Phoenix is more than just the gateway to the Grand Canyon. It's also a gateway to art, architecture, and a vibrant cultural history. Just minutes from the airport to downtown, Arizona's state capital is a thriving cosmopolitan center with attractions the whole family will enjoy. Phoenix is a center for culture, business, and education, home to ASU's Downtown Phoenix campus and teams from all four professional major league sports.
Art lovers shouldn't miss Roosevelt Row, an area of the city full of art galleries, colorful street murals, and a monthly art walk—and should pay a visit to some of the city's many museums. Explore the largest fine art collection in the Southwest at the Phoenix Museum of Art; delve into Native American art and tradition at the Heard Museum; browse the collection of over 15,000 instruments and musical accessories at the Musical Instrument Museum; or see the world's largest collection of fire-fighting equipment at the Hall of Flame—all located in the greater Phoenix area. In the evening, catch a ballet performance at the Orpheum Theater or see a concert at the renowned Comerica Theatre.
You can't visit this gorgeously sunny city without spending at least some time outside! Phoenix is located in the Sonoran Desert, home of the saguaro cactus and one of the few places in the world where it grows natively, so keep an eye out for these prickly plants. Explore the 50 miles of trails in South Mountain Park and Preserve, and hike up the 1,200-foot-tall landmark Camelback Mountain for views of the city and Phoenix Mountains Preserve. Check out the red rock buttes in Papago Park, and then end a long day of trekking at one of the many delicious dining options in Phoenix's historic Heritage Square.