Scrolling through Instagram these days will have you feeling a little bit of FOMO if you don’t have a filtered pic from Coachella Valley. However, there’s more to desert vacations than simply partying it up at one of the country’s biggest music festivals. In fact, more and more people across the country are beginning to rediscover the appeal and wonder of beautiful destinations right in their own backyard. Seeing as domestic vacations now make up 85% of American vacations per year, people seem to be looking for top getaways that offer them the chance to turn the heat up a bit and explore the Wild Wild West. The desire to explore something new is so intense that “getting off the beaten track” is listed as one of the top motives for planning a travel adventure. What better way to experience a new sub-culture of your own country than to head out to the desert for some much needed rest and rejuvenation?

Adventure & Total Relaxation in Joshua Tree

Located just a two and a half hour drive from Los Angeles, Joshua Tree has become famous in recent years for its unbeatable rock climbing opportunities, stunning camping spots and the opportunity it offers campers to totally disconnect from reality. Head outdoors and truly immerse yourself in the desert culture by checking out Skull Rock and Arch Rock. For a bit of a challenge, try the scenic, one-mile-long Hidden Valley trail. This is a great trip for friends who want to experience warm desert nights, cool stargazing opportunities and the most beautiful desert red sunsets you’ve ever seen. While the nightlife here consists of stargazing and campfires, you can experience adventure by heading over to The Integratron, which is a dome-shaped structure built in the 1950s by UFOlogist George Van Tassel. The man claims he received the instructions for the building from extraterrestrials and you can receive a sound bath to truly rejuvenate your mind and body.

Stunning & Sunning it Up in Scottsdale

It wouldn’t be a great desert getaway if you didn’t take advantage of the heat to hit up some pools, right? Scottsdale is swimming with pools and offers a more resort-style feel than Joshua Tree. In fact, there are more than 130 resort pools to choose from in the Scottsdale area. If you decide to head outside of the realms of a picture perfect resort, you can still take a dip in the water while exploring the Sonoran Desert. Whether that’s paddle boarding down the Salt River or kayaking along the Verde River, there’s a little something for everyone. After a day out in the sun, get ready to hit the down, as this desert city is known for its diversity in nightlife with a wide offering of dive bars, nightclubs, beer gardens and even Scottsdale private events that will leave you feeling like a celebrity with VIP bottle service, great food and a night you’ll never forget. Even better, because it is such a popular place to spend a vacation, the city and numerous resorts often offer seriously slashed rates on stays that ensure you can splurge on an extra night or more drinks at the bar.

Desert Destinations Are Heating Up

Adventure awaits in the far-reaching deserts of the United States. Turn up the heat in your life by planning a vacation to one of the country’s top desert destinations. Whether you’re looking for total tranquility and a glimpse of the Milky Way or want to float in a resort pool and truly live a luxurious night at a private event, there are endless opportunities that suit your travel style.

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