Escape for a weekend of rest and relaxation.
With summer Fridays still in full force, and the rest of August stretched out before us, it’s time we acknowledge the beauty of the weekend getaway. There’s nothing like a quick jaunt to rest and recharge before you have to head back to work, especially if you make a point to focus on self-care. Wellness might be one of the buzziest words in the industry right now, but that doesn’t mean you have to start collecting crystals (but if you *do* want to pursue that, check this out). We found a few of the best weekend getaway activities just outside of L.A. where you can easily take care of your mind, body, and spirit as well as enjoy the sights and drop an Instagram or five. Here’s what you should do.
Joshua Tree National Park boasts 792,510 acres of desert. Not only are there spots you should make sure to consider, such as Skull Rock, Keys View, Cottonwood Spring, and Black Rock Canyon, but you can essentially pull off the road and park anywhere to do a little exploring.
With the Mojave and Colorado deserts meeting in the park, the landscape has a wide array of plantlife, animals, and rock formations offering the options from simply exploring to full rock-climbing to park visitors.
For the experienced outdoorspeople, there are nine established campgrounds to sleep under the stars (more on that shortly). The park’s site also offers a guide of best-established hikes from nature walk to more advanced so you aren’t driving around the winding roads aimlessly.
If you reside in a city, hands down, no questions asked, you will see more stars than you’ve ever seen from the park. Owner of Sky Watchers skygazing tours Craig Herkimer even organizes weekly stargazing tours in Palm Springs, or they can come to you for a private group tour.
Sky Watchers mix mythology, legends, and folklore in with guidance on what to look for and exactly what it is you’re seeing. Check your horoscopes, and ask lots of questions, because these people know their stuff and can give you the grown-up version of your childhood planetarium visit.
Miraculously, with limited water, the 29 Palms Inn grows their own organic fruits and veggies in the Faultline Farm and uses them at their poolside restaurant. Named for its proximity to the Pinto Mountain Faultline (literally 50 feet away from the restaurant, casually), it’s also next to one of the oldest water sources in the area, a 9,000-year-old lake bed that has now been reduced to a pond. It still offers a lot more water for the garden than other neighboring areas, enabling 29 Palms Inn to grow fresh broccoli, beets, zucchini, cilantro, kale, cauliflower, melons, basil, beans, zucchini, multiple squashes, artichokes, eggplant, peppers, malabar spinach, cucumbers, tomatoes, pumpkins, several kinds of figs, and more, all to be used on their menu.
The 29 Palms Inn is the option for clean-eating near Joshua Tree, where there is no shortage of barbecue and taco options. The Inn bakes their own bread fresh daily, fresh steaks, and seafood in addition to all of their garden-grown produce.
Self-proclaimed fusion of art, science, and magic (of course), the historic Integratron is located in Landers, CA. Erected in the 1950s, the wooden dome’s unique structure amplifies sound and energy. Initially built with rejuvenation and time travel in mind (magic), it now offers huevos rancheros at its cafe surrounded by hammocks and Sound Baths within it.
Inside the Integratron for your Sound Bath, quartz crystal bowls are played like instruments, sending soothing sounds and vibrations through your body for an hour. The team here says the baths increase balance and awareness, offering deep relaxation to the mind and body. No time travel anymore, though!