Bonus Hike: Palm Canyon in Palm Springs

Looking to plan a weekend in Joshua Tree? Check out this overview of our 2-day itinerary.

My coverage of Joshua Tree is complete, but I’ve got one last part of our weekend to share with you — Kelley and I grab a delicious lunch in Palm Springs, and then headed south to squeeze in one final hike before our drive back to Los Angeles.

We ended up at Trio, a restaurant my sister and I visited a few years ago during our weekend in Palm Springs. I love this place because they offer a three-course pre-fixe meal for $20, and it’s a generous menu. Here are our appetizers — bruschetta for Kelley, and fried artichoke for me:


Kelley orders butternut squash and sage ravioli for her entree, and I pick Australian sole with spinach and Israeli cous cous:


For dessert, Kelley selects the brownie and I get the white chocolate hazelnut bread pudding. Yum!


Thoroughly stuffed, we worked off our meal at Palm Canyon. This is located about seven miles south of downtown Palm Springs on a Native American reservation. I thought I read on-line that the entrance fee is $9 per vehicle, but it turns out that fee is actually per person. A little steeper than we would’ve liked to pay, but honestly, it’s just gorgeous here and I’m so glad we have enough time to visit on this trip.


I first heard about this place when my sister came here on a bachelorette weekend in Palm Springs years ago. It’s an oasis of palm trees and flowing water. No wonder a Native American tribe settled here long ago! While there are many hikes throughout this area, we spend most of our time at Palm Canyon, and then at a ranger’s suggestion we stop briefly at Andreas Canyon (also located on the reservation) for a quick hike on our way out.


There is one scary sign at the trailhead, but don’t let that deter you… we did not see any snakes, and neither did my sister during her visit years ago:


This is an easy trail and we saw all ages hiking here.

I wish the sky wasn’t so cloudy because the groves of palm trees are remarkable, and sunlight would showcase them better. Hopefully you’ll still get a feel for their grandeur in these photos.






Kelley waves for scale:


This would be a lovely spot for a picnic lunch. There are a few tables down here.




These ‘beards’ on the palm trees are impressive. Kelley pointed out how they are clearly an inspiration for Dr. Seuss’s The Lorax. So many of the images we’ve seen in Joshua Tree are similar, too.


Case in point — thanks, Kelley!





Kelley points out that this area feels almost prehistoric — indeed, it’s removed from civilization, like we’ve turned the clock back by coming here. We had a similar feeling in Joshua Tree… like you can imagine dinosaurs roaming here. Kudos to Kelley for putting this together in Photoshop with one of the photos she snapped here at Palm Canyon. Ha!




So many more palm trees! Keep scrolling…









Here is one photo from the other canyon in this park (Andreas Canyon) — we didn’t fully explore this one, but it appeared very similar to Palm Canyon. Again, thanks to Kelley for demonstrating the scale of these giant trees:


And that officially wraps up our Joshua Tree / Palm Springs weekend. Thanks for following along!

4 thoughts on “Bonus Hike: Palm Canyon in Palm Springs

  1. Hands down one of the coolest hidden gems in Southern California!!!! Can’t wait to go back there and explore more of the waterfalls and trails!!! So glad you fit this into our itinerary!!!!

    • Thanks for the hike recommendation, B! And it was fun to go back to that same restaurant (Trio) with Kelley that you and I went to years ago!

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