We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
Attractions (172)
Activities (202)
Nightlife (35)
Shopping (58)

Top things to do in California Desert

Name
Ranked #1 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Category: Concerts; Arenas/ Stadiums/ Fields; Theaters & Stadiums
Map | Visitor photos (24)
San Jacinto Mountain (Palm Springs)
Book a Tour
$95* and up
Ranked #2 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Category: Mountains; Outdoors
Map | Visitor photos (151)
Book a Tour
$159* and up
Ranked #3 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Category: Trams; Scenic Railroads; Landmarks

In March, there was still some snow at the top, even though Palm Springs was about 85 degrees.  In August when Palm Springs is over 100 degrees, the temperature will be 67- 70... more »

Map | Visitor photos (1015)
Ranked #4 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Category: Performances; Theaters & Stadiums
Owner description: A state-of-the-art performing arts center that presents a stunning variety of entertainment and cultural experiences from... more » Owner description: A state-of-the-art performing arts center that presents a stunning variety of entertainment and cultural experiences from Broadway productions and opera to classical and rock music. « less
Map
Joshua Tree National Park (Twentynine Palms)
Book a Tour
$159* and up
Ranked #5 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Map | Visitor photos (291)
Indian Canyons (Palm Springs)
Book a Tour
$125* and up
Ranked #6 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Category: Ancient Ruins; Historic Sites; Canyons; Outdoors
Map | Visitor photos (69)
Palm Springs Air Museum (Palm Springs)
Ranked #7 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Category: Educational Sites; History Museums; Specialty Museums; Museums

The Palm Springs Air Museum is the Home of One of the Nation's Largest Collection of World War II Flying Aircraft diplayed in Modern, Well Lighted, Air Conditioned and Clean... more »

Map | Visitor photos (138)
Alabama Hills (Lone Pine)
Ranked #8 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Category: Mountains; Outdoors
Located near Lone Pine, these hills form the gateway to Mount Whitney, and are a favorite location for movies and television.
Map | Visitor photos (120)
Ranked #9 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Category: Deserts; Scenic Drives; State Parks; Outdoors
The largest state park in California is home to amazing flowers and plants which bloom in the early spring.
Map | Visitor photos (253)
Sunnylands (Rancho Mirage)
Ranked #10 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Category: Historic Sites; Cultural
Owner description: Sunnylands, a 200-acre midcentury modern estate, opened March 2012 for high-level retreats of leaders seeking solutions. Left... more » Owner description: Sunnylands, a 200-acre midcentury modern estate, opened March 2012 for high-level retreats of leaders seeking solutions. Left by Walter and Leonore Annenberg, the estate will continue to welcome U.S. Presidents, bipartisan political leaders, & others.The Annenberg Retreat at Sunnylands is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization devoted to building international understanding, advancing world peace, improving the functioning of government and other purposes through high-level retreats for global leaders from a spectrum of fields.The Annenberg Retreat at Sunnylands welcomes national and international leaders for high-level retreats and meetings that address and seek solutions to serious issues facing the nation and world. Sunnylands, the former winter residence of Ambassadors Walter and Leonore Annenberg, is available also for limited public tours. The adjacent Sunnylands Center & Gardens features exhibitions, films, and educational programs; and visitors can enjoy a nine-acre art garden. The historic house and Sunnylands Center & Gardens opened March 1, 2012.Sunnylands Center & GardensHours: 9am - 4pm, Thursdays through Sundays7am - 2pm, Thursdays through Sundays in June & JulyClosed in AugustCafe open until one hour before closing. « less
Map | Visitor photos (65)
Galleta Meadows (Borrego Springs)
Ranked #11 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Map | Visitor photos (91)
Ranked #12 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Category: ; History Museums; Specialty Museums; Museums
Map | Visitor photos (64)
Palm Springs Art Museum (Palm Springs)
Ranked #13 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Category: Art Museums; Museums
Owner description: Located in downtown Palm Springs (with a branch location in Palm Desert, CA), the Palm Springs Art Museum offers compelling... more » Owner description: Located in downtown Palm Springs (with a branch location in Palm Desert, CA), the Palm Springs Art Museum offers compelling art exhibitions from national and international artists. The museum's extensive permanent collection includes significant works by modern and contemporary artists, western, contemporary and glass artists, and features several temporary exhibitions throughout the year. The museum is open free every Thursday night and the second Sunday of every month. It also offers a range of theatrical and musical performances in its Annenberg Theater. Throughout all these programs, the museum is dedicated to creating memorable and inspiring interactions through educational and cultural opportunities. « less
Map | Visitor photos (65)
Book a Tour
$95* and up
Ranked #14 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Category: Deserts; Nature/ Wildlife Areas; Outdoors
Owner description: Formed by a system of sand dunes, this 20,000-acre sanctuary is home to several species of rare wildlife and a number of palm... more » Owner description: Formed by a system of sand dunes, this 20,000-acre sanctuary is home to several species of rare wildlife and a number of palm oases. « less
Map | Visitor photos (114)
Ranked #15 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Category: Canyons; Deserts; Parks; Hiking Trails; Outdoors

There are several great hikes and trails and a Trading Post within the Agua Calient Indian Canyons, including the most popular Palm Canyon Trail.  To get there, take Palm Canyon... more »

Map | Visitor photos (55)
Book a Tour
$159* and up
Ranked #16 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Travelers' Choice™ 2014 Winner Attractions
Category: Natural History Museums; Deserts; Gardens; Nature/ Wildlife Areas; Parks; Zoos/Aquariums
The botanical gardens of this park offer great opportunities to see desert vegetation.
Map | Visitor photos (291)
Palm Canyon (Palm Springs)
Ranked #17 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Category: Canyons; Deserts; Outdoors
Map | Visitor photos (65)
Painted Canyon (Palm Springs)
Ranked #18 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Category: Canyons; Outdoors
A variety of colors paint the rocks here, giving this unique location its name.
Visitor photos (53)
Ranked #19 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Category: Children's Museums; Museums
An interactive museum with hands-on exhibits allows children to explore and learn.
Map | Visitor photos (7)
Ranked #20 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Category: Scenic Drives; Outdoors
Visitor photos (34)
Ranked #21 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Category: Architectural Buildings; Landmarks
Map | Visitor photos (29)
Ranked #22 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Category: Canyons; Outdoors
Cosos Mountains canyon containing rock paintings that pre-date Native Americans.
Visitor photos (6)
Ranked #23 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Category: Water Parks; Zoos/Aquariums
Map | Visitor photos (15)
VillageFest (Palm Springs)
Ranked #24 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Category: Flea/ Street Markets; Landmarks/ Points of Interest; Cultural
Owner description: The place to meet new friends is at this old-fashioned street fair with sidewalk performers, musicians, farmer's market,... more » Owner description: The place to meet new friends is at this old-fashioned street fair with sidewalk performers, musicians, farmer's market, gifts and lots of food. « less
Map | Visitor photos (33)
Tahquitz Canyon (Palm Springs)
Ranked #25 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Category: Canyons; Outdoors
Map | Visitor photos (53)
Camelot Theatres (Palm Springs)
Ranked #26 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Map
Ranked #27 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Category: Landmarks/ Points of Interest; Landmarks
Map | Visitor photos (23)
Annenberg Theatre (Palm Springs)
Ranked #28 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Owner description: An intimate 440-seat theater that is located in the Palm Springs Desert Museum features cutting-edge lighting and sound... more » Owner description: An intimate 440-seat theater that is located in the Palm Springs Desert Museum features cutting-edge lighting and sound facilities. « less
Map
Kelso Dunes (Essex)
Ranked #29 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Category: Geologic Formations; Outdoors
One of the areas in California where one can view the unique aspects of sand dunes.
Map | Visitor photos (26)
Murray Canyon Trail (Palm Springs)
Ranked #30 of 172 attractions in California Desert
Category: Nature/ Wildlife Areas; Outdoors
Owner description: Located in the Indian Canyons, this trail passes some uniquely amazing desert vegetation, such as the yellow creosote... more » Owner description: Located in the Indian Canyons, this trail passes some uniquely amazing desert vegetation, such as the yellow creosote flowers. « less
Visitor photos (7)