Set in the San Jacinto mountains, the town of Idyllwild, Califrnia offers your family the chance to relax and recover from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Surrounded by large towering pines and tall cedar trees, the town offers endless opportunities to enjoy nature by sitting out on the deck of your vacation rental, and with your morning cup of coffee, take in the scent of comforting woodland. This small mountain town is a great destination for hiking and rock climbing, while still being close enough to Palm Springs that you can easily drive out for a day trip. Book a stay at a Idyllwild vacation rental today. Check out the top family-friendly attractions at Idyllwild.

1. Mount San Jacinto State Park

When you arrive at Mount San Jacinto State Park, stop by the visitors center to learn more about the mountains and the history of the area, then schedule a guided tour of the park, or strike off on your own. Numerous hiking trails weave their way through the park offering varying levels of difficulty, so it’s easy to find a trail that’s just right for the kids. During your hike, take time to enjoy the stunning views of the mountains and the desert below. Pack a lunch before leaving your vacation rental, and eat at one of the picnic shelters.

2. Tahquitz Peak

A hike up to Tahquitz Peak is guaranteed to get your kid’s hearts pumping and gives your family the chance to spend time reconnecting. As you navigate the 6.5-mile trail, you might run across other hikers, but you’re sure to see some wildlife, including birds, raccoons, and deer. Once you get to the peak on the western slope of the San Jacinto mountains, you can climb up the fire lookout building for stunning views as far as you can see.

3. Rock Climbing at Suicide Rock

If you have rock climbers in the family, then Suicide Rock is an ideal location for an afternoon of adventure. This rock has more than 300 different routes and climbing opportunities, so you can have a great time trying different approaches to reach the top. If your kids are too young for rock climbing, hike Suicide Rock Trail, which spans more than 6 miles.

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4. Lake Hemet

Bring kayaks or a couple of canoes for a day on Lake Hemet. This small reservoir covers more than 14,000-acre feet of water, so there are ample shorelines to discover as you paddle around the lake. If you don’t want to go out on the water, bring your fishing gear and toss your line in from the banks of the lake. Bring a cooler with you to carry fish back to your vacation rental for a tasty fish fry.

5. Idyllwild Nature Center

Learn about Idyllwild’s ecology and the culture of the local Cahuilla Native Americans at the Idyllwild Nature Center. In addition to a small museum, this nature center has several walking trails, where you can catch sight of beautiful wildflowers in the spring and summer months. Depending on the timing of your trip, you may be able to attend one of the center’s special seasonal events, such as Labor Day Family Fun, Lemon Lily Festival, or Butterfly Daze.

6. Idyllwild Park

Covering more than 200 acres, Idyllwild Park is a great spot for a picnic or a hike, and it even has a small lake for fishing or canoeing. In the winter months, if there’s snow on the ground, slip on your cross country skis and hit the trails. In the fall and spring, this area comes alive in a rainbow of colors with wildflowers in the spring and leaves changing colors in the fall.

7. Idyllwild Area Historical Society

If the weather isn’t cooperating, take the family to the Idyllwild Area Historical Society to learn more about the history of the town. This small museum has several exhibits and some great vintage photos of the town and the people who lived here in the past. Additionally,, the museum has exhibits that focus on the natural areas that surround Idyllwild, such as the Tahquitz Peak.

8. Devil’s Slide Trail

With its devilish name, you’d expect a long and rigorous uphill trail, but Devil’s Slide Trail actually offers a little less than 2 miles of moderate hiking. This trail was once a driving road, so expect to see hikers, bikers, and horseback riders making their way up and down. Along the way, there are benches for resting and telescopes that allow you to see all the way to the ocean on clear days.

9. Palm Springs

Make the short drive from your vacation rental to the city of Palm Springs for a day of family fun. Take a scenic ride on the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway to enjoy views for miles, with no climbing involved. Visit the Moorten Botanical Garden and Cactarium to see more flowers and learn the names of all those beautiful wildflowers around Idyllwild. If it’s a hot day, take the family to Wet’n’Wild Palm Springs and cool off on the water slides.

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