Best Day Trips From La Quinta Resort & Club
Best Day Trips from La Quinta Resort
When you book your trip to La Quinta, you know much of your time will be spent lounging by the pool in the warm sun. But what to do when you’re looking to get out and see the local sights? The Coachella Valley and beyond offers much to explore, and La Quinta Resort, with its luxurious accommodations and personalized service, serves as the perfect base camp for Southern California adventures.
Palm Springs you say? Isn’t La Quinta Resort located in Palm Springs? Close, but not so much- Palm Springs is a 45 minute drive from La Quinta. There is also so much to explore in Palm Springs, it definitely qualifies as a day trip. For extraordinary views, take a ride on the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway to the top of the San Jacinto peaks and gaze upon the valley below, or hike along the trails. Later meander downtown Palm Springs for eclectic local shopping, or visit the popular Palm Springs Art Museum. Grab lunch downtown at Farm, known for their farm-to-table French fare. Palm Springs also has the highest concentration of mid-century modern architecture in the United States, and offers plenty of self-guided or guided tours of the most iconic buildings.
Local Tip: Don’t forget an extra layer when you visit the tram. While the valley enjoys warm sunshine, the top of the mountains can be chilly and are on average 30 degrees cooler than the valley floor.
Travel an hour up the aptly named Palms to Pines Scenic Byway and you’ll notice how quickly the scenery does indeed transform from palm trees to pine trees. On the way, stop by the Highway 74 Vista Point for sprawling views of the valley below. Once you arrive in the small mountain town, local shops and restaurants are all within walking distance. Keep your eyes open and you may see Mayor Max, the lovable four-legged Golden Retriever dubbed the Mayor.
Local Tip: Stop by the Idyllwild Brewpub for a midday beverage and lunch whilst enjoying the mountainous view.
Salvation Mountain/Painted Canyons
Salvation Mountain is a hillside environment covered in artwork, encompassing numerous murals and Christian bible verses created by local artist Leonard Knight, featured in the 2007 movie Into the Wild. On the way, explore the Painted Canyons, which were formed by the convergence of North American and Pacific tectonic plates along the San Andreas fault. Here you can see the slot canyons and unique geologic features. While venturing to Salvation Mountain, you’ll also pass by the Salton Sea. Although one of the largest lakes in California and one of the lowest points below sea level on Earth, increasing salinity has led to its decline.
Local Tip: If you hike the Painted Canyons, be sure to take extra water and print a map if possible, as cell service in the area is limited.
Joshua Tree National Park is located about an hour away from La Quinta Resort & Club. It’s known for the many rugged rock formations, stark desert landscapes, and named for the distinct Joshua trees. The hikes to Skull Rock and Barker Dam in the park are among the most popular. On your way, stop by Pioneertown for a glimpse into the Old West and have lunch at Pappy and Harriet’s, a well-known restaurant and by evening music venue. Keep in mind there is no cell service inside the park, and to always take extra water when hiking.
Local Tip: Take Interstate 10 East to get to the park, as it takes you to the Visitor Center entrance where you can gather further directions and information.