Best 5 Hiking Trails in the Valley

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Spring has sprung in the city of Phoenix, and it’s the perfect time to take advantage of the Valley’s many gorgeous hiking trails. Whether you want to challenge your body with a strenuous hike or just take in Arizona’s natural beauty, these trails are an excellent way to enjoy the warm weather. Check out the list below to learn more about the five best hiking trails in the Valley!

1. Freedom Trail

If you’ve already conquered Camelback a million times, try a hike on the beautiful yet challenging Freedom Trail. Although the trail is only 1.2-miles long, it’s an all uphill trek to the 2608-foot Piestewa (or Sqaw) Peak. And just when you think that you’ve reached the summit, you’ll have to turn left and climb a little further to get to the official trail marker. With switchbacks and stairs that drop off near the top of the trail, this trip is not recommended for beginners! However, Freedom Trail is still pretty popular and is a fun challenge.

2. Sunrise Trail at McDowell Mountains

The McDowell Mountains’ trails are perfect for impromptu hikes from the city and have amazing views of the region! We recommend trying out the Sunrise Trail for a mix of challenging and relaxing aspects, as the hike spans 4.4-miles long with a 1300 foot climb. With just enough hard work to get your heart pumping, grab your hiking boots and get lost right in the middle of Phoenix.

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If you’re looking for a challenging hike that offers great cardio, take a trek on the short, but brutal Freedom Trail.

3. Papago Park

If you’re new to hiking or want to take a more leisurely trek, you should consider checking out Papago Park. This place offers a 2.2-mile loop that’s mostly flat and is perfect for newbies, families, or those with bad knees. The best part about this trail is that it’s easily accessible, with a location that’s smack dab in the middle of the city. And the views of nearby caves, golf courses, and the Downtown aren’t too shabby, either!

4. Lookout Mountain

For hikers who want an awesome workout and an incredible view, the trails of Lookout Mountain are the right pick for you. With no other mountains close by, you’ll get an Instagram-worthy 360-degree view of the Valley. You can also choose the heart-pumping 1-mile summit trail if you love to climb or the less difficult 3-mile circumference trail for an easier trek. And whichever you choose, both will give you stunning views of the stretching horizon.

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The aptly named Lookout Mountain offers panoramic views of the Valley below.

5. National Trail

National Trail in South Mountain Park is perfect if you plan to spend your whole day hiking outdoors. Because of its mostly flat terrain, bikers and runners will also love this 14.3-mile trail as well. And with plenty of different trailheads and paths that hook up to each other, it’s a wonderful park to do some exploring in the warm Arizona sunshine.

If you still have any energy left in those legs after a long day of hiking, you can unwind by strolling the streets of Old Town, one of Phoenix’s most walkable neighborhoods, and chow down on a generous-sized burger at Cold Beers and Cheeseburgers.

 

Most Walkable Neighborhoods in the Phoenix-Scottsdale Area

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Phoenix is the largest city in Arizona and has a sprawling landscape of buildings and communities. With an overall score of 40 on Walk Score, you can generally expect to need a car in most sections of the city. However, you’ll find that some neighborhoods don’t follow suit and offer several dining and entertainment options within a reasonable walking distance. For the most walkable neighborhoods that the Phoenix-Scottsdale area has to offer, here are our top picks below.

Downtown Phoenix

Downtown Phoenix has several restaurants, entertainment venues, and bars that are close together and are perfect for leaving your car in a parking lot. With famous performances at the Symphony Hall and Orpheum Theatre, delicious food at many upscale restaurants, and a thriving retail scene for shopaholics, downtown Phoenix has something for everyone within walking distance. Those looking to live downtown can also find affordable housing options from low-cost urban chic apartments to luxurious and spacious lofts.

Downtown Phoenix has lots of restaurants, shopping, and entertainment within walking distance.
Downtown Phoenix has lots of restaurants, shopping, and entertainment within walking distance.

Booker T. Washington

Just east of Downtown Phoenix lies the Booker T. Washington District. With several picnic areas and sports facilities, the parks in this neighborhood are easy to access. The area also offers a range of shopping options and includes everything from retail to open air markets to authentic Southwest grocery stores. Housing in this neighborhood is reasonably priced with an average apartment rent of just $760 per month.

Mill Avenue District

Although the Mill Avenue District is considered a suburb of Phoenix, it still has a broad range of bars and restaurants that are easy to walk to. Boasting a lively nightlife, the neighborhood is located right next to Arizona State University, which provides art galleries and concert halls for residents in the area. And with open mic nights, happy hours, block parties, and dinner specials that most restaurants near the campus offer, there’s plenty to see and do within the city suburb. If you’re looking to move to the Mills Avenue District, you can find a flood of new development and real estate options that are perfect for building a new house.

Old Town

Nestled along a waterfront promenade, Old Town is filled with swanky speakeasies, charming boutiques, and several pubs that are all within walking distance of each other. You can also walk to historical points of interest and the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art while passing the area’s thriving restaurant scene. Housing here is a little more pricey than other spots in the Phoenix area and has an average monthly rent of around $900 for a studio space.

Whether you’re visiting for a weekend or newly moved and settling in, there are some great walkable neighborhoods in the greater Phoenix metro. Cheap Movers Phoenix urges you to lace up those sneakers and get out and explore all this great town has to offer. For the cheapest rates on movers in the Valley, give this local moving company a call:

Cheap Movers Phoenix (http://www.cheapmoversphoenix.net)
2730 W. Agua Fria Fwy Ste 100
Phoenix, AZ 85027
(480) 712-5652

11 Fun Things to Do in Phoenix, AZ

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With beautiful desert scenery and plenty of family-friendly activities, the city of Phoenix is a hot spot for tourists from around the world. And if you’re planning a trip for you and your family, here are 11 fun things to do in this exciting Arizona town.

1. Golf

Though it’s located in a desert, modern irrigation techniques have made the Phoenix-Scottsdale area one of the premier golfing destinations in the world.

The city of Phoenix is home to over 200 golf courses that are perfect for enjoying a game in the gorgeous Arizona weather. Several professional golf tournaments, including the LPGA’s Founders Cup and The Phoenix Open, take place on these pristine lawns and are fun to attend throughout the year. And in addition to famous matches, some of the most renown golfers in the world have played in Phoenix, and include Arnold Palmer, Phil Mickelson, and Jack Nicklaus.

2. Professional Sports

For sports fans who crave a little more action, Phoenix also contains major professional sporting leagues, and include the Phoenix Suns (basketball), the Arizona Diamondbacks (baseball), and the Arizona Cardinals (football). Few things are as exciting as attending a live professional sporting event, and with several sports to choose from, Phoenix has the adrenaline fix for diehard fans looking to catch a game.

3. Musical Instrument Museum

The Musical Instrument Museum is a unique attraction in the city of Phoenix. With almost 6,000 musical instruments from around the globe, celebrity exhibits that honor Taylor Swift and Elvis Presley, and many more displays, the museum is a huge place that you can easily spend hours inside of. And with several interactive musical centers, it’s the perfect activity for families with young children.

4. Desert Botanical Garden

For a calm and peaceful outing with kids, we recommend visiting the city’s Desert Botanical Garden. And whether you’re a plant enthusiast, avid gardener, or are simply looking to admire the greenery, the gardens have something for everyone and are breathtaking to see.

5. Children’s Museum of Phoenix

Get ready for a day filled with laughter and fun when visiting the Children’s Museum of Phoenix. With a toddler area that features car race tracks and a realistic grocery store that would delight any youngster, there are plenty of hands-on activities to keep you and your children entertained for hours!

6. Dorrance Planetarium

The Dorrance Planetarium is part of the Arizona Science Center and is one of the most advanced planetariums in the United States. When visiting the planetarium, guests will have a chance to tour the solar system, see a laser light show, and learn about the outer reaches of space.

7. Historical Buildings

The city of Phoenix has many different historical buildings that are located around the city. And if you’re a history buff looking to learn more about Phoenix, we recommend taking a tour of Senator Barry Goldwater’s estate or the Arizona State Capitol building.

8. Hot Air Balloon Ride

Cool desert mornings provide the ideal conditions for lifting off in a hot air balloon and taking in the breathtaking views of the city below.

No trip to Phoenix is complete without a hot air balloon ride through the clear Arizona skies. Riders can experience stunning views of the Sonoran Desert and choose between a morning sunrise or dramatic sunset flight. And with beautiful surroundings and a romantic atmosphere, it’s perfect for both special occasions and anniversaries with loved ones.

9. Camelback Mountain

Camelback Mountain is a great spot for those who enjoy hiking in the great outdoors. With an elevation of 2,704-feet, you can either hire a mountain guide or hike the trail yourself. And with plenty of lookouts, cactus plants, and desert flowers, it’s a spectacular activity for nature enthusiasts who are looking for an adventure. If you’re looking for less traveled trails, check out our list of the 5 best hiking trails in Phoenix.

10. Phoenix Zoo

The Phoenix Zoo is a non-profit, privately owned zoo with an excellent reputation for animal conservation. It features Sonoran Desert wildlife such as the collared peccary, coyote, and cougar, as well as exotic animals from Africa that include giraffes, cheetahs, zebras, and more. The Children’s Trail even has smaller animals that kids can get close to and is a perfect exhibit for young, curious minds.

11. Grand Canyon Group Tour

We’ve saved the best for last! When visiting the city of Phoenix, seeing the iconic Grand Canyon is a must. With sweeping views and jaw-dropping heights, it’s one of the most beautiful places in the world. And if you sign up for a tour with an expert guide, you’ll be able to sit back, relax, and enjoy the drive through the magnificent Arizona landscape.