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A Weekend Away at Joshua Tree

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As the cooler air of autumn starts to blow, head out to the desert for a weekend of spectacular views and groovy activities at Joshua Tree. The park allows camping or you can stay at a hotel or bed and breakfast near the park—kitschy and popular options include Spin and Margie’s Desert Hide-A-Way in Joshua Tree or the Pioneertown Motel in nearby Pioneertown, a village that was originally built as an Old West movie set, including the motel, where Roy Rogers and Gene Autry stayed.

Joshua Tree has four visitor centers, which can help guide you to either a short nature trail for a day visit or a longer trail for a more substantial hike, including the popular Keys Ranch guided walking tour. The park is also famous for its rock-climbing and classes are available from the Joshua Tree Rock Climbing School. Outside of the park, you can take a “sound bath” at the Integratron, a large dome built by George Van Tassel, who claimed to have been instructed by extra-terrestrials in how and why to build the dome. Today, the “sound bath” is a half-hour session of lying down while nine quartz crystal bowls are played, keyed (supposedly) to the energy centers of your body. Far out—and worth visiting.

The preceding post is part of the LAist Fall Guide, sponsored by Lexus.