Palm Springs, California | A Guide

Saturday, February 10, 2018

Well, hey there! How are you? I’m doing just fine, chilling here back home in the South.

I’m back from a vacation my Mom and I took to Palm Springs, California. We were out there for Planners Rock, hosted by The West Coast Planners. We decided to make a week of it and enjoy one of our favorite parts of the Golden State.

This was my third time to visit Palm Springs. As such, I’ve accumulated some favorite places that I’ve visited with my family over the years. I like to think I’ve gathered quite a few since the first time I visited Palm Springs three years ago.

So, here are some food and things to do that I love out in what I think is the happiest place in the desert.


King’s Highway - Located at the Ace Hotel & Swim Club, King’s Highway used to be a Denny’s, but after getting the “Ace” treatment, it’s an awesome retro diner with the coolest 60s-70s aesthetic. The food here is phenomenal anytime during the day, but my personal favorite is breakfast. I loved the breakfast burrito (with copious amounts of chorizo), and their yogurt and granola. Honorable mention: their chicken caesar salad with extra avocado.

Norma’s - Go get brunch at Norma’s at least once. Norma’s at the Parker Palm Springs (which is worth a visit to the hotel itself for its amazing interior decor designed by Jonathan Adler) is a sibling to the Norma’s in New York, just with different offerings, like their donuts. Speaking of their donuts, you need to try them, too. They’re my favorite thing to get there (I mean, who doesn’t like brown sugar donut holes you can dip in lemon curd and blueberry jam to your heart’s content?). But I’m sure you will find something you like here. 

Cheeky’s - Mom was recommended this place by a friend of hers. and boy howdy, it did not disappoint. They had an awesome selection of brunch offerings, too. I went with their Chilequiles - breakfast nachos - and they were the most beautiful chilaquiles I’d ever had. Of course they tasted awesome. Mom's Huevos Rancheros looked incredible, too, and she definitely enjoyed hers. This place is fun for breakfast, lunch, or late brunch out.

Manhattan in the Desert - A longtime favorite of my family’s, Manhattan in the Desert is a New York-style delicatessen serving sandwiches, soups, and everything else in between. I like their Lox (Smoked Salmon) bagels a whole lot.

Elmer’s - If you want a classic diner with the comforts of home-, almost Southern-style cooking, this is a great place, too. I got biscuits and gravy, because, hey, I’m a Southern gal. I crave things like that sometimes no matter where I am in the world.


The Aerial Tramway - Mom, Dad, and I did this last year during our last visit, and we loved it a lot. It’s a neat getaway from the city. Just remember to pack a sweater, because there is snow. And it’s a mountain, so you’re going to get that chill. Take pictures of the views!

Cabazon Dinosaurs!! - This is hands-down my favorite attraction in the Palm Springs area. Head west to Cabazon and visit the dinosaur exhibit out there. You can pay for a tour (which we still have not done yet, but I’d like to someday), or (my favorite), take quick photos with the giant T-Rex (named Mr. Rex) and the Brontosaurus (named Dinny, or as I call him, Littlefoot). It’s just a cool and weird thing on an interstate exit and I love it so much.

Salvation Mountain - I wrote a longer post on this that you can check out here. It’s a mountain handmade and hand-painted by a local artist that’s neat to see.

Joshua Tree - If you haven’t been to this national park, you need to go. Just drive east from Palm Springs - which, by the way, is an awesome drive that’s worth making in itself through Morongo and Yucca Valley and into Joshua Tree itself - and visit the national park while you’re in town. Also, if you have extra time, try Pioneer Town just a few roads away, a fun recreation of an old West cowboy town.

I hope you enjoyed this little guide I put together of one of my favorite places ever. Thanks for reading!

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