A travel guide on what to do with kids if you’re in Palm Springs for 24 hours!
A few weeks ago my daughter and I took a road trip to Palm Springs, Ca to have a girls weekend with my mom, sister-in-law, cousin, and my niece. I was excited since I hadn’t seen them since April and couldn’t wait for Aves to have some bonding time with her family.
While we were there, my niece was competing in her first beauty pageant. I will admit, I wasn’t sure what to think when I heard pageants. All I imagined was “pageant moms” and “kids dressed like adults.” Sadly. I never ran into any pageant mom’s which was slightly disappointing. I also enjoyed the show more than I was anticipating. Most of these young girls are more talented than me and doing more meaningful things with life than myself. The particular competition was make-up free, so I never saw kids with make-up on which was refreshing.
While I would never go to a pageant again, I had a lot of fun and even shed a few tears when the current queen had to give up her title. It was also heartbreaking to see four to six-year-old bawling cause they didn’t get to move on to Nationals. While they may not have fully understood it, it was crushing. Thankfully, my niece didn’t care and enjoyed spending the rest of her weekend with family.
If you are traveling with kids in Palm Springs, there are a few things I would highly recommend doing. We essentially had under 24 hours in the California desert but did a ton. First off, if you’re staying in Palm Springs or a nearby city in the Summer, spring for a resort so you can have a nice pool to swim in.
Warning, it’s going to be freakin hot if you visit in the Summer!
We stayed at the Marriot resort in Indian Wells, and I fell in love with resort living! Can you blame me with these views?
Children’s Museum Of The Desert:
We managed to visit a few local places during our trip. My cousin and I took Aves to the Children’s Museum Of The Desert, and it was fantastic. I love a good children’s museum, and this one was great because it had kids and adults in mind. There are mind games for the adults and tons to do with kids. Plus, there are several different buildings and each building has different themes. I thought the coolest building was the game room. We all had fun even if we were sweating and burning from building to building due to the heat.
Palm Springs Aerial Tramway:
If you visit Palm Springs, this is a must visit! The tram takes you from the hot desert heat to San Jacinto National Park, which is significantly cooler.
When we visited, it was 100 degrees in Palm Springs and 65 degrees at the top of the mountain which felt fantastic. Once you reach the top, you can explore with several hiking trails, enjoy a meal, or have your mind blown with the incredible views of the desert and the mountains. It’s one of my favorite views in California. It’s a little pricey to ride the tram but kids love it the ride, and since it’s serene it’s worth every penny to visit!
Cabazon Dinosaur Park:
Unfortunately, the rest of my family did not have the opportunity to visit the dinosaur park but Aves, and I visited before heading back to Arizona. To start with, it was hot, and the last thing we should have done was go inside the Cabazon Dinosaur Park.
However, I had never been and read it was a $1.00 to get in so it was a bargain and thought I could get past the heat. It was a fail; I was sweaty, and Aves was hot and wanted me to hold her.
A side note, the dinosaur park is not a $1.00 like I read somewhere online and was $10.00 for adults and $9.00 for children which was about $6 a ticket too much to me. However, I paid it for the experience and hoped for the best.
Those not familiar with the dinosaur park, it was featured in Pee Wee’s Big Adventure, and it felt important to pay homage to a movie I loved as a kid.
Inside the park is various dinosaurs, and the path leads you to a huge Tyrannosaurus Rex dinosaur which you can climb in. It was super windy during our journey, so the dinosaur was slightly swaying by the time we got into his mouth which was a little scary, but Aves thought it was cool.
In the gift shop, they had some dinosaurs that moved which confused Aves since I tried explaining dinosaurs were not alive anymore, and these were replicas.
I would say if you are in the Palm Springs area it’s worth visiting the dinosaur park. However, they have two free dinosaurs you can pose with, and that would honestly be sufficient unless you have a kid who loves dinosaurs.
Where To Eat:
One place I recommend eating at is Elmers Restaurant. I’ve been twice now, and they are fantastic and reasonably priced. I ordered German Pancakes, which I never had before, and they were amazing.
The waiter told me they had a location in Arizona, and it turns out they are building one down the street from my house, which is very random but exciting. Elmer’s is also ranked one the best places for breakfast when visiting Palm Springs.
There are so many things to do in Palm Springs and the surrounding areas; I wish we had more time. Next time, I’d like to check out the Joshua Tree National Forest which has been on my “To Visit List” since I was a kid. I’d also like to visit the Salton Sea, hike, and go to the zoo.
If you’ve visited Palm Springs before I’d love to hear where you visited and what you ate, please comment below!