Los Angeles: Side Trips
Joshua Tree National Park
Just south of L.A. near Palm Springs, the desert becomes one endless U2 album cover. Sure, it's just a collection of sad little cactuses, but it's as vast as the ocean, stretching out in every direction it's the American version of Ayer's Rock. You can rent a house near Joshua Tree, such as JT Rockhouse (928-814-4552), and look at the stars and feel tiny. Also, you can probably get laid.
If you've already made the 140-mile drive from L.A., you may as well pit stop in Palm Springs on the way back. Yes, it's a little gay even if you're gay, a little old even if you're old, and a little golfy even if you're into golf. But in the last few years, the desert, as we call it, has gotten cooler restaurants, bars, hotels and spas.