Separated from Los Angeles by the San Gabriel Mountains, Palmdale lies north of Los Angeles and is nicknamed the ‘aerospace capital of America’ due to its main industry being that of aerospace technology. The city boasts several unique attractionssuch as the Joe Davies Heritage Airpark, the Prime Desert Woodland Preserve, andthe DryTown Water Park.
1.State Route 138 - Pearblossom Highway
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State Route 138 (SR 138), also known as the Pearblossom Highway is a state highway in southern California that runs from east to west, following the western Mojave Desert into the northern foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains. The scenic road begins just south of Gorman in the Sierra Pelona Mountains, runs eastward through the Antelope Valley and Cajon Pass, to the San Bernardino Mountains in the east. The highway is famous for being the subject matter of David Hockney’s picturesque photographic collage entitled Pearblossom Highway which currently sits in the Getty Museum in Los Angeles.
© Blackbird Airpark
Blackbird Airpark is a private 12,000 square foot museum at Edwards Air Force Base that features 8,500 square feet of interesting displays and exhibits, a research library, a 40-seat theater, administrative offices, and a gift shop. Exhibits in the museum cover a wide range of topics from the story of Glen Edwards, the base’s namesake and flight-testing during WWII to the formation of the ancient lake beds and early homesteading in the area, high-speed flight, and breaking the sound barrier. Other museum attractions include displays of airplane models, rocket engines, and flight hardware, and the gift shop sells a variety of aeronautical-related souvenirs and gifts.
2503 E Ave P, Palmdale, CA 93550, Phone: 661-274-0884
3.DryTown Water Park
© DryTown Water Park
Dry Town Water Park is a family-friendly water park located on the grounds of the Palmdale Oasis Park & Recreation Center in southeast Palmdale. Seasonally open every year from Memorial Day weekend in May through Labor Day in September, the park features six beautifully landscaped acres of attractions, including several thrilling water-based rides, a tubing ride called Big Rock River, and the super-fast Dusty’s Mineshaft Racer. Little Miner’s Camp is ideal for younger guests, and there are several restaurants and cafés that serve casual fare and drinks dotted around the park, and modern restrooms.
3850-B E Ave S, Palmdale, CA 93550, Phone: 661-267-6161
4.Transplants Brewing Company
© Transplants Brewing Company
Transplants Brewing Company is a locally owned and operated brewery in Palmdale that produces a variety of inventive beers with a focus on hoppy west coast ales and creative specialties. The brewery has a modern, comfortable tasting room where a range of flagship, barrel-aged, seasonal and collabs can be tasted. Flagship beers include The Independent – an IPA made with Newport hops; Trace Plants – an IPA with Columbus and Chinook; The Fascinators – a Black IPA; The Bible Salesman – old-aged in Koval Bourbon barrels; and Old Weird Eyes – an Oktoberfest ale inspired by Heino. Transplants Brewing Company is open six days a week at various hours.
40242 La Quinta Lane Unit 101, Palmdale, CA 93551, Phone: 661-266-7911
5.Joe Davies Heritage Airpark
© Joe Davies Heritage Airpark
The Joe Davies Heritage Airpark is a local museum/exhibition facility that boasts an outstanding collection of aircraft from the USAF, US Navy, USMC and Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF). Established in the late 1990s by the USAF, the airpark was named in honor of Joe Davies, who served in World War Two and Vietnam and as the USAAF’s Air Force Plant 42’s third commander for five years. The park features excellent open-air displays of a wide variety of retired military aircraft that span many decades of aviation, from jets to bombers, including greats like the Boeing B-52F Stratofortress strategic bomber, and the McDonnell Douglas F-4 Phantom II multi-role fighter. Other awe-inspiring displays include a Vought A-7 Corsair II attack fighter, Douglas A-4C Skyhawk attack aircraft, and a Grumman F-14D Tomcat interceptor.
2001 E Ave P, Palmdale, CA 93550, Phone: 661-267-5300
6.Lucky Luke Brewing
© Lucky Luke Brewing
Lucky Luke Brewing is a locally owned and operated brewery that focuses on producing handcrafted quality craft beer for the surrounding community. The brewery boasts a 10-barrel brewing system comprised of a natural gas direct fired hot liquor tank and kettle, and a fully insulated mash tun with an ever-growing 60-barrel cellaring capacity. Lucky Luke Brewing is committed to sustainable brewing practices and utilizes special water-saving equipment. Signature brews include the Impresario – an American IPA, the Millwright, an Imperial Oatmeal Stout, the Cartographer, a rye beer, the Mortician – a black/Cascadian dark ale, and the Scrivener – a blonde ale. Lucky Luke Brewing is open seven days a week at various hours.
610 W Ave O #104, Palmdale, CA 93551, Phone: 661-270-5588
7.Rancho Vista Golf Club
© Rancho Vista Golf Club
The Rancho Vista Golf Club is a Ted Robinson-designed 18-hole golf course in the heart of the Antelope Valley with spectacular desert surroundings, and a modern clubhouse with a restaurant and spaces for special events and functions. The 6,659-yard, par 72 course features beautifully contoured fairways, strategically incorporated lakes and bunkers, a grass tee driving range, pitching bunkers and putting greens, and offers a challenging round for all levels of playing ability. The Clubhouse provides a stylish, yet comfortable venue for dining, entertainment or celebrating special occasions and a golf shop sells golf essentials, apparel, and gear. A team of golf and service professionals is on hand to offer lessons and advice on game improvement and take care of member’s golfing needs.
3905 Club Rancho Dr, Palmdale, CA 93551, Phone: 661-272-9903
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The Palmdale Amphitheater is a premier outdoor entertainment venue located at Marie Kerr Park in the Antelope Valley. The community-based center hosts high energy concert performances and a variety of community-based events such as dance recitals, plays, music concerts and more. The Amphitheater features comfortable, grassy seating areas and spaces for food vendors, as well as amenities such as restrooms and a green room for the entertainers. During the summer months, the Palmdale Amphitheater hosts Friday evening Family Movie Nights and Saturday evening concerts and the venue is packed with locals and visitors alike who come to enjoy live music under the stars on spectacular summer evenings.
2723 Rancho Vista Blvd, Palmdale, CA 93551, Phone: 661-267-5611
9.Rainbow Ridge Ranch
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Rainbow Ridge Ranch is a horseback riding and rental stable located near Acton and Palmdale that offers horseback riding lessons, riding clinics, outrides and adventures, pony and horse rentals, and stall and pasture boarding for owners of horses. The ranch also offers training for horse and rider and is available for special event and celebrations such as birthday parties, day camps, and pony parties. Visitors can overnight at the ranch with their horses if needed, and the Ranch Store offers a range of horse essentials, horseback riding gear and equipment, and horse-related gifts and souvenirs.
1701 Crystal Rd, Palmdale, CA 93550, Phone: 661-860-0593
10.Lee Esther's Creole and Cajun Cooking
© Lee Esther's Creole and Cajun Cooking
Lee Esther's Creole and Cajun Cooking is a cozy Louisiana-style joint that specializes in serving delicious Creole and Cajun cuisine in a friendly, relaxed atmosphere. Owned by Chef Lee Esther, who has a passion for creating mouthwatering Southern fare, the family-friendly restaurant offers a menu of typical Creole and Cajun dishes such as gumbo, jambalaya, po' boys, crawfish etouffee, Cajun chicken, and blackened fish. Signature dishes on the ‘secret menu’ include Ravalaya, Mike's Famous Courtboullion, and Fish with Crawfish Wine Sauce, and desserts range from peach cobbler and beignets to banana and bread pudding. Lee Esther's Creole and Cajun Cooking is open for lunch and dinner, Tuesday through Sunday.
830 1/2 E Avenue Q-6, Palmdale, CA 93550, Phone: 661-266-0000
11.Jasmine Thai Restaurant
© Jasmine Thai Restaurant
The Jasmine Thai Restaurant is a modern restaurant on Palmdale Boulevard that specializes in Thai food and serves a menu of traditional Thai cuisine. Using on the freshest and highest quality ingredients, dishes are prepared from scratch and range from appetizers of jasmine rolls, coconut shrimp, satay, and a variety of tempura to entrées of pad thai; pad woo sen, jasmine ba-mee, and a variety of stir-fries and mild to hot curries. The cuisine is accompanied by a range of beverages, including jasmine and green tea, Thai Iced Tea, Thai Iced Coffee, Ginseng Coffee, Coconut water, and soft drinks. The Jasmine Thai Restaurant is open for lunch and dinner, Tuesday through Sunday.
326 E Palmdale Blvd, Palmdale, CA 93550, Phone: 661-274-8424
12.Baracoa Cuban Restaurant
© Baracoa Cuban Restaurant
Baracoa Cuban Restaurant brings a taste of Cuba to Palmdale with authentic Cuban cuisine and a colorful, vibrant atmosphere. Blending tropical, African, and European flavors with a distinct Creole flavor, Cuban cuisine reflects the rich culture and heritage of the island and brings it to the table. Owned by the by the grandchildren of Cuban native Disnarda Aragon Salva, the dynamic restaurant serves a menu of specialty dishes such as Papas Renellas, Fricase de Camaron, Empanadas de Carne, Platanos Fritos, Ceviche de Pargo, along with Cuban sandwiches, tapas, sides, and desserts. The restaurant also boasts a coffee bar that serves strong Cuban coffee. Baracoa Cuban Restaurant is open for lunch and dinner, seven days a week.
853 Auto Center Dr. Ste F, Palmdale, CA 93551, Phone: 661-265-9463
12 Best Things to Do in Palmdale, California
- State Route 138 - Pearblossom Highway, Photo: Courtesy of queen1987 - Fotolia.com
- Blackbird Airpark, Photo: Blackbird Airpark
- DryTown Water Park, Photo: DryTown Water Park
- Transplants Brewing Company, Photo: Transplants Brewing Company
- Joe Davies Heritage Airpark, Photo: Joe Davies Heritage Airpark
- Lucky Luke Brewing, Photo: Lucky Luke Brewing
- Rancho Vista Golf Club, Photo: Rancho Vista Golf Club
- Palmdale Amphitheater, Photo: Courtesy of ChiccoDodiFC - Fotolia.com
- Rainbow Ridge Ranch, Photo: Courtesy of Christian Schwier - Fotolia.com
- Lee Esther's Creole and Cajun Cooking, Photo: Lee Esther's Creole and Cajun Cooking
- Jasmine Thai Restaurant, Photo: Jasmine Thai Restaurant
- Baracoa Cuban Restaurant, Photo: Baracoa Cuban Restaurant
- Cover Photo: Courtesy of spiritofamerica - Fotolia.com