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Where is Palm Springs?

Everyone knows Palm Springs: the days spent by the pool are legendary, the world-class golf courses, the unparalleled hiking, the architecture in its own right.

And everyone knows roughly where is it. But many of us find it hard to identify exactly where is it. Ask around and you’ll get answers of “Isn’t that just outside LA?” to “Is it near San Diego?” or the vague “It’s somewhere…in the south, isn’t it?”

And everyone is somewhat right.

Let us help clear that up for you (spoiler alert: it’s easier to get to than you think) and tune into the SoCal playground that has enchanted the world for generations.

Where is Palm Springs?

First, let’s take our bearings, using Los Angeles as a point of reference. (We all know where LA is, right?). From Los Angeles, driving 100 miles (about two hours) east on the I-10 freeway will take you to Palm Springs. From Palm Springs, driving 2.5 hours in different directions can get you to San Diego, the Arizona border, or Mexico.

Palm Springs is in Riverside County, a county above Orange County, and stretches from the Los Angeles metropolitan area to the Arizona border. Palm Springs sits at the northern end of the Coachella Valley, a desert valley that stretches southeast flanked by mountain ranges.

These beaches separate the valley from the coastal weather systems along the Pacific, and are what give the Greater Palm Springs area the arid climate and year-round summers it is known for.

What is the Greater Palm Springs Area?

When you hear “the Greater Palm Springs area,” that includes Palm Springs and eight other desert towns along a 30-mile stretch of the Coachella Valley: Desert Hot Springs, Cathedral City, Rancho Mirage, Palm Desert, Indian Wells, La Quinta, Indio and Coachella. All of these towns are connected by the I-10 and CA-111 freeways in a scenic strip of homes, casinos, golf courses and nature preserves, and visitors can drive from one end to the other by a little over half an hour.

Getting to Palm Springs

With 350 days of fog-free sunshine each year, this resort destination may seem far away, but dozens of airports fly nonstop to Palm Springs, bringing the sun and the good times much closer than you think.

Twelve airlines fly directly to Palm Springs from more than 30 cities nationwide, including all major airlines and many low-cost carriers ready to take you there directly. From San Francisco, for example, the flight time to Palm Springs is only 1 hour and 40 minutes. Flights from Seattle arrive at 2 hours and 50 minutes. Houston is 3 hours and 40 minutes by plane, and from New York City (JFK) – the longest non-stop in Palm Springs – you’re looking at just under 5 hours.

Book an Avis rental car in Palm Springs

Once you touch down in Palm Springs, car rental companies at Palm Springs International Airport (PSP) will have wheels waiting for you. PSP hosts all major car rental companies including Avis, Alamo, Budget, Dollar, Enterprise, Hertz, National, and Thrifty. And just two miles from downtown Palm Springs and minutes from hotels and accommodations, PSP can have you relaxing by the pool just minutes after your plane hits the tarmac.

Where to sleep in Palm Springs

Palm Springs is full of hotels renowned for their attention to comfort and design, and you’ll be spoiled for choice when it comes to finding a stay with a vibe to match your trip. If you prefer lavish resorts, Palm Springs casinos hit the jackpot with luxury accommodations, five-star spas, golf courses and penthouse bars. Prefer a smaller, quirkier home base? The area is full of boutique hotels that are small, imaginative and unmistakably Palm Springs. Or if you’re loyal to a particular national brand, you’ll find all the hotel heavyweights here, including Hilton, Hyatt, IHG, Marriott, Omni, and WorldMark.

ARRIVAL in Palm Springs

ARRIVAL in Palm Springs

Newly built in 2016 in the modern style the desert is known for, ARRIVE Palm Springs has just 32 guest rooms, each bright and contemporary. Outside, there’s plenty of space for socializing, including a sparkling 66-foot pool, 20-foot hot tub, private cabanas, fire pits, and an 80-seat beachfront restaurant and bar. swimming pool.

Palm Springs Cacti


27 chic and bohemian rooms comprise Les Cactus Palm Springs in a mix of cozy suites and small studios. This whimsical boutique hotel has a heated pool, hot tub, and massage room, plus poolside lounge chairs, a breezy garden full of hammocks, and a relaxation area with a fire pit.

The Saguaro Palm Springs

The Saguaro Palm Springs

Vibrant colors and bold style exude a big party vibe at Saguaro Palm Springs, where every stay begins with a welcome margarita at check-in. 244 fun and funky venues surround Saguaro’s huge pool deck, staging weekend DJ sets and poolside dance parties. It is also home to El Jefe restaurant and speakeasy serving Mexican street food and over 100 kinds of tequila.

Agua Caliente Resort Casino Spa Rancho Mirage

Agua Caliente Casino Resort Spa

Agua Caliente Resort Casino Spa Rancho Mirage offers 340 luxury rooms and suites on 16 floors with private balconies and pool views, plus all the slots, table games, and live poker you could bet on. A full-service spa, an array of restaurants and bars, and a live music arena live up to this bustling resort casino.

Things to do in Palm Springs

Whether you’re on the weekend or an extended stay, you won’t have to worry about things to do in Palm Springs. There’s a unique food and craft scene, more than 100 tournament-tested golf courses, monumental hikes to alpine peaks and hidden desert waterfalls, and unmissable festivals like Coachella and Stagecoach.

Palm Springs Aerial Tramway

Palm Springs Aerial Tramway Admission Ticket

Hitchhiking on the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway offers the best terrain layout and unparalleled views. Featuring the largest revolving trams in the world, the tram gently whisks you along breathtaking canyons to views 5,800 feet above the desert floor and often cooler temperatures of 30 degrees. From there, dine at Peaks Restaurant with the entire Coachella Valley at your feet, or explore Mount San Jacinto on more than 80 km of highland trails.

Palm Springs: Legends and Icons Tour

Palm Springs: Legends and Icons Tour

In Hollywood’s Golden Age, Palm Springs was where movie stars escaped to relax without violating their contracts that required them to stay within a two-hour drive of their studios. Many called a neighborhood now called Movie Colony their home, and Five Star Adventures Tours has all the details on who lived where. They’ll guide you to over 50 celebrity-related homes, including the former residences of Marilyn Monroe, Bob Hope, and Frank Sinatra.

Indian Canyons Walking Tour by Jeep

Indian Canyons Walking Tour by Jeep from Palm Springs

Long before bewitching Hollywood, Palm Springs was Dried, the ancestral homeland of the Cahuilla Indians who have made their home for thousands of years among its hot springs, mountain canyons and palm forests. Climb aboard an open-top jeep for a tour of these ancient canyons, a gentle hike that’s easy on the knees and heavy on the scenery.