Things to Do in Idyllwild – Tourist Attractions and Fun Places to Go Around This Unincorporated Mountain Town

If you’re looking for things to do in Idyllwild, look no further! This unincorporated mountain town is home to some of the most beautiful scenery in California and several tourist attractions. So start planning your itinerary and get ready to have some fun

things to do in idyllwild

Why Is Idyllwild Worth Visiting?

Idyllwild is a small town in the San Jacinto Mountains, about 2 hours from LA. It’s known for being a great place to hike and rock-climb, but it’s also a very special place for other reasons. Before we get into all the things to do in Idyllwild, let’s learn a little about it.

The town itself – an unincorporated community and a census-designated place together with the adjacent Pine Cove – has a population of around 2,000 people. It’s nestled between the Mount San Jacinto and highway 74, with highway 243 running through the town.

The community has been here since 1889 when George and Sarah Hannahs built a summer camp there. The settlement grew after it became accessible via a turnpike from Hemet and a post office was established.

The appeal of Idyllwild is that it’s so quiet and peaceful. There are also plenty of hiking trails right out your front door, including Mount San Jacinto State Park just minutes away. You can take short hikes or long ones depending on how much time you have!

Outdoor Things to Do in Idyllwild – Hiking, Camping and Rock Climbing

Now that we know a little more about this beautiful mountain town, let’s get into all the things to do in Idyllwild! As we mentioned, one of the best activities for tourists is hiking. There are trails for all levels here – easy ones that are great for families with small children, and more challenging ones for experienced hikers.

One of the most popular trails is the Deer Springs Trail, which is a challenging trail that takes you through some stunning scenery to San Jacinto Peak. It’s about 19 miles long and takes around 10 hours to complete, so make sure you start early in the day!

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If you’re looking for an easier hike, the Devil’s Slide Trail is a great option. It’s only about 3 miles long and takes around an hour to complete. It leads from Humber Park to the mountains.

Idyllwild is also a great place for camping and rock climbing. There are several campsites in the area, as well as many cliffs and rocks to climb, such as the Suicide Rock and Tahquitz Peak. If you’re new to rock climbing, there are several companies that offer guided tours and lessons.

Tourist Attractions in the Heart of Idyllwild

In addition to all the outdoor activities, there are also several things to do in Idyllwild downtown. One of the most popular is the Idyllwild Nature Center, which is a great place to learn about the local flora and fauna. The center has hiking trails, a butterfly garden, and a native plant nursery.

Another option is Idyllwild Area Historical Society Museum, which is housed in an old stagecoach stop. The museum has exhibits on the history of Idyllwild and the surrounding area, as well as a gift shop. You can also take a pottery class in the nearby Mountain Pottery.

For art lovers, the Town Gallery is a great place to check out. This art gallery features rotating exhibitions of local artists.

If you’re looking for places to take kids, the Idyllwild Public Playground is a great option. There’s also the Idyllwild Regional Park (also known as the Idyllwild Park), where the family can picnic and have fun in the snow during the winter. And, of course, the San Jacinto State Park is always a hit with kids and adults alike.

Dining and Shopping in Idyllwild

After a long day of hiking or exploring the town, you’ll probably be ready for a bite to eat. Idyllwild has several great restaurants, such as Cafe Aroma, which is known for its coffee and pastries. Some other options are:

  • La Casita – a Mexican restaurant a bit off-the-beaten path;
  • Tommy’s Kitchen – the perfect place for a leisurely lunch with a good choice of salads;
  • Idyology – a homey restaurant considered to be a hidden gem and serving surprisingly good-quality food.
  • Idyllwild Pizza Company – one of the most popular restaurants in town, with delicious pizza (and long waiting lines).
  • Middle Ridge Winery – a great place to relax with a glass of wine and enjoy the stunning views.
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That’s not all – Idyllwild also has several great shops where you can find souvenirs, gifts, and more. A few of our favorites are Earth’s Elements, Idyllwild Gift Shop, and A Piece of Idyllwild.

Movies and Live Entertainment in Idyllwild

How about watching a movie or some live entertainment while you’re in Idyllwild? The Rustic Theatre and Entertainment Center shows movies throughout the year if you’re looking to catch a premiere during your stay. For live music, head to the Idyllwild Brewpub, where you can enjoy a pint and some tunes. Beware that it might be very busy!

Sometimes, events are hosted at the Butterfield Amphitheater. This is a great spot to catch a concert or play in the summer months.

Where to Stay in Idyllwilld?

There are several great places to stay in Idyllwild, depending on your budget and preferences. For a luxurious experience, the Grand Idyllwild Lodge is a great option with its villa-style suites and on-site spa, gym and sauna.

If you’re looking for something more affordable, the Idyllwild Inn is a good choice. There are also several Airbnbs and vacation rentals in the area if you’re looking for a more private experience.

When Is the Best Time to Visit Idyllwild?

The best time to visit Idyllwild depends on what you’re looking for. If you want to enjoy the outdoors, the summer months are a great time to come, with temperatures in the 70s and 80s. That’s also the best time to camp by Lake Fulmor in the mountains.

However, if you’re looking to snowboard or cross-country ski, winter is the best time to visit. You can enjoy the many things to do in Idyllwild any time of the year!

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Things to Do in Pine Cove – 5 Minutes by Car from Idyllwild

Pine Cove is a small community adjacent to Idyllwild, and it’s worth visiting if you’re in the area. One of the best things to do in Pine Cove is to visit the Donaldson Futuro House, which is a unique and interesting piece of architecture.

Another option is to go hiking – there are several trails in Pine Cove that offer stunning views of the surrounding area. And, if you’re looking for a place to stay, Pine Cove has several bed and breakfasts, as well as vacation rentals.

Have a Pleasant Stay in Idyllwild!

And there you have it – a guide to things to do in Idyllwild! This small town has a lot to offer, and we hope you enjoy your stay. Be sure to check out some things on this list, and let us know if we missed anything. If you’re looking for even more scenic views and tourist attractions, Palm Springs is waiting an hour’s drive away.


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