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Things to do in Phoenix Arizona: 21 Top Activities For You!

Date: September 28, 2022

The sunny weather in Phoenix may make you want to escape to a remote resort and spend your days lounging by the pool while sipping margaritas. Fun can be had at any time of year, although winter is a particularly popular period for tourists.

Resist the urge to give in, as off-season travel offers some of the best prices at hotels and resorts. Enjoy the many resorts and spas, visit world-class museums, marvel at the desert's natural splendor, hike the many mountains surrounding the city, and more of the many things to do in Phoenix Arizona.

The top 21 things to do in Phoenix, AZ

Desert terrains can be expanded through the exploration of Phoenix's many attractions. The greater Phoenix area is covered in this article.

Now, without further ado, I present to you the best of what Phoenix has to offer.

  1. Musical Instrument Museum

The Musical Instrument Museum (commonly known as MIM) in Phoenix is a lot of fun and a unique experience for any visitor to Phoenix, Arizona. Beautifully and carefully curated, it is the only Museum of its kind in the world dedicated to musical instruments from all around the world.

There is so much variety in the Museum's displays of instruments from all across the world. The collection of more than 15,000 musical instruments from all corners of the globe is unparalleled and sure to please any music lover's ears.

When you buy a ticket, you will also receive a headset, and afterward, you can explore the many zones that stand in for other continents and regions, read up on the locals, and witness live performances of some of the instruments you've been learning about.

The MIM offers a wide variety of fun experiences for its guests. It's fascinating to read about an instrument and then watch a video of that instrument being performed.

There are African drums and harpsichords among the rare guitars and other instruments on display at this Museum. In addition to the concerts, they also feature John Lennon's piano.

All of the instruments are shown in state-of-the-art, hi-tech showcases that let visitors see, hear, and interact with the pieces. Great and well-known instruments, such as those played by John Lennon, Elvis Presley, Taylor Swift, Carlos Santana, Johnny Cash, and others, are among those in the collection.

It's now possible to hear the instruments as they were originally intended to be heard. The music and instruments of various folk, ethnic, and tribal groups can also be viewed and heard in their native settings.

  1. Desert Botanical Garden

The Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix is a popular destination for tourists because it provides a welcome respite from the heat of the surrounding desert. It features a desert garden on 140 acres with 50,000 plants, plus food, shopping, and a library.

Parking and entry are both accessible for people using wheelchairs. You can take a stroll through the garden's peaceful walkways, enjoy the activities held there, eat at the eateries, and get an education on desert life.

Most people, when they imagine a desert, see sand and various shades of brown. The garden features over twenty distinct exhibits for guests to enjoy, such as a variety of cacti and succulents, an extensive collection of plants with their own saltwater pools, and even a section specifically designed for butterflies and birds.

There aren't many people that travel to arid regions in hopes of seeing beautiful vegetation. The Desert Botanical Garden was built to dispel the widespread misconception that the desert is completely devoid of vegetation.

You might find this thought baffling, given how scorching Arizona and its deserts can get. At 1201 N. Galvin Parkway, Phoenix, Arizona 85008, you'll find the Desert Botanical Garden.

  1. Visit the NASCAR at the Phoenix International Raceway
An image showing a NASCAR race car

Visit the Phoenix International Raceway to get your heart racing if you're a fan of high speeds and fast cars. The raceway is a tri-oval racetrack that spans a distance of 1 mile and features minimal banking.

The NASCAR Racing Experience it's as real as it gets, and you get to put your driving skills to the test. Pre-booking their VIP experience, which includes paddock tours and pit lane access, will make you feel like a real insider on race day.

After a briefing and training session at a Drivers Meeting, you'll get to spin the tires of a NASCAR race car during timed sessions at some of the best tracks in the country. But if that's not thrilling enough, you can also try your hand at driving a go-kart or taking a "hot lap" around the track.

  1. Taliesen West

One of the many reasons why visitors to Phoenix should check out Taliesin West is that it is a National Historic Landmark. It was designed and constructed by the legendary Frank Lloyd Wright, who is widely regarded as a seminal figure in the development of a distinctively American architectural style.

For those of you who have a passion for architecture, a trip to Scottsdale's Taliesin West, a UNESCO World Heritage site and National Historic Landmark, is an absolute must. Its architectural style makes it a delightful surprise in the midst of what might otherwise be a boring stretch of the Phoenix desert.

From 1937 through 1959, renowned architect Frank Lloyd Wright spent his winters at his winter house in California, Taliesin West. Today, the home serves as the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation's administrative headquarters and is available for tours and rentals by the public and business sectors.

The residence went through improvements when Wright visited annually, working with his students to carry out his vision. Inspiring the home's design were the neighboring trees and grass.

The home is a unique work of art. The walls were fashioned from local stones, and many of the angles and flows of the rooms drew inspiration from the environment as well.

Everything in the camp, from the studios to the homes to the theaters and amenities, was built with local materials and designed with the help of art and architecture students to blend in with the natural surroundings. Built at the bottom of the spectacular McDowell Mountains, these 600 acres of property were chosen simply owing to Wright's love of the Sonoran Desert.

Concerts and art exhibitions are only two of the many special events that are regularly staged to spruce up the area. In addition, certain excursions require advance scheduling in order for visitors to get access to the grounds.

Visitors can take advantage of tours and guides who can shed more light on the site's nuances and Wright's history. These tours of Taliesin West can last anything from an hour to three hours and cover a wide variety of topics.

Taliesin West can be found at 12621 N Frank Lloyd Wright Blvd, Scottsdale, AZ 85259. Open from 8:30 am to 6:30 pm daily, and there is also a gift shop to peruse.

  1. Dobbins Lookout South Mountain

Chairman of the Phoenix Planning Commission and a driving force behind the purchase of the land, James C. Dobbins, was honored with the naming of the lookout in his honor.

At this magnificent lookout, you can see more of Phoenix than from anywhere else. Numerous mountains surround the valley, providing a variety of hiking opportunities and scenic vistas.

At an elevation of over 2,000 feet, it is the highest point reachable by car. Whether you plan on visiting South Mountain Park, you should first check the park's website to see if any roads will be closed.

In this beautiful desert park, visitors can enjoy hiking on more than 51 miles of trails. Find the Dobbins Lookout at 10919 S Central Ave, Phoenix, Arizona 85042.

  1. Bat Cave

This is not a natural cave despite its name; instead, it is a flood control tunnel that is frequently occupied by tens of thousands, even hundreds of thousands, of Mexican Free-Tailed bats.

More than ten thousand Mexican bats winter in Phoenix before making the long journey back to Mexico in the fall. You should just observe these amazing animals in silence and in accordance with the posted rules and regulations.

When daytime comes around, they go to sleep, but as soon as dusk approaches, they cover the sky. Dusk is the best time to visit because that's when the bats come out to feast on insects, filling the sky.

Considering its proximity to Phoenix, it is truly a sight to behold. Because the bats don't seem to fear humans, you should be prepared for some close calls as they fly by.

It is found at 3698-3694 E Colter St, Phoenix, AZ 85018, United States

  1. Hike the Many Phoenix Mountain Parks
Mountains: One of the many things to do in Phoenix Arizona

The Phoenix mountains are among the many unique things about the city. You can get a good workout climbing to the top of a mountain and being rewarded with a great view of Phoenix and its environs.

The parks do an admirable job of showcasing the desert in all its splendor. Incredible views of the valley from the summits make the workout seem less like work.

Many great hiking sites may be found in state and local parks across the Phoenix region. Beautiful cactus and other desert plants may be found everywhere, and after the spring rains, the landscape is blanketed in a lush carpet of greenery and colorful wildflowers.

Some of the many places you can hike include:

  • Phoenix Mountains Preserve
  • Phoenix Mountains Park
  • North Mountain Park
  • Piestewa Peak Park
  • South Mountain Park and Preserve
  • Lookout Mountain Park
  • Shaw Butte Trailhead
  • Mountain Park Ranch Hiking Trail
  • Echo Canyon Recreation Area
  • Phoenix Sonoran Preserve
  • Adobe Mountain Park
  • Camelback Mountain
  1. Arizona Science Center

Located in the heart of Phoenix, just a stone's throw away from Heritage Park, lies the Arizona Science Center, a public science museum often regarded as the best in the state.

The four-story science center features numerous interactive exhibits. The planetarium is state-of-the-art, and it's never too late to expand your mind via exploration of the cosmos or the wonders of the natural world.

The Arizona Science Center is a family-friendly attraction downtown, where visitors of all ages may explore more than 300 interactive exhibits, see live science demonstrations, and gaze at the stars in the Dorrance Planetarium for one admission.

Exhibits are typically offered hands-on, demonstrating everything from friction and gravity to the solar system and biology, weather and energy, and aviation IT. Regardless, visiting the science center is one of the many must-do activities in central Phoenix.

The learning hub was made with kids in mind; there's a lot for them to pick up and learn there. If you're over 21, get to the center's science with a twist event, which features a night of science-themed programs, beverages, dancing, and a wonderful time.

The following is the complete address: 600 E Washington St, Phoenix, AZ 85004, USA.

  1. Visit Castles N' Coasters

For those who crave excitement, the 10-acre Castles N' Coasters amusement park features rides for all ages, from the Sky Diver roller coaster to the family-friendly vintage carousel. Castles N' Coasters, located in the city's northwest, has enough thrilling attractions to keep you entertained for a full day.

Even while Phoenix isn't necessarily home to some of the best amusement parks in the country, it doesn't mean there aren't some exciting destinations that fit the bill.

It's possible to choose from a variety of thrilling rides, splashdown, a log flume water ride, and when the craving for speed has been satisfied, visitors can enjoy the 18-hole mini-golf course or the neon-lit arcade.

Intense heart rate increases are expected on roller coasters like the Desert Storm, which features numerous loop-de-loops. And that's not all there is to do here; there's also a drop tower, arcade, bumper boats, cars, and go-karts.

It is located at 9445 N Metro Pkwy E, Phoenix, Arizona 85051.

  1. Japanese Friendship Garden

This garden is a welcome respite from the heat and aridity of Phoenix. The Japanese Friendship Garden first opened in 1987 to strengthen ties between Phoenix and Himeji, Japan.

Japanese Friendship Garden is an actual Japanese garden in the midst of Phoenix, in contrast to the Desert Botanical Garden, which is dedicated to the desert and native species. The architects of Himeji created this tranquil sanctuary full of lush vegetation and koi fish to decorate the carefully planned landscape.

The 3.5-acre site features a koi pond stocked with over 300 fish, a 12-foot waterfall, stone footbridges, lanterns, and a tea house where traditional ceremonies can be held.

You may wish to include a stop at this tea garden when planning your trip to Arizona. It is also the best spot to experience a traditional Japanese tea ceremony.

The garden also hosts a number of other events, such as craft workshops and summer jazz nights, in addition to tea ceremonies. There are also many additional events where people can see and try Japanese dances, arts, and cuisine.

When in Phoenix, stop by the Japanese Friendship Garden at 1125 N. 3rd Avenue, Phoenix, AZ 85003

  1. Visit the Arizona Museum of Natural History

The Phoenix metropolitan area and its neighboring areas are rich in archaeological potential, so it's no wonder that the Arizona Museum of Natural History is well-known for its dinosaur displays. The Arizona Museum of Natural History near Tempe Town Lake is a fun and educational destination for visitors of all ages.

The Museum is famous for its extensive collection documenting the history, culture, and migration patterns of the Grand Canyon State's native species and artifacts.

You can go on a Paleontological excavation in Arizona, learn about the history of Western North America's indigenous peoples, and much more.

The Museum has been in operation since 1977 and is located in the area around Phoenix in the building that housed Mesa City Hall. Guests can explore the Museum's multi-story Mesozoic Era exhibit, Dinosaur Mountain, complete with a three-story waterfall.

Young explorers can get up and personal with lifelike replicas of dinosaur skeletons, while aspiring paleontologists can practice their skills in the Museum's Paleo Dig Pit.

Because of the city's rich archaeological past, the Arizona Museum of Natural History is among the top Phoenix attractions.

It is located at 53 N Macdonald, Mesa, AZ 85201.

  1. Phoenix Art Museum

Presenting over 17,000 pieces of cutting-edge international and modern art, the Phoenix Art Museum is the largest art museum in the southwestern US and a must-see for art lovers. It may not be as huge as some of the world's best art museums, but it certainly holds its own.

It houses so many wonderful paintings, including the permanent collection and the fantastic temporary displays. This Museum features a wealth of entertaining modern art shows.

Collaborating with the University of Arizona's Center for Creative Photography means that guests can also indulge their passion for photography here!

You may find it at 1625 N Central Ave, Phoenix, AZ 85004.

  1. Wrigley Mansion

Wrigley is a household name since it is synonymous with the ubiquitous chewing gum manufactured under that name all over the globe. If the name Wrigley seems familiar, it's probably because of the gum by that name.

It turns out that the estate perched over Phoenix belonged to none other than chewing gum magnate William Wrigley Jr. This corporation was founded by William Wrigley Jr., who in 1932 commissioned the construction of a magnificent mansion to celebrate his wedding anniversary.

It enjoys a commanding position on a hill, taking in breathtaking panoramas of the surrounding landscape, including both urban areas and mountain ranges. Those interested in the building's history or rumored hauntings might take a tour to learn more.

The magnificent tile-work, which includes tiles originally made at Wrigley's tile factory on Catalina Island, gives the building a decidedly Californian vibe, making it seem more like a destination than a destination in Arizona. The tiles had to travel over a hundred miles from the chateau to the Californian factory, so mules were used to make the journey.

As one of the best local restaurants and event spaces, it has become a popular destination for visitors visiting Phoenix. Join one of the 45-minute tours of the mansion if you're not interested in hosting an elegant brunch or wedding reception there.

The address for the Wrigley Mansion in Phoenix, Arizona, is 2501 E Telawa Trail.

  1. The Heard Museum

To promote American Indian art, the Heard Museum was founded. Located north of Phoenix, Maie Bartlett Heard and her husband established the Heard Museum in 1929, not long after they had purchased the La Ciudad Indian Ruin.

The Heard Museum in Arizona is widely regarded as one of the best museums in the United States for showcasing Native American culture and artifacts. This Museum houses around forty thousand works of ancient and contemporary Native American art and artifacts in its award-winning displays.

Phoenix has a significant Native American population, and this Museum is an excellent resource for learning about the region's history and culture. This Museum has a unique take on art and culture, with a regional focus on the American Southwest and North America.

Since its completion in 1929, this landmark has been a major venue for showcasing American Indian art and culture to an international audience. Many festivals, educational events, and exhibits on topics like Navajo weavings, Hopi katsina dolls, Zuni and Navajo jewelry, ancient ceramics, and woven baskets.

The address of the Heard Museum in Phoenix, Arizona, is 2301 N Central Ave, Phoenix, AZ, 85004, USA.

  1. Canyon Lake and the Dolly Steamboat

Consider a romantic dinner cruise or a scenic daytime adventure with Dolly when looking for things to do in Phoenix. Excursions last between 1 hour and 30 minutes and 3 hours.

The Apache Trail is non-negotiable, but why spend hours behind the wheel when you.

People can take dinner excursions or sight-see the lake's beautiful waters aboard this vessel. A few additional sights are worth seeing in this historic stagecoach stop along the Apache Trail in the American West.

Cruises depart during the day at around midday and evening at sunset, with the exact times altering seasonally. You won't find anything else like it in Phoenix, so don't miss out!

Approximately fifty miles east of Phoenix's downtown, in a place called Tortilla Flat Arizona 85117, at 16802 AZ-88, is where you'll find Dolly Steamboat. There is a wide variety of cruises to pick from, and customized tours are also available.

  1. Goldfield Ghost Town

Goldfield Ghost Town is a tourist attraction in Phoenix, Arizona, rebuilt from the original ghost town. A trip to the Goldfield Ghost Town is a great way to spend a day.

After gold was discovered in the Superstition Mountains in 1893, the community of Goldfield was established on the eastern side of the Valley of the Sun. When the gold ran out, the mine shut down in 1926, and the town was slowly abandoned.

Many of the historic structures along Main Street are open for viewing. The mine tour, train journey, and other entertainment options are just the beginning.

With its many authentic western structures and skilled re-enactors, this town provides tourists a flavor of the Old West as it was at its peak. Another activity is horseback riding.

If you aren't interested in participating in one of the town's excursions, you might want to try visiting the Museum and staying for the free gunfight show.

The address of Goldfield Ghost Town is 4650 N. Mammoth Mine Road, Apache Junction, Arizona 85119.

  1. Tres Rio Wetlands

The Tres Rios, Environmental Restoration project restores 700 acres of wetland and riparian habitat along the Salt River. The project connects the restored wetlands to a nearby wastewater treatment plant.

The wastewater treatment plant pumps recovered water to the wetlands, where plants and animals drink it before it's released into the river. This project repairs a natural ecosystem by restoring the Salt River to the early 1800s.

Tres Rios is home to around 150 bird and animal species, including muskrats, raccoons, skunks, coyotes, bobcats, and beavers. Cottonwood groves, willows, mesquites, and other desert shrubs attract migrating and wintering songbirds.

  1. Tour the Rosson House Museum at Heritage Square

Do you ever think about how people in the Valley of the Sun put up with the oppressive heat before air conditioning was commonplace? The Museum was a Queen Anne Victorian home built in 1895, and it has been meticulously renovated to serve as a museum interpreting Phoenix's past.

The Museum was once a beautifully restored Queen Anne Victorian residence from 1895 where visitors could learn about the city's history while taking in its splendor.

Visitors can see how early Phoenix families actually lived by touring every room in the house. You should know that Rosson House is only open to the public during guided tours with a typical length of 60 minutes.

  1. Hall of Flame Fire Museum

The Hall of Flame Fire Museum is another excellent option for a one-of-a-kind museum visit. There's a good reason why the Hall of Flame Fire Museum in Phoenix, Arizona, is one of the city's most popular tourist destinations: it has a great name.

This Museum is a homage to firefighters and a historical collection, with exhibits spanning from 1725 to the present day and covering an entire acre. This popular destination is the largest firefighting museum in the world. It honors the service and sacrifice of all first responders and pays tribute to the firemen who put their lives at risk while protecting the public.

The antique fire engines on display, some of which were built in the 1700s, are the primary draw. Most people who check out the Hall of Flame Fire Museum say that the refurbished fire engines are the highlight.

The Museum also displays automobiles from other countries. This Museum is fantastic if you want to learn the historical background of a topic you haven't given much thought to before.

You will gain a lot of knowledge and have a fantastic experience. From the most recent innovations in firefighting technology to artifacts dating back to 1725, this fascinating Museum celebrates firemen in all their illustrious glory.

The Hall of Flame Fire Museum can be found at 6101 E Van Buren St, Phoenix, Arizona 85008.

  1. Phoenix Police Museum

The Phoenix Police Department's history, beginning in 1881, is on display at the Museum. The Phoenix Police Museum is an excellent resource for anybody interested in Phoenix's law enforcement history, spanning more than 130 years.

The Museum houses several informative displays, some of which encourage audience participation. Both historic and modern vehicles, as well as a memorial to the victims of September 11th, and the inspiring experiences of police officers who have protected the city are on display at the Museum.

Aspiring investigators can peruse images from actual cases and examine authentic equipment, unlike in traditional exhibitions. If you like art and history, this is one of the most interesting things to do in Phoenix.

  1. Children's Museum of Phoenix

The Children's Museum of Phoenix is a must-see for any youngster, offering them a chance to explore science through a wide variety of hands-on activities, such as blowing bubbles, making crafts, and navigating obstacle courses.

There are a variety of exhibits and programs designed to engage, educate, and entertain children of all ages. With three stories and 48,000 square feet to explore, this Museum has something for kids of all ages, from infants to preteens.

Over 300 interactive displays allow kids to learn about various important subjects in a way that's both entertaining and instructive. Some of the most interesting displays include a noodle forest, a fort-building area, a small market, a kiddie cafe, Pedal Power, the Schuff-Perini Climber, and BlockMania.

It is located at 215 N 7th St, Phoenix, AZ 85034, United States.

Frequently Asked Questions

When is the best time to visit Phoenix?

There are many opportunities for outdoor fun in Phoenix. Phoenix is in the low desert; therefore, the winters are mild, and the summers are hot.

May through September is the best time to visit if you can stand chilly mornings and evenings and hot days. The monsoons typically last from about the middle of June to the end of September. It's wonderful from October through April.

In June, July, and August, temperatures average 105 degrees Fahrenheit (almost 41 Celcius). Temperatures in June and July average 110- and 118 degrees Fahrenheit (almost 48 degrees Celcius).

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Our roofing company was founded in 2001 by Michael Riutta, who is still part of the ownership and management team. Between Michael, his two sons and co-owners, Devin and Joshua, and our crew members, we have many years of experience to handle any type of roof repair or roof installation solutions you may need.