Outdoor Activities » Phoenix, AZ

Outdoor Activities in Phoenix, AZ

Nothing beats being outdoors in the Valley (at least in the months where the temperature is less than 100 degrees). If you are new to the area and want to get some exercise or if you are burned out from the Scottsdale gym scene, these activities will get you out and moving while enjoying the Arizona sunshine.
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Camelback Mountain

If adventure and amazing views are what you are after then Camelback Mountain offers the perfect combination of exercise and beauty. This iconic red mountain is a landmark of the Phoenix area.  In fact, you may even remember catching a glimpse of it in the movie Twilight (remember the airport scene?). With a variety of trails to choose from, you will be able to find one that will suit your fitness level and ability. There are two that go over the summit and unless you are an avid hiker, you may want to work your way up to those eventually and start on the shorter trails. This is a great activity to do with your friends or even on your own. Just remember to take plenty of water so that you stay hydrated. 

Desert Botanical Garden

When you feel like getting out for a walk, the Desert Botanical Garden is a great place to do it. Many of us live in the desert but become a bit numb to the beauty around us. The garden gives you fresh eyes to view the landscape around us. From learning about the different vegetation to enjoying some local treats, there is plenty to do and see at the garden. You can get an annual pass and come in and visit whenever you would like. This is particularly advantageous when the butterfly exhibit is going on. Seeing it once is just not enough. 

Tempe Town Lake

It’s common for those of us who are desert dwellers to feel a bit landlocked now and again. It’s this restless feeling that brings many out to Tempe Town Lake. While it might not be the pristine waters we traditionally picture when a lake comes to mind, it definitely does the trick. There are so many different activities that you can take part in around the lake. A paved trail for joggers and bikes goes around the lake with markers showing how far you have traveled and the ever popular paddle boats are also located at the lake for renting. Whether you are on or near the lake, there is something very relaxing about looking out over the water and with so many different activities available, you will be able to find something to keep you busy. 

Papago Park

There is nothing like enjoying the beautiful sunshine surrounded by picturesque mountains. For those around the Tempe area, Papago Park is a must. Whether you have a dog and want to visit the dog area or simply want to bring a picnic, you will find an area of the park that is ideal for you. There is a scenic pond complete with ducks and benches for viewing and then miles of trails that can be walked, biked or even ridden on horseback. It’s a great place to sit and read a book in solitude or chat happily with the girls while eating a picnic lunch. If you feel like traveling a bit further, head over to the Phoenix Zoo and wrap up your afternoon by watching the turtles swimming outside the zoo entrance – no admission needed!

Melrose District

Sometimes its fun to travel off the beaten path, Melrose District is certainly like that. This quirky area in the Phoenix area is one it’s best hidden treasures. You won’t find a ton of information about it, but most hear about it by word of mouth. It’s an artsy area that is perfect for parking your car on one end and working your way down. These stores are full of vintage gear from all different decades. From clothing to records, the entire area is a reminder of times gone by. It’s a wonderful place to wander around alone or with your friends. You’ll get some fresh air and exercise and maybe some really great vintage stuff too!