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Looking for a desert escape where instead of northern freezing winter cold you can be in warm sunshine relaxing poolside with sunglasses, sipping a drink, working on your tan, and dining or barbecuing outdoors? Plus golfing at courses favored by celebrities and ex-presidents, strolling streets shopping at boutiques, and hiking, biking and horseback riding amongst cacti and wildflowers. Palm Desert, in the Coachella Valley about a dozen miles east of pricier Palm Springs and 125 miles on the I-10 from LAX, has it all, at the best prices. Forget expensive desert resort hotels, ramshackle motels, and overpriced tourist eateries. Fire up the poolside barbecue at a money-saving Palm Desert vacation rental, and start enjoying life.
El Paseo is Palm Desert’s main shopping and strolling street, lined with shops, boutiques, and places to eat and drink. With the money saved by forgoing an expensive commercial resort hotel, you have more money for shopping and eating out on El Paseo or motoring to nearby Palm Springs, Rancho Mirage, or Joshua Tree National Park. Take Gerald Ford Drive to Frank Sinatra Drive to reach the Desert Willow Golf Resorts’ Firecliff and Mountain View courses in the center of town. Or tee off at one of the several dozen other golf courses near your money-saving Palm Desert vacation rental villa, home, townhouse, condo, or apartment.
Hike the Hopalong Cassidy and Gabby Hayes Trails near El Paseo and the visitors center. Or use your money-saving Palm Desert vacation rental as a base for biking and horseback riding the desert trails. Rock climb in nearby Joshua Tree National Park. Stop in Indio for a refreshing date milkshake, and buy some dates for the hike at a roadside date garden. Marvel at the desert blooming in red, yellow, and other bright colors from late winter into late spring or early summer. The crazily-branched Joshua trees bloom in February, followed by a colorful array of wildflowers by March, and flowering cacti in May and June.
“Do it All…Or Do Nothing at All” is Palm Desert’s motto to contemplate as you settle into your money-saving vacation rental. Whether a family gathering or a romantic escape, doing it all means a visit to the 1,800-acre Living Desert. Indulge the kids with a visit to the petting zoo and toy train town. Take the tram or walk the botanical and zoological gardens to get a feel for the diversity of desert plants and desert animals around the world. Experience the Living Desert’s mission to “preserve a portion of the Colorado Desert in its natural state” by hiking the Eisenhower Mountain Trail Loop.