Head's up, there might be affiliate links ahead!
We just got back from our 5th trip to Palm Springs. It’s a favorite spot for us because we love the sun, the dry heat and the unique, funky vibe that you can only get in the SoCal desert.
Why go to Palm Springs?
Well if you live in California, it’s only a car-ride away, so a perfect destination to bring your dogs (it’s a very dog-friendly town). But even if you live far away, there’s an airport that’s literally 10 minutes from the main strip and honestly, I’m not kidding about the vibe. It’s really cool and unlike anywhere else in the US. Palm Springs has a history of being a Hollywood star getaway in the 50’s and 60’s so it had a big boom during that era and then literally froze in time. From the art to the architecture, it’s all in celebration of the late 50s-60s where bright colors, modern home design and palm trees are the norm.
It’s Not Hard to Eat Healthy in Palm Springs
From low-carb veggie burgers to green smoothie bars, Palm Springs is a true reflection of SoCal cuisine – fresh, largely organic and always fit foodie-friendly. While we were there, we generally ate breakfast and lunch at our Airbnb and then headed out for dinner every night to try new, cool places. Since we mostly visited restaurants after dark (not ideal for photography), I’m sharing some images of the properties that are not all my own, but the dish recommendations most certainly are.
PS – I came back from my 9 day trip to Palm Springs 3 pounds lighter than when I left. That literally never happens on vacation for me, but because the food options are so healthy and the motivation to be out running or doing Piyo in the morning never failed me, I lost weight. If that’s not a testament to the fit-foodie vibe, I’m not sure what is!
Best Lunch Spot in Palm Springs
Grab a menu if you want, but whatever you do, order the tacos. Oh. My. Gosh. Best tacos ever! There are other things on the menu that look good, but stick with tacos and you won’t be disappointed. The hubby ordered a tuna bowl that photographed much better, so that made the cut – not the tacos. Sorry! Order your food along with with a Baja Margharita or the Cucumber Smash if you want something refreshing. Grab a table outside and watch the world go by on the main strip. I love people watching in Palm Springs because there’s always something interesting to watch.
Best New Spot for Drinks in Palm Springs
Image // Paul Bar
First, if you’re looking for some pre-dinner drinks, I absolutely MUST go visit Paul Bar. Warning – it’s located in a random strip mall on the edge of town and the minute you drive into the parking lot, you’ll want to turn around and leave. Please don’t. Just park the car, step inside and immediately you’ll feel transported to another time and place.
I recommend the Black Manhattan – it’s smooth, not too sweet and delicious.
Where to Eat Dinner in Palm Springs
This spot is a bit of an institution in Palm Springs, so expect to see an older crowd, but don’t be fooled, because these folks who are generally locals, know where to find the best food! Ask for a table out on their outdoor Terrence which is apparently dog-friendly and super cute. I had the double breast free-range chicken and it was enough for two whole meals! The martinis are generous as well (from what I can recall after finishing it!).
We didn’t make it there this time, but we certainly did last time we were in Palm Springs, and it’s a favorite. Again, tucked in behind the Colony Palms hotel, so you wouldn’t even know about it, except it’s quite popular. It reminds me a lot of Azucar as the decor is dramatic and open but it still feels like a secret hideaway. Ask for a seat outside and get the pan roasted Red Trout and you won’t be disappointed.
Image // Purple Palm
This is a new spot in Palm Springs, catering to a younger crowd and I was excited to try it as I’m a HUGE fan of sushi. I will say, the food was amazing – when we finally got it. They were painfully short staffed and everything took forever to order. The waitress, who was also the hostess and possibly the restaurant manager forgot to order one of our items, so we didn’t get a full meal, but the Koko and the Venue Roll were both outstanding. I love the theme of sushi and whiskey and the decor was modern and chic. Hopefully, if you head here, they’ve got their staffing situation sorted out.
Image // Sandfish
Where to Stay in Palm Springs
Personally, I’m a fan of renting a home via Airbnb and bringing the dogs and having a backyard oasis to play around in all day. We rented the Lost Oasis house (via Airbnb) this past trip and it was amazing! Loved the private pool and hot tub and the house was super quiet and really stylish.
Caren is a certified yoga teacher, fitness instructor and author of The Fit Habit. Here she shares simple, healthy recipes, home workout ideas and practical ways to foster mind + body wellness.