Planning on visiting Arizona and looking for things to do in or near Phoenix? Enjoy the luxurious amenities of the city, but take advantage of the multitude of western-themed attractions perfect for kids and adults alike.
Packed with everything from historical sites and art walks to gourmet food truck caravans and saloons, Old Town and downtown Scottsdale has something for everyone. Don’t miss the 1-hour downtown historical walking tour, given on Tuesdays at 10am.
Balance all that history with a visit to the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art, which is the only Arizona museum featuring modern art, architecture, and design. Hire a horse and buggy during the winter months, or hop on the free Scottsdale Trolley, which operates year-round.
You’re bound to work up a cowboy-sized appetite with all this exploring. When you’re ready to take a load off, visit Pinnacle Peak Patio Steakhouse. This Phoenix-area attraction serves award-winning steaks, ribs, and chicken with a side of live country western music. It’s a relaxed atmosphere, so you can skip the tie and go straight to casual.
Voted the best western destination near Phoenix and all of Arizona, Rawhide is a popular attraction that features a live action stunt show, zip line, petting zoo, stagecoach, and more. Test your own physical limits when you scale a rock wall, or try your luck on the “Widowmaker,” a bucking mechanical bull. Is one of your family members driving you crazy? Sign up to arrest a guest. You can even enjoy a shotgun wedding — all with a western flair.
A trip to the old west wouldn’t be complete without a visit to a real-life ghost town, and Goldfield fits the bill. Although Goldfield was a bustling community of shops, saloons, a boarding house, and a school in the 1890s, the town slowly failed once the local gold vein faulted. Located on the Apache trail, you can explore and enjoy the Goldfield of today. Sights include a gold mine, a narrow-gauge train, and an old west gunfight that are full of authentic western history.
Even though the Phoenix and Scottsdale region enjoy a cultural heritage born in the old west, modern amenities and comforts are everywhere — including luxurious accommodations, cultural attractions, and fine dining establishments.
If you’re looking for an old west experience but don’t want to stray too far from contemporary conveniences, plan a visit to Phoenix. Arizona has something for everyone!