“Home is where the heart is.”
There are so many reasons to visit Scottsdale, Arizona. I’m going to give you a few reasons to visit Scottsdale and you will see why we like to call this home. We have great weather year round, even when its hot during the summer months the early mornings and evenings are quite pleasant and you can quickly cool off in a beautiful swimming pool. We have a multitude of great golf courses with incredible views surrounding our mountains. Scottsdale has great hiking, tennis, spas, fabulous dining options, and even casinos (just like Vegas). During February and March Scottsdale really gets going. Spring Training is in full swing around the valley, we have the San Francisco Giants playing in the heart of Scottsdale and the Diamondbacks and Colorado Rockies within 2 miles away. Thursday nights are the Art Walk, from 7pm – 9pm where the galleries are open late for night time viewing. Phoenix Sky Harbor is only 20 minutes from downtown Scottsdale so its quick and easy to visit on a whim.
My favorite things to do at Home
Scottsdale and the surrounding area have more than 300 miles of beautiful hiking trails. One of the most famous hikes is Camelback Mountain. Even though its only 2 miles in length, it is not to be taken lightly, make sure to take plenty of water on this hike. The reward is the 360 degrees views of The Valley of the Sun.
Scottsdales own McDowell Sonoran Desert Preserve has over 190 miles of trails to choose from- 2 of the best being Toms Thumb Trail and the paved Bajaba Desert Intrepretive Trail.
The restaurants and bars in Old Town Scottsdale are always a great time! Do get around you will see “party golf carts” that are more than happy to get you to your next destination. You can even ask them to give you a tour of downtown Scottsdale. Also I mentioned above, Scottsdale has a Art Walk that is held on Thursday nights from 7pm-9pm that is worth checking out. We also have the scooters available to rent they are called “Lime” and “Bird”, also check on the bike rentals as well.
Scottsdale has really figured out the bike paths, we have a bike path that can take you from Scottsdale into Tempe, AZ to Tempe Town Lake which is a great place to stop and find a bite to eat. This path is about 17 miles one way. The link is posted below.
Wow, where do I even start???? Scottsdale has an incredible amount of golfing, from local golf courses to the famous TPC golf course. Our favorite thing to do in January is to attend the Waste Management Golf Tournament at the TPC Golf Course, it is a party on every hole and everyone is having a fabulous time whether you are a golfer or not. We have over 20 golf courses near the heart of Scottsdale, checkout the link below with a map of golf courses, there is a website that can be used for discounts on tee times, I will put the link below.
Scottsdale Fashion Square is our large mall that is located right in the heart of Scottsdale, it has over 200 stores and restaurants including Neiman Marcus, Nordstroms, Dillards, Dicks Sporting Goods, Harkins Movie Theatre, and even have a showroom for Tesla. Originally built in 1961 they are continuing to add and make improvements to the mall. Another area of Scottsdale that we like is Scottsdale Quarter, this is north of downtown Scottsdale, this is an outdoor shopping mall with fantastic shops and restaurants. In the evening this is a beautiful area to go to do not miss out on the reflecting water feature they have.
Ready to catch a movie? Our favorite theatre to go to is Road House Cinemas on Indian Bend Road, I will include the link below. The reason why we like this theatre so much is that you can reserve your seat ahead of time as well as order from a full menu from your reclined seat. Make sure to take advantage of the popcorn that you get free refills on, even as you are leaving you can ask them to bag it up and refill it for you.
Acres in Scottsdale’s McDowell Sonoran Preserve that are available for hiking, biking, climbing and horseback riding.
Miles of trails in Scottsdale’s McDowell Sonoran Preserve.
Days of annual sunshine – perfect weather for outdoor adventures of all kinds.
Miles of trails in the Scottsdale area.
Designated climbing areas in Scottsdale’s McDowell Sonoran Preserve.
Lakes within a one hour drive of Downtown Scottsdale.
Blocking out the sun can be fun, you just have to have the right hat for it. This sunhat is perfect for a summer day by the pool, or a brunch on the patio. It makes the perfect combination of protection and style.
Sunscreen is essential year round in Arizona. Weather you’re baking in the Phoenix sun or you’re playing in the Flagstaff snow, sunscreen is a must have. This Oil-free EltaMD UV Clear facial sunscreen is recommended by dermatologists because it helps calm and protect sensitive skin types prone to acne, rosacea and discoloration. This mineral-based face sunscreen is lightweight and silky.
The AZ sunshine means that sunglasses are an absolute must. These lightweight, stylish glasses are essential for any trip to Arizona.
The Phoenix Open
At the end of January we have the Waste Management Phoenix Open. This is for all golfers and non-golfers, such a great time on every hole! Cost ranges per day, my favorite day to go is on Wednesdays when the ProAm takes place, so fun to see professional golfers play a round of golf with some of your favorite celebrities. Do not miss the famous Hole 16 where spectators can yell at the players for playing terrible, it is quite an experience and one not to be missed.
Yes, our summers are HOT, but we call it a dry heat. Temperatures in the summer average at 104*, fall is 85*, winter is 66* and our beautiful spring is 78*. With our great temperatures it still allows for great outdoor activity from golfing, tennis and hiking. If you want to take a break from the heat in the summer than plan a trip north to Prescott or Flagstaff where the temperatures drop 10-15*.
This is a must with 15 Major League Baseball teams playing out of Arizona in February and March. You can easily catch a baseball game with your favorite team, or if you are not into baseball its just fun to go out to the stadiums- it becomes a huge party. Some of the fields have grass areas where you can bring a blanket, soak up some sun and have a picnic while taking in a baseball game.
Old Town Scottsdale
Book in Advance
Scottsdale becomes extremely busy during Spring Training season which is February and March. If you are looking for a hotel during this period expect to pay double the cost, if you are booking through Airbnb or vrbo the properties book up 1 year in advance so plan accordingly.
Old Town Scottsdale is a great place to walk around and see the sites, with so many restaurants, bars and shops its very easy to spend an entire day just walking around. Old Town Scottsdale is near Scottsdale Fashion Square so check this mall out as well.
Plan your Days
Ahhhh, Scottsdale has 299 days of sunshine- bring your sunscreen & hat. Enjoy your time at the pool, take in the shopping in Scottsdale, and if you are visiting during the Springtime take in a Spring Training Game.
Well if you come to Arizona you are bound to eat some Mexican food, here are some of our favorite Mexican Restaurants…. Hacienda’s in Scottsdale, Valle Luna in Chandler, and La Fonda in Tempe. Cien Agaves in Old Town Scottsdale is my husbands favorite because they have real authentic coke from Mexico, he likes to drink it from the bottle my favorite drink they offer is the Blackberry Mojito. All of these Mexican Restaurants are local and every one is delicious. I will include the links below so you can look at them on yelp.
These are some of my favorite restaurants that serve Italian food. Do not miss out on Oregano’s, this started as a family restaurant and has 21 locations, fantastic wide range of items on their menu, it definitely brings home Italian cooking right to your table. Our other favorite Italian restaurant is in a strip mall in north Scottsdale called Guido’s Chicago Meat & Deli, its not a very big place but very popular and good authentic Italian food. Another Pizzeria restaurant we enjoy is Spinato’s Pizzeria, another really good authentic Italian restaurant, check out these great Italian Restaurants on Yelp.
Looking for a little flair with your food? One of my favorite spicy restaurants is Z-tejas, they have a location in the Scottsdale Fashion Square Mall. If you like a little zip to your food this is a great place, plates range from $12-$20. Try to get there for happy hour from 3-7pm, appetizers are 1/2 off and they make a delicious Chambord Margarita.
Old Town Scottsdale Food with a Flair
Another restaurant that is quite unique is Tapa Papa Fritas near Old Town Scottsdale right on the canal. There are several reasons why we like this restaurant, first they take reservations through the Yelp App. Second is they offer food with small portions, hence “Tapa” in the name of the restaurant so you can order 4-6 different kinds of foods to try from, they offer seafood, salads, meat, poultry their menu is based on food from Spain. Third reason is that you can sit outside under the lights, very romantic! One last reason is that they have live music on Thursdays and Sundays & then live Flamenco dancing on Fridays and Saturdays.
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