Tahquitz Canyon is a natural wonder located in Palm Springs, California. This 60-foot waterfall and its surrounding landscape are popular tourist destinations, and for good reason. Visitors can enjoy hiking and picnicking in the park, in addition to admiring the beauty of the falls.
About Tahquitz Canyon
Tahquitz Canyon is in Palm Springs, California, within the San Jacinto Mountains. It is recognized as a haven for adventure, recovery, and awe-inspiring sights.
It’s part of the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians and is regarded as one of the region’s best-preserved and most beautiful, cultured places. It’s also well-known for its hiking route, which runs through a red rock canyon.
Tahquitz Canyon was named by the Cahuilla Indians of the Agua Caliente Indian Reservation, who considered the Tahquitz Falls and its surroundings sacred.
The canyon was used as a place of refuge and healing, and the waterfall was believed to have spiritual powers as they were deemed an ancient irrigation system.
Today, Tahquitz Canyon is a popular tourist destination and a great place for hiking and picnicking. The canyon is also home to a variety of plant and animal life, including the endangered Palm Springs Indian Paintbrush.
See Related: Family-Friendly Hotels in Palm Springs, California
What should I bring to Tahquitz Canyon?
Pack plenty of water and snacks if you plan on making this a longer hike. You’ll also want sunscreen, a hat, and closed-toe shoes.
Depending on the time of year you visit, you may also want to pack a jacket, as the higher elevation can lead to cooler temperatures. Also, ensure you bring water in a Camelbak or water bottle, given the heat conditions in Southern California.
What should I expect?
The hike to Tahquitz Falls is definitely beautiful, but it’s also very strenuous, with some large boulders and cliffs. The trail is mostly uphill with many stairs, so be prepared for a workout. The waterfall is 60 feet tall and very impressive, but swimming is not allowed in the pool at the base.
If you’re looking for a moderately easy two-mile loop trail with a stunning payoff, Tahquitz Falls is definitely worth a visit. Just make sure to come prepared with plenty of water and snacks, and you’ll be sure to enjoy your time in this natural Palm Springs in Southern California.
See Related: Best Day to Book Flights
How to Get to Tahquitz Canyon
Tahquitz Canyon is part of the Indian Canyons in Palm Springs, California. The easiest way to get there is by car. Here are some general driving directions:
- If coming from the Palm Springs Visitor Center, head south on Palm Canyon Dr and turn right on W Mesquite Ave, Palm Springs.
- If you are coming from Palm Desert, head north on Highway 111 (Palm Canyon Dr), take the exit for W Mesquite Avenue, and turn left. The Tahquitz visitor center will be on your right.
The official address of the visitor center is 500 W Mesquite Ave, Palm Springs, CA 92264. If you are coming from out of town, there are plenty of great nearby attractions to explore, such as the Palm Springs Art Museum, Palm Springs Art Museum Architecture and Design Center, and plenty of excellent Palm Springs restaurants. You can easily make an entire day out of your trip.
See Related: Best Day Trips from Palm Springs, California
Tahquitz Canyon Trail
The Tahquitz Canyon Loop Trail is a 2 miles (3.1 kilometers) hike known to be heavily trafficked. The trail climbs 350 feet and features different rock art, old irrigation systems, and a gushing stream on its rocky crevices.
Visitors can enjoy hiking and picnicking in the park, as well as admiring the beauty of the falls. The 60-foot waterfall is a popular tourist destination, and for good reason. Tahquitz Canyon is a natural wonder located in Palm Springs, California, that offers stunning views and a range of activities for visitors to enjoy.
Whether you’re looking to hike, picnic, or admire the beauty of the falls, Tahquitz Canyon is the perfect spot for a day trip from downtown Palm Springs.
At the top of the trail, the seasonal 60-foot waterfall is known as Tahquitz Falls. The view of the waterfall is serene; with its crystal clear, shallow waters, it’s said it was best seen shortly after a rainstorm. The falls stem from Tahquitz Creek, located within the Indian Canyons.
The Tahquitz Falls are within the boundaries included in the National Register of Historic Places. The canyon’s name and its waterfall are from the spirit of Tahquitz, a Cahuilla native of the Agua Caliente folklore.
See Related: Havasupai Paradise Desert
Tahquitz Canyon Visitor Center
If you want to learn more about the area and get a guided tour, the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians rangers provides interpretive hikes. They give historical information on the culture and customs of the area.
They also provide tips on where to go and what to see while you are visiting. The park rangers will teach you about the tribe’s history and desert journey as you trek and enjoy the canyon’s scenery. The tour also lasts two-and-half-hour.
Tahquitz Canyon offers ranger-led interpretive hikes that are perfect for visitors of all ages. These ranger-led hikes on the trail start at 8 a.m., 10 a.m., noon, and 2 p.m.
You’ll also find rock art at this site, including one of the original Cahuilla village sites. The rangers will also describe how indigenous plants like honey, mesquite, and yucca were used for medicine, food, and dyes.
However, you can also opt out of the ranger-led interpretive hikes. The hiking trail is family-friendly and highlights the beautiful waterfall. The track is compatible with all skill levels.
The review of previous visitors and travelers sums up that it was easy to traverse even with its lack of shade and changes in elevation in some of its areas.
- Adults: $15
- Children (6-12): $7
- Military: Free (with U.S. military ID)
- Annual Pass: $125
Purchase your day-hike tickets at the visitor center in Tahquitz Canyon; it’s one of the best tours in Palm Springs you can do. Tickets and annual passes may also be obtained at the Agua Caliente Visitor’s Counter in the Palm Springs Visitor Center, 2901 North Palm Canyon Drive.
See Related: Most Exotic Places in California
Best Time to Hike Tahquitz Canyon – Palm Springs, California
The waterfall’s temperature reaches 100 degrees Fahrenheit, if not hotter than that, during the summer (June and July) and early fall, making it a popular hiking path that is best done between October and May.
The flowing waterfalls are most visible in the winter and spring. People also recommend bringing at least 1 liter of water per person, although it depends on how long you plan to stay away from civilization.
If you’re looking for a fun and beautiful place to visit in Palm Springs, California, be sure to check out Tahquitz Canyon. This natural wonder has plenty to offer, including hiking and picnicking to admiring the stunning 60-foot waterfall.
The wonders of Tahquitz Canyon, which are family and nature friendly, are open to all. Be sure to follow us on Instagram via our handle @viatravelers or subscribe to our YouTube Channel.
Is Tahquitz Canyon hike hard?
The hike can be challenging for some, as the trail is steep with several rock steps. You need good balance and be able to ascend and descend rocks up to 12 inches. There are only a few shade spots in these canyons and no bathroom facility or drinking fountain.
Can you swim at Tahquitz Canyon?
Yes, visitors can enjoy swimming at the Tahquitz Canyon trail. The falls’ rock wall provides a beautiful backdrop for a swim, and the sandy bottom makes for a comfortable place to dip.
How long of a hike is Tahquitz Falls?
The Tahquitz Falls hiking trail can be considered a moderate-difficult hike. With more than 1 mile of steep, rocky terrain complete with waterfall and water crossings, the trek is not easy for the novice hiker.
There are three loops on an unmarked path ranging from 1.25 to 1.9 miles. This would be considered a quick hike for most people, but the option of taking a less-traveled path could add time and distance.
- Best California Road Trips
- Northern vs South California: What’s the Difference?
- Free California Travel Guide: Printable Travel Guide
Lock In Your Travel Now
Find Cheap Flights
Use Skyscanner to find flight deals. As my personal favorite flight search engine, Skyscanner scours websites and airlines across the globe, leaving no stone unturned to help you find the best deal possible. And if you really want to take your savings to new heights, pair Skyscanner with Going (Formerly Scott's Cheap Flights). With access to exclusive mistake fares delivered straight to your inbox, you'll be packing your bags and jetting off on your next adventure before you know it.
Travel insurance is a low cost way to ensure your travel plans go smooth no matter what's thrown at it. Cover yourself against illness, injury and theft, and protect the arrangements you've made with our flexible travel cancellation insurance. My favorite options for travel insurance are:
Book Your Accommodation
In order to capture the widest selection of properties and the best price, use Booking.com as they have the cheapest rates for guesthouses, hotels, luxury condos, B&Bs and so much more.
Want More Destination Ideas Direct to Your Inbox?
Be sure to join the ViaTravelers Newsletter for expert tips, tricks and inspiration for your next travel journey!
Discover the Best Travel Tools
Be sure to visit our page on our favorite travel resources to learn how you too can visit over 10 countries in year.