Desert by Palm Springs

Palm Springs International Airport (PSP)

Chaplin. Bogart. Sinatra. These are just a few of the famous names that put Palm Springs on the map. And over the past few decades, this desert enclave about 100 miles east of Los Angeles has forged an identity all its own. But one thing about the place that hasn't changed: it's still very much a destination of leisure. World class golf courses, tennis courts and spas are as ubiquitous as the palm trees and views of the dramatic mountains that surround the town.

Shop 'til You Drop

Another favorite sport in Palm Springs is shopping, and there's little debate it can be done in style here. Locals will tell you that the El Paseo Shopping District is the best spot to browse — it's teeming with swank boutiques, art galleries, spas and restaurants. Here, you'll find every designer and label under the sun, from BCBGMAXAZRIA to Tiffany & Co. For something less pricey, VillageFest, held every Thursday on Palm Canyon Drive in downtown Palm Springs, combines the simple charms of a street fair with a farmer's market.

Few towns this size (the population of Palm Springs is around 50,000) can boast so many fabulous restaurants in just about every cuisine and style imaginable. Whether you crave old school steakhouse or nouveau California, you won't be disappointed by the depth and variety here.

For art lovers, the Palm Springs Art Museum, founded in 1938, has become a regional powerhouse. Its Western art and photography collections are particularly noteworthy, and it's also home to the Annenberg Theater where you can enjoy performances of all kinds, from jazz to opera to contemporary.