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United States > California  
See USA Map
Disneyland
Golf & Course
Rafting & Fun
Soft Drinks
  California  
 
 
California Division of Tourism
PO Box 1499 Dept. 200
Sacramento, CA
95812-1499
(800) 862-2543
[800-TO-CALIF], ext. 200;
(916) 322-2881

Road Conditions Hotline
(916) 445-7623;
(916) 445-1534

California Fish and Game
(916
rules of the road  
 
 

Speed Limit : 70

Studded Tires Permitted from Nov. 1 - Apr. 30

Child Restraints Required

Seat Belts Required

Auto Liability Insurance Mandatory
 
 

Overnight Off-Road Parking Permitted Except on Freeways and Where Otherwise Posted

Trailer Brakes Required if Weight > 1,500 lbs

Combined Maximum Length of Car-Trailer Combination must not exceed 65 feet in total

Trailer Chains Required

Flares Required



  overview

The Deserts

Expansive landscapes, brilliant skies, traces of pioneer history and glittering resort cities make the California desert region a year-round retreat. Natural phenomena abound, from the solitude of Death Valley National Park to the vast Joshua Tree National Park. The quiet pleasures of the back country, where a desert tortoise may be one’s only companion, and the excitement of a sunny resort in the Coachella Valley, are both equally possible. Other options include trekking across ancient Native American lands, boating down the Colorado River, rock hounding, fishing on the Salton Sea, watching wildlife, exploring a ghost town or driving down historic Route 66.





BARSTOW/JOSHUA TREE AREA: Bustling Barstow, originally a railway junction and transport centre, is a good base for exploring the myriad sights in this High Desert area. From Barstow, visitors can make a tour of nearby Calico Ghost Town, a restored 1800s mining town with campsite, shops, mine tours, train rides, gold panning and a melodrama playhouse. The Mojave National Scenic Preserve offers a remote slice of the Old West, featuring spectacular natural landscapes and history. Another eerily remote area is the Joshua Tree National Park – 220 sq km (850 sq miles) of protected land with many opportunities for hiking and rock climbing. To the south, Providence Mountains State Recreation Area offers dramatic eastern Mojave scenery, hiking trails and the limestone Mitchell Caverns, primitive camping and a visitor centre. Rainbow Basin/Owl Canyon is a colourful natural landmark containing the fossilised remains of numerous animals.

COLORADO RIVER/IMPERIAL VALLEY: River recreations are abundant in Needles and Blythe, resort towns situated along the Colorado River, which separates Nevada and Arizona from the southeastern portion of California’s Deserts Region. Here, water devotees can boat, fish and tube down the lazy river from Lake Havasu, which was created by Parker Dam. Water from the Colorado River has today transformed the desert lands of Imperial Valley into a fertile farming and recreation area. El Centro, an agricultural market centre, is a good base for exploring the valley’s wealth of attractions. East of El Centro is the Imperial Sand Dunes, popular with off-road vehicle enthusiasts. To the west are the Coyote, Fish Creek and Superstition mountains, which attract rock hounds and fossil collectors. North of El Centro, anglers and boating enthusiasts are lured to buoyant Salton Sea, a vast inland lake. Boating, saltwater fishing and hunting are popular recreational activities here. It also offers swimming, nature trails, a variety of campsites, an 18,000-acre boating park, the Salton Sea National Wildlife Refuge and the Imperial Wildlife Area.

PALM SPRINGS/COACHELLA VALLEY: With 330 days of sunshine, the Coachella Valley is a year-round paradise for lovers of the outdoors. This 19th-century desert resort area now features no less than 10,000 swimming pools, 600 tennis courts and 90 golf courses. Visitors can shop, watch polo matches, tour museums and art galleries, attend the theatre or dance the night away. More adventurous travellers can go horseriding or hiking through the historic Indian Canyons, be whisked from sea level to the top of 3300m (10,800ft) Mount Jacinto via an aerial tramway or hover above the Coachella Valley in a hot-air balloon.

OTHER ATTRACTIONS: These include Palm Desert’s Living Desert Wildlife and Botanical Park, which sustains five plant communities and about 250 bird and animal species; and Moorten’s Botanical Garden, in Palm Springs, which shelters more than 3000 species of desert plants.

SPECIAL EVENTS: Feb 2003 57th Annual Riverside County Fair and National Date Festival. Mar Indio Pow Wow Spring Celebration, Indio. Apr Annual Palm Springs Car Classic; Coachella Arts and Music Festival, Coachella. Aug Annual Palm Springs International Short Film Festival.

TRAVEL: There are direct and non-stop flights and convenient connections for the major airlines serving the Palm Springs Regional Airport (PSP) (website: www.ci.palm-springs.ca.us/Departments/airport/airport.html), including Alaska Airlines, America West Express, American Airlines, SkyWest Airlines, United Express, USAir Express and Northwest Airlines.
Ontario International Airport (ONT) (website: www.lawa.org/ont/welcome.htm) is a one-hour drive by freeway. Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) (website: www.lawa.org/lax/welcome.htm) is a two-hour drive.
John Wayne Airport (SNA) (website: www.ocair.com) in Orange County and San Diego International Airport (SAN) (website: www.portofsandiego.org/sandiego_airport/index.html) are, respectively, two hours and half an hour away by car. Amtrak provides daily services to the nearby community of Indio. There is a frequent and convenient bus service with Greyhound to the Palm Springs Bus Depot, 311 N Indian Canyon Drive.


CLIMATE: The area’s warm, dry climate is a major attraction, with 354 days of sunshine and less than five and a half inches of rain each year.

More Stories Like This...

Los Angeles, California travel information
San Diego, California travel information
San Francisco, California travel information

Golf & Course :

Cypress Point Club, Pebble Beach
The Los Angeles Country Club - North Course, Los Angeles
The Olympic Club - Lake Course, San Francisco
Pebble Beach Golf Links, Pebble Beach
Riviera Country Club, Pacific Palisades
San Francisco Golf Club, San Francisco
Spyglass Hill Golf Course, Pebble Beach

Disneyland :

Disneyland Theme Parks, Disneyland
Disney's California Adventure, Disneyland
Downtown Disney, Disneyland

Rafting & Fun:

Eastern United States Map
Western United States Map





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