A short drive west of Palm Springs, this community has become known for its high-rise casino and long strip of designer outlets, which beckon drivers on Interstate 10. The namesake of the city, Chief Cabazon was a leader of the Cahuilla Indians of the desert from the 1830s to the 70s.
Morongo Casino Resort & Spa
Stay, play and spend hours on a sandy beach with a tropical cocktail in hand. A lazy river, luxury spa, headlining shows, and fine-casual dining options (including Wahlburgers and a new food court helmed by celebrity chef Fabio Viviani) are just a few of the advantages of this place. morongocasino resort.com
Founded by Paul and Peggy Hadley in 1931, this market and cafe provides access to healthy, locally grown snacks and meals. Fruits and nuts are the specialty, especially dates, and the cafe mixes up a variety of date shakes (try one with banana and malt!). Although the exact origins of trail mix are disputed, this shop claims to have started the trend, feeding hikers en route to San Jacinto Peak. hadley fruitorchards.com
Many will recognize the pair of dinos, affectionately known as Mr. Rex and Dinny, from cult films such as Pee-wee’s Big Adventure. But you might not realize that this park is home to over 50 lifelike dinosaurs. While you’re here, stop by the gift shop to purchase a prehistoric souvenir. cabazondinosaurs.com
Considered the oldest nonprofit museum founded by Native Americans on an Indian reservation in California, this cultural center on the lands of the Morongo Band of Mission Indians in Banning (near Cabazon) features artifacts, a garden of native plants and rotating exhibits showcasing the native communities of the surrounding area. A shop features handcrafted jewelry, cultural and poetry books, and other small items. malkimuseum.org
High end Desert Hills outlets
This open-air mall has some 180 designer outlets, all offering serious bargains. You’ll likely see coaches unload shoppers, so they can get their hands on Alexander McQueen, Saint Laurent Paris, Gucci and other luxury brands at discount prices. premiumoutlets.com/outlet/desert-hills