The city of Palm Springs in California

When you think of the state of California, you quickly think of large cities such as San Francisco and Los Angeles. However, there are also smaller towns in this state that are worth a visit. An example of this is the city of Palm Springs, located about a hundred miles (about 160 kilometers) from Los Angeles. The city can be reached by car, train and bus, but it also has its own airport – Palm Springs International Airport.


Many Indians used to live in the area where the city of Palm Springs is now located. One of those tribes was the Agua Caliente Indian Tribe, the Warm Water Indian Tribe. They spent the winter in the warm valley of what is now Palm Springs and in the summer they headed into the cooler San Bernardino Mountains. Even today, the Agua Caliente Indians still own a lot in Palm Springs: they now rent out the mansions they built in the city to tourists to earn money. The Agua Caliente Indians are one of the richest Indian tribes in the United States.
In 1870, Palm Springs officially became a city when the Southern Pacific Railroad built a railroad through the area. Palm Springs got a train station, which brought people to the city. Due to Palm Springs’ pleasant weather, many famous Hollywood stars moved to the city between 1920 and 1930. Even today, Palm Springs is still a place where celebrities like to spend their time.

The name

The name Palm Springs consists of two parts Palm and Springs. Palm comes from the Washington palm, a palm tree that is common in the city. Springs comes from the hot springs, which used to be common in the area.

Location and climate

Palm Springs is located in the middle of the desert. Several mountain ranges surround the city: the San Bernardino Mountains are to the north, the Santa Rosa Mountains to the south and the San Jacinto Mountains to the west. Because Palm Springs is located in the valley of all these mountains, the heat is retained there. This means that even in winter it is still warm and sunny in the city.
On average, the city has 330 days of sunshine per year. The average temperature is between 23 and 24 degrees and approximately 10 centimeters of rain falls per year. There is actually no snow in the city itself, but it can cool down considerably in the mountains around Palm Springs. This makes Palm Springs also attractive for winter sports enthusiasts in the winter.


Most people visit Palm Springs to enjoy the weather. However, there is also plenty to do in the city, ranging from music and film festivals to visiting a museum. Palm Springs has two well-known museums: the Palm Springs Air Museum and the Palm Springs Desert Museum. At the Palm Springs Air Museum, the history of World War II is told using old aircraft. The Palm Springs Desert Museum is more focused on the arts and natural sciences.
The city itself also has a Walk of Fame: the names of celebrities in stars on the street, just like in Los Angeles. All the celebrities who received a star are celebrities who actually lived in Palm Springs.


The city’s biggest attraction (literally) is the wind farm, which is located just before Palm Springs. There are a total of more than four thousand wind turbines, all of which can produce around 300 kilowatts of energy. This is about enough for an average household to get through a month.

Palm Springs Aerial Tramway

Those who are not afraid of great heights can take the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway in Palm Springs: a cable car that takes you to a height of more than 2.5 kilometers. On the way to the top you will have views of the San Jacinto Mountains. You’ll even get the chance to see them from all sides as the cable car cart rotates.
At the terminus of the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway you can get off and enjoy the view of the city of Palm Springs with the wind farm. On the other side of the mountain is San Jacinto Mountain Park, which has hikes through it. These can be walked without a guide.

Tips for visiting Palm Springs

These tips can help you get even more out of your visit to Palm Springs and ensure that your visit goes well.

  • The city is divided into Uptown and Downtown. Buses run between the two parts, stopping often. As an adult, you pay one dollar (2017 price) for a ride, regardless of the time you spend on the bus.
  • Make sure you have enough water when walking through the city. In summer the temperature can reach 44 degrees or even warmer.
  • If you go into the mountains around Palm Springs by car, pay close attention to the engine temperature. On steep sections it is recommended to turn off the air conditioning to prevent engine burns.