Region Overviews: California Travel Guide: Overview
Take some time to explore California, and you'll understand why visitors from all over the world flock here.
One or more kids 17+ required (siblings 14+ ok) | Min age to ride e-bike 16+
Family — Older Teens & 20s
5 days 4 nights
Activity Level: 1-3
From: $3,699 - $3,799 pp dbl occ
($700 - $1,000 for sgl occ)
In the California desert, less is more. A single white cloud floats above the San Jacinto Mountains in Palm Springs' vast blue sky. Joshua trees stand humbly within the rugged expanse of the national park. And sparse vegetation and little precipitation conspire to create a distinctive landscape of stark beauty. That ice-cold drink at the end of the day? A simple but welcome pleasure. On this one-of-a-kind classic desert escape.
Start/End Palm Springs
Start/End locations may vary. Do not book flights until your trip details are confirmed.
Travel with your family from Palm Springs, the jewel of California's low desert, into the high desert landscapes nestled between Joshua Tree National Park and the San Bernardino National Forest | Hike piney ridge trails in a geologically rich wildlands preserve | Immerse yourself in quirky desert culture in rugged one-street Pioneertown, built as a Western film façade in the 1940s | Take in the scene at a local saloon and relax at our one-of-a-kind American West hotel.
Once frequented by film stars here shooting old Westerns, this coolly revamped desert hideaway spotlights local artisans and celebrates the town's quirky history, culture and setting.
Journey to Joshua Tree National Park and be awed by its fascinating rock formations and iconic yucca trees | It's a full-day adventure amid the park's surreal labyrinths of sculpted granite, massive boulders and secret craggy passageways | Explore colorful pockets of the park on an optional hike | All levels are welcome for a rock climbing experience with an expert guide in one of the world's top climbing destinations! | Bike through historic Palm Springs neighborhoods on an architectural bike tour | Witness the lush oases of Indian Canyons | Follow desert trails in Mission Creek and Whitewater Preserves, where a dry rocky valley gives way to a cascading river | Discover tranquil desert sanctuaries and craggy mountain ridges | Weather and crowd permitting, journey over the breathtaking cliffs of Chino Canyon on a ride up to Mount San Jacinto State Park on the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway | Marvel at the views of Chino Canyon's breathtaking cliffs | Walk amid age-old pine trees and rocky ridgelines, pausing at overlooks with picturesque panoramas of the surrounding desert and beyond | Sip a signature desert cocktail poolside and take in the gorgeous vistas of the Coachella Valley | Extend your getaway in one of Old Hollywood's favorite escapes.
Set on a bluff overlooking glittering Palm Springs, this chic retreat complements its desert surroundings with elements of wood, stone and fire. (pool, spa)
The earlier you book, the more choice you'll have and the lower your price. And you can always change your mind — you won't be charged to transfer to a different trip before your final payment is due. View cancellation policy.
Click on dates for pricing, itinerary variations and to book your trip. Price is per person, double occupancy in USD.
Our Private Trips are best for groups of 6 or more. We suggest joining a scheduled trip.
Group size is required to show per-person pricing. Your group size can be approximate and can change.
Every Backroads trip is designed to appeal to a wide variety of interests and fitness levels. Several routes and a range of levels are offered each day so you can choose how much or how little activity you want to do. Learn more about how we determine activity levels.
The hiking terrain on this trip includes well-maintained paths and rugged desert trails with some rocky and sandy sections, and a few steeper climbs and descents. Weather permitting, we may hike at the top of the Palm Springs aerial tram, which takes place at 8,500 feet and may make the route more challenging than the mileage may suggest. The biking terrain varies from level to rolling with a few steeper hills. Possible extreme weather conditions, such as heat and wind (or colder temperatures in winter months), can make biking more strenuous.
The key to a stellar day's ride is a bike that's perfectly in tune with your cycling style… Backroads has you covered with the best bike fleet in the world! Please note that bike requests are subject to availability and prioritized based on the date they're submitted.
Click the arrow to see all bike options.
We want to make sure you're on the right trip and that you have the best experience possible. Every Backroads trip is unique and this one is no exception.
To bring you to our favorite parts of Joshua Tree National Park and Palm Springs, we make liberal use of shuttles on this trip. Although you'll see the inside of the Backroads van on each day and will experience some longer rides (1–1½ hours) as we shuttle between highlights, consider it an opportunity to view some spectacular scenery while resting your legs in preparation for your next adventure.