26 trails in the valley, high desert and forest

Greg and Collette Jones hike in the Big Morongo Canyon Preserve on Nov. 24 in Morongo Valley. The couple is from Desert Hot Springs.

The Coachella Valley is known for its desert landscape, palm trees, pools and unique home designs, but it’s also a treasure trove for hiking. From Joshua trees and stunning rock formations to waterfalls and palm tree oases, there’s a scenic hike for all skill levels within reach of the valley.

This guide provides a sampling of top hikes in the area that Desert Sun reporters Erin Rode, Ema Sasic and Janet Wilson recommend to locals and visitors alike. 

Note: For trails without specific hours and prices listed, readers should assume the trail is open dawn to dusk and free to enjoy.

Coachella Valley hikes

A young visitor leaves the Tahquitz Canyon Visitor Center on Nov. 24 in Palm Springs.

Indian Canyons

Mileage: 60 plus miles

Address: 38-520 S. Palm Canyon Drive, Palm Springs

Indian Canyon and Palm Canyon feature five dozen miles of trails, and while easier access ones can be crowded, all offer a real sense of what this area was like pre-major development, when Cahuilla people wisely retreated from the scorching valley floor to cool palm oases and higher ground for the summer months. But exposed areas can be hot year round.