Travel Agenda: Coming up in California


Tomorrow: Check into The Saguaro hotel in ritzy Palm Springs. The former Holiday Inn property, pictured, has been given a sleek renovation by Californian-based hotel group Joie de Vivre. It now features a pool, tequila bar and tapas restaurant, with a vivid colour palette that contrasts with the stark landscape of the Coachella Valley (

Meanwhile, the Noise Pop Festival is taking place in San Francisco this weekend with a performance from Atlas Sound today and The Dodos closing the event tomorrow (

This week: The birth of John Steinbeck is celebrated in his hometown of Salinas tomorrow at the National Steinbeck Center with free music, storytelling and children's activities ( Over in the High Sierra region, the SnowFest winter carnival gets under way in North Lake Tahoe on Friday with ice-cream eating contests, fireworks, torchlight parades and a snow palace, until 11 March (

In The Diary: In Orange Country, the Laguna Beach Uncorked festival will see a gathering of 50 restaurants and wineries celebrate local produce at the city's Festival of Arts venue on 10 March ( Or, for those of a literary persuasion, the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books has authors taking part in free readings, recitals and panel discussions on the city's University of Southern California campus between 21-22 April (

Finally, witness one of California's favourite pastimes in Santa Cruz at the Big Stick Logjam Surfing Contest, near Pleasure Point between 28-29 April. The city has just been designated as a World Surfing Reserve this year, with the official dedication ceremony due to happen on the Saturday (