Why Phoenix Is More Than Just a Stopover or Business Destination

Hopper's travel guide to Phoenix highlights its 20 best attractions, restaurants, golf courses and hotels, and has tips from local travel bloggers.

Dakota Smith - Jan. 27, 2015

As the sixth largest city in the country, Phoenix has something for everyone, from rugged mountains offering an array of outdoor adventures to lavish resorts and Native American culture and art. But, unfortunately, a lot of visitors just use Phoenix for its Sky Harbor International Airport, either to fly off somewhere else or in transit. But those who do stay a while will find a special city.

For instance, hiking and mountain biking trails crisscross past red rocks and cacti through the Sonoran Desert. Or visitors can experience the desert from above on a hot air balloon ride. Downtown Phoenix offers a diverse selection of dining and entertainment at venues like Heard Museum and Symphony Hall. Tranquility is waiting to be found at one of Phoenix’s destination spas. And a round of golf against a desert backdrop is always a great way to end a day.

Photo by squeaks2569/Flickr.

Check out the collection at the Phoenix Art Museum

The museum features a sculpture garden, interactive gallery for children and photography exhibit alongside its collection of more than 17,000 works of American, Latin American, Western American, European, Asian, modern and contemporary art, and fashion design. Before visiting, be sure to check their online calendar for upcoming events as the Phoenix Art Museum hosts live performances, films, and festivals year round.

Hit the links at the Arizona Grand Golf Course

The par-71 course boasts panoramic views of the Sonoran Desert and mountain vistas. Arizona Grand Resort & Spa luxury suites provide a restful haven that accommodate weary golfers. Rejuvenate with a hot stone massage at the resort spa and a ride along the lazy river of Oasis seven-acre water park.

Take the kids to meet the animals at the Phoenix Zoo

More than 1,400 animals, including 30 endangered species, live in the Phoenix Zoo, which is located in Papago Park. While exploring the zoo, don’t forget to stop by Monkey Village, which is America’s only walk-through squirrel monkey exhibit. Kids and family programs are available to help create a memorable and educational day at the zoo.

Comfort food in a chic setting at Beckett’s Table

The award-winning restaurant provides an elegant twist on classic comfort foods like chicken ‘n’ dumplings and short ribs in an industrial chic setting. Two patios allow patrons to enjoy Phoenix’s famously pleasant weather. Wine enthusiasts should note that the special on Sunday evenings at Beckett’s Table are half-priced bottles of independently produced Arizona wines.

Real luxury at the Royal Palms Resort & Spa

Originally opened in 1929 as a couple’s desert getaway, this luxury resort is located at the base of Camelback Mountain. Guests can choose from special package deals focusing on specific themes, such as romance, adventure, and golf. T. Cook’s and The Mix Up will nourish guests with dishes derived from fresh, local and seasonal ingredients

Get the Hopper app to find the best deals.
You could save up to 40% on your next flight!