As the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival approaches, an eager excitement settles in over the rolling hills of Southern California. The festival has been on since 1999, but has gained a massive following in the last few years.
So you’ve heard all the buzz, but you’re not entirely sure how to approach the whole thing, right? Don’t worry- we’ve got you covered! Check out this customizable guide to experiencing Coachella the best way possible… however you want to!
Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival is located in the Southern California desert near the town of Indio. The closest airport is Palm Springs International, which has easy, but pricey flights. You can also land at LAX, which has shuttle options to Indio. If you love the independence of having your own car, it’s advisable to rent one and drive yourself! The 142-mile cruise from LAX to Indio is full of beautiful scenery to calm your inner being before the excitement of the festival.
Just remember- if you’re taking your own car (or a rental) be sure to map out parking and traffic zones before you leave. Thousands of people attend Coachella each year and a huge portion drive, so the roads will most likely be clogged.
Another option is utilizing shuttles from local Indio hotels to the festival grounds. Inquire ahead of time to see if your hotel has this option- it will save you time and a headache later!
Where To Stay
Coachella offers a few on-site camping options. Unfortunately, all of the spaces for car camping and traditional bring-you-own tent camping are already sold out. But if you desperately prefer to book accommodations on the festival grounds, it’s still possible.
Check Coachella’s website to learn more about their luxury Tipi and Shikar style tent rentals. These are a great option for those who wish to experience an extremely unique Coachella environment, without sacrificing the need for exclusive amenities. For example, if you book a Tipi style tent at Lake Eldorado, you’ll receive a designated parking space, a free sleeping bag, and access to Lake Eldorado itself. And with the Shikar style tent rental, you’ll get backstage passes, golf cart shuttles to the stages, and free breakfast and late night snacks.
But if you’re eager to experience Coachella with a back-to-basics mentality, it’s also still possible to camp off-site. The festival’s website recommends several campgrounds (including some that welcome RVs.)
Hotels are a great way to experience the fun at Coachella, while having a homebase to shower and access WiFi. Many hotels get booked quickly, but there’s still a chance you might find one! Other rental options, like AirBnB or HomeAway, are excellent choices for the independent traveler who wishes to sleep away from the festival.
What To Bring
Having fun all day in the California desert comes with a few challenges such as heat, fatigue, and dehydration. Here are a few crucial items to bring along to make sure you stay happy and healthy!
- Rain Jacket
- Comfortable Shoes
- Bug Spray
- Water Bottle
Created by Mandy Burkholder