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September 14th, 2017

Must-See Locations in Arizona That AREN’T the Grand Canyon

Hitting the road for an adventure is always fun.

Whether you gather a group of friends, go with one special someone or explore alone, there’s no shortage of places to enjoy in Arizona.

Fill your cooler with cold beverages, your bag with snacks and take off to one (or more!) of these fabulous spots.

Lake Powell

Part of the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, this man-made reservoir is right on the Arizona-Utah border.

Not surprisingly, it’s one of the most popular destinations in the state – there’s a ton to do there! You can go boating, jet skiing, water skiing, fishing and hiking.

Superstition Mountains

You’ll find these red cliffs east of Phoenix. They’re 2000 feet high and look a little spooky from a distance – hence, the name!

The hiking is on the difficult side, but, if you’re up for the challenge, you could see bobcats, coyotes, black bears or mountain lions just chilling in their natural habitat.

Just keep in mind that the rough terrain may make it difficult to run away!

Tumacacori National Historical Park

This spot is home to three 17th-century missions. The monument here was built to lend protection to the ruins, which are adobe, wood, and plaster.

The monument and accompanying museum are located 50 miles from Tucson and are visited by thousands of tourists each year. You can tour on your own or go with a guide.

If the monument and museum are too tame for you, take a hike on the Anza Trail that runs nearby.

Bisbee

If you’re traveling 90 miles southeast of Tucson, you’ll run right into Bisbee.

This town has an interesting history. At one point it was one the richest mining towns in the world.

Bisbee grew quickly and was a thriving town with a library, the first-ever golf course, an opera house and 47 saloons. Yes, 47.

The mine closed and people started to leave. They were soon replaced with artists and other free spirits who now make up the 6,000 residents.

Bisbee’s eclectic mix of art galleries, museums, hotels and kitschy shops draw tourists from all over.

Tonto National Monument

Before you get too excited, it’s not that Tonto. No Lone Ranger or Silver, either.

What you will find are two cliff dwellings that were home to the Salado people from the 13th through the 15th-century.

You can even see some of their colorful pottery and woven cloth that were left behind.

You’ll actually be killing two birds with one stone because the Tonto National Monument is located in the Superstition Mountains.

Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area

The area used to be used for mining and ranching but is now a great spot for biking, hiking, horseback riding, camping and even stargazing.

What really makes the Spur Cross Ranch stand out is the astounding variety of wildflowers.

Saguaro National Park

A list of the must-see places in Arizona wouldn’t be complete without including a spot that’s famous for cactus.

The Saguaro cactus is what most people envision when they think of these pokey plants.

Saguaro’s earned their own national park because they grow in few places in the country and the species needs to be protected.

There’s more to do here than just gazing at the cactus, however.

Hikers of all skill levels can find an appropriate trail and the bravest among you may even want to camp out.

Hit the road

Any of these locations will give you a chance to take in some breathtaking scenery and enjoy some quality time with your favorite people.

You can pick a place and hit the road or make a plan to see them all in a year. It’s up to you – but get going!

Is one of your favorite Arizona locations on this list?