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« Previous Edition   |   This California Travel Edition Posted on 12/11/15

Visiting California's Desert Region

The California desert sees the most beautiful weather of the year in the winter. Breezy, sun-filled days and crisp, cool nights mean this mountainous landscape has an abundance of outdoor adventure opportunities. Take advantage of them now – better than any other time of year. Even better, communities from Needles and Barstow to Blythe and Calexico welcome visitors with a variety of family-friendly festivals and special events.

Interstate 10 travelers know Blythe as the ideal midway stopping point between Phoenix and the LA area, but from January 15th through 17th, it’s a destination for music lovers. The 2016 Blythe Bluegrass Festival brings some of the bigger names in bluegrass to the Colorado River Fairgrounds for a weekend of banjos and blow jugs. Don’t miss the toe-tappin’ timbres of bands like the Gibson Brothers, Possum Trot, and Lonesome Otis.

Further west, Palm Springs is a coveted getaway year-round. The desert oasis, with its abundance of kitschy boutiques and culinary gems, is known as a retreat for movie stars and the rich and famous.

Filmmakers and movie buffs descend on Palm Springs for the 27th Annual Palm Springs International Film Festival, January 1st through 11th. One of California's longest running film festivals, the PSIFF features over 200 films from more than 60 countries. Check local show times during your visit – screenings are held at multiple venues throughout town, including Camelot Theatres.

The arts are alive in nearby Indio and the 2016 Southwest Arts Festival is proof. From January 29th through the 31st, the Empire Polo Club – home of the world-famous Coachella Music Festival – fills with everything from interactive art exhibits to live jazz music and more. Things get started around 10 a.m. each day.

Blythe celebrates “country roots and cowboy boots” with the 2016 Colorado River Fair. Join residents for a weekend of all things western at the I-10 Speedway, March 17th through 20th.

Desert Region Hotel Map

Best Western Rewards

11 Best Western Hotels
in Desert Region

    Desert Villa Inn




    Main Street Inn


    John Jay Inn


    John Jay Inn

    El Centro

    Date Tree Hotel


    Colorado River Inn


    Palm Desert Resort

    Palm Desert

    Inn at Palm Springs

    Palm Springs

    Las Brisas Hotel

    Palm Springs

    Gardens Hotel at Joshua Tree National Park

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Desert Region Events

March 2016

March 17-20, 2016
2016 Colorado River Fair

Pack your cowboy hats and spurs and enjoy this "country roots and cowboy boots" festival. The festival features a ton of western-themed activities all at the I-10 Speedway in Blythe. Start time is TBA.

March 5, 2016
2016 Rhythm, Wine & Brews

Empire Polo Fields in Indio hosts the annual RWB festival, featuring plenty of live entertainment and tasty, locally grown beverages. Cali reggae-rock legends 311 are set to perform. More details are TBA.

April 2016

April 15 – 17 & 22 – 24, 2016

Don't miss out on this year's version of Coachella, one of the biggest and most anticipated music and art festivals on the planet. Head for the Empire Polo Club in Indio on the first weekend, April 15th – 17th, or the second, April 22nd – 24th.

April 20 – May 8, 2016
4000 Miles Live on Stage

Enjoy a night at the theatre during your next stay in the Coachella Valley. Visit the Coachella Valley Repertory any time from April 20th through May 8th for a live production of 4000 Miles. See the story of a 21 year-old and his 91 year old grandmother share a West Village apartment. Somebody call the Tony's. 

April 1, 2016
2nd Annual Relay For Life Dance

Make the most of your spring trip to Brawley. On April 1st, head for Hidalgo Hall for the 2nd Annual Relay For Life Dance. The party rages from 8 p.m. to midnight, and tickets are $10 pre-sale, and $12 at the door. 

May 2016

May 6, 2016
El Paseo Cruise Night

See a diverse selection of classic rides this May in El Paseo. Head for the Gardens on El Paseo on May 6th for El Paseo Cruise Night. The classic sleds get rolling at 3:15 p.m. – don't miss it, it's the last show of the season.

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