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5 Best Things to Do in Scottsdale

Updated on June 3, 2013

Want to Have Fun in Scottsdale?

Whether you are in Scottsdale for a short weekend vacation or business conference, or if you live in the Valley full-time and are just looking to have some fun, this lens will give you 5 great suggestions to enjoy Scottsdale, AZ. Scottsdale is a year-round vacation hotspot and it shows with all the fun things you can do here.

Sonoran desert
Sonoran desert

1.) Hike Camelback Mountain or Pinnacle Peak

2 popular spots for hiking

Camelback Mountain is the best spot for hiking in South Scottsdale and Pinnacle Peak Park is the best spot in North Scottsdale. Access Camelback via Cholla Trailhead or Echo Canyon Trailhead. Pinnacle Peak Park can be accessed from Alma School Road in the Troon area.

Camelback Mountain has some of the best views of Paradise Valley going north towards the McDowell Mountains and Four Peaks. It also has views of Downtown Phoenix, Tempe, and Mesa and is a great spot to look at the Phoenician Resort and its many pools or to watch planes land at Sky Harbor Airport.

Pinnacle Peak Park has views going in a southwestern direction towards Camelback and Mummy Mountain as well as going north towards Desert Mountain and Carefree.

Frank Lloyd Wright
Frank Lloyd Wright

2.) Explore Taliesin West

An Architecural Gem in Scottsdale

If you have even a remote interest in architecture, you have to visit Frank Lloyd Wright's Taliesin West campus. It was his personal home in Arizona and now houses a architectural graduate school and studios. Tours are a bit expensive at over $30 for adults, however, this is a rare opportunity and well worth the trip. Learn not only about architecture but about FLW's interesting and dramatic life.

Troon North
Troon North

3.) Play Golf at Troon North

Had to pick some place

There are a slew of golf courses in and around Scottsdale including such gems as the Phoenician Resort Course, Talking Stick, TPC Scottsdale, We Ko Pa, Kierland and Grayhawk as well as members-only private clubs like Paradise Valley Country Club, Desert Mountain, Desert Highlands, DC Ranch, Silverleaf and Fire Rock. I am picking Troon North which is a beautiful desert-style course which is also pretty challenging. Stay hydrated and have fun!

Scottsdale stadium
Scottsdale stadium

4.) Attend a Spring Training Game

The Rockies, D-Backs and Giants are all in Scottsdale

If you are in Scottsdale in March, you need to attend a Spring Training game. The San Francisco Giants have their own stadium which is walking distance to Old Town and near the Scottsdale Osborn hospital. The D-Backs and Giants share the Salt River Fields complex which is technically on the Salt River Reservation just east of Scottsdale at Pima and Indian Bend Roads. Spring Training is a blast and a glorified cocktail party for some people.

Image of Scottsdale Stadium for a rare night game (most are at 1pm) courtesy of 5of7 on Flickr

Scottsdale Stadium Hint

If you are attending a Giants game at Scottsdale Stadium, you may want to spend the extra money for a Charro Lodge pass. It includes your food, wine & beer (5 drink limit per person), program, and a separate covered area in right field behind the Giants Bullpen.

5.) Have Dinner at Mastro's City Hall Steakhouse and Drinks at W Hotel Scottsdale

2 great spots in South Scottsdale near Fashion Square

Mastro's Restaurants are known as the best in Scottsdale. They include City Hall Steakhouse, Ocean Club, and Mastro's Steakhouse at Pinnacle Peak. The service is fantastic, the food is great and the atmosphere is engaging. Another great spot for people watching is the Rooftop Bar at W Hotel Scottsdale. The pool area transforms into a hip spot an night to enjoy a cocktail. Both of these spots are near the Old Town area which includes various other restaurants, bars, and art galleries. Some of the best shopping in town is at Scottsdale Fashion Square mall (including Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom and Barney's) and on both sides of the canal are restaurants and condos at the Scottsdale Waterfront.

Mastros Hint

If you are ordering a steak, order the seafood tower appetizer for the whole table and also share the lobster mashed potatoes

Scottsdale Travel Book Suggestions - Buy one before your trip

New Guestbook Comments

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    • Klaartje Loose profile image

      Klaartje Loose 5 years ago

      Never been to Arizona yet...

    • profile image

      lionmom100 5 years ago

      We visited Taliesen West and the botanical garden with cactii in full bloom about five years ago. A wonderful experience.