Into the Wild // Joshua Tree
Joshua Tree is like nowhere else on Earth. This weird and wonderful town in the middle of the Mojave Desert is only two hours from Los Angeles but feels like another planet. Split your days between the wild splendor of the national park and the amazing vintage shopping just outside it and spend your nights two steppin' at Pappy and Harriet's. Throw in a sound bath at the Integratron for a guaranteed out of this world visit to the high desert.
The Natural Sisters Cafe: an oasis of healthy options in the middle of the desert. The food is delicious but there is nothing like one of their smoothies either before or after a long day in the park to cool down and power up. There is also a farmer's market in front of the cafe every Saturday that showcases amazing handcrafted goods in addition to local produce.
Pappy and Harriet's: a vestige of the wild west in Pioneertown and a seriously amazing live music venue. Grab a drink at the bar or at one of the picnic tables outside and plan to stay a while. Between this and my Ojai pick you might be catching on to the fact that I have a thing for honky tonks. You can take the girl out of Texas but you can't take the Texas out of the girl.
Joshua Tree National Park: the main event. The park sprawls over almost 800,000 acres and is named for the Joshua Trees that are native to the land. There are tons of incredible hikes in the park as well as ample opportunities for rock climbing for the more vertically inclined. The roads throughout the park are easy to navigate with the map provided at the entrance and will allow you to easily access all the major highlights. Lost Horse Mine, Barker Dam Loop, and Inspiration Peak are some of my favorite trails as well as a sunset stroll through the stunning Cholla Cactus Garden.
Integratron: clear minds, full hearts, can't lose. The Integratron is located 20 miles north of Joshua Tree in Landers and it is a must. It was built by George Van Tassel in the 1950s using an amalgam of Nikolai Tesla's writings and telepathic instructions from extra-terrestrials from Venus and was originally intended for time travel. The success of the time machine is open for debate, however Van Tassel did succeed in creating an acoustically perfect dome. The structure has been taken over by three sisters who use the space to perform healing sound baths with quartz bowls. No matter what you believe, it is an unparalleled and meditative experience that I highly recommend. Start your visit with a shot of Ormus to raise your vibration even higher.
The End: a magical little shop in the middle of the desert that flawlessly mixes vintage, designer, and handcrafted goods. Their selection of Adina Mills' massive crystal jewelry and their beautifully curated housewares were standouts.
Joshua Tree Inn: a retro 1950s motor lodge with some of the chillest vibes around. The inn was popular with musicians including Donovan, Emmylou Harris, and Gram Parsons who actually spent his last hours in room number eight. Come for the legends, stay for the pool.
1966 RV on Airbnb: if you're feeling adventurous stay in this conveniently located 1966 RV in the middle of the desert. It comes complete with a firepit, a charcoal grill, and a finished bocce ball court because there is really nothing quite like a rousing game of bocce in the middle of the Mojave.