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Things to Do and See in Greater Phoenix

20 Places That Should Be on Your Phoenix Bucket List

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Boyce Thompson Arboretum

© Judy Hedding

Climb Piestewa Peak or Camelback Mountain
Piestewa Peak, formerly known as Squaw Peak, is part of the Phoenix Mountains Preserve. The elevation of Piestewa Peak is 2,608 feet; the total elevation gain for the Summit Trail is 1,190 feet. That might not sound high, but hikers of all levels can get a great workout climbing this mountain, and get a great view of the city when they get to the top. If you decide to hike the Summit Trail, though, you won't be alone. According to the City of Phoenix. it is one of the most heavily used trails in the nation with 4,000 to 10,000 hikers per week. Dogs and bicycles are not permitted on the Summit Trail. Camelback Mountain has two major trails. Neither one is especially long, but they are considered moderate to difficult hikes. Echo Canyon is the most popular, and is steeper. Cholla Trail is not as steep, but rockier.

Climb Piestewa Peak
Climb Camelback Mountain

Scottsdale Art Walk
There are more than 100 art galleries in Scottsdale. You can enjoy Scottsdale ArtWalks every Thursday evening, year-round (except on Thanksgiving) from 7 to 9 p.m. Each week, Scottsdale Gallery Association members host special exhibits - many with artist receptions - and join together for an informal come-and-go “open house” throughout the district. Casual and eclectic, it’s a great time to visit the galleries and learn about featured artists. Several times per year, the Scottsdale Gallery Association holds Special Event ArtWalks with live music along the streets and special themed events.

Scottsdale Art Walk Photo Tour
Each Spring, Scottsdale Arts Festival

Boyce Thompson Arboretum
The Boyce Thompson Arboretum brings together plants from the Earth's many and varied deserts and dry lands. Approximately 3,200 different desert plants can be found within the arboretum, and most of them can be seen along the 1.5 mile main trail. During wildflower season, the Boyce Thompson Arboretum is especially beautiful, displaying all the wonderful colors of the desert. Are you a bird lover? More than 250 species of birds have been recorded at the Boyce Thompson Arboretum.

Photo Tour, Information, Details About the Boyce Thompson Arboretum
Video: Visiting Boyce Thompson Arboretum
Arizona Wildflowers and Picture Gallery
Cactus Flowers Picture Gallery

Arizona Capitol Museum**
I don't know exactly why this museum doesn't get more attention -- I love this place and it's free! There's no better way to learn about the history of Arizona, from territorial days, through the creation of the state, and into the current century. Visit the first Governor's Office, the original Congressional chamber and other cool places. This museum is located in the government complex near downtown Phoenix. It's actually right next door to our current House and Senate buildings. While you are there, stop across the street and walk around Wesley Bolin Memorial Plaza with memorials to various historical figures, individuals and organizations, as well as a 9-11 Memorial.

Arizona Capitol Museum
More Free Museums

Page 1: Southwest History, Love the Desert, Stadium Tours, Music of the World
Page 2: Hike Up Mountains, Stroll the Galleries, Natural Desert, AZ History
Page 3: FLW Home, Desert Golf, Scenic Drive, Family Castle
Page 4: Art for Today, Biggest City Park, Day Trip to National Monuments, Let's Shop
Page 5: Zoo, Old Western Town, Dainty Bugs and Flying High

Note: Items marked with asterisks are suitable for days when the temperature might be too hot for outside activity.

Readers Respond: Best Places To Go With Kids in Greater Phoenix

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