About The Trip
Length Estimate: 6-9 hours depending on where you’re driving from
Total Miles: Distance from Cabazon Dinosaur to Salvation Mountain is 125 miles one way.
Region: Palm Spring and east of San Diego desert region
Number of Stops: 3
Navigation: Easy. All are popular attractions. GPS will do fine.
Active Level: Low. Unless if it’s hot, you shouldn’t break a sweat
Highlights: Largest Dinosaur gift store on earth, largest lake in california, and one of the largest free standing one man made art installment in a desert!
Prepare For The Trip
First, we must prepare for the trip. At Salton Sea and Salvation mountain, there aren’t any really good places around there to eat to my knowledge, so I highly recommend that you pack lunch. Actually, I think that it’d be really cool to do a picnic at Salton Sea. Bring a lot of water! All of these three places are free to visit! Make sure to check your car, as this is a 3 hours drive total one way and there aren’t really any car shop between Cabazon to Salvation Mountain. Bring a camera and you are more than good to go!
First Stop: Cabazon Dinosaur
If you’re coming from either Orange County or Los Angeles area, you will most likely take the 10 east toward Palm Springs to our first stop, which is Cabazon Dinosaur. You will then take the 106 exit for main street, turn left on to main, and right on seminole drive. It is pretty easy to find due to the sheer size of the dinosaur. Cabazon is the largest gift store in a dinosaur shape in the world. The place is free to visit, take pictures, and the gift shop is really cute. They have an interactive dino museum in the back, but it costs money. This place is really cool especially for kids and kids at hearts. Fans of Jurassic Park and the Land Before Time will surely find this place fascinating.
Second Stop: Salton Sea
Salton Sea was an accidental lake created in the mid 1900’s. It is now the largest inland body of water in California. There isn’t much to do here due to the fact that the water is so bad that you will see thousands of dead tilapia on the shores. Although some folks come here to fish, I just don’t think that it is a very exciting place to fish. However, the most interesting thing about this place is that it looks like it jumps out from a post apocalyptic world. Imagine a desert land, salty lake, thousands of dead fish, and numerous abandon homes that you can explore. No, this is not a movie set for a zombie film.
Last Stop: Salvation Mountain
One of the most amazing free standing art installment in any desert, Salvation Mountain was created by one man out of donated adobe and paints. Leonard Knight spent nearly 30 years building this monument is worth preserving forever. Only true passion and dedication can make someone do this. Saying that this place is fascinating is an understatement. I have never seen anything like this nor do I think that there’s anything like it anywhere else. There’s also a little exhibition that he had just recently built this past few years that you can explore.