Phoenix, also called the Valley of the Sun, is the capital of the state of Arizona. If you’re looking for a place that is sunny all year round, surrounded by the most beautiful mountains, and is a discovery place for art, this is the place to be. As the fifth-largest city in the U.S., there are many activities and places to visit in Arizona. Here are seven of the best things you can do while in Phoenix:
1. Valley, Desert, and Canyon Tours
If you’re going to visit Phoenix you can’t go and not visit the valleys and the canyons. There are plenty of small-group tours, hiking tours, helicopter tours, and airplane tours that you can book to get a closer look at the Valley of the Sun. If you visit the southwestern region of the city, you will be lucky enough to see a portion of the vast Sonoran desert. There are a variety of tours here that is open for all tourists of all ages, such as ATV, UTV, hiking, and biking tours. Each tour shows a different side and a new perspective of the city’s beautiful landscape.
If retail therapy is your cup of tea, then you should head to Phoenix’s outlets and shopping malls. They have tons of malls filled with a range of stores, from clothing boutiques to luxury brands. They have a wide variety of shopping destinations to fit all your shopping needs. There are several outlets in the city, where you can receive coupons and get discounts on the best clothing items. This is any fashion lover’s dream destination for retail therapy.
3. Hiking and Camping
There are multiple locations in Phoenix where you can hike and camp. A great place, in particular, is the Phoenix Mountains Preserve that is located in Central Phoenix. Not only is it a great form of exercise, you even get to immerse yourself in nature. It’s a great activity for friends and family alike. The Phoenix Mountains Preserve is also a great place to get a view of the entire city. There are plenty of hidden spots where you can view Phoenix from the mountains.
4. Hot Air Balloon Flight
If you thought that seeing Phoenix from the tip of the mountain is great, wait till you see it from the air. A hot air balloon flight is an exciting way to see the city. Relax in the hot air balloon as it flies over the Valley of the Sun. Get to see all of Phoenix’s highlights from above; the valleys, deserts, and canyons, all from a birds-eye view. The ride can last from 45 minutes to a few hours, depending on the operator and your desired flight time. The best time to take hot an air balloon flight would be in the afternoon, right before sunsets. If you’re a morning person, you can even catch a flight early in the morning and watch the sunrise.
5. Phoenix Zoo
The Phoenix Zoo is one of the largest non-profit zoos in the U.S. It houses 3,000 animals of 400 different species, including endangered species. But, don’t worry, in the Phoenix Zoo, they make sure to conserve and protect all their animals. They have been a strong advocate for rescuing endangered species and have made it their goal to continue protecting and saving even more.
If you would like to support their efforts and visit the zoo, they are open from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Your family and friends can learn more about animals, their natural habitats, and how to take care of them. If you’d like to engage with the animals, the zoo has activities such as animal presentations, giraffe encounters, safari cruiser, monkey village walk-thru, and other virtual programs.
6. Phoenix Botanical Garden
The Botanical Garden is home to over a thousand different plant species. Much like the Phoenix Zoo, instead of animals, the botanical garden serves to protect hundreds of rare and endangered plant species. They have different research and conservation programs to help protect these plants. The garden is over 140 acres large and has 5 garden trails and various exhibits. This place is a plant-lovers’ paradise. It is a place where art and nature meet. You can spend hours here just adoring the plants and taking photos, or you could even join one of their learning programs.
If you are more of an indoor person, Phoenix has plenty of museums. Some of their most well-known museums and exhibits include Wonderspaces, the Heard Museum, the Musical Instrument Museum, and the Phoenix Art Museum. All of these showcase different kinds of arts and history.
Wonderspaces is more of an experience than it is an exhibit. Instead of the usual paintings or artworks on display, Wonderspaces encourages people to connect with art. They have13 interactive and immersive artworks that change every month. It’s an art experience you surely wouldn’t want to miss. The Heard Museum is great for those who want to learn more about the history of the United States. It has thousands of artworks and artifacts that represent the history of American-Indians in the U.S. They mainly focus on the history of the southwestern tribes. Music enthusiasts should visit the Musical Instrument Museum. They have collections and galleries that exhibit more than 8,000 instruments from different parts of the world. The Phoenix Art Museum is the largest museum for visual arts in the city and the entirety of the southwest region of the United States. It features a wide variety of exhibitions and collections that display different kinds of art, from classical art to modern art.
If you are looking to go on a vacation, we recommend you come down to the Valley. There are tourist destinations and activities that fit every tourist’s preferences. You could go on outdoor tours, shopping sprees, climb mountains, camp, ride hot air balloons, visit zoos, gardens, and several museums.