Hikes in Palm Springs
Palm Springs hikes are a spectacular pastime, even if it may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of the sizzling desert oasis that is Palm Springs. It tends to be more of a golf and sit-by-the-pool destination, but whenever your feet grow restless, you’ll find a network of trails worth exploring. Some cut through mountainscapes and others take you deep into a palm tree wonderland, but one thing is certain, setting out on any number of incredible Palm Springs Hikes will be sure to leave a lasting impression on you and your companions!
Some of the best regions to go hiking around Palm Springs are Agua Caliente Indian Reservation, which boasts the incredible Tahquitz Canyon. There’s also the Aerial Tramway area, which includes one of the toughest adventures in the USA—Skyline Trail: Cactus to Clouds. Discover more amazing Palm Springs hikes below!
10 Amazing Hiking Routes in Palm Springs
Looking for amazing hikes in Palm Springs? We’ve got you covered. The hikes below detail our favorite walking adventures, all replete with stunning scenery, whether you’re chasing after mountain views or desert imagery.
- Tahquitz Canyon Loop Trail - Tahquitz Canyon Loop Trail packs a punch for a short hike. Bring the kids along and explore a trail flanked by boulders before surmounting to a valley view at the highest point. You’ll also pass a waterfall! Note that the waterfall dries in the summer months, so you have a better chance of catching it at its actual velocity come winter.
- Tahquitz Peak via Devil’s Slide Trail - Looking for a challenging half-day excursion? Tahquitz Peak via Devil’s Slide Trail will fulfill your need! Enjoy a trail lined with trees as you wind to the top, where the Tahquitz Peak Fire Lookout awaits. Bask in the layers of mountain peaks before turning around and heading back the way you came. You can bring your dog along on this adventure!
- Palm Canyon Trail - The Palm Canyon Trail is a fantastic hiking adventure for the entire family! Let your imagination run wild as you explore a palm tree wonderland set against a dry desert backdrop. It’s hard not to love this short, rewarding excursion.
- Skyline Trail: Cactus to Clouds - The Skyline Trail: Cactus to Clouds sits atop experienced hikers’ bucket lists across the United States. You can’t complete this insane hike without training for it first! At the top, you can relax knowing you can skip walking down what you just walked up and take the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway instead.
- Murray Canyon Trail to Seven Falls - The Murray Canyon Trail to Seven Falls is a kid-friendly, easy-going trail that boasts a highlight reel of scenery: boulders, a 20-foot waterfall, and a hilly background. Enjoy the palm trees bordering the path, too! If you want to catch the water flowing, it’s best to tackle this hike in winter or spring.
- Garstin Loop Trail - The Garstin Loop Trail is a Palm Springs gem! If you’re looking for a workout paired with outstanding scenery, the Garstin Loop Trail doesn’t fail to provide one. Revel in the views of Palm Springs sprawled across the valley below.
- Fern Canyon Trail - Dedicate a couple of hours to exploring the stunning sandy wash along the Fern Canyon Trail. The entire trail brims with beauty punctuated by cacti lining the path, but the real beauty comes when you reach the canyon decorated with palms and ferns. This track is a Palm Springs gem!
- Victor Loop Trail - Victor Loop Trail unveils a highlight reel of Palm Springs in one remarkable adventure! Encounter a palm tree wonderland, a mountain background, and a sprawling valley below. This is an excellent hike to try with kids—just be sure to brush up on rattlesnake safety before you go.
- Araby Trail - Explore the desert and fit a decent workout in? Araby Trail knows how to simultaneously elevate heart rates through its enchanting scenery and intense incline. Walk by cacti, exciting rock formations, and mountain scenery as you make your way to the sweeping Palm Springs view.
- South Lykken Trail - Looking for a long, challenging hike in Palm Springs? The South Lykken Trail is a taxing but rewarding adventure that keeps you entertained, thanks to possible bighorn sheep glimpses. Don’t expect shade, though—bring water, sunscreen, a hat, and snacks!
When is the Best Time to Hike in Palm Springs?
The best time to hike in Palm Springs is between October to March when the sizzling desert heat fizzles to a reasonable adventure temperature; however, it is possible to hike in the summer. Just aim to head out early to beat the exhausting afternoon heat when exploring any of the above mentioned Palm Springs hikes.
Other Outdoor Activities in Palm Springs
While Palm Springs hikes are certainly popular, golf is the activity that likely sits at the top of the list for many outdoor enthusiasts in Palm Springs. Conversely, ATVing along the miles of open desert plains can be quite the thrilling antithesis of golf. Of course, there’s also mountain biking—several hiking trails serve as mountain bike and horse riding routes!
Fantastic Adventure Tours near Palm Springs
While we do not currently offer any adventure tours in Palm Springs, there are plenty of other amazing tours to be experienced throughout the state of California. If you don’t want to deal with the hassle of planning your next trip, be sure to check out our collection of California Tours and leave the planning to the professionals!
Frequently Asked Questions About Palm Springs
Why is Palm Springs so popular?
People flock to Palm Springs for its sun, golf, and overall resort-town feel.
What is the rainiest month in Palm Springs?
You can expect the most rain in Palm Springs in February. But it doesn’t even rain a lot! Expect around 1.5 inches of precipitation.
Do you need a car in Palm Springs?
While a car grants ultimate roaming freedom, having a car in Palm Springs is optional. You’ll find that several hikes start close enough to town, too. However, a car is always a good bet if you want to venture.
Find other fantastic hiking regions in California
Best Hikes in Palm Springs
Gene Autry Trail Sidewalk
The Gene Autry Trail Sidewalk takes you along an accessible sidewalk street adventure. Invite your friends—even strollers can handle this route—and enjoy a lovely morning or afternoon meander in Palm Springs, California.
Tahquitz Peak Loop Hike
The Tahquitz Peak Loop Hike takes you along a strenuous, punishing path hugged by nature towards the ever-so-rewarding Tahquitz Peak Fire Lookout. Revel in the view of peaks stretching deep into the horizon! This trail isn’t for the faint of heart, so pack a lot of water and snacks. If you’re going in winter, microspikes are a must.
Garstin Loop Trail
The Garstin Loop Trail in Palm Springs, California, is a local gem! If you’re looking for a quick, heart-pumping outing fused with phenomenal views of the valley etched below, consider taking this walk. Several users have reported that kids can come along, too!
Simonetta Kennett Viewpoint via South Lykken Trail
The Simonetta Kennett Viewpoint via South Lykken Trail is the ultimate bang-for-your-buck adventure if you’re looking for a quick, moderately challenging hike! Plus, you’ll get to revel in vistas of the Palm Springs valley peppering the landscape below.
Murray Hill Loop Hike
The Murray Hill Loop Hike is an adventure tailored for experienced and fit hikers. This hike is not for the faint of heart! However, the huffing, puffing, and leg burning will lead to the ultimate reward: peaks lining your sightline. (And phenomenal vistas of the valley of Palm Springs sprawled below).
Cahuilla Canyon Trail
Looking for an entertaining hike? The Cahuilla Canyon Trail is an unforgettable adventure in Palm Springs replete with palm trees fronting boulders, a desert landscape backed by mountains, and peppered with wildflowers. You’ll reach a lovely pool at the end, but it might be dried depending on how close to the summer months you hike.
Palm Canyon and Vandeventer Trail
The Palm Canyon and Vandeventer Trail is a phenomenal hike that winds through a palm tree oasis, where brown and green hues blend to create a spectacular image. If you’re in Palm Springs for a short time, this adventure deserves a spot on your list.
Fern Canyon Trail
The Fern Canyon Trail in Palm Springs, California, follows along a beautiful sandy wash, creating a beach-like vibe. Enjoy a lovely walk along the wash before surmounting a moderate incline to stunning views! Unfortunately, you’ll have to leave your dog home for this adventure.
North Lykken Trail to Palm Springs Art Museum
Looking for a good workout? North Lykken Trail to Palm Springs Art Museum takes you along a challenging trail to a great view of Palm Springs. You may even encounter bighorn sheep along the way! It’s best to visit this trail between October and March to avoid the intense desert heat in the summer.
Berns Trail packs a heart-pumping workout, incredible views of Palm Springs, and a mountainous backdrop into one phenomenal outdoor adventure. This hike can get confusing, thanks to a network of trails carved throughout the area, so be sure to download a GPS before going. Remember to pack a hat and sunscreen!
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