I visited Palm Springs (3 nights) in March 2018 for a long weekend getaway with my wife and kids (ages 3 and 6mo) and one of our close friends from San Francisco with their 3 kids (ages: 7,3,1). My wife had a work trip in LA so we joined for this trip for the first 3 days before her work. It was our first long-flight trip as a family of four after our daughter was born. Palm Springs is one of the very few places in the US that is warm in the first months of the year – it sits in a dessert climate and surrounded by mountains making it a really nice scape. We flew to LAX and then rented a car drove – best to do this in the morning or late evening. Navigating LA traffic can be tough (captain obvious)! There are some direct flights to Palm Springs but they are expensive and infrequent. We stayed in Rancho Mirage but had the chance to explore a bunch of nice restaurants, parks, towns etc. Such a fun quick trip!
We stayed at The Ritz-Carlton Rancho Mirage for our visit. The hotel is expansive, beautiful and is nestled nicely in the town of Rancho Mirage in the Palm Springs community. The pool, restaurants, play areas, game rooms and general activities made the hotel a wonderful destination and very kid-friendly – number of Easter-related activities were going on given the time of year we visited.
- Dining: We really enjoyed our Italian dinners at Mamma Gina's and Piero's PizzaVino on El Paseo and Las Casuelas Nuevas and Fresh Agave for Mexican; next time we visit, we plan to also try Workshop Kitchen and Bar and Eight Four Nine for American and sit outside at the Acqua California Bistro
- Activities: The Aereal Tram Car experience and the Red Jeep Tours to the San Andreas Fault, Painted Canyon, Palm Oasis and Joshua Tree are essential visits; The Living Dessert Zoo and Gardens is a great kids activity along with Boomer's in Cathedral City; The Ritz Kids zone had an excellent game room with billiards and foosball - it was our son Ishan's first time playing either! Almost no trip for us would be complete without a wonderful Flytographer family photo shoot - this one at the Michael S Wolfson Park along Frank Sinatra Drive!
I would certainly recommend a long weekend (3-4 nights is perfect) to Palm Springs during the colder months on the East Coast but also as an easier warm escape from anywhere in the Western US. While a longer flight from the East Coast, it is a nice alternative to Arizona or even the Caribbean/Florida which we have done frequently. We made this trip because of a prior need to be in Southern California but we would certainly consider another trip in the future. We had a great, relaxing visit and enjoyed the local hospitality, dining and activities at the hotel. Enjoy your trip!