A historic and sacred centerpiece for the Agua Caliente people, this canyon featured in the 1937 Frank Capra movie Lost Horizon. The visitor center has natural- and cultural-history exhibits and shows a video about the legend of Tahquitz, a shaman of the Cahuilla people. A 2-mile fairly steep and rocky trail loops around to a 60ft waterfall.
Bring a picnic, water and be sure to wear sneakers or hiking boots. Self-hiking is available until 3:30pm. Alternatively, join a 2½-hour ranger-led hike offered four times daily; reserve in advance.
In the 1960s the canyon was taken over by teenage squatters and soon became a point of contention between tribespeople, law-enforcement agencies and the squatters themselves. After the latter were booted out, it took the tribe years to haul out trash, erase graffiti and restore the site to its natural state.