Desert | California

Soaking Up the California Desert

integratronReinvigorate yourself both spiritually and physically on an adventure that explores desert national parks and small towns. With spring-fed mineral pools, epic landscapes, and occasional glimpses of the desert’s creative and eccentric side, this trip will leave you energized and inspired.

Trip Time: 3–4 days, Total Distance: 353mi/567km


Desert Hot Springs. Get pampered with a clay and sandalwood wrap, then dip into mineral pools at The Spring Resort & Spa. With décor out of Marrakesh, El Morocco Inn & Spa offers soothing, exotic escapes. INFO at deserthotsprings.com

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Landers (36mi/58km). Take a healing “sound bath” at the Integratron, a domed structure said to have rejuvenating powers. INFO at visitcwc.com/YuccaValley

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Joshua Tree National Park (17mi/27km). Take a drive through the park and be inspired by the desert panorama at Keys View. Savor healthy gluten-free and vegan dishes at Natural Sisters Café (61695 29 Palms Highway; 760-366-3600). INFO at joshuatreechamber.org

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Amboy (50mi/80km). Climb to the top of Amboy Crate, a National Natural Landmark, for expansive Mojave views. Pick up snacks and souvenirs at Roy’s, a Route 66 landmark. INFO at visitcwc.com/Barstow

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Kelso (42mi/68km). Attend a ranger talk and see art exhibits at Mojave National Preserve’s Kelso Depot Visitor Center . Drive up Kelso Cima Road and hike Teutonia Peak Trail on Cima Dome—home to the world’s largest Joshua tree forest. INFO at visitcwc.com/Barstow

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Worlds- tallest- thermometer-baker-california

Baker (63mi/101km). Behold the world’s tallest thermometer, then dine on gyros, hummus, and other Mediterranean specialties at The Mad Greek (72112 Baker Blvd.; 760-733-4354). INFO at visitcwc.com/Barstow 

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Tecopa (54mi/86km). Chill out in the hot spring mineral baths at remote and rustic Tecopa Hot Springs Resort. Fill up on fresh dates and baked goods at China Ranch Date Farm. INFO at deathvalleychamber.org

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death-valley-national-parkDeath Valley Junction (35mi/56km). Experience the artistic vision of dance legend and painter Marta Becket during performances at historic Amargosa Opera House. INFO at deathvalleychamber.org

Death Valley National Park (31mi/51km). See the Lower 48’s highest peak (Mt. Whitney) and lowest point (Badwater) from Dante’s View. Wake up early for the inspiring, world-famous sunrise at Zabriskie Point. INFO at nps.gov/deva

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