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Desert Beauty: Anza-Borrego and Joshua Tree National Park
The desert is a place of silence, light and space with beauty in its arid landscape, and wildflowers tucked into its crevices. Spend enough time here and the desert will weave a spell upon you. Experience the beauty and grandeur for yourself in this springtime expedition.
A late-morning flight delivers you to San Diego for lunch in beautiful Old Town. Afterwards, enjoy the view of the Pacific Ocean from Point Cabrillo, a monumental site commemorating the first European explorer. This evening take in the sights and sounds of San Diego from your bayside rooms. Embassy Suites Downtown San Diego (L)
Travel from the seashore into the mountains to Julian, a small mining town known for apple pies. A quick lunch and you are off to Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, California’s largest. Famous for its springtime display of wildflowers, this desert park has so much to offer: dramatic mountains and vast arid landscapes punctuated by oases prolific with all types of flora and fauna. Traverse the park with a guide to learn more about this “desert beauty.” Our late afternoon drive to Rancho Mirage, home to a “hot water” resort, provides insight into the agriculture of the Coachella Valley. Agua Caliente Casino Resort Spa – 3 nights (FB,L)
The history, culture and legends of the Cahuilla people along with the beauty of the desert come alive on an open-air Jeep trek through slot canyons. See date palms surrounding a lush desert oasis! This afternoon ascend two-and-one-half miles through multiple life zones aboard the world’s largest rotating tramcar showcasing the diversity of the desert and amazing views of the Coachella Valley. Dinner is on your own at your casino resort. Perhaps try your luck tonight!
Forests of trees and jumbles of massive rocks make Joshua Tree National Park enchanting. Two distinct desert ecosystems, the Mojave and the Colorado come together creating surreal geologic features adding to the mystique of this vast wilderness. Tonight you have the option to stroll through Village Fest, a menagerie of crafts, art and music in downtown Palm Springs after an included dinner – a fun evening out for locals and visitors alike. (L,D)
At The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens get up close and personal with the “residents.” Ever fed a giraffe? You will. Your tour provides insight to the survival of wildlife in the world’s deserts. Before your afternoon flight from Ontario you have the chance to sample and buy the predominant crop of the region, dates! Lunch is included. You’ll leave with a greater appreciation of the desert and her undeniable beauty. (L)
|B||Generally a limited buffet or menu|
|FB||Full buffet or choice of menu|
|BR||Brunch, often buffet-style|
|L||Lunch, often several menu options|
|HT or AT||High or Afternoon Tea|
|D||Dinner, often several menu options|