Your Phoenix vacation
When a town is named the Valley of the Sun, you can count on swimming pools, spas (with top-notch skin care treatments), al fresco dining -- and desert heat. Phoenix also is home to major museums, world-class golf and upscale shopping.
Ride a hot-air balloon over the city, and hike through the Phoenix Mountain Preserve. Drive the Apache Trail, and work your desert mojo at Scottsdale's dance clubs, saloons and swanky wine bars.
But before you pack your sunglasses, let Orbitz give you the lay of the land with top to-dos for your Phoenix vacation.
|Chicago||Phoenix||Tue, Jun 11 - Wed, Jun 12||$276|
|Minneapolis||Phoenix||Sat, Jun 22 - Sat, Jun 29||$334|
|Denver||Phoenix||Wed, Jun 5 - Mon, Jun 10||$186|
|Milwaukee||Phoenix||Sat, May 25 - Thu, May 30||$222|
|Seattle||Phoenix||Fri, May 31 - Wed, Jun 5||$278|
|Detroit||Phoenix||Fri, May 31 - Fri, Jun 14||$358|
|New York||Phoenix||Sun, Jun 2 - Wed, Jun 5||$322|
|Boston||Phoenix||Tue, Jun 4 - Tue, Jun 11||$258|
|Philadelphia||Phoenix||Tue, Jun 4 - Tue, Jun 11||$281|
|San Francisco||Phoenix||Sat, Jun 1 - Fri, Jun 21||$236|
|Newark||Phoenix||Sat, Jun 8 - Sat, Jun 15||$369|
|Portland||Phoenix||Sat, Jun 8 - Sat, Jun 15||$296|
Desert Botanical Garden
Wander trails studded with desert plants and wildflowers, followed by a drink at the outdoor cafe. Visit at night for a thrilling flashlight tour (June to September).
Experience the outdoors
Ride horseback through the Sonoran Desert, or climb Camelback Mountain. Hit the trails of Phoenix Mountain Preserve for its hidden valleys and gorgeous city views.
Visit this Frank Lloyd Wright masterpiece, in the foothills of the McDowell Mountains, where light-filled rooms are patterned after rattlesnakes, chameleons and Gila monsters.
Scottsdale Fashion Square
This stylish precinct runs the gamut from luxury retailers (Burberry, Neiman Marcus), H&M and home goods (Williams-Sonoma, Crate and Barrel) to a food court and cinema.
Get inspired by the Native American art, and use your artistic skills at hands-on exhibits. Dine al fresco on Southwestern fare at the cafe.
Ride in a hot air balloon
Float over the city, and toast the saguaros with a bottle of champagne. Take flight at sunrise or sunset for rose-colored desert views.
Drive the Apache Trail
Nervous Nellies and backseat drivers beware: This scenic, desert-plant-rich drive is filled with canyon views, hair-pin turns and areas named after superstition and lost Dutchmen. But boy, is it worth it.
Go tubing down the Salt River
Defeat the desert heat with a few hours' float down the Salt River, tubing from Mesa through the Tonto National Forest.
Hit the links
Golf against a desert landscape at Troon North Golf Course. Having a swinging time and putt your stuff at Wa-Ko-Pa Golf Club, the McDowell Mountains and Four Peaks.
Go to the spa
Get pampered, massaged, detoxified and reinvigorated with desert botanicals such as Gila River red clay, blue agave, colla cactus buds and more.
More on Phoenix from AOL Travel
With its dusty landscapes and neutral-toned adobe-style houses, most people think of Phoenix as a monotone city chock-full of browns, beiges and burnt sienna. While neutral colors are familiar to Phoenix inhabitants, that's only part of this desert city's color story. Tourists are often surprised at just how vibrant Phoenix is, especially come dusk when its sunsets -- arguably some of the most stunning in the nation -- sweep over the expansive metropolis, illuminating green, spiked cacti and blossoming desert flowers speckled across the landscape. Named as one of National Geographic's best hiking cities, nature lovers can soak up the sun (and sunsets) at one of the city's many preserves, parks or national monuments. Notable must-see locations include Papago Park, where visitors can climb up to the famous "Hole in the Rock" and look over downtown Phoenix; South Mountain Park, one of the largest municipal parks in the world at 17,000 acres; and White Tanks Mountain Regional Park, a rugged and beautiful park deeply serrated with ridges and canyons. Those who desire to fill their brains with knowledge will learn everything they need to know about Native American history at Phoenix's Heard Museum. Other museums include the Phoenix Art Museum, which focuses on American, Asian, Latin American, Modern and contemporary art, the Arizona Science Center and the Pueblo Grande Museum and Archaeological Park. Foodies won't have a hard time satisfying discerning palettes, either. Try one of the city's scenic restaurants, often located in elevated locations to provide patrons the best possible views. Visitors will also find myriad independent restaurants, bars, pubs, eateries and cafes in midtown and downtown Phoenix.