Our first “official” Airstream trip to test the Airstream out was to Emerald Desert RV Resort in Palm Desert.
I’m dubbing it our first “official” trip because the very first trip for the Airstream was to the Pala Casino RV Resort for 3 days as our first shake down trip.
The Pala Casino Resort was only 5 miles from the Airstream dealer in Temecula, we wanted to stay close in case of issues. Pala was really a very nice resort, but we only went to try out the Airstream. We did go to the buffet while we were there, but no other exploring.
So Palm Desert is really the second Airstream trip, but what I think of as the first actual trip.
We went the first round for 3 days in the beginning of December, had an issue with the Airstream batteries overheating, so we had to cut that trip short (it ended up being a bad battery). We then went back over the week of Christmas for our first “official, official” Airstream trip.
It was a great week, and the Emerald Desert RV Resort was a nice stay. It has a very nice pool, well maintained property, gym, and nice bathhouse. Also, if you have a dog they had an amazing, large run behind the storage area.
I didn’t capture too many picture of the resort. We lounged at the pool on Christmas Eve, but the rest of the week was pretty chilly weather-wise.
Eats + Drinks
Sandfish Sushi & Whiskey
Great food, good staff, small place. I would definitely recommend a reservation.
We really enjoyed our Prime Rib. It’s a very old school vibe steakhouse. It was a pricey but nice dinner. Though fair warning their dirty martini was not very dirty.
The food was super impressive. I particularly liked the fried mac and cheese. Good beer selection too. Highly recommend for a nice sit down lunch. Maybe consider a reservation, it got busy quick.
Sherman’s Deli (Lunch)
A very popular Jewish deli, the sandwiches were spot quite good. I recommend calling in your order and just picking it up though (we ended up getting our’s to go to avoid the wait).
Yummy little brunch spot that has been on our list forever (but both our prior trips it has been closed). They have a bacon flight, good flavor but not wowed by it. Unique offerings we had a breakfast tamale and oxtail fried rice. Warning their “pickled” green beans, in the bloody mary is actually vodka soaked not pickled.
Lulu California Bistro
Super big space, and they take brunch reservations (yay). Good meal, good michelada even though it’s not listed on the menu (I spied it on another table).
Coachella Valley Brewing Company
Good beers, just check the abv they had some high ones.
Super nice space, good beer list and cocktails. We did have the pimento cheese and that was good, but that was all we ate there, just drinks.
Hikes + The Great Outdoors
It’s amazing, such a different landscape. We did 3 different hikes in Joshua Tree (two the first round in early December and one December 26th).
Hi-View Nature Trail (1.3 Miles–Loop)
This was my least favorite of the three, I just didn’t feel like it had the same views as the other two, it’s on the edge of the park so you don’t have the weird rock formations that the other two hikes had. It’s listed as High view on the link, but in the joshua tree park hike list it’s listed as Hi-View.
Barker Dam (1.1 Miles–Loop/Flat)
Super easy hike, really it’s all very flat and wide trail, it’s more of a walk. You do in fact see the damn, lots of joshua trees and rocks to see. There are some other trails that you can take to make this longer but we stayed on the loop.
Ryan Mountain (3.3 miles total–Up and Down–1500ft elevation gain)
This one was intense because it was COLD and WINDY. Once we got to the top the wind was whipping making it crazy cold. The views were really nice, but this one was definitely a work out, but not too too challenging (and I’m out of shape).
Coachella Valley Preserve
McCallum Pond (2 Miles–Loop/Flat)
Super easy “hike” to see the palm oasis. Pretty cool to see the massive palm trees. Beware the water does smell and I’m sure in the summer months it’s much smellier. There are other more challenging trails in the same area as well.
I highly recommend a trip out towards Palm Springs/Palm Desert/Joshua Tree. We saw a TON of RVs on our trip in December, the particular park we stayed was filling up fast by the end of Christmas week so make a reservation.
We really liked staying more in the city and just driving up to Joshua Tree, rather than staying in the Joshua Tree area. This way we could take full advantage of eating and drinking (and taking a Lyft). It was about an hour drive to get into Joshua Tree from Emerald Desert.
Also near Emerald Desert was a Bristol Farms grocery store, which is really nice. Tons of prepared foods if you aren’t in the mood to cook but want to eat in. There are several other grocery store options near there as well (like Ralphs and Vons). Plenty of other stores to fit any needs too. On set-up/arrival day we went to Panera for an easy easy dinner on a long day (can’t beat broccoli and cheese soup). This might become a tradition.