Palm Springs Girls' Getaway

In October, I road tripped 8 hours to Palm Springs with my mom.

Some of my friends would gawk at this, but my mom is seriously my best friend and favorite travel buddy. We have so much fun together! She is on the same wavelength as me when it comes to travel — we want to take in the sights, but also relax and enjoy plenty of downtime.

So when we both were overdue for a vacation, I found the sweetest mid-century boho Airbnb (featured in Sunset magazine!) to stay at for a few nights. I had never been to Palm Springs — and my mom hadn’t been since the 1980s! So it’s safe to say it was a treat for both of us.

Take a peek below at the gorgeous home we stayed in… I would go back in a heartbeat! I have complete and utter home envy.

Our four-night trip was filled with a great mix of relaxation poolside and some local sightseeing. Since we drove down, I was able to pack the car with pool floaties I purchased on Amazon (links below in my packing list) I couldn’t wait to test them out in the saltwater pool once we arrived! I dubbed this guy “Pinkie” and let’s just say he will be coming with me on every bachelorette/pool trip I take from here on out.

Below, I’m sharing our itinerary — what we did when we weren’t relaxing by the pool, the best places we ate and of course — a simple packing list!

SIGHTS TO SEE

MOORTEN BOTANICAL GARDENS

Upon arrival, check in and pay a small admission fee. You’ll get a sweet hand-drawn map of the family owned gardens, and be encouraged to explore and take pictures! At the end of the route, make sure to check out their desert tortoises. My mom and I had so much fun watching those lil guys slooooowly move about their spaces and eat their lettuce lunches. They also have succulents and cacti for sale —- I took home two really pretty plants!

PALM SPRINGS AERIAL TRAMWAY

The aerial tramway is a Palm Springs tourist staple. The tramway goes up 2.5 miles, with the mountain station at elevation 8,500 feet. Head up for a photo op and take in the gorgeous views —- or make a day of it and go hiking on one of the 50 miles of trails available to the public.

PALM SPRINGS DOOR TOUR

A trip to Palm Springs is not complete without exploring the city’s many neighborhoods in pursuit of the perfect pretty door. I used this guide on the Salty Canary blog to help my mom and I find the best spots for photo ops! Make sure to be respectful of others property. We drove around in the evening and I found it was the perfect time to not only get sunset-soaked photos but have the streets to ourselves.

The best streets to visit include East Sierra Way, home of the Party Lions and That Pink Door (in the pic to the right), and Alhambra. If you have a car, just take a nice and slow ride around the neighborhood and enjoy all of the sights! I like to play the game, “Which house would I buy?” …. if I had an unlimited budget, that is!

SHIELDS DATE GARDENS

My mom has been using Shields Date Crystals for the past thirty years to make the most amazing banana bran date muffins! We drove out to Indio (30 minutes from downtown Palm Springs) one morning on our trip to stock up on their date crystals. She bought 25 lbs worth in bulk — and we calculated hundreds of dollars of savings, including the shipping she usually pays to have them delivered! We didn’t actually walk around the date gardens but we browsed the gift shop. Their date shake counter makes for a cute photo op! We ended up trying a dairy-free date shake in downtown Palm Springs because I’ve been eating low-fodmap to help my tummy. It was so sweet but SO good.

PLACES TO EAT

COFFEe AT ERNEST COFFEE

I had the best iced almond milk latte the morning my mom and I stopped in the uptown design district to explore various shops!

BRUNCH AT NORMA’S AT THE PARKER

The bright and cheery open-air terrace restaurant can’t be missed! The portions are huge — so plan on splitting with a gal pal or else you’ll never be hungry for dinner.

DINNER AT WORKSHOP KITCHEN+BAR

My mom and I came here at the recommendation of my hairstylist, Carlos, who has a condo in Palm Springs. I’m so glad we did! We sat out on the patio and had a 6:30 p.m. dinner on Tuesday night. By 7:15, the patio was lively with tons of groups enjoying the balmy weather. We split an appetizer and an amazing risotto, with a tasty passionfruit mousse for dessert. It was seriously SO tasty and I loved the vibe!

WEDNESDAY NIGHT COMMUNAL DINNER AT SPARROW’S LODGE

If you find yourself in Palm Springs in the middle of the week, you don’t want to miss Sparrow’s Lodge and their communal chicken dinner on Wednesday nights! My mom and I stayed at Sparrow’s Lodge on Halloween night. We checked in during the early afternoon to lounge poolside, and then got ready for a 6:30 dinner. They served various appetizers and champagne around the fire before everyone sat down at a gorgeously decorated long table outdoors in the garden. We were assigned seats next to a Swiss couple on a West Coast roadtrip. They were so fun to talk to and I loved learning about their experience renovating a home from the 1850s just outside of Geneva. Not only was the company great, but the food was delicious. The team there puts so much love into these communal meals and the guests come from all over to enjoy the hospitality!

PACKING LIST

Other Ideas

  • Casual jean jacket for evenings

  • Pair of pool flip flops

  • Pair of sandals for day/night

  • Pool cover up

  • One athleisure outfit or hiking (if you plan on it)

  • Dresses for day and night

UNTIL NEXT TIME, PALM SPRINGS!