
The Homestead trail plan is famous for its cross, the lovely view of the Coachella Valley, and dog-friendly trails.
Address: 72500 Thrush Rd. Palm Desert, California 92260.
The Lykken Trails
The Lykken trails are separated into North and South Lykken trails. North Lykken trails are accessible from the west end of Ramon Road. The trails overlook the Tahquitz Canyon and Palm Springs. However, upon reaching the top, you will be greeted by a small picnic spot as well.
And the South Lykken trails are known for their moderate difficulty treks. It’s got both a North and South starting point. Lastly, Lykken trails are never too crowded, and the Southern one even offers stunning views of the Indian Canyons.
Address: S Lykken Trail I, Palm Springs, CA 92264.
Bump and Grind
This famous trail offers two separate difficulties of trails for trekkers to choose from. When you reach the mountain, the trail on the left will offer you a more challenging and longer hike. It’s only recommended for experienced hikers to partake.
Whereas, the trail on the right is comparatively easier and gives you a smoother experience. Nevertheless, both trails will take you on towards stunning views of the Palm Desert and Rancho Mirage area.
Address: Rancho Mirage, CA 92270
Ancient Lake Cahuilla Overlook
As the name suggests, the Lake Cahuilla Overlook is a hike through the Southern Santa Rosa Mountains that overlooks an ancient freshwater lake. You may hit the fairly easy trails with your bike or horse. Don’t worry if you don’t own one, it’s always up for rental nearby.
Exiting through La Quinta Cove Oasis, the trail takes you on a round trip of nearly 2.8 miles. If you have your dog with you, then you can only trek between the Boo Hoff and Bear Creek trailheads.
Address: Cove Oasis, La Quinta, CA 92253.
4. Take a Tour of the Fun Museums
During the peak of winter, consider visiting the following famous museums to familiarize yourself and enjoy the art and local culture.
Palm Springs Art Museum
This museum is accommodated with several exquisite exhibitions of modern and contemporary art. If you are planning on going through the entire museum, then it’s going to take nearly 2 hours to enjoy this place to the fullest.
Expect a lot of eye-catching exhibitions of contemporary art along with some sculptures.
Address: Address: 101 N Museum Dr, Palm Springs, CA 92262.
The Air Museum
Situated right outside the Palm Springs airport, the Air Museum is filled with a plethora of historic airplanes. The entry costs 19$. And the museum consists of four hangars, where each hangar is a story from a particular war or part of the war.
The Air Museum is vastly informative, and there is a lot to learn from the descriptions provided. If you are visiting during the weekends, then you might be lucky enough to get into a war-used B-17 cockpit or even see one of them take off.
Address: 745 N Gene Autry Trail, Palm Springs, CA 92262.
Cabot’s Pueblo Museum
This museum is popular among Palm Springs visitors for being the only Hopi(Native American)-style ‘Pueblo’ museum in Palm Springs. Just in case you’re feeling a bit knowledge-hungry this winter, you can visit Cabot’s Pueblo Museum, located in the Desert Hot Springs, California.
Among the many collection presents here, the noteworthy ones are the–
- American Indian and Alaska Native artifacts
- Native American potteries
- Artwork, documents, and photographs of Yerxa related letters
5. Take the ‘Walk of Stars’
The Palm Springs Walk of Stars, established in 1992, is Palm Springs’ very own ‘walk of fame’. Secondly, it’s situated in downtown Palm Springs, so this location is perfect for your winter evening visit. The weather remains quite clear and cool during the evening.
If you’re willing to visit the walk during the daytime, expect little to decent sunshine. Walking through the pavements, you are bound to come across engravings of your favorite celebrities who have spent a portion of their lives here in Palm Springs.
Address: 10 N Palm Canyon Dr, Palm Springs, CA 92262.
6. Cruise Palm Springs’ Favorite Landscapes
The first thing that comes to your mind when you picture desert trips is ‘sand and sweat’, right? Now subtract the sweat and add breezy weather. That’s your trip to the Greater Palm Spring Deserts during winter.
Many agencies have vehicle rental programs available for visitors, along with trained professional guides. Consider booking a trip with them to cruise around the Coachella Valley. Tailor your trip by consulting with the guide after booking, and set off to explore the epic landscapes of the valley.
Some noteworthy ones to visit during winter would be-
- Agua Caliente Cahuilla Indian lands
- Mecca Hills Painted Canyon
- Or The San Andreas Fault
7. Try out Some Sport!
You don’t have to be an athlete to participate in the fun sports played around Palm Springs. So if you’re feeling sporty this weekend, don’t forget to hit the sport zones.
Unlike most other golf courses in the US, the courses in Palm Springs are rarely covered in snow during winter. As a result, any time of the year is a good time to go golfing here. Here are some addresses of golf courses worth visiting.
- Escena Golf Club at 1100 Clubhouse View Dr, Palm Springs, CA 92262
- Indian Canyon Golf Resort at 1097 E Murray Canyon Dr, Palm Springs, CA 92264
- Tahquitz Creek Golf Resort at 1885 Golf Club Dr, Palm Springs, CA 92264
Tennis grounds are properly manicured and properly de-iced. This makes it yet another perfect sport to try out during the winter. Here are some popular options for tennis venues to choose from.
- Getaways At Palm Springs Tennis Club at 701 W Baristo Rd, Palm Springs, CA 92262
- Palm Springs Tennis Club at 701 W Baristo Rd, Palm Springs, CA 92262
- Village Racquet Club at 900 Ramon Rd, Palm Springs, CA 92262
Footgolf is just golf that you play with a football and your feet. Warm-up your winter by testing your free kick and golf skills in this exciting sport.
Tahquitz Creek Golf Resort, Indian Canyon Golf Resort, and United States FootGolf Course all allow their visitors to play Footgolf in their courses. Let the fun begin!
8. Go on a Shopping Spree
Here is a compilation of some of the popular shopping places that visitors tend to visit on their trip to Palm Springs area-
- Visit El Paseo in Palm Deserts for unique shops that feature gorgeous textiles, mid-century architecture, and comfortable shopping.
- Take a walk through the Old Town La Quinta for a unique shopping experience. You will be surprised by how welcoming the Old Town is.
- Main Street Palm Springs office at 268 N Palm Canyon Dr, Palm Springs, CA 92262, is for those who are looking to buy souvenirs and home goods or just relax by the bar on a cold winter night.
- The Smoke Tree Commons at 2465 E Palm Canyon Dr, Palm Springs, CA 92264
- Another main attraction of the winter shopping is the open-air markets where vendors offer various handicrafts, starting from cosmetics to pottery.
- Last but not least, don’t forget to visit the Uptown Design District in Palm Springs.
9. Experience the Best Local Restaurants
It’s hard to run out of dining options in Palm Springs, there’s so many to choose from that even we had a hard time handpicking only three suggestions for you.
If you’re around Palm Springs, make sure to visit these exciting food places to relinquish your taste buds.
- Cheeky’s is the favorite breakfast spot for many visitors. If you want to get seated, then you’re going to have to visit the store in the morning as soon as they open. Other than the constant rush, it’s a great place for breakfast.
- Address: 160 S Palm Canyon Dr. A, Palm Springs, CA 92262.
- Chef Tanya’s Kitchen is a vegetarian takeaway restaurant for all the veg-lovers out there.
- Address: 706 S Eugene Rd, Palm Springs, CA 92264.
- Spencer’s Restaurant near the Palm Springs Art Museum is a great place to sit with your family and plan the rest of the winter trip. They even have live piano music for their guests. How cool is that!
- Address: 701 W Baristo Rd, Palm Springs, CA 92262.
10. Don’t Miss the Winter-Special Festivals
If you’re visiting Palm Springs around the winter, you are guaranteed to come across at least a few of the winter festivals that take place in the oasis.
Irrespective of you being a Festival person or not, we recommend that you attend these two extravagant winter festivals for a memorable experience.
The 10-11 day long festival takes place in the cool of February. Winter visitors flock to the festival to experience modern art and architecture. As a result, it’s often quite crowded. The event features double-decker bus tours, architectural walking, and various sorts of sales.
Robolights is one of the most popular winter-holiday tourist attractions in Palm Springs. It’s an ever-evolving holiday art display. The venue remains most crowded during 25th December, as people from all over Palm Springs gather around here for their favorite Christmas theme.
Make the Best out of Your Winter at Palm Springs!
Even though all these ideas might seem like a handful, but it’s only the tip of the iceberg. The valley has a lot to offer than we can normally comprehend.
If you’re contemplating your next location for the winter tour, then stop thinking. We urge you to head straight to Palm Springs and carry out your favorites from our top 10 list. The experience during winter is bound to be breathtaking. You have our word.