With its warm, dry climate and awe-inspiring scenery, Arizona has plenty to offer residents and tourists alike. Those who restrict themselves to the Grand Canyon won’t be disappointed, but there’s a multitude of other options that await the more adventurous and versatile-minded traveler. To name just a few of the highlights:
Driving up Mt. Lemmon
This 9,157-foot peak, found just outside Tucson, is an oasis of cool in the hot desert—literally. On an early spring morning, after a dip in the pool, travelers can drive up Mt. Lemmon’s access road and strap on a pair of skis for an afternoon schuss down the slopes. Don’t miss out on the cozy town of Summerhaven, home to the Mount Lemmon General Store and Gift Shop.
A funky little town located near the Mexican border, Bisbee is unmistakable on approach: As with many Arizona locations, it makes its presence known to airline pilots by a huge white “B” etched into the side of a nearby hill. Make a day of exploring the curved, winding streets and sidewalk cafés. For antiquing enthusiasts, it’s a must-see.
Hiking in Sedona
The stunning red rock formations in this yoga-lovers paradise should appear on every American’s bucket list. Sedona is not too far from Phoenix—perhaps an hour and a half by car—but it’s also a beautiful destination in and of itself. The scenery is exhilarating, but the town’s overall vibe is one of relaxation and rejuvenation. For those who aren’t up for a hike on vacation, there are off-road Jeep tours available as well.
Yes, there are lakes in Arizona—and this body of water is one of its finest, with excellent boating and fishing opportunities. Located in Tortilla Flats, Canyon Lake was created when the Salt River was dammed up, making this a great place to view the local wildlife.
Speaking of rivers and dams, this national treasure is more commonly associated with Colorado, but in fact, it shares a border with Arizona as well. Lake Mead, the resultant body of water, is 110 miles long and a must-see; the dam itself is more than 700 feet tall and over 1,200 feet long. It’s especially beautiful when viewed at night, under a blanket of desert stars.