Top 12 desert escapes
Soak, sun, relax--do all of this and more on a trip to these top-notch desert destinations
For spa goers: Desert Hot Springs, CAWith natural-hot-spring spas all around, Desert Hot Springs beckons with sun, dry air, warmth, and pure relaxation. Bonus: This low-key neighbor to Palm Springs and gateway to Joshua Tree National Park has budget-friendly pampering options. At the delightfully minimalist Miracle Manor Retreat (pictured), soak in the hot pool with views of snowcapped San Jacinto peaks, then recharge with a spa treatment. Day use from $135, including treatment; miraclemanor.com
Best time to go: March, when the average high is a comfy 80°.
Stay: The luxe Hotel Lautner is a splurge, but it’s a hot spot for midcentury modern design—with a saltwater dipping pool. From $270; 2-night min.; hotellautner.com