Phoenix vacation rentals
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Your guide to Phoenix
All About Phoenix
Sun-bathed Phoenix, Arizona’s capital and largest city, rules the Valley of the Sun, a metropolitan region that also includes such bustling regions as college town Tempe and swanky Scottsdale. A former agricultural hub, Phoenix is now the state's economic and cultural lynchpin. The city is home to world-class museums, nearly 200 golf courses, and — thanks to a population that is more than 40 percent Hispanic or Latinx — some of the best Mexican food to be had north of the border. The city also attracts adventurers who want to hike through storybook desert landscapes dotted with cactus and dramatic rock formations, which can be found just outside the city.
The best time to stay in a vacation rental in Phoenix
This is the desert, and it’s hot. From June through August, it’s not unusual to experience temperatures over 100 degrees Fahrenheit, dipping to 90 and 80 degrees in September and October. November through March bring temperatures in the 60s and 70s with dips into the 40s, and in April and May, things soar back up to 80 and 90 degrees. Overall, the city sees 300 days of sun and very little rain. Pack for hot weather, and don’t forget sunscreen. During winter, bring layers for cooler mornings and evenings.
Top things to do in Phoenix
This mountain earned its name from a pair of peaks that resemble the hump of a camel’s back, and its reputation as a tough but rewarding hike thanks to panoramic views of the Valley of the Sun. There are two trails to take to the 1,420-foot summit, the Cholla Trail and the slightly harder Echo Canyon Trail. Both are challenging, featuring rocky terrain, steep ascents, and some climbing. As you hike, you’ll be surrounded by the colorful pink, orange, and red hues of the sandstone terrain from which saguaro and prickly pear cactus grow. Camelback Mountain is located just twenty minutes’ drive from downtown Phoenix, so you won’t have to wait long after finishing to reward yourself with a snack and a cool drink.
Desert Botanical Garden
Looking for something less taxing than a sweaty mountain hike? Explore more than 50,000 plant displays in this gorgeously landscaped 140-acre botanical garden devoted to desert flora. Thousands of agave and cacti grow here, alongside 485 rare and endangered species. Five themed trails cut through the gardens, which grow against the backdrop of the Papago Buttes, a cluster of striking red rock formations. The garden also hosts musical performances and art installations. Grab a quick bite at the cafe, or enjoy a sit-down meal of farm-to-table fare at the garden restaurant.
Musical Instrument Museum
Strum a Peruvian harp or try your luck at coaxing sci-fi-style wails out of a Theremin at this utterly unique museum showcasing more than 8,000 musical instruments from more than 200 countries. No, you can’t touch everything here, but a highlight for many visitors (especially kids) is the Experience Gallery, where you can bang gongs and thump on massive communal drums. A STEM gallery explores the science of soundwaves and frequency, while the Mechanical Music Gallery showcases player pianos, automatons, and music boxes that play themselves.