Top Sights to See While Visiting Palm Springs

Nothing ruins a vacation faster than a bit of bad weather when you've planned to sightsee your way around town, but luckily, you won't come across that problem in Palm Springs. Year-round sunshine means you're always free to soak up the desert's top sights, but where does one start? We have a few ideas.

When it comes to sightseeing, you'll find it hard to beat the sweeping, 360-views of the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway. The rotating cable cars offer unobstructed views of the Coachella Valley and surrounding areas, and once you reach the top, you'll be able to enjoy the nature walks and hiking trails of San Jacinto State Park.

Or you can take a closer look at the desert's natural beauty at nearby sites like Joshua Tree National Park and the Indian Canyons. Joshua Tree is a stunning sight to see with its alien-like boulders and twisted Joshua trees, while the Indian Canyons offer a look at the mountains the native Cahuilla people once made their home. 

Palm Springs' museums and zoos also host a wealth of sights worth a visit. At the Palm Springs Air Museum, for example, you'll set your gaze on the world's largest collection of flyable WWII planes, while the Palm Springs Art Museum offers a look at both historic Native American artifacts and fine contemporary art. Over at The Living Desert, you'll be able to see dozens of desert dwellers from around the world, including giraffes, cheetahs and zebras, to name a few.

Check out the full list of the desert's 10 best sightseeing attractions below.



As the deadliest war in history, WWII forever changed the course of American and international history. Today, visitors can view the largest collection of flyable WWII planes in the world at the Palm Springs Air Museum. Whether or not you're a...  Read More



The Palm Springs Art Museum has seen many transformations since its inception in 1938. Originally focused on the desert environment and the native Cahuilla people, the museum is now dedicated to both the region's indigenous culture and...  Read More



Who needs mass produced homes and traditional building materials? When homesteader Yerxa Cabot settled in Desert Hot Springs, he used natural materials and a little ingenuity to build a home so unique it remains a preserved museum to this day....  Read More



Ever wonder what a roadrunner and coyote really look like? At The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens, you can meet the real life inspiration for these desert-dwelling "Looney Tunes" characters. This Palm Desert zoo focuses on educating visitors about...  Read More



Santa Rosa and San Jacinto National Monument provides the picturesque background for the Coachella Valley. The Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains line the desert, and in the winter months, these peaks are snowcapped for the ultimate photo...  Read More



Sparkling springs set amid 20,000 acres of lush greenery provide a haven for a myriad desert creatures, just five miles outside of Palm Springs. In the center is a 1000-acre, idyllic palm oasis that served as the backdrop for Cecil De Mille's...  Read More



Discover the outdoors from the open bed of a red jeep on a Desert Adventures tour. The tour company specializes in eco tours of the Coachella Valley, including tours of Joshua Tree National Park, the Agua Caliente Indian Canyons, Mecca Hills and...  Read More



There's no better way to view the Coachella Valley than from above. Don't settle for the view from your airplane window, though. For the best views of the desert, take a cable car into the mountains at the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway. A 12.5...  Read More



Once a community center for the native Cahuilla people, the Agua Caliente Indian Canyons are a recreational oasis for hikers, horseback riders and nature lovers. Protected by the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians, the area's hiking trails...  Read More

Joshua Tree National Park


Joshua Tree National Park is about a 45-minute drive from Palm Springs, but it feels like a world away. Filled with hiking trails, scenic vistas and larger-than-life rock formations, Joshua Tree is the perfect destination for those looking to...  Read More


Meet Marissa Willman

Marissa Willman moved to the Coachella Valley in 2001 and loves discovering the best that the desert has to offer. As a Palm Springs local, Marissa enjoys sharing her knowledge of this desert...  More About Marissa