Snowbird in Palm Springs, California

Snowbird in Palm Springs, California

When the leaves start to change at home, it’s time to pack up the RV and head south for the winter.  Those of us who snowbird in Palm Springs, California have found (we think) the perfect place to settle in and enjoy the sunshine.   There is so much to do in the area, so much to explore, this little oasis in the southern California Mojave Desert just bustles with activity in the winter.

We’ve stayed at nearby Desert Hot Springs – north east of town – but found it too isolated for our tastes.   While we loved the pools at these parks, and the neighbors, we found ourselves driving into Palm Springs most every day for shopping and entertainment.    We’ve also stayed in Indio – at the south end of town – in a newly remodeled park and really liked it there.   Indio is a working man’s town – away from the bright lights and glamour of Palm Springs.   The other park we like is right in Palm Springs (Cathedral City) where we have very close access to the busy Hwy 10 and centrally located. 

Before we retired, I researched the weather in the southern cities – asking myself “Where is the closest place we can go and be warm?” and then decided on Palm Springs.   The average temperature in January is 71 degrees F and that’s warmer than Phoenix, San Diego, LA and Yuma.   But this is the desert and it can get very cold at night, so we need both warm and cold weather clothing.   The drive down from Washington had us staying the night in Weed, CA in 6 inches of snow!  It’s not all bathing suits and sunscreen in the winter!

Palm Springs has the most amazing Saturday Market we’ve ever attended.   Held on the grounds of the  College of the Desert,  vendors sell everything from arts and crafts and sunglasses to dog collars, food, soap, clothing, etc.   If you need most anything at all, you can probably find it there, including the best window cleaner I’ve ever owned.  

Another ‘not-to-miss’ is going to a Cardenas Market (one of several in the area) for the best fresh tortillas, salsa and guacamole – ever.  They have a huge fruit and vegetable section.  

Take a walk through downtown Palm Springs during the an art walk and visit the art museum.   Take your picture next to the 30 foot high Marilyn Monroe!  

Visit the Palm Springs Air Museum or ride the tram 8000 feet to the top of the mountain.  

Take the clubs if you are a golfer – there are plenty of courses to chose from. 

The area has absolutely everything you could ever want (Home Depot, Walmart, high and low end shopping) as well as a nearby desert Oasis, the great Salton Sea, Joshua Tree National Park, and on and on.   Two things to do at least once.  First, drive down to Indio on Hwy 10 and go to Dateland and watch the movie “The Sex Life of the Date” – something to fun to tell your friends back home.  Secondly, go to a Sunday afternoon polo match (free!) at the Empire Polo Club, also in Indio.   Its a tailgating party along the field – bring your lunch, cold drinks, sunscreen, and some shade if you have it.  Its a hoot! 

So.  Where do you stay in Palm Springs?  What do you do?  Comment below and maybe we’ll see you there?

Photo:  Husband, dog and Marilyn

Zoom in and out on the map below to see roads and attractions!


Michael is a retired, single, world traveler who enjoys being outdoors, a good pint of beer or glass of wine, and museums.