The Coolest Palm Springs City Guide

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Our new Palm Springs City Guide is here! Palm Springs is one of the best places to visit all year long, whether you're coming to party at Coachella, explore architecture at Modernism Week, or just want to relax by the pool in the sunshine.

Our Palm Springs City Guide gives you everything you need to know to plan for your upcoming vacay, from things to do in Palm Springs to the best restaurants, shopping, and where to stay in Palm Springs:

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FUn Things to Do in Palm Springs

One of our favorite things to do in Palm Springs is to explore all of the beautiful architecture, and there's a ton of architecture or home tours that you can take around town. Palm Springs is full of bright doors, and we highly recommend taking yourself on a bike tour of all the gorgeous houses if you're looking for fun things to do in Palm Springs. We rented bikes from Bike Palm Springs and biked all around the flat city checking out the historic houses in this self-guided tour.  

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A visit to #Thatpinkdoor is a Palm Springs classic - I mean, any house that has it's own Instagram hashtag must be, right? If you're looking for That Pink Door's address or location, you can find her at 1100 East Sierra Way in South Palm Springs (not too far from The Ace Hotel). 

 Shoes:  Mohinders  

Shoes: Mohinders 

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Even though we've been to Palm Springs countless times, there's still fun things to do that we haven't checked off our list yet! Like visiting the Moorten Botanical Gardens for a perfect selfie shot, or feeding the giraffes at The Living Desert.

Another  incredible Palm Springs experience is participating in the long table dinners at Sparrows Lodge. You need to book ahead, but we just loved this dining al fresco experience and will definitely do it again! We also loved exploring the cool art collection at the Palm Springs Art Museum, and if you get a chance to book a tour to Albert Frey's house, Frey House II, definitely do it! 

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Best Pools in Palm Springs

Obviously, you have to have to spend some serious time by the pool in Palm Springs while you're there. The good news is that you're not confined to the pool at your hotel! You can pool hop in Palm Springs, with most pools being open to the public if you buy a drink, eat some food, or sometimes, pay a small cover charge. 

If you're looking to party, the pool at The Saguaro is super fun with a great poolside bar, tacos, and music. The Ace Hotel pool is kind of an inbetween, with lots of people lounging but there's still some music to groove to. The pool at Arrive Hotel is just stunning, and a really great place to lay out with good food and drinks. Last but not least, Holiday House has killer margaritas and an amazing lawn / shaded area, complete with shuffleboard.

  The Saguaro pool

The Saguaro pool

  Arrive hotel pool

Arrive hotel pool

  Ace Hotel pool

Ace Hotel pool

  Holiday House pool

Holiday House pool

  Arrive Hotel pool

Arrive Hotel pool

BEST RESTAURANTS IN PALM SPRINGS

Wondering where to eat in Palm Springs? Palm Springs is in the middle of a cultural renaissance, and there are SO many amazing restaurants and bars to choose from. Our current obsession is Azucar Restaurant, with their modern boho decor, incredible cocktail menu (hello, blood orange margaritas), and gorgeous rooftop bar! This is definitely one of the best restaurants in Palm Springs, I mean...just look at it:

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Other good restaurants in Palm Springs are King's Highway at the Ace Hotel, you can eat by the pool or inside their cool '60s restaurant. This is one of the Palm Springs staples, and we come here to eat every time we visit! 

Norma's at The Parker hotel is also famous for their brunch, but it is pretty pricey so check the menu before you go. Another favorite Palm Springs restaurant is  Reservoir at Arrive Hotel, which is great for both lunch and dinner. 

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If you're looking for a serious good cocktail, head to Bootleger Tiki for some tropical drinks! Next door is Ernest Coffee, which is where you'll want to spend your mornings if you're a fan of Stumptown Cofeee. Also a great spot to work if you need to! Ice Cream & Shoppe is the place to go to cool down with some gelato or ice cream, and they have a totally rad gift shop of curated goodies (and a #palmspringsisbetter neon sign).  If you're in South Palm Springs by the Saguaro or Ace, then you'll want to hit up Koffi for coffee.

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Where to Shop in Palm Springs

There's a ton of really great mid-century mod furniture shopping in Palm Springs, but if you don't want to break the bank, head to The Frippery for some cute and curated vintage shopping!

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Somewhat new to Palm Springs is The Shops at 1345, a shopping destination full of amazing  Moroccan rugs at Soukie Modern, cute and colorful desert goodies at Palm Springs Style shop, and a ton of other really cool vendors.

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If you're in Palm Desert, we love love love the vintage store The Fine Art of Design. Amidst all the luxury brands and big stores in Palm Desert, we found the lovely local boutique Elizabeth & Prince, where you can easily get into stylish Palm Springs vacation mode.

Where to Stay in Palm Springs

When it comes to where to stay in Palm Springs, there are SO many amazing options! Honestly…you can’t go wrong. Here are some of our favourite places to stay in Palm Springs, based on where we have personally chosen to stay!

Best Palm Springs Hotels: The Saguaro

We have stayed at the Saguaro Hotel a bunch, and we love it! The hotel grounds are super colourful which makes the perfect backdrop for your Instagram photos, and it’s really reasonably priced too. Definitely spring for a pool view room! This is where you want to stay if you want a lively atmosphere and fun pool to hang out at -  the DJ is always playing!

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Best Palm Springs Hotels: Ace Hotel

We are regular visitors to all of the Ace Hotels, and the Ace Hotel Palm Springs is one of our favourites! We love the rooms with the big patios, perfect for happy hour with your friends. The huge beds are super comfy too, and it’s nice to be close to a great pool, a cool bar, and a yummy restaurant.

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Best Palm Springs Hotels: The Parker Palm Springs

The Parker Palm Springs is a super hot spot Palm Springs hotel, and it’s pricey too. Located a bit away from the centre of the “city”, you’ll want to stay here if you’re looking for a resort-like hotel that has a ton of amenities, secluded in the luxury of peace of quiet. Think lots of lawns, fire pits, and a celebrity or two from LA. If you don’t stay here, come for a drink at least, it’s pretty cool!

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Best Boutique Hotel in Palm Springs: The Amado

If you are looking for something in between an Airbnb and a big hotel, then the Amado is perfect for you! It’s very peaceful, with just 5 units and a common pool. The rooms are big with a kitchen, dining area, and living room, so it’s like your cool home away from home in the desert.

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Best Airbnbs in Palm Springs:

There are a TON of really amazing Palm Springs houses for rent on Airbnb, so if you’re going with a big group of people definitely check those out! We recently stayed at the picture perfect Flamingo House and LOVED it. We also really loved having our own pool to hang out at with our girlfriends, and a huge kitchen to cook in. Not to mention this incredible design!

Get $40 in free Airbnb credit for your first stay! Just sign up at this link here and your credit will be there for you when you need it - you don't even have to book right now! :)

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We hope you enjoyed our Palm Springs City Guide! This is honestly our favorite place to visit, and this is our most popular blog post ever so we are very excited to have it all updated for you guys.

You can check out all our Palm Springs blog posts here, and don't forget to follow us on Instagram at @localwanderer for even more travel inspo!

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Did we miss something? Let us know in the comments! 

The Port Moody Ale Trail is Vancouver's Best Kept Secret

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We recently visited the Port Moody Ale Trail, and we had the BEST weekend sitting on patios, sipping craft beer, and indulging in yummy tacos. The BC Ale Trail has come a long way since our original road trip along Vancouver Island's "beer belt," and you can find a ton of craft beer road trips or day trips on their website! Last spring we checked out the Fraser Valley Ale Trail too, so obviously it was time for us to explore another one this spring! 

And trust us...the Port Moody Ale Trail is a hidden gem if you live in Vancouver. 

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Port Moody Ale Trail

This was our first visit to Port Moody ever, despite growing up in the Lower Mainland. Port Moody is a small, oceanfront town about 35 minutes east of Vancouver, and honestly we were shocked at how much we enjoyed our weekend there! One of the best things about the Port Moody Ale Trail is that all of the breweries have PATIOS. There is nothing better than enjoying a flight of local craft beer outside on a warm sunny day, but unfortunately that is a rare luxury when you live in the city. If you want to do a brewery crawl in Vancouver with your friends on a weekend, it's basically impossible because it's so busy and the breweries are so small.  

But in Port Moody, all of the breweries are quite large, with a ton of space both inside and outside, and did we mention they all sit along the waterfront too? 😍 

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It's also super easy to get to on public transit, which is important if you're going to be day drinking all day! All we had to do was just jump on the Skytrain and take the brand new Evergreen line right to Port Moody, and all of the breweries and restaurants are right there in walking distance. 

There are 4 breweries in just 3 blocks, so next time you and your friends want something fun to do, head to the Port Moody Ale Trail! It's honestly the perfect day trip that requires minimal effort and planning. 

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Where to Wander in Port Moody

A great place to start your day in Port Moody is at the adorable cafe Gabi & Jules. They have the cutest pink espresso machine, and a ton of baked goods, coffee, and tea for you to start your day with! It's about a 10 minute walk west of the Skytrain, and you pass a ton of cute local shops along the way too. 

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They're also famous for their pie & ice cream, and sometimes you just have to split a pie for breakfast, right? When it looks as good as this salted caramel apple pie does, you definitely need to indulge.

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In addition to the spots we're sharing, there's also a few other spots in the Port Moody Ale Trail that you can check out too! You could also start your day with a breakfast panini or wrap from Caffe Divano and take it to go to enjoy along the water. Burrard Public House, St. James Well, Gallery Bistro, and Brew Street Craft & Kitchen are all other local watering holes where you can enjoy beer and fill up on some yummy food!

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Parkside Brewery on the Port Moody Ale Trail

Alright, now it's time to get to the BEER! We absolutely LOVED Parkside Brewery, we've been drinking their beers for a while but have never visited the actual brewery before! There was a taco truck placed out front, astro turf on the patio, and a ton of cool people and their even cooler dogs lounging around in the sun.

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Parkside Brewery was definitely our favorite as far as atmosphere goes, and it was bumping in the late afternoon! The tacos from Taqueria del Pueblo were soooooo delicious and the perfect snack to our flights of beer. Parkside even has their own popsicles too for a summer treat! 

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GROWLER ROOM AT Romer's 

After all that eating and drinking (and we're just getting started) we needed to go on a little walk! We walked east through the trails along the waterfront until we came to Romer's Burger Bar for some craft beer and seriously good burgers. They have a "growler room" upstairs which is home to beers from all of the Port Moody breweries, so you can try out a bunch all at once! 

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Yellow Dog Brewing on the port moody ale trail

Yellow Dog Brewing was the original brewery in Port Moody, opening in 2014. Last year they opened a big, modern tasting room, and when you walk in you're greeted by a giant neon yellow dog on the wall, so you'll know you made it to the right place. We also loved the spacious picnic area in the backyard, and the beers were sooo good too. We drink Yellow Dog at home a lot so it was fun to actually get to visit the brewery! 

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Twin Sails Brewing on the port moody ale trail

Next door to Yellow Dog is Twin Sails Brewing, and these two breweries are top contenders for the best breweries in all of BC! If ranking beer is your thing, check out this detailed blog post that our beer obsessed friends made, who declared that Twin Sails has "the most amazing and diverse collection of IPAs from any brewery in B.C."

You'll notice most of the beers are the same colour, and that's because Twin Sails originally set itself apart by focusing on German beers like lagers, pilsners, and hefeweizens, but now they're all about the more unique beers (beer brewed with real crab, anyone?). We loved their oh so trendy Hazy IPAs!

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TACO TIME AT TAPS AND TACOS

If you're looking for lunch closer to all the breweries, just make your way up the road to Taps & Tacos! They have cool vegan options like the jackfruit taco, which looks exactly like a pulled pork taco. But what really blew us away was the Korean Pork taco, it hit just the spot after a day full of beer and we will definitely be stopping here every time we're in Port Moody.

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Whether you're wandering through the trails or walking down the oceanfront pier, there's a lot to see and do in Port Moody within walking distance of the breweries and Skytrain station. You can even hop into a historic train car outside the Port Moody Station Museum, or find your next read at the bookstore inside a train car!

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Moody Ales on the Port Moody Ale Trail

All of the breweries along the Port Moody Ale Trail are distinct from each other, which means you won't get the same beer (or vibes) twice. Moody Ales focuses on ales, and you'll find a lot of unique flavours here ranging from a lemon matcha saison to a nitro vanilla porter. We should also mention that every brewery on the Port Moody Ale Trail has cider too, and most had wine options as well. So you can bring along all of your friends for a fun day trip, even if they don't like (or can't drink) beer!

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Honestly, as two "city girls" we were a little hesitant to take public transit out to the suburbs on the weekend but we're SO happy that we did! Even though we live down the street from all the breweries in Vancouver's Mt. Pleasant, it was nice to get out and enjoy some good beer outside by the water. 

You can find more info (and a handy map) about the Port Moody Ale Trail here, or check out BC Ale Trail's website for other fun, beer oriented summer trips!

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This post is in partnership with Port Moody Ale Trail