After two months in 4 different locations in Arizona, we arrived in La Quinta Cove, California for a 6-week stay in a great Airbnb on December 22. This longer stay allowed for Ds mom, Mary Vee, to stay with us for a few weeks, and for us to enjoy extended downtime.
La Quinta is in the Coachella Valley approximately 25 miles from Palm Springs. This is our third winter stay in this valley in as many years. At this location we’re within walking distance of the foothills and hiking/biking trails of the Cove. Here are a few things we enjoyed during our stay in the valley:
We stopped into old town La Quinta for the local weekly farmers market, coffee shops and restaurants all within a walk of 1.5 miles of our home.
While visiting the valley, we have never gone to the very popular Swap Meet at the COD - otherwise known as the College of the Desert in Palm Desert. So, we popped in to see what all the fuss was about. This time of the year it was pretty laid back, but by spring it will be packed with vendors and shoppers.
The Galen Art Museum and Faye Sarkowsky Sculpture Garden
These are two small free venues in Palm Desert located next to each other. The gardens are fun to see and a quiet break from the hustle and bustle. The Galen may be small but was enjoyable and just about the right size for us the day we visited.
Awe-mazing Living Desert
The Living Desert is located in the foothills of Indio and Palm Desert. At this time, exhibits focus on the desert environments of North America and Africa combining excellent botanical and animal habitats. It even includes 5 miles of nature trails behind the exhibits out into the foothills. We spent just over 3.5 hours and walked 4.5 miles on the main zoo/botanical route which included all the various loops. One would need a full day here to allow for the addition of the trails out back; although, we did walk out to the San Andreas fault exhibit. It was a pleasant day and well worth our time.
Note: They are currently working on the addition of Australian exhibits for the fall of this year.
Entrance fee tip: Having read reviews prior to our visit we found we could save on the entrance fee if we purchased our tickets at Costco beforehand. Normally it would have cost us $18 per person for AAA or senior rates. At Costco we purchased a block of 2 tickets for $22!
Thai Massage at La Quinta’s Old Town Massage
I was way overdue having a massage, so I spent 90 minutes having the kinks heated, kneaded, and rubbed out of me. The deep tissue portion of the massage was what I expected, but then my therapist asked if I wanted to be stretched! So, why not? I was pulled, folded, and thumped in a massage-chiropractic kind of way that was fantastic. By the time Tina was done, I felt wonderful.
Last January we enjoyed much warmer temperatures while visiting the Coachella Valley. This year was on the cooler side by about 15 degrees, and we experienced more rain days. Being in the foothills we saw more roadrunners than ever. They were along trails, on roofs, and making themselves at home in yards like ours. During our stay we could tell something changed with the roadrunners as if the call to spring had erupted. These guys became quite vocal and goofier than ever – never did see Wile E. Coyote, but it was fun to watch the roadrunners up close and personal. While last year’s visit showed us an amazing super blue blood moon, that would not be the case this year as the clouds rolled in during the eclipse. This was the fourth location we’ve stayed in the Coachella Valley and would definitely return to The Cove. We enjoyed meeting up with friend’s, sitting out and watching the sun come up in the mornings and setting in the evenings. While it doesn’t have the vibe of Palm Springs, it is a jewel of the valley. It all depends on what you are looking for.
Thanks for joining our journey.