The Allure of Joshua Tree

Discover the art of the desert

Named for its epic, twisted trees, Joshua Tree is both a place and a state of mind. Designated as a national park in 1994, Joshua Tree straddles the Colorado and Mojave deserts and is about an hour away from Palm Springs. It remains a haven for artists, musicians, and anyone seeking tranquility and spiritual transformation.

The town’s latest art installation, Transmission, was created by renowned South African artist Daniel Popper, together with local artisans and contractors. Immense mosaic sculptures tower above the otherworldly desert landscape, “nudging you onwards towards your personal cosmic expansion.”

Legendary musicians—from Bono to Jim Morrison—have found inspiration in Joshua Tree. The 17th Annual Fall Joshua Tree Music Festival took place October 6–9. If you missed it, don’t fret. The festival usually is held each year in both spring and fall. Plus, there are plenty of other ways to experience cool sounds beneath the warm desert skies of this blissful sanctuary.

Discover your next favorite band downtown at Highway 62 and Park Boulevard at the Joshua Tree Saloon, or experience music, art, and ecological events at the Harrison House. Visit nearby Pappy + Harriet’s Pioneertown Palace, where many famous musicians, from Robert Plant to Paul McCartney, have dropped in for a surprise set. Or learn how to photograph the starry night sky with a Joshua Tree workshop and let your inner artist shine.