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“the Jewel of Coachella Valley”
Review of Salton Sea

Salton Sea
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$169.00*
and up
Half-Day Jeep Tour of the San Andreas Fault From...
Ranked #2,082 of 9,488 things to do in California
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Owner description: California's largest lake offers more than 380 square miles of outdoor recreation including boating, birding, camping and fishing.
Reviewed February 2, 2013

We arrived at the Salton Sea and went to the Visitor Center/Gift Shop, very nice. We were surprised that they had boat tours of the sea, available near the visitor center . We took the tour and we were truly astounded by all the false information and misconceptions about the sea that are out there. Taking the tour we found out JUST how important the Salton Sea really is. With over 400 bird species making the sea their home as they migrate across North America, the sea is not only beautiful but a necessity.
The sea was originally Lake Cahuilla and was far more immense then it is today. There are active volcanoes at the east end of the sea...how many of you knew that? Did you know Frank Sinatra had a house there, the boat tour will take you right to it...crazy. We were very pleasantly surprised by the sea and all it has to offer. There is so much to do at the sea and surrounding areas you will need more then a day if you really want to enjoy it.
We suggest you take the boat tour which is soon to be a land and sea tour, as these gentlemen know so very much about the history of the area from the time of Lake Cahuilla to the Bradshaw Trail to the Railroad station that now sits at the bottom of the sea, just to mention a few things they will tell you all about. We had a fabulous time and hope you too will see the sea for what it is, the jewel of Coachella Valley.

10  Thank gwfamOf4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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250 - 254 of 301 reviews

Reviewed January 7, 2013

We had so much fun on this drive! We picked up the yellow sheet at the visitor centre and followed the rather cryptic suggestions. I don't want to spoil surprises for you. Be sure to drive through Bombay Beach, and LATER read about it online. Visit the Mud Pots, and even more importantly, the Mud Volcanos. Take videos at the volcanos to capture the sound as well as the action.
Be sure to visit Salvation Mountain and especially dare to walk beyond to look at the reservoirs of Slab City. LATER, look for the movie clip from Into the Wild which was filmed here.
Sunset on the Salton Sea is beautiful.
This is a great area for bird watchers!

10  Thank JKW333
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 20, 2012

We enjoyed the state park visitor center which gave us a good overview of the history of the formation of the lake and the importance of the lake to the migratory birds who transit the area each year. We enjoyed watching the birds and planned to have a picnic while sitting by the lake shore. What we found was a strong smell of dead fish that littered the beach where we ate. Had a short picnic and decided not to pursue any other areas of the lake. It may be worth seeing the visitor center if you are driving by, but I wouldn't go out of my way to see this lake.

7  Thank Jim B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 19, 2012

We drove to the Salton sea park. The sea is interesting. We saw the video at the visitor center. The pelicans eating the talipia is a sight. The history of the place is a special story. I encourage people to visit the sea.

4  Thank Colby R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed November 13, 2012

Salton City had a cool/eerie feel to it at one time, largely due to the abandoned/flooded out marina, hotel etc, but as of February, 2012 it's all gone. (Those hoping to see the Sea after watching No Reservations, for example will be disappointed). That being said, I found it to be a pretty and interesting place with thousands of birds. The odor is largely dependent upon the time of year you go, because of the massive die-off of Tilapia, caused by the increase of water temperature, and also the blooming cycle of algae. I did not find the odor to be strong when I was there.

The sand around the sea is nothing like I have seen or felt before (it's quite similar to quick sand- wear boots, you will sink a few inches!) and there are dead/fossilized fish all over. It's a very interesting site, and I would go back.

2  Thank MKUltra3340
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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