Get the Most Out of Fall in the Palm Springs Area

Yes, we survived and even thrived during the summer in Coachella Valley, but there’s no denying that us desert-dwellers come alive during autumn. And that’s not just due to the temperatures lowering. While most people think of driving into the mountains to see the changing leaves this time of year, we’d like to point out that the Coachella Valley has its own autumnal charm.

1. Howl-O-Ween at the Living Desert

If you’ve got wee animal lovers in tow, it’s hard to beat the Howl-O-Ween event at the Living Desert in Palm Desert. If you haven’t been here, you will be awestruck by the beauty of the indigenous plant life and the curious nature of the animals. And the Living Desert is a leader in animal and plant conservation for over 50 years. 

This fun and family-friendly event will take place this year on Saturday, October 26 from 9 am-12 pm and on Thursday, October 31 from 6 pm-8:30. The first date is free for members or with paid admission and the price of the second date will be released on their website soon.

2. The 55th Annual Palm Desert Golf Cart Parade

If you love to drive golf carts and a bit of competition gets your blood flowing, the annual Palm Desert Golf Cart Parade is for you. In its 55th year, this fun-filled day features food trucks, a golf booth expo, various vendors, a Food Zone, and a Kid Zone. Specialized golf carts and classic cars will be on display but if you prefer to be a more active participant, submit a form to decorate your own cart to be in the parade. There is also a pooch “paw-rade” for those who prefer a good canine caravan.

3. Palm Springs Aerial Tram

This is an ideal summer outing, as it’s 30-40 degrees cooler at the top, providing heavenly relief during scorching summer months. However, the view from the top of the Palm Springs Aerial Tram during the fall months is spectacular. Pine trees abound and the golden light of autumn illuminates the rock formations in a way that is any photographer’s dream. It’s also a good idea to sneak in a trip before winter, as it can get icy at the top during those months. Although beautiful during the winter as well, you’ll need the right gear to trek through the snow.

4. Enjoy the Wonders of Joshua Tree National Park

Anyone who has ever visited this majestic park during the summer knows that the temperatures make it tricky to do much by way of hiking or exploring during the day. September is still warm but it cools off in October and November, making these idyllic months to camp and ogle the awesome red rock formations and desert plant life. On top of the temperate climate during this time of year, the crowds are also noticeably smaller. And if your life motto is “fest is best,” you’ll want to check out the Joshua Tree Music Festival and Bhakti Fest.

5. Jump on a Jeep Tour

Much like the Palm Springs Tram, this is a great desert activity at any time of the year, but fall’s sparse crowds, lowering temperatures, and panoramic vistas lend themselves to maximum enjoyment. The desert fauna and flora are breathtaking around this time of year. Many plants are fruiting during fall, and the hackberries, wolfberries, and various flowering cacti provide an awe-inspiring splash of color. Most tour companies know that everyone is seeking something different from their adventures, so if you’re looking for something a bit more rugged for your fall jeep tour, you’ll have plenty of options.

6. Hike Indian Canyons

We’d have to do an entirely separate post for all the heavenly hikes readily available to you in the Coachella Valley so, for the sake of this blog post, we’ll stick to Indian Canyons. There are three canyon hikes to enjoy in this scenic area:

Palm Canyon

You’ll surely see the rocky gorges and desert lands for which this area is known, but what is so magical is the way the indigenous flora and fauna offset this barren landscape. It’s a moderate hike, with foot paths that wind down into the canyon, making it ideal for horseback riding or picnicking near the stream.

Andreas Canyon

Photographers will love this hike, as the birds, lush oasis, and skirted palms serve as magnificent muses. You’ll see plenty of unusual rock formations as you take this relatively easy foot trail through the canyon and Andreas Creek. There are more than 150 species of plants within a half-mile radius, so calling it scenic is an understatement.

Murray Canyon

This is perfect for a group looking for a hike that’s relatively low in challenges but high in scenery. You might even catch a glimpse of a Peninsular Big Horn Sheep (an endangered species), mule deer, or other wild animals that tend to roam the ground high above the canyon. Also endangered, the Least Bell’s Vireo bird species is known to nest here. Foot and equestrian trails lead visitors to a stunning recreation area chock full of pine trees. The seclusion of this area is what has kept it so majestic.

7. Have an Autumn Scavenger Hunt

If you’re already a Palm Springs-area resident, you’ve likely heard about the epic challenge ScavengerHunt.com by Big City. It’s a two-hour jaunt through Palm Springs that includes puzzle-solving, landmark exploration, and other challenges. Great for birthdays, team building, or just for fun, your group can get started any time you’re ready. This is also an optimal experience for new Palm Springs residents, as it’s an entertaining way to get to know your new city.



If you’re in or looking to join the healthcare field and have had your eye on living in the Coachella Valley, we’d love you to peruse our current job openings at Eisenhower Health. It’s the perfect place to live, work, play, and prosper.

Originally posted on 18/9/2019

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