This is no desert mirage. The metropolitan oasis of Palm Springs, Calif., gets 360 days of sunlight every year and lies 110 miles east of Los Angeles in the Coachella Valley. Hardly in the middle of nowhere, Palm Springs is guarded on three sides by the San Jacinto Mountains, the San Bernadino Mountains and the Santa Rosa Mountains, and the Salton Sea (a huge lake, actually) lies to the south.
Its proximity to an array of natural attractions makes Palm Springs a major destination for outdoor enthusiasts who enjoy hiking, cycling and horseback riding; nearby Joshua Tree National Park offers world-famous rock climbing. Palm Springs is also known as “the golf capital of the world” offering more than 100 golf courses. Every Thursday night, Palm Canyon Drive turns into Villagefest, a music, arts and crafts, and food festival that celebrates the city’s simple “village vibe” ambiance.