We decided to escape to the desert for Fall Break this year, and it was the perfect getaway! The temperatures were in the 80’s and 90’s, the kids got to swim to their hearts content, and we got to explore a new city as a family! Palm Springs is a bit of a hidden gem! It was once considered a sleepy retiree town, it is now a retro-chic destination that is also very family friendly, not to mention the entire place is so photogenic and Instagrammable! Seriously, beautiful mid-century architecture, amazing dining experiences, outdoor hiking, a national park, shopping, it really has it all!
Our fondest memories are almost always traced back to our family vacations, and our Palm Springs stay was another great trip for the books! The Palm Springs area offers a variety of the best activities the desert has to offer! Check out the full list of 6 things to do with kids in Palm Springs below!
- Tour Mid-Century Modern Homes: Palm Springs is known for it’s vast array of beautiful homes. There are so many gorgeous Mid-Century Modern style homes in the area, and what better way to view and enjoy them, than to stay in one! We loved renting our Palm Springs Vacation home with Vacation Palm Springs through Wyndham Vacation Rentals! They have the best selection of Vacation Rental Homes in Palm Springs! We had such a beauty of a vacation home called Martini Springs home, it really had it all! Beautifully decorated 3 bedrooms, including a triple decker bunkbed my kids went nuts over, a large kitchen and family room area, an insanely gorgeous pool and hot tub area with mountain views, outdoor living space with a fire pit, I could go on and on! We enjoyed relaxing at the house, making dinner together, lounging in the pool, sitting by the fire, playing board games. In fact, it took a lot of convincing to get our kids to leave the house to explore more of the town because there was so much to do at the house!
- Palm Springs Aerial Tram: We had heard good things about the Palm Springs Aerial Tram so we decided to head up! We rode the 12 1/2 minute rotating tram ride (2 1/2 miles) to the top of the Mountain to Mount San Jacinto State Park. Once you get to the top you can mosey around the visitors center, or go outside and enjoy some of the nature trails for some more majestic views of the Coachella Valley. Be sure to pack a jacket even if it feels warm down below (we made that mistake and were freezing up there), and in the winter pack gloves and a coat, there is usually snow up top!
- The Living Desert Zoo: If you want an up-close look at some real deserve animal life, then The Living Desert is a great place to visit in Palm Springs. You can “travel the world” as you make your way through The Living Desert Zoo. The Palm Desert Zoo focuses on showing it’s visitors animals from North Africa and North America, including a beautiful giraffe exhibit, coyotes, Mexican wolves, Mountain Lions, Hyenas, Jaguars, bighorn sheep just to name a few. The zoo also features a model train exhibit that my kids just loved! With 1080 acres of undisturbed desert land and nature trails, a discovery center, and many play areas there is so much to do!
- Villagefest Thursday Night Street Festival: Every Thursday evening, Palm Springs holds a Villagefest Street Festival! World Famous Palm Canyon Drive shuts down to cars and is filled with an array of artists, artisans, entertainers, food stands, handmade gifts and jewelry. It is really something! You can walk the streets, pop in and out of the great shops and restaurants along the way, and enjoy the music, artists, and fun! We loved walking around while we were enjoying some yummy shakes from Great Shakes! Always a must while in Palm Springs!
- Hikes for the Nature Loving Family: Palm Springs offers a great variety of hikes for the family and nature lovers. You can hike at the top of the Aerial Tram, hit up Joshua Tree that is not too far out of town, or set off on the Tahquitz Canyon and Indian Canyon trails that are right in town! Another one not to miss if you are a nature lover is the Moorten Botanical Gardens. Not exactly a hike, but it is a beautiful place to spend a little time take a few pictures along their little trails, and see all the varieties of cacti and vegetation the area has to offer!
- Desert Dining Restaurants: Palm Springs is not short of options when it comes to family dining! The benefit of renting a vacation home is that we were able to cook most of our dinners at the house and not have to disrupt the kids during their swimming time. But, we did however want to get out and try some of the amazing restaurants the town has to offer! We decided we definitely wanted to hit the brunch scene that Palm Springs is known for. Cheeky’s (the eggs benedict and hueovs rancheros!), and The Great Shakes (get the coconut pancakes!) were a few of my favorites! I also loved the roasted cauliflower at the Ace Hotel’s King’s Highway Diner! So many good options! And, don’t forget to grab a shake at Great Shakes! The date shakes are very “Palm Springs!” And, I hear another local favorite for date Shakes is at Hadley Farms, we definitely want to give them a try next time we are in town!
If you are looking for a unique family vacation experience off the beaten path, then Palm Springs would be the perfect escape for your family! With so many amazing vacation rentals to choose from, you can really take the experience to the next level!
We loved soaking up the desert sun, splashing away in the pool, and enjoyed exploring Palm Springs as a family! Long after the heat of the desert leaves us, our hearts will still be warm with the memories and experiences we shared together! Always the sign of success when it comes to family vacations if you ask me.
Until next time!
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Disclosure: As typical with Travel Blogging, my family was hosted, all thoughts and opinions are my own.