15 Things To Do In Phoenix, Arizona

things to do in phoenix arizona

The next time you’re in Phoenix, make sure you take advantage of all the city’s offerings, including museums, parks, and entertainment for all ages. Whether you’re alone on business or vacationing with the family, you will always find something to do in the state capital.

1. Phoenix Art Museum

To start things off, when you’re in Phoenix you can, and should, visit the largest art museum in the southwestern United States. The Phoenix Art Museum brings art from all over the world to the people of Arizona and those passing through. Besides art, the museum presents festivals, live performances, independent art films, plus family and school educational programs throughout the year that are meant to be entertaining, yet educational so that you can have a blast while learning.

Phoenix Art Museum

Address: 1625 N. Central Avenue Phoenix, AZ 85004-1685

Opening Hours: 10am - 5pm (Tuesday - Saturday), 10am - 10pm (First Fridays) and 12pm - 5pm (Sunday). Closed on Mondays

Contact: +1 6022571880

Website: Phoenix Art Museum

2. Musical Instrument Museum

Phoenix-Musical Instrument Museum-Cambodia exhibit
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Marine 69-71 used under CC BY-SA 4.0

You don’t have to play an instrument to love Phoenix’s Musical Instrument Museum. The MIM is home to more than 6,500 instruments collected from around the world and is the world’s only international music museum. Most of the displays come with audio and video technologies that will allow you to not only see the instrument but hear the instruments’ sounds, and watch where the instrument would have originally been played. In the Experience Gallery, you can play the international instruments yourself, and in the Artist Gallery you can see instruments from well-known musicians like John Lennon, Taylor Swift, and more.

Musical Instrument Museum

Address: Musical Instrument Museum, 4725 E. Mayo Boulevard, Phoenix, AZ 85050

Price: from 20 USD

Opening Hours: 9am - 5pm, open daily

Contact: +1 4804786000

Website: Musical Instrument Museum

3. Heard Museum

Known internationally for their quality collections, educational programs, and festivals, the Heard Museum has become a staple for American Indian art and history. By collaborating closely with the Native people, the museum not only displays the art, but also presents their first-person voices, which help celebrate the diversity and achievements of today’s artists. Interchanging exhibits bring more variety to the museum, meaning that every time you visit, you’re guaranteed a new experience.

Heard Museum

Address: 2301 N. Central Avenue, Phoenix, Arizona 85004

Price: from 18 USD

Opening Hours: 9.30am - 5pm (Monday - Saturday) and 11am - 5pm (Sunday)

Contact: +1 6022528840

Website: Heard Museum

4. Camelback Mountain

Posted by Camelback Mountain on Thursday, 18 September 2014

If you’re looking for an adventure on your feet, consider hiking up Camelback Mountain. Camelback Mountain is not only a beautiful piece of scenery, but also provides an adventure for those getting cabin fever in their hotel rooms. Not that athletic? Don’t fret. Camelback has both difficult and easy trails, meaning anyone can experience the mountain. From the mountain’s top, you can view Phoenix in all its glory and plot your next adventure from the sky.

Hike Camelback Mountain

Address: Echo Canyon Recreation Area, 4925 E. McDonald Dr.

Contact: +1 6025345867

Website: Hike Camelback Mountain

5. Phoenix Water Park

Quality Spring Break time with friends at Wet 'n' Wild phoenix. Did you notice the beautiful new mural at Monsoon Bay? — Products shown: 2017 Season Pass EZ Band.

Posted by Wet 'n' Wild Phoenix on Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Let’s face it. Phoenix, and specifically Phoenix in the summer, is hot. With all the outdoor attractions, sometimes the hotel’s pool just won’t cut it. So when you finally cave and are ready to cool down, visit Wet n’ Wild Phoenix. As the name implies, water and fun abound at this family oriented destination where you can wade in Monsoon Bay, float down Crazy Cactus Roaring River, or brave the eye of the storm on the Tornado. Whatever you choose, you’re sure to cool off and escape the Arizona heat.

Wet n' Wild Phoenix

Address: Wet ‘n’ Wild Phoenix, Adobe Dam Regional Park, 4243 W Pinnacle Peak Rd, Glendale, AZ 85310

Price: from 31.99 USD

Opening Hours: 11am - 5pm, open daily

Duration: around 3 hours required

Contact: +1 6232012000

Website: Phoenix Water Park

6. Encanto Park

Saturday is #rugby day. @larugbyclub

A post shared by Kierston (@keeksasaurus) on Jan 14, 2017 at 3:56pm PST

Named one of the best city parks in America, Encanto Park is a 222-acre (90-hectare) oasis with picnic areas, a lagoon, boat house, swimming pool, nature trail, urban fishing, and two golf courses. Handball, racquetball, tennis, and volleyball are also available for visitors to play a few rounds. The Park is also home to Enchanted Island Amusement Park, a fun-filled theme park centered around children ages 2 to 10. Located just a few blocks from Phoenix’s busy central corridor, the Encanto Park stands out as a hub where young and old come together as a community.

Encanto Park

Address: 2605 N. 15th Ave. 15th Avenue & Encanto Blvd.

Opening Hours: 5.30am - 11pm, open daily

Contact: +1 6022618991

Website: Encanto Park

7. Papago Park

Papago Park-3
Source: Photo by user Visitor7 used under CC BY-SA 3.0

While Phoenix is stocked full of attractions, you should always make time for Papago Park. The sandstone buttes alone are a magnificent display, but the park offers so much more than just beautiful scenery. Both the Phoenix Zoo and Desert Botanical Gardens are within the park, all of which is only 10 minutes from Downtown. Other facilities include an archery range, an exercise course, fishing lagoons, a baseball facility, and a softball complex providing activities for both the family and individuals alike.

Papago Park

Address: 625 N. Galvin Parkway

Opening Hours: Open from dawn to dusk everyday

Contact: +1 6024955458

Website: Papago Park

8. Phoenix Zoo

Reminder: We are now open from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.! Members can access the Zoo one hour early. Have fun!

Posted by Phoenix Zoo on Monday, 16 January 2017

Posted by Phoenix Zoo on Tuesday, 3 May 2016

Come to Phoenix Zoo where you can see and sometimes pet animals during your holiday. Community oriented, the exhibits are meant to do more than just hold the animals, but also teach visitors about conservation and endangered species, with the hope of making tomorrow better than today. Other attractions like the Yakulla Caverns and Leapin’ Lagoon are available March thru October and allow you and the kids to cool down before heading to your next event.

Phoenix Zoo

Address: Phoenix Zoo, 455 North Galvin Parkway Phoenix, AZ 85008

Website: Phoenix Zoo

9. Desert Botanical Garden

Posted by Desert Botanical Garden on Friday, 13 May 2016

At this garden of native plants, you can learn more about the Sonora Desert’s natural beauty through permanent trailside exhibits, interchanging art exhibitions, and varying seasonal experiences. Here they seek to transform the visitor experience into one of discovery and meaning about the desert and desert plants. While visiting, be sure to go through the butterfly exhibit, a seasonal display of beauty that pairs perfectly with Arizona’s flora.

Desert Botanical Garden

Address: Desert Botanical Garden,1201 N. Galvin Parkway, Phoenix, AZ 85008

Price: from 24.95 USD

Opening Hours: 8am - 8pm, open daily. Open at 7am on Wednesday and Sunday for members

Contact: +1 4809411225

Website: Desert Botanical Garden

10. Arizona Broadway Theatre

A post shared by Diana Hickman (@dhickman09) on Jun 17, 2016 at 10:21pm PDT

If you’re looking for a more classical night out, check out the Arizona Broadway Theatre. Since its construction in 2004, the Arizona Broadway Theatre has created a beautiful, versatile venue, equipped to take on every type of theatre production and musical performance. With multiple shows year round, something is always playing at the theatre, from Broadway classics to small performances with only a few cast members, to keep you entertained until the curtains close.

Arizona Broadway Theatre

Address: 7701 West Paradise Lane, Peoria, AZ 85382

Contact: +1 6237768400

Website: Arizona Broadway Theatre

11. Hot-air balloon ride

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

For an experience unlike any other, take a ride over Phoenix in a hot-air balloon with Hot Air Expeditions. Early in the morning you’ll meet to watch the balloon being inflated. Once prepped, you will board the lazy flier and ride over Phoenix. Upon your landing, you’ll be greeted and treated to a celebration and a gourmet picnic. The whole experience will leave you breathless and longing to go back up.

Hot Air Expeditions

Contact: +1 8008317610

Website: Hot Air Expeditions

12. Roosevelt Row

Posted by Roosevelt Row CDC on Monday, 3 October 2016

To fully experience Phoenix’s urban art scene, consider visiting Roosevelt Row, a walkable arts district in Downtown Phoenix. With 12 exhibition galleries, free guided tours, outdoor sculpture gardens, a renowned café, a contemporary art gallery, trading-post style shopping, and more, you might have to spend more than one day exploring it all.

Roosevelt Row

Address: Roosevelt Row CDC, 922 N 5th Street, Phoenix, AZ 85004

Contact: +1 6028295259

Website: Roosevelt Row

13. Golf in Phoenix

Golfing in the Sunset
Source: Pixabay

While you’re in Phoenix, take advantage of the city’s many golf courses, located throughout the city and equipped for golfers of all levels. The courses include five 18-hole championship courses and three 9-hole courses, matching your availability and skill level. The greens are re-seeded annually to give you the best playing conditions, and PGA/LPGA teaching professionals are available to help you make the most of your game. Don’t own your own gear? That’s okay because each location rents out equipment, insuring you a good time.

Golfing in Phoenix

Address: Multiple locations

Website: Golf in Phoenix

14. Japanese Friendship Garden

Posted by Japanese Friendship Garden of Phoenix on Monday, 2 April 2012

Experience a different kind of garden at the Japanese Friendship Garden Phoenix. This garden has been carefully cultivated to mimic the traditional gardens of Japan, with lush greenery, garden paths, and a pond full of koi. However, use caution when visiting. The peaceful ambiance of the garden will seem to transport you out of the Arizona City and straight into Japan where all your troubles will float away—you might be late for the next event on your agenda!

Japanese Friendship Garden

Address: 1125 N 3rd Ave, Phoenix, AZ 85003

Price: from 5 USD

Opening Hours: 10am - 4pm (Tuesday - Sunday). Closed on Mondays

Contact: +1 6022919209

Website: Japanese Friendship Garden

15. Arizona Science Center

Attention #Educators, Arizona Science Center's Freeport-McMoRan Foundation Center for Leadership in Learning provides...

Posted by Arizona Science Center on Monday, 2 January 2017

Posted by Arizona Science Center on Monday, 21 November 2016

Finally, have fun while learning at the Arizona Science Center. Fun for all ages is to be had at this site, where you can learn about why science works, with interactive and exciting exhibits. The facilities also feature an IMAX theater which will make education seemingly pop into your lap. While many exhibits are permanent, there are always new additions to ensure that your next visit won’t be like the last.

Arizona Science Center

Address: 600 E. Washington St., Phoenix, AZ 85004

Price: from 18.00 USD

Opening Hours: 10am - 5pm

Contact: +1 6027162000

Website: Arizona Science Center

Have fun in Phoenix

The next time you’re in the capital of the copper state, leave the hotel and experience all that the city has to offer. Whether you’re looking to learn at a museum or just play at a park, Phoenix will keep you entertained until you have to head home.

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.

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Haley has been writing stories since she was five, but did not decide to be a full-time writer until her college years. She studied English and Biology at Eastern New Mexico University and has...Read more

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