While it is possible to appreciate beautiful scenery from your car or even from the inside of your rental home, the only way to truly appreciate it is to immerse yourself in it—to get outside and hike up or through the mountains or into the desert. Here are a few suggestions to kick start your Scottsdale wildlife and nature journey.

Day 1 – Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center

Start off your journey by scheduling a tour of the Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center (SWCC), a non-profit rescue and rehabilitation facility focusing on wildlife that has been wounded, endangered or removed from their original environment. A wide variety of animals are housed at the sanctuary, including black bears, bobcats, coyote, mule deer, foxes, javelin, Mexican gray wolves, mountain lions, porcupines, tortoises, skunks, great horned owls, and red-tailed hawks. This is a great way to introduce kids to native (and non-native) Scottsdale wildlife in a safe, friendly way.

Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center
27026 N 156th St, Scottsdale, AZ
480-471-9109
swcc@southwestwildlife.org

Day 2 – Desert Botanical Garden

Located in nearby Phoenix, with over 50,000 species of native plants spread over 140 acres in the beautiful Sonoran Desert, the Desert Botanical Garden should be on your itinerary. There are five different loop trails, each with a specific focus. Hike to the top of the Sonoran Desert Loop Trail for an expansive view of the surrounding mountains. Walk through the Center for Desert Living Trail and submerse yourself in the colors and fragrances that only a desert habitat can produce. Take the Plants & People of the Sonoran Desert Loop Trail to learn how desert plants were used by native people. And, if the season is right, you can watch hummingbirds visiting the vibrant desert wildflowers and blooming cactus as you stroll along the wildflower loop trail.

Desert Botanical Garden
1201 North Galvin Parkway
Phoenix, AZ
1-480-941-1225

Day 3 – Butterfly Wonderland

It’s the largest butterfly pavilion in the country, with thousands of butterflies housed in a controlled environment. After surrounding yourself with thousands of butterflies, make time to visit the honey exhibit, the live ant colony, and on Mondays watch the butterfly release.

Butterfly Wonderland
9500 East Via de Ventura
Scottsdale, AZ
480-800-3000

Day 4 – McDonald’s Ranch

MacDonald’s Ranch offers everything from horseback rides, stagecoach rides and hayrides to a petting zoo. Horseback and stagecoach rides are offered for private and group experiences, and there is also a lovely moonlight tour option for each. The guides will match the right horse to your riding experience, and they have pony rides for the kids, too. The terrain is gentle and the scenery is gorgeous. Your guides will give you the history of the area, and educate you on the flora and fauna while you ride.

MacDonald’s Ranch
26540 N. Scottsdale Road
Scottsdale, AZ
480-585-0239
macranch@macdonaldsranch.com

Day 5 – Desert Monster Tours

If hiking or horseback riding through the desert seems too tame, Desert Monster Tours can help you out. Their ATV/UTV tours will have you driving through the sandy washes, streams, and riverbeds, across desert plateaus, along trails winding through the beautiful Sonoran Desert. Try the sunset tour to witness the amazing vibrant desert sunset in the best of Scottsdale nature.

Desert Monster Tours
6424 East Greenway Parkway, Suite #100 – 408
Scottsdale, AZ
info@desertmonsterstours.com
1-866-777-1950

Day 6 – McDowell Sonoran Preserve

The Scottsdale McDowell Sonoran Preserve is 30,000 acres of protected desert with over 120 miles of desert trails. Five trailheads start you off on your journey – hike, run, bike, or ride horseback through cacti forests, desert terrain, and mountains. Trails vary in length, difficulty, and terrain so there is a trail for every visitor. There are accessible trails too and designated rock climbing areas. The preserve is packed with desert wildlife including Gila woodpeckers, roadrunners, snakes and lizards, mule deer and javelina.

McDowell Sonoran Preserve
Scottsdale, AZ
480-998-7971
lori@mcdowellsonoran.org

Day 7 – Bartlett Lake Recreation Area

Tired of just desert scenery? Head to Bartlett Lake. Part of the Tonto National Forest, Bartlett Lake Recreation Area is a perfect location for some outdoor fun. Whether you are looking for hiking, boating, water skiing, or fishing, you can do it at the lake. On your hike, you’ll pass many native desert plants—saguaro, mesquite, and blooming ocotillo—and you may encounter some of the local Scottsdale wildlife, like mule deer, bald eagles, javelina, and coyotes.

Bartlett Lake Recreation Area
East Bartlett Dam Road
Scottsdale, AZ
480-221-0503

Day 8 –The Phoenix Zoo

What better way to enjoy and learn about wild animals than the zoo? The Phoenix Zoo is home to a wide variety of endangered species from around the globelike toucans, Asian elephants, cheetahs, Komodo dragons, zebras, African lions, orangutans, and jaguars. Local wildlife like coyotes, bobcats, ringtail cats, golden eagles, and Mexican gray wolves. Native plants are also represented with their own zoo trail. The zoo’s trails highlight animals and habitats of specific regions while the Children’s Trail focuses on farm animals and small animals from around the world; it also has a petting zoo.

Phoenix Zoo
455 North Galvin Parkway
Phoenix, AZ 85008
602-286-3800

Day 9 –Tres Rios Wetlands

How about something totally different? Tres Rios Wetlands is a City of Phoenix environmental project that is set on restoring the vital wetland habitats along the Salt River. Cute little burrowing owls, pelicans, American kestrels, coyotes, bobcats, beavers, snakes, lizards, and toads are just a few of the local inhabitants here in this city park. And Tres Rios isn’t just a pretty little park either; this cool project reclaims water from the wastewater treatment plant, then pumps it out over the wetlands to be filtered naturally. The park has become a premier bird-watching area too, with egrets, white-faced ibis, and more. Tres Rio is such a success that great blue heron have set up a rookery on site.

Tres Rios Wetlands

16 miles SW of Phoenix –there isn’t a specific address, check their website for driving directions and a park map.

602-262-6011 (Phoenix City Hall)

Day 10 – Pinnacle Peak Park

With over 150 acres and several trails, Pinnacle Peak Park is a favorite hiking area. Hike along the rocky trails on your own or take the interpretive tour and learn about the park flora and fauna, Hohokam history, and the park geology as you hike toward the peak. Be sure to sign up for the Full Moon Hike to experience the cool, crisp desert nights, or the Astronomy Evenings where you’ll enjoy a beautiful desert evening under the stars while you listen to a NASA Solar System Ambassador discussing the visible objects in the sky and those visible only through a high-end refractor telescope. Every area visitor should hike the popular Pinnacle Peak Trail. An out-and-back, this moderate trail loop offers beautiful views especially when the wildflowers are blooming. Be on the lookout for Saguaro cacti, rattlesnakes, desert tortoises, Gila monsters, coyotes, grey foxes, mule deer, javelina, and maybe a bobcat or mountain lion if you’re lucky.

Pinnacle Peak Park
26802 N. 102ndWay
Scottsdale, AZ 85262
480-312-0990

ymassman@ScottsdaleAZ.gov

Enjoy Scenic Views of Scottsdale Nature from a Parsons Villa

You can enjoy beautiful views of Scottsdale wildlife from any of Parsons Villas vacation rentals, as well as luxury amenities, spacious accommodations, and more. Browse our selection here, and contact us to book today!

While there are many cultural events happening throughout the year in Scottsdale, there are some cultural venues that can be enjoyed all year round. Here are our picks for your Scottsdale arts and cultural journey—enjoy!

Day 1 – Western Spirit: Scottsdale Museum of the West

Begin your journey with the Western Spirit: Scottsdale Museum of the West and its exhibits of Western and Native American art, artifacts and cultural treasures. Past exhibits have included authentic Old West cowboy gear, Hopi pottery, Kit Carson’s pistol and message pouch, and Native Buffalo robes. Conveniently located on the free downtown trolley line, the museum is accessible from any part of the city.

Western Spirit: Scottsdale Museum of the West
3830 N. Marshall Way Scottsdale, AZ 85251
(480) 686-9539
info@scottsdalemuseumwest.org

Day 2 – Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art

Designed by award-winning architect Will Bruder, the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art (SMoCA) features modern and contemporary art from around the world, and is a critical part of Scottsdale culture. Exhibits are pulled from the worlds of music, literature, art, dance, performance art and film. Stroll through the museum’s exhibit spaces or attend one of the museum’s lectures or programs. Past programs have included piñata making and Japanese flower arranging. The outdoor courtyard has one of James Turrell’s Skyspaces; it’s worth the trip just to see this beautiful space.

Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art
7374 2nd Street
Scottsdale, AZ
480.874.4666

Day 3 – Frank Lloyd Wright’s Taliesin West

Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, Taliesin West in Scottsdale is a National Historic Landmark. Constructed over a period of twenty years by Wright and his apprentices and set in a Sonoran Desert Preserve, Taliesin West is a perfect example of Wright’s later architectural style. The buildings rise up and off the desert rocks and appear to be part of them at the same time. There are several tours, including the Panorama Tour, the Night Lights Tour, and Desert “Shelter” Tour.

Frank Lloyd Wright’s Taliesin West
12345 North Taliesin Drive
Scottsdale, AZ
480.860.2700

Day 4 – ASU Kerr Cultural Center

A one-of-a-kind historic adobe performing arts venue, ASU Kerr Cultural Center was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2010. It showcases a wide variety of performing arts shows, including its well-known jazz concerts. The Kerr Center was begun by “The Grand Lady of Arizona Music,” Louise Lincoln Kerr, in her adobe house and studio and has served as a performance hall and gathering place for musicians (including Pablo Casals and Isaac Stern) since 1959. There is sure to be a musical or theatrical performance scheduled during your visit that you will enjoy at this mecca of Scottsdale culture. This historic structure is worth a visit.

ASU Kerr Cultural Center
6110 North Scottsdale Road
Scottsdale, AZ
480.596.2660

Day 5 – Main Street Scottsdale Art Galleries

If you enjoy art, you need to visit the internationally recognized Main Street Galleries in downtown Scottsdale. You can stroll through the galleries on your own and view the work of over 1,000 artists in 40+ galleries. And, every Thursday night the galleries open their doors for the Scottsdale ArtWalk. Serious collector or casual browser, you won’t want to miss visiting this Scottsdale art mecca.

Day 6 – Arizona Commemorative Air Force Museum

Located in nearby Mesa, the Arizona Commemorative Air Force Museum is home to exhibits focusing on the story of military aviators. Tour vintage WWII planes, take a ride in a B-17, and view exhibits on aircraft and war memorabilia including displays from WWII and Vietnam.

Arizona Commemorative Air Force Museum
2017 North Greenfield Road
Mesa, AZ

Day 7 – Food & Drink Tours

One of the best and most enjoyable ways to get to know a city is through its food. And, Scottsdale does enjoy good food and drink! There are many food-oriented tours and some combine food with the history of the city. Walk, bike, or Segway your way through town while drinking and dining. Tour options include craft beer, wine, fine dining, coffee & dessert tours, and happy hour tours.

Day 8 – Art & Cultural Tours

Short on time? Then Ultimate Art & Cultural Tours might be just right for you. They feature a selection of tours that provide an overview of the art and culture of the area. The LocalMotion Trolley Tour is a 2-hour tour winding through the Arts District, the Waterfront and more, while the Arizona Art Tours provides access to premier art galleries, artists’ studios and many of the area’s art museums. And the Arizona Architectural Tour highlights modern architecture in the area, including the current fav –Mid Century Modern.

Ultimate Art & Cultural Tours
602-826-3155
ace@ultimateattours.com

Day 9 – Scottsdale Public Art

Great art can be found all around Scottsdale, not just in its art galleries and museums. These public works of art are best viewed while walking through the city. Download an interactive map from ScottsdalePublicArt.org and create your own tour to enjoy at your own pace. Use the suggested route or pick and choose your own itinerary. Here are a few highlights for your tour: the Soleri Bridge and Plaza, (designed by Italian architect Paolo Soleri, the bridge is also a solar calendar), the Goldwater Bell(featuring bronze bells cast by Soleri himself), One-Eyed Jack(a huge white metal rabbit located in the Arts District), Windows to the Westby Louise Nevelson (her first large sculptural installation in the southwest), the Frank Lloyd Wright Spire(located in the Promenade), and the iconic LOVEsculpture by Robert Indiana.

Scottsdale Public Art
480-425-5353

Day 10 – Heard Museum

Founded in 1929 and focusing on American Indian art, the Heard Museum is internationally known for its exhibits, educational programming, and its festivals. Past exhibitions have included Away from Home: American Indian Boarding School Stories, Behind the Mask: Indigenous Artists Speak Out(COVID-19 related masks created by American Indian artists), The Third Dimension: Sculptural Stories in Stone & Bronze(works by leading American Indian sculptures), Through the Lens of Barry Goldwater(a collection of prints made from color slides by the Arizona senator) and David Hockney’s Yosemite and Masters of California Basketry. Leave time for the museum shop where you can find lovely American Indian inspired jewelry, baskets, Navajo Folk Art and textiles, Kachina Dolls, Zuni Fetish Carvings and more.

Heard Museum
2301 North Central Avenue
Phoenix, AZ 85004

602-252-8840

A Rental as Beautiful as Scottsdale Art

Take your Scottsdale vacation to the next level with a villa as beautiful as the art you will see on your journey from Parsons Villas! Browse our available selections today, and contact us to book your stay today!

If you want to combine your love of the desert with your love of adventure, Scottsdale is the place to be. While a hiking tour through the desert and mountains may be adventure enough for some, here are some ideas to take your trip to the next level with exciting Scottsdale adventures.

Day 1 – Bike Through the Desert

Arizona Outback Adventures can organize half-day, full-day, and multi-day desert adventures for your group. While they do offer hiking and backpacking tours, their focus is on mountain biking. Imagine biking up rocky mountain trails or cycling along a desert trail between towering cacti. AOA will arrange a guided mountain biking adventure through the Sonoran Desert that will be the highlight of your trip to the Sonoran Desert.

Arizona Outback Adventures
17465 N. 93rd Street
Scottsdale, AZ
866.455.1601

Day 2 – Hot Air Balloons

For amazing views of the surrounding mountains and deserts, you can always hike up to the top of the nearest mountain, or you can take a shortcut with a hot air balloon tour! Take some great photographs as you float through the air, viewing the desert life from a perspective you don’t usually have. You’ll get close enough to see wildlife—deer, javelina, coyotes, and roadrunners—and head far up into the clouds to get an amazing 360-degree view of the area. Try morning or evening balloon flights for some of the most amazing sunrises and sunsets you will see from any Scottsdale adventures! Aerogelic Ballooning and 360-Adventure Tours are two of several local companies in the area that can get your hot air adventure on its way.

Aerogelic Ballooning
526 N 74th Street
Scottsdale, AZ
480.991.4260

Day 3 – Helicopter Flights

If you want to get those great aerial photographs and amazing views but want something more exciting than a hot air balloon ride, take a helicopter flight! There are many helicopter tour companies in the Scottsdale area, and all offer 360-degree aerial tours of the surrounding area. Some, like Sunstate Helicopter Tours, offer lessons, too! This is a great way to get a quick view of the beautiful Sonoran Desert and the surrounding area.

Sunstate Helicopter Tours
7430 E Butherus Drive, Suite G
Scottsdale, AZ
480.993.3223

Day 4 – Rappelling Scottsdale Adventure

Your Scottsdale adventure begins with a hike through the desert and continues on to the top of a local mountain peak. Once at the top, you’ll start your descent. Enjoy the views as you slide your way down the mountain in a controlled descent off a vertical drop. The best part of hiking up a mountain is coming down!

Epic Adventures
480.246.7207
15525 N. 83rd Way, Suite 6
Scottsdale, AZ

Day 5 – Rock Climbing

Feeling agile and ready for an activity to test your strength, balance, and endurance? Then go rock climbing. There are numerous climbing spots around the Scottsdale area. A favorite climb of locals is Tom’s Thumb, a 200-foot tall granite dome with over 30 routes to the summit. Or, take a guided tour that is tailored to your abilities and preferences. This is great for those climbers needing a climbing buddy for full-day or half-day climbing adventures.

360-Adventure Tours
480.418.7816
tours@360-adventures.com

Day 6 – Canyoneering

If you’re in great shape, then canyoneering is the adventure for you. A combination of hiking, rock climbing, and scrambling, you make your way up a mountain, then rappel down some of the Sonoran Desert’s beautiful natural canyons and gorges. Canyoneering involves skill in carefully selecting and finding your way through the many obstacles a desert mountain can have: boulders, steep drop-offs, deep pools, large gaps, and some very tight spaces. This isn’t a gentle every day hike on a desert trail; you make your own trails and memories on this Scottsdale adventure.

360-Adventure Tours
480.418.7816
tours@360-adventures.com

Day 7 – ATV/UTV Rides

Tired of hiking, scrambling, and climbing? Take a guided tour through the desert on an ATV. Drive deep into the Sonoran Desert over rocky desert terrain while keeping an eye out for coyotes, javelina, and deer. Get all the thrills of off-roading through the desert while learning about the history and wildlife of this wonderful desert area from your guide. There are many ATV tour companies in the area; book a tour through Desert Wolf Tours and try their ATV & Machine Gun Adventure for a little twist.

Desert Wolf Tours
877.613.9653
info@desertwolftours.com

Day 8 – Go-Kart Racing

Head to Octane Raceway for some heart-pounding go-kart racing! Their 1/3-mile course is mostly indoors, but a portion of the track swings outside for a quick glimpse of those desert mountains. Best of all, their racing karts are electric and have no emissions –you’ll have all the fun of racing without any of the fumes. You can book a group session, or just walk-in and join a group. Other area go-kart facilities include Cracker Jax and K1Speed.

Octane Raceway
9119 Talking Stick Way
Scottsdale, AZ 85250

Day 9 – Virtual Reality

We’ve all watched the commercials on TV, but not all of us have been lucky enough to have had a chance to try VR yet. At Velocity VR, you play the games you love without the wires and consoles. You are the controller. Transport yourself to another dimension and reality. Put all your survival skills to the test. From zombie apocalypses, killer drones, and space adventures to kid-friendly 3-D games, there is a VR experience for everyone.

Velocity VR
9119 Talking Stick Way
Scottsdale, AZ 85250

Day 10 – Indoor Skydiving

At iFLY, you’ll experience the excitement of skydiving without any of the risk. It’s also a great way to practice your techniques before you actually jump out of that plane. Gear up (they provide all your gear: jumpsuit, helmet, goggles, and earplugs), and after a short training session, you’ll be out soaring in their man-made wind tunnel. You’ll be floating on a cushion of controlled air. There’s no falling involved. iFLY is great for kids of all ages, from 3 on up!

iFLY
9206 Talking Stick Way
Scottsdale, AZ 85250

Day 11 – Whitewater Rafting Tour

Whitewater rafting in the desert? You bet! The Salt River is great for all kinds of outdoor activities, from swimming and fly-fishing to tubing and white water rafting. Salt River Rafting, one of many area tour companies, will guide you down the river for a day or half-day of exciting whitewater rafting and amazing scenery. They have trips for all experience levels and groups, from family-friendly to extreme wild rafting adventures. Arizona Rafting by Wilderness Aware and Advantage Grand Canyon also offers whitewater rafting adventures. If you’re not quite ready for whitewater rafting, Salt River Tubing offers a quieter, gentler Salt River experience.

Salt River Rafting
2827 E. Blanche
Phoenix, AZ 85032
800-425-5253

A Comfortable Reprieve from Scottsdale Adventures

What better place to return to after a long day of adventuring than the comfortable and spacious accommodations of a Parsons Villas vacation rental? Browse our available selection of villas and rentals today, and contact us today to find the perfect retreat for your next Scottsdale vacation!

When you think of Scottsdale, you think of the desert and towering Saguaro cactus, and not necessarily about fishing. But the Scottsdale area has beautiful lakes nestled in between the desert and mountains and rivers threading down through the mountains, all brimming with great fishing opportunities. Sometimes you will want to fish alone, and sometimes it’s good to get some help by hiring a fishing guide, especially if you aren’t familiar with the area. If you want to fish while you’re in the Scottsdale area, here are some ideas, including guided fishing in Scottsdale. Just decide how you want to fish, what kind of fish to hunt, then pick your angling adventure.

Day 1 – Lake Pleasant

Lake Pleasant is about 30 minutes away from downtown Scottsdale, and this beautiful lake with its crystal-clear waters is the state’s premier bass fishery and is loaded with both largemouth bass and striped bass. Lake Pleasant has been called the Southwest’s best place to fly fish for stripers and largemouth. If you don’t fly fish, don’t worry; the fishing is still great, no matter how you do it. Plus, the surrounding desert and mountains offer up some great outdoor spots for hiking. Rent a boat, kayak, or paddleboard and fish the lake on your own. This is a great spot to do your own thing.

Day 2 – Sonoran Bass Adventure

With The Hook Up Outfitters’ Sonoran Bass Adventure, all the details will be taken care of, and all you have to do is worry about landing your fish. Fish the clear waters of a local lake on a tournament-rigged bass boat. Their guides will select a lake for your adventure based on where the fish are biting and your experience level. This tour is great for groups and families who are out to have a fun fishing adventure.

The Hookup Outfitters
888.899.4665

Day 3 – Big Water Bass on the Fly

Ready for some fly fishing excitement? This is the fishing tour for you. Fish Lake Pleasant or Saguaro Lake, wherever the best fishing in Scottsdale is to be found. Largemouth and white bass abound in Lake Pleasant, while largemouth, smallmouth, yellow bass and bluegill can be caught in Saguaro Lake. Experienced fly angler or not, this fly fishing trip will be one to remember.

The Arizona Fishing Guides
480.772.8460

Day 4 – Hooked-Up Striper Charter

Another popular fishing tour for families, groups, and those anglers who just want to have fun while fishing, the Hooked-Up Striper Charter focuses on the striped bass. This bass is at the top of the fish food chain in Arizona. Gathering in large schools while hunting for bait fish, they are constantly on the move. Once you find the school, you can catch them as fast as you can reel them in. Stripers are great eating, too!

The Hookup Outfitters
888.899.4665

Day 5 – Trophy Bass Fishing in Scottsdale

Sometimes you just get serious. The Trophy Bass Fishing Tour is designed for that serious angler searching for their latest trophy fish. If quality means more than quantity, this is the trip for you. Your guides will have their boat outfitted with special gear meant for hooking and landing those larger fish. If you’re ready to try for the trophy bass of your dreams and enjoy amazing fishing in Scottsdale, give The Arizona Fishing Guides a call and book this fishing adventure.

The Arizona Fishing Guides
480.772.8460

Day 6 – Carp on the Fly

Carp are one of the largest freshwater fish and are challenging to catch at best, especially on a fly rod. This carp trip will work for both the experienced fly fisherman and the novice. Carp on the Fly is a sight fishing adventure on local area lakes. Imagine getting a 3-foot carp to take your fly and then landing it. Carp fishing can be exhilarating, and you’ll enjoy every minute.

The Arizona Fishing Guides
480.772.8460

Day 7 – Chaparral Lake

Chaparral Lake is in west Scottsdale in Chaparral Park, a perfect spot for a quick fishing get-away. The 10-acre lake is stocked by AZ Game & Fish twice a month throughout the year. From October to March, the lake is stocked with trout, and from April to July and in September and October, the lake is stocked with catfish. Sunfish are also periodically stocked throughout the year. Fish from the pier or rent a boat, kayak or canoe. It’s a great spot for some quick fishing in Scottsdale on your own without having to travel.

Chaparral Park
5401 North Hayden Road
Scottsdale, AZ
480.312.2353

Day 8 – Saguaro Lake

Rugged cliffs surround Saguaro Lake and tower over you as you fish the lake, searching for that trophy largemouth. About 45 minutes east of Scottsdale, and with over 20 miles of shoreline, the lake is the perfect place for a day of boating, kayaking, and paddleboarding, not to mention swimming, jet skiing and pretty much any water activity. And there’s great fishing too. The lake is a popular fishing spot year-round, known for its largemouth bass, but you can also land rainbow trout, smallmouth bass, crappie, and sunfish. The Saguaro Lake Marina has everything you’ll need for a day on the water, plus restrooms, boat ramps(bring your own or rent one), a gas station, picnic tables and a restaurant. The marina is in Mesa, a short trip (about 20 minutes) from Scottsdale.
Saguaro Lake Marina
14011N. Bush Highway
Mesa, AZ 85215
480-986-5546

Day 9 – Nighttime Fishing

If you haven’t tried night time fishing before, you should. It’s a totally different experience. You fish using sonaror light (the light attracts bugs and baitfish which will attract the fish you are after), and a lighter, more sensitive rod and line since you’ll be relying on the feel of the line and bait rather than seeing the line or bait move. Try fishing at night on your own or book a Reel’em In Adventures’ Nighttime Striper Bass fishing charter. Fish the calm and quiet of Lake Pleasant from the comfort of a pontoon boat. You’ll arrive in time to enjoy the beautiful sunset on the lake before you start your hunt for your striper. Reel’em In Adventures also offers a full day of guided striper bass fishing too if you’d rather keep your nights free for sleeping and do your hunting for that trophy striper bass during the day.
Reel’em In Adventures
24thStreet and Camelback
Biltmore, AZ
602-741-8234

Hang Up Your Gear and Relax with Parsons

Once you have fished the area lakes dry, take your haul down to one of the many beautiful villas offered by Parsons Villas! Our rentals are spacious and feature luxury amenities, including high-end kitchen equipment for managing all the fish you will catch! When you rent one of our villas with an outdoor grill on the back patio, you can grill your catch of the day out in the lovely desert air and enjoy the mountain scenery at the same time. Nothing beats a freshly caught wild trout when it’s been cooked over an open fire.

Browse our available selection, and contact our team today to reserve your stay!

Scottsdale loves to eat, drink, and socialize. The number of fine Scottsdale dining venues in this desert city continues to increase, and the bar on award-winning cuisine keeps getting higher. Here are a few highlights to start you on your epicurean journey of fine dining in Scottsdale.

Day 1 – Café Monarch

Start your tour off with a Scottsdale tradition, Café Monarch, perfect for a romantic dinner, special occasion, or just an extravagant night out. Their four-course prix fixe menu varies weekly to reflect local, organic, and sustainable premium ingredients. For the ultimate romantic dinner, ask to be seated on the tree-filled outdoor patio. Café Monarch is consistently voted one of the top 100 restaurants in the country; come see if you agree.

Café Monarch
6939 E 1st Avenue
Scottsdale, AZ
(480) 970-7682

Day 2 – Fat Ox

For a modern twist on Italian classics, head to the Fat Ox. With seasonal ingredients and fresh house-made pasta, you can indulge in both classic Italian dishes and more adventurous, creative Scottsdale dining. Pair your dinner selections with a wine from their extensive wine list. Their slow-roasted meats and seafood are cooked over a pecan wood-fired grill for amazing flavor.

Fat Ox
6316 N Scottsdale Road
Scottsdale, AZ
(480) 307-6900

Day 3 – Dominick’s Steakhouse

Dominick’s Steakhouse has two floors of dining experiences just waiting for you. Dine in the elegant first floor dining space, or head up to the second floor for a more modern Scottsdale dining experience at the tables surrounding the rooftop pool. The featured menu item is steak—all cuts and sizes and toppings. There is a raw bar, too, with oysters on the half-shell and iced Alaskan king crab, but this place is all about great steaks.

Dominick’s Steakhouse
15169 N Scottsdale Road
Scottsdale, AZ
(480) 272-7271

Day 4 – Sel

Chef Branden Levine is at the helm of Sel, a small, chic restaurant nestled in between the art galleries and boutiques of Old Town. Sel offers a four-course prix fixe menu of contemporary American cuisine (also available a la carte) that is constantly changing to reflect the seasonal ingredients available. Chef Levine has appeared on Food Network cooking competitions and brings all his skill and flair to this Scottsdale dining establishment.

Sel
7044 E Main Street
Scottsdale, AZ
(480) 949-6296

Day 5 – Elements at Sanctuary Camelback Mountain

A short drive from Scottsdale, elements’ Food Network star Chef Beau MacMillan offers innovative seasonal menus using local, organic produce and hormone-free meat. Sit on the patio overlooking the pool and watch the sunset behind the surrounding mountains as you enjoy an award-winning meal at elements.

elements at Sanctuary Camelback Mountain
5700 East McDonald Drive
Paradise Valley, AZ

Day 6 – Roka Akor

At Roka Akor, the center of the contemporary-style dining room is the robata grill, the heart of the restaurant. Voted one of the top ten sushi spots in the US by Bon Appetite, Roka Akor also is known for its steaks. The menu varies according to season but will always offer prime cut steaks and seafood with a Japanese twist, and of course, sushi and sashimi. Try the Chef’s Tasting Menu for an amazing Scottsdale dining experience.

Roka Akor Scottsdale
7299 North Scottsdale Road
Scottsdale, AZ 85253
(480) 582-4552
Scottsdale@RokaAkor.com

Day 7 – FnB

Award-winning FnB’s vegetable-forward menu changes frequently to reflect local seasonal ingredients, and their wine program highlights Arizona’s local wineries. Locally known as the “veggie whisperer,” Chef (and co-owner) Charleen Badman has been a “Best Chef Southwest Nominee” by the James Beard Foundation every year since 2014. Located in the historic Craftsman Court in downtown Scottsdale, FnB offers farm-fresh flavors and creative, unexpected flavor combinations.

FnB
7125 East 5th Avenue, Suite 31
Scottsdale, AZ
(480) 425-9463

Day 8 – Franco’s Italian Café

Consistently named one of the top ten restaurants in Scottsdale, Franco’s offers its guests authentic Italian cuisine. This casual, small establishment features all your favorite Italian dishes like Baked Asparagus & Prosciutto, Ravioli, Linguine & Clams, and Fettuccine Tartufo. The pastas are all made in-house and you really can taste the difference. If you have room, the Mascarpone Cheesecake and the Tiramisu are always popular desert choices, but the Mernghata is amazing.

Franco’s Italian Café
4327 N. Scottsdale Road
Scottsdale, AZ 85251

Day 9 – Roaring Fork

Conveniently located in Old Town Scottsdale, Roaring Fork offers “Bold American cuisine and contemporary Western ambiance.”All of their entrees are prepared by wood fire rotisserie, open flame grill or wood oven roasting, adding an amazing extra layer of flavor. If you or someone in your group is a steak lover, the Roaring Fork is heaven. Steaks are wood-grilled, hand-cut in house and specially aged. But you may want to try customer favorites like their Sugar-Cured Duck Breast, “Big Ass Burger,” or Rainbow Trout. The antler chandelier and rustic wood and stone décor reinforce the western flair.

The Roaring Fork
4800 North Scottsdale Road
Scottsdale, AZ 85251
480-947-0795

Day 10 – Citizen Public House

This contemporary “public house” has clean, classic décor with the vintage black & white photos of family lining the walls that add a nice touch. Order classic house cocktails or barrel-aged cocktails (try the Instant Gratification made with Cognac, Scotch, Orange-Infused Brandy, Amaro, and Mole Bitters), while you wait for your meal. Start your dining experience off with the customer favorites Bacon Fat Popcorn, Fondue Board (3-cheese fondue, pear slices, pretzel rolls and sausage), Pork BellyPastrami, or Crab Cakes. Delicious main dish options include Amaro Meatloaf, Fair Trade Coffee Short Ribs (another customer favorite), Seared Sea Scallops, Togarashi Spiced Filet Mignon, and a Pan Roasted Salmon.A Whiskey Bread Pudding, Cookie Bag or Chocolate Pot de Crèmedesert will finish the night nicely.

Citizen Public House
7111 East 5th Ave, Suite E
Scottsdale, AZ 85251
480-398-4208

Day 11 – Vine & Hops

If you’re looking for a casual wine or craft beer bar that also has good food (sometimes it seems like it’s only one or the other), try Vine & Hops. With over 20 craft beers and 70 different wines from around the world, you can sample new choices all night long. Try their Burrata and Charcuterie Board; it’s a customer favorite!

Vine & Hops
4216 North Brown Avenue
Scottsdale, AZ 85251
480-748-4460

A Place to Return To After Enjoying the Best Dining in Scottsdale

Once you have indulged yourself with the best dining in Scottsdale, return to a luxury villa from Parsons Villas to spoil yourself even further! Browse our available rentals, and book your favorite by contacting us today!

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There are festivals and events year-round in Scottsdale and there is bound to be an event taking place while you are visiting you will be interested in. Alternatively, you may want to plan your trip around a specific Scottsdale event or festival. Here are some to help get your planning started.

Arizona Fine Art Expo

The Arizona Fine Art Expo takes place in January through March. This Scottsdale event offers you the opportunity to meet the artists in their studios. Watch each artist create their art, then browse through the galleries, shops and studios. Sculptures, ceramics, fine art, jewelry, and more—there is something for every collector. Add to your collection or start a new one with original art from the expo.

Arizona Fine Arts Expo
26540 N Scottsdale Road
Scottsdale, AZ

Arizona Vegetarian Food Festival

In February, the Vegetarian Food Festival takes over the Scottsdale Civic Center Amphitheater with all things vegetarian and vegan. Delicious food, chefs, authors, animal welfare specialists, yoga and health & wellness doctors, booths, and speakers are all ready to help you start (or continue) on your way to a healthier lifestyle.

Arizona Vegetarian Food Festival
Scottsdale Civic Center Amphitheater
7380 E 2nd Street
Scottsdale, AZ

Waterfront Fine Art & Wine Festival

Also in February, and combing two popular indulgences— wine and art—the Waterfront Fine Art & Wine Festival takes place along the banks of the Scottsdale Waterfront. Listen to live music, sip a glass of award-winning wine, and stroll through the many vendors offering their art at this Scottsdale festival.

Waterfront Fine Art & Wine Festival
Scottsdale Waterfront
Scottsdale, AZ

Scottsdale Arabian Horse Shows

There are several Arabian horse shows in Scottsdale put on by the Arabian Horse Association of Arizona. In February, and lasting for over a week, is the Arabian Horse Show, which besides the show includes pony rides and a petting zoo for kids, auctions, and riding contests. The Arabian National Breeder Finals are in September and the show brings top owners, trainers and breeders of Arabian horses from around the world to Scottsdale to compete. With over two thousand entries, a wins at these annual shows means big money and prestige.

Scottsdale Arabian Horse Show
16601 North Pima Road
Scottsdale, AZ 85260

Scottsdale Western Week

Western Week, beginning in February, has expanded to include the Western Spirit Gold Palette ArtWalk, Hashknife Pony Express, the Parada del Sol Parade (held in March) and Trail’s End Festival and the Arizona Indian Festival. This Scottsdale festival provides a better understanding of Arizona’s indigenous communities, and this inter-tribe event celebrates the culture, traditional art, crafts and foods of local tribes. For several days during the week, the Western Spirit: Scottsdale’s Museum of the West offers free admission. This event is a must for anyone who loves the Old West and American Indian cultures.

Salt River Fields Spooktacular Hot Air Balloon Festival

Halloween and hot air balloons together can only mean fun! Hot air balloons from all over the country will act as ‘trick-or-treat’ stations for candy and treats all night long. Fun for the entire family, there will be live music, food and beverages, a Kid Zone, tethered balloon rides, a haunted spooky trail (put on by local high school students), costume contests and fireworks. This is a unique way to spend Halloween.

Salt River Fields Spooktacular Hot Air Balloon Festival
Salt River Fields at Talking Stick
7555 Pima Road
Scottsdale, AZ
480-270-5000

Scottsdale International Film Festival

Started in 2001, the Scottsdale International Film Festival offers award-winning films from around the world. For over ten days in the cool month of November, this is your chance to expand your horizon and watch films you may not have access to or wouldn’t ordinarily see. With films from every genre, there are films for everyone’s taste.

Scottsdale International Film Festival
Harkins Shea 14 Theatre
7354 East Shea Boulevard
Scottsdale, AZ 85260

Fountain Hills Festival of Arts & Crafts

This popular event started back in 1974 with a few thousand visitors. Now over 200,000 visitors attend every year, making the Fountain Hills Festival of Arts & Crafts (also known as the Fountain Festival) is one of the largest arts & crafts events in the southwest. Taking place each February, the festival attracts nearly 500 artists and food vendors and live music. The festival is set up next to the famous fountain and Fountain Hills Lake. Vendors offer jewelry, photography, sculpture, woodworking, artwork, pottery, fine arts and tacky souvenirs, textiles, Native American goods, clothing, and local food items. Admission and parking are free, and there’s a beer garden!

Fountain Hills Festival of Arts & Crafts
12925 North Saguaro Blvd.
Fountain Hills, AZ
480-837-1654

Tempe Festival of the Arts

Twice a year, in early December and again in late March, this long three-day weekend festival takes over Mill Avenue in downtown Tempe (less than 10 miles from Scottsdale). The festival has live music, street performers and vendor booths from over 350 artists from around the country. There are food vendors, including the popular “Main Lobster Lady,” fine art to fun, goofy souvenirs, and booths with locally produced food items. Items for sale include art and crafts made of fiber, leather, glass, mixed media, wood, ceramics, metal and upcycled crafts, and jewelry, sculptures, furniture, photography, ceramics & pottery, clothing, and plenty of booths selling fun things for your furry friends. Admission is free to this popular event.

3105 Mill Avenue, Ste A-201
Tempe, AZ
480-355-6060

McDowell Mountain Music Festival

Established in 2004, the McDowell Mountain Music Festival is a three-day festival taking place in downtown Phoenix in early March. The festival takes place in the lovely Margaret T. Hance Park and has a Central Park vibe. Past headliners have included Beck, Kid Cudi, and the Avett Brothers. Also known as the M3F, this music festival strives to be more than just great music. The festival’s motto is “Community, culture and charity” –the 3 C’s –and all of the festival proceeds benefit the Phoenix Children’s Hospital Foundation and the UMOM New Day Center. The M3F is a great way to enjoy great music while helping the community.

Margaret T. Hance Park
1200 North 1stStreet
Phoenix, AZ

And More…

There are so many other Scottsdale festivals and events taking place throughout the year. You won’t have trouble finding something exciting to do while you’re here. Here are just a few more to consider as you plan your trip to Scottsdale:

• Gelato Festival America, October
• Arizona Taco Festival, October
• Mac & Cheese Festival, November
• Arizona Polish Festival
• Scottsdale Culinary Festival

From Energetic Scottsdale Events to Cozy Homes

Return from all of the excitement and fun of these festivals and events to the comfort of a Parsons Villas vacation rental, and end the day in style. Browse our available selection, and book your stay by contacting us today!

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Looking for a great place for you and your buddies to have that fun getaway? Look no further than Scottsdale! Whether you are planning a college reunion, bachelor party, or just a few days with some close friends, there are plenty of Scottsdale attractions to keep you guys busy.

Day 1 – Penske Racing Museum

With its amazing collection of cars, trophies, and racing memorabilia, the Penske Racing Museum showcases the Penske dynasty of racing. Vehicles on exhibit rotate, but the racing cars you may see include a Penske PC-6, March 86C, and a 1973 Porsche IROC RSR. If you are interested in cars and/or racing, head to this museum.

Penske Racing Museum
7191 East Chauncy Lane
Phoenix, AZ
480-538-4444

Day 2 – Golf

The weather in Scottsdale is great for golfing year-round, even in the summer. The lower green fees make the higher temperatures a little more bearable. One of the public facilities in the area is Troon North Golf Club with its two courses. Nestled up against the base of Pinnacle Peak is Troon North’s Pinnacle Course, a classic desert golf course. Troon North’s Monument Course is named for the giant boulder on the third hole. Of course, you can also try your skills on the Champions Course and Stadium Course at TPC Scottsdale, home to the Waste Management Phoenix Open. If you trip coincides with the tournament, you can always relax and watch some amazing golf.

Troon North Golf Club
10320 East Dynamite Boulevard
Scottsdale, AZ
480-585-7700

Day 3 – Rock Climbing

Are you and your guys feeling agile and ready for an activity to pit your strength, balance, and endurance against each other? Then go rock climbing in one of the numerous climbing spots around the Scottsdale area, a favorite Scottsdale attraction. A favorite climb of locals is Tom’s Thumb, a 200-foot tall granite dome with over 30 routes to the summit. Or, take a guided tour that is tailored to your abilities and preferences. If you are feeling really adventurous, add rappelling to your trip.

360-Adventure Tours
480-418-7816
tours@360-adventures.com

Day 4 – Go-Karts

Feel like a kid again with some go-kart racing. Octane Raceway has both indoor and outdoor courses and caters to kids of all ages. They specialize in group outings. Spend an exciting afternoon racing against your gang.

Octane Raceways
9119 East Talking Stick Way
Scottsdale, AZ
602-302-7223

Day 5 – Horseback Riding

Imagine yourself back in the Old West, riding horseback through the desert with the McDowell Mountains on the horizon. You can have that experience and more at MacDonald’s Ranch. They offer horseback rides, stagecoach rides, cowboy cookouts, and their outings are perfect groups and small parties. View the desert from a different perspective on horseback as you ride down scenic trails with your guys.

MacDonald’s Ranch
26540 North Scottsdale Road
Scottsdale, AZ
480-585-0239

Day 6 – Fishing

Yes, you can have a fishing adventure in the desert! Take a guided fishing adventure on one of the area’s lakes, one of the most popular Scottsdale attractions. Your guide will take you to where the fish are biting, and fishing in these crystal-clear lakes for largemouth bass or stripers is great fun. This is a great idea for groups since all you have to do is worry about having fun and catching fish; everything else is taken care of!

The Hook Up Outfitters
888-899-4665

Day 7 – ATV Tour and Machine Gun Adventure

Take a guided tour through the desert on an ATV. Drive deep into the Sonoran Desert over rocky desert terrain while keeping an eye out for coyotes, javelina, and deer. Get all the thrills of off-roading through the desert while learning about the history and wildlife of this wonderful desert area from your guide. There are many ATV tour companies in the area, but book a tour through Desert Wolf Tours and try their ATV & Machine Gun Adventure for a little twist.

Desert Wolf Tours – ATV tour and Machine Gun Adventure
https://desertwolftours.com/arizona-tours/atv-tour-machine-gun-adventure/
877-613-9653
info@desertwolftours.com

Day 8 – Ale Trail

Why not spend a tasty afternoon crawling along the Old Town Ale Trail? Old Town has over seven breweries and beerhouses with over 30 craft breweries in the greater Scottsdale area including the Scapegoat Beer & Wine Bar, Two Brothers Tap House, Brat Hause, Papago Brewing Company, and the Pig & Pickle. Be sure to try the Big Mouth Blond at the Scottsdale Beer Company, and the Hop Knot IPA at Four Peaks Brewing Company. Not a craft brew fan? Maybe the Scottsdale Coffee Trail and Scottsdale Wine Trail will work. Download a map for all of the Old Town Trails and taste at your own pace.

Day 9 – Talking Stick Casino

Time for poker! Talking Stick Resort and Casino’s Arena Poker Room is home to the Arizona State Poker Championship, and you can join in one of the daily poker tournaments or try your hand at one of the over 50 table games, including Blackjack, High Card Flush, or Casino War.
Craps, Roulette, and more than 900 multi-denominational play slots are waiting for you. Feeling lucky?

Talking Stick Resort and Casino
9800 East Talking Stick Way
Scottsdale, AZ 85256
480-850-7777

Day 10 – Whitewater Rafting Tour

You can spend the day swimming, fly-fishing and tubing down the Salt River, but why not take things up a notch with some white water rafting? Book a guided rafting tour down the river for a day or half-day of excitement and beautiful scenery. Salt River Rafting, Arizona Rafting by Wilderness Aware and Advantage Grand Canyon all offer whitewater rafting adventures.

Salt River Rafting
2827 E. Blanche
Phoenix, AZ 85032
800-425-5253

Day 11 – Hot Air Ballooning

It’s time for a hot air balloon ride! You can’t help but take great photographs as you float effortlessly among the clouds, viewing the Sonoran Desert from a new perspective thousands of feet up in the air. Close enough to see wildlife—deer, javelina, coyotes, and roadrunners—but high enough for an amazing 360-degree view of the area. Try morning or evening balloon flights for some of the most glorious sunrises and sunsets you will see from any Scottsdale adventures! Aerogelic Ballooning and 360-Adventure Tours are two of several local companies in the area that can get your hot air adventure on its way.

Aerogelic Ballooning
526 N 74th Street
Scottsdale, AZ
480.991.4260

Kick Back in Style After Enjoying Scottsdale Attractions

When you and the guys are beat after a long day of fun and excitement, kick back in the comfortable accommodations of a villa from Parsons Villas. Browse our available rentals, and contact us today to book your stay.

There are so many fun things to do in the lovely desert city of Scottsdale! Whether you are in town with your BFFs for a long weekend, to reconnect with your old college friends, or for a bachelorette party, this city has plenty to keep your girls occupied. Get ready to make some great memories with great friends with these top things to do in Scottsdale.

Day 1 – Desert Botanical Garden

Located in nearby Phoenix, the Desert Botanical Garden has over 50,000 species of native plants spread over 140 acres in the beautiful Sonoran Desert. There are five different loop trails, each with a specific focus. Hike to the top of the Sonoran Desert Loop Trail for an expansive view of the surrounding mountains, and if the season is right, you can watch hummingbirds visiting the vibrant desert wildflowers and blooming cactus as you stroll along the Wildflower Loop Trail. These easy and moderate trails and the beautiful scenery will get your trip off to a great start.

Desert Botanical Garden
1201 North Galvin Parkway
Phoenix, AZ
1-480-941-1225

DAY 2 – Guided Desert Tour

Take a guided tour through the beautiful Sonoran Desert. Hike or bike on half-day and full-day tours. Imagine hiking up rocky mountain trails, or cycling along a desert trail between towering cacti. There are many tour companies in the area; give Arizona Outback Adventures a try. They will arrange a guided adventure that will be the highlight of your trip to the Sonoran Desert.

Arizona Outback Adventures
17465 N. 93rd Street
Scottsdale, AZ
866-455-1601

Day 3 – Shopping

After a long day hiking or biking, get ready for some serious exercise: shopping! Scottsdale is well-known for its shopping venues (it’s one of the top things to do in Scottsdale), and the Scottsdale Fashion Square Mall is one of the largest shopping venues in the Southwest. Head to the upscale Scottsdale Fashion Square Mall and stroll through more than 225 stores and restaurants. Shopping, dinner, and then a movie? It’s all here at the Scottsdale Fashion Square Mall.

Scottsdale Fashion Square Mall
7014-950 East Camelback Road
Scottsdale, AZ
480-949-0202

Day 4 – Food Tour

Take it easy after your shopping marathon. Take a bike, Segway, or trolley as you eat your way through the city. Try the Taste of Old Town Lunch Tour or the Scottsdale “Sip ‘N Sample” Happy Hour Tour from Arizona Food Tours (480-386-9038). Tour Old Town on your own, then go on the Trolley Dessert Tour (Taste It Tours, 480-274-3569). Indulge yourself with handcrafted chocolate, gelato and more.

Day 5 – Old Town

You can’t visit Scottsdale without visiting Old Town, it’s one of the top things to do in Scottsdale. Get ready for more shopping and dining! Stroll through the many boutiques, art galleries, and shops in this historic center of town. There are fine art shops, wonderfully tacky souvenir shops, western art and contemporary art galleries. If you’re visiting on a Thursday night, join the Art Walk, a Scottsdale Arts District open house. Afterward, grab a table at one of the many drinking establishments’ sidewalk patios and people watch while you sip your favorite adult beverage.

Old Town Scottsdale
602-617-1211
admin@oldtownscottsdale.com

Day 6 – Horseback Riding

MacDonald’s Ranch offers horseback rides, stagecoach rides, and hayrides. Horseback and stagecoach rides are offered for private and group experiences, and there is also a lovely moonlight tour option for each. And, for the girls who haven’t ever ridden, don’t worry; the guides will match the right horse to each rider’s riding experience. Your guides will give you the history of the area and educate you on the flora and fauna while you ride. Ride through the desert on horseback. The terrain is gentle, and the scenery is gorgeous—a great memory for your trip!

MacDonald’s Ranch
26540 N. Scottsdale Road
Scottsdale, AZ
480-585-0239
macranch@macdonaldsranch.com

Day 7 – Spa Day

End your last day with some serious pampering. There are so many spas in the city to choose from! Try the New Serenity Spa for their “upgraded” Swedish massage, a Hot Stone Massage, the Serenity Facial and Massage Package, or their Hydra Facials. And who couldn’t use a Miracle Facial!

New Serenity Spa
15609 North Hayden Road
Scottsdale, AZ
480-998-6991

Day 8 – Hot Air Balloon Ride

Let’s get up in the clouds for a hot air balloon ride! Take in amazing views of the craggy mountain peaks and dusty Sonoran Desert as you float along, thousands of feet in the air. A morning or evening balloon flight with glorious sunrises and sunsets will be the highlight of your Scottsdale getaway! Aerogelic Ballooning and 360-Adventure Tours are two of several local companies in the area that can get your hot air adventure on its way.

Aerogelic Ballooning
526 N 74th Street
Scottsdale, AZ
480.991.4260

Day 9 – The Salt River

The Salt River is the perfect place for all the water activities you love. Spend a day lazing on the shoreline catching up on things, or take a slow, lazy tube ride past towering cliffs and desert flats. Hire a guide for a day of fly fishing where depending on your location and the season you’ll be landing trout (perfect for grilling!), large and smallmouth bass, and carp. Put a little excitement in your getaway and book a guided rafting tour down the river for a day or half-day of excitement and beautiful scenery.

Salt River Rafting2827
E. Blanche
Phoenix, AZ 85032
800-425-5253

Day 10 – Drinking Trails

Do you and your girls have an appreciation of fine wine or craft beer? Why not spend an afternoon on a self-guided tasting tour? Old Town has over seven breweries and beerhouses with over 30 craft breweries in the area including the Scapegoat Beer & Wine Bar, Two Brothers Tap House, Papago Brewing Company, and the Pig & Pickle. Wine lovers shouldn’t miss the Carlson Creek Tasting Room and Aridus Wine Company. If beer and wine tasting isn’t your thing, try the Scottsdale Coffee Trail. Download a map for all of the Old Town Trails and taste at your own pace or take a guided tour (with no worries about driving).

Enjoy the Top Things to Do in Scottsdale in Style

There is no better place to return to after a long day out with the girls than a luxury vacation rental from Parsons Villas! Browse our available selection of rentals, and contact us to reserve your stay today!

Spring is a wonderful time to visit Scottsdale. And, with temperatures hovering between 50° and 80°, the weather is perfect for outdoor activities. Make the most of your trip to the Sonoran Desert and Scottsdale by getting outside while the weather is so perfect, and enjoy these great things to see in Scottsdale.

Day 1 – Spring Training

If you’re in town in February or March, you’ll be able to watch spring training. Baseball fans have been coming to the area since the 1940s to get a head start on the season. The San Francisco Giants play at Scottsdale Stadium in the heart of Old Town, and the Colorado Rockies and Arizona Diamondbacks play at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick. This is baseball at its best. The crowds are smaller and spring training gives you a chance to see teams as they work out the kinks before the regular season starts.

Day 2 – Guided Desert Tour

Hike or bike through the desert before the weather turns too hot. Arizona Outback Adventures can organize half-day, full-day, and multi-day desert adventures for your group. They offer hiking, biking, and backpacking tours. Imagine hiking up rugged, rocky mountain trails, or cycling along a desert trail between towering cacti. AOA will arrange a guided adventure that will be the highlight of your trip to the Sonoran Desert.

Arizona Outback Adventures
17465 N. 93rd Street
Scottsdale, AZ
866-455-1601

Day 3 – Desert Botanical Gardens

The Desert Botanical Garden should be on your list of things to see in Scottsdale no matter what time of year you visit the area. Minutes away in nearby Phoenix, with over 140 acres in the beautiful Sonoran Desert, the gardens have five different loop trails, each with a different focus and feel. Hike to the top of the Sonoran Desert Loop Trail for an amazing view of the surrounding mountains and walk through the Center for Desert Living Trail to surround yourself in the colors and fragrances that only the Sonoran desert can produce. And, if the season is right, you can watch hummingbirds visiting the vibrant desert wildflowers and blooming cactus as you stroll along the wildflower loop trail.

Desert Botanical Garden
1201 North Galvin Parkway
Phoenix, AZ
1-480-941-1225

Day 4 – McDowell Sonoran Preserve

The Scottsdale McDowell Sonoran Preserve has over 120 miles of desert trails, with accessible trails and designated rock climbing areas. There are five trailheads to choose from, and you can hike, run, bike, or ride horseback through cacti forests, rocky desert terrain, and mountains. The trails vary in length, difficulty, and terrain so there is a trail to fit every visitor’s taste and fitness level. The preserve is packed with desert wildlife including roadrunners, snakes and lizards, mule deer and javelina. A trip to the preserve is a great way to get some exercise while the weather is perfect.

McDowell Sonoran Preserve
Scottsdale, AZ
480-998-7971
lori@mcdowellsonoran.org

Day 5 – Rock Climbing

Spring is a good time for rock climbing since the weather (and the rocks) aren’t too hot yet. If you are looking for an adventure to test your strength, balance, and endurance, and great things to see in Scottsdale, then go rock climbing. While there are numerous climbing spots around the Scottsdale area, a favorite climb of locals is Tom’s Thumb, a 200-foot tall granite dome. Or, take a guided tour that is tailored to your abilities and preferences.

360-Adventure Tours
480-418-7816
tours@360-adventures.com

Day 6 – Frank Lloyd Wright’s Taliesin West

Frank Lloyd Wright’s Taliesin West in Scottsdale is a National Historic Landmark. Set in a Sonoran Desert Preserve, Taliesin West is a perfect example of Wright’s later architectural style. His buildings rise up and out of the desert rocks as if they are a part of them and his design style of intermingling indoor and outdoor spaces is on full display here. There are several tours you can take, including the Panorama Tour, the Night Lights Tour, and Desert “Shelter” Tour. Taliesin West in the spring is a wondrous place, whether you are an architecture buff or not.

Frank Lloyd Wright’s Taliesin West
12345 North Taliesin Drive
Scottsdale, AZ
480-860-2700

Day 7 – Sonoran Desert Stargazing

At night, a desert is a magical place. And the stars look so close and so bright! Plan a stargazing tour as an end to a day of hiking, biking or rock climbing. This stargazing adventure includes a one-hour presentation by a professional Astronomer on the wonders of the universe as seen from the beautiful Sonoran desert. Use professional grade telescopes for an up close and personal look at the stars.

360-Adventure Tours
480-418-7816
tours@360-adventures.com

Day 8 – Wildflower Hikes

Spring is when the desert explodes in color! Purple lupine, yellow brittlebush, golden poppies and other vibrant wildflowers begin to bloom in mid-February and reach their peak in March and April. We suggest the following trails for wildflower viewing: The Bajada Nature Trail, Taliesin Overlook, Granite Mountain Loop Trail in the McDowell Sonoran Preserve, and the Pinnacle Peak summit trail. The Harriet K. Maxwell Desert Wildflower Loop Trail in the Desert Botanical Gardens is the perfect place for a leisurely stroll through the flowering desert plants –and the hummingbirds love it too!

Day 9 – Scottsdale Arts Festival

The Scottsdale ArtsFestival is a three-day celebration “of all things creative.” More than 175 vendors come together to show off their creative efforts. The Festival takes place every March at the Scottsdale Civic Center Park(where you’ll find the famous LOVE sculpture), complete with booths featuring artists from around the world, local food trucks, adult beverages, live music and lots of family-friendly fun.

Scottsdale Civic Center Park
7343 East Scottsdale Mall
Scottsdale, AZ
480-946-0674

Day 10 – Arizona Bike Week

In the beginning of April, the bikers arrive in Scottsdale’s WestWorld for Arizona Bike Week. To say this is a Bike Rally doesn’t do it justice. This is a bike rally on steroids. Bike Week has developed into two parts: the Motorcycle Rally in the Poweryard outdoor exhibit space, and the Music Fest with concerts in the Rockyard. The Poweryard is the spot to find vendors, daily stunt shows, exhibitions, contests and games, bike shows, local bands, demos, the HandleBar Saloon, and the Rally Girls. And when you’re in town for Biker Week, a few “biker-friendly” bars are the Dirty Dogg Saloon, Moe’s Roadhouse, Boondock’s and Chopper John’s.

Arizona Bike Week
WestWorld of Scottsdale
16601 North Pima Road
Scottsdale, AZ 85260

Day 11 – Heard Museum Guild Indian Art Fair & Market

The Heard Museum Guild’s Indian Art Fair & Market has been an annual event every March since 1959. A venue for Native American artists to display and sell their work, the Fair & Market now features more than 600 Native American artists. This is your chance to talk to the Native American artists as you consider purchasing their wares. Authentic handmade works include jewelry, pottery, doll carvers, bead workers, weavers and more. You can also enjoy artist demonstrations, cultural performances and traditional Native American foods.

Heard Museum
2301 North Central Avenue
Phoenix, AZ 85004
602-252-8840

The Final Thing to See in Scottsdale: Parsons Villas

The beautiful villas of Parsons Villas are the last thing you need to see in Scottsdale and the best place to stay in Scottsdale! Browse our selection of rentals today, and contact us to book your stay!

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The Southwest is beautiful in the fall, and with high temperatures in the 60s and 70s during the day, this desert area is extremely comfortable. Festivals and events are scheduled throughout the winter months, and the holiday season in the desert will make for some awesome memories. Here are a variety of events for the Scottsdale winter season.

Day 1 – Desert Botanical Gardens

You should visit the Desert Botanical Gardens every time you visit Scottsdale. With over 50,000 species of native plants and over 140 acres in the Sonoran Desert, the garden is always changing and you will see something new with each visit to this desert garden. One of the most popular events the garden hosts is Los Noches de Las Luminarias. For several nights during the holiday season, the garden’s trails are illuminated by over 8,000 hand-lit luminaries. Listen to live music, sip warm cocoa and cider, and stroll through the sparkling desert trails. Start off your holiday season with this area tradition.

Desert Botanical Gardens
1201 North Galvin Parkway
Phoenix, AZ
480-941-1225

Day 2 – Phoenix Zoo

Located just minutes from Scottsdale, the Phoenix Zoo has play areas for the kids, camel rides, a giraffe encounter and plenty of animals. And it has the only walk-through squirrel monkey exhibit in the country. Another holiday tradition is Zoo Lights when millions of lights line the zoo’s paths, there is a 200-ft polar slide and live reindeer. Visiting the zoo at night, lit with millions of sparkly festive holiday lights, will provide you and your family with memories to last a lifetime.

Phoenix Zoo
455 North Galvin Parkway
Phoenix, AZ
602-286-3800

Day 3 – Scottsdazzle

For a special holiday, head to Scottsdazzle and enjoy the month-long holiday celebration in Old Town during December. Most events are free, and many are kid-friendly. Enjoy the Tree Lighting & Sing-along, Feliz Navidad Festival, and stroll down Fifth Avenue, which is transformed into a Scottsdale winter wonderland complete with Sugar Plum Fairies and Nutcracker performances. Adult activities include the Gold Palette Art Walk, The Santa Wine Around & Ale Trail. This month-long festival could be your family’s new holiday tradition.

Scottsdazzle
City of Scottsdale Tourism & Events
7506 East Indian School Road
Scottsdale, AZ
480-312-7177

Day 4 – Barrett-Jackson Classic Car Auction

Billed as the “granddaddy of all car events,” the Barrett-Jackson Classic Car Auction takes place in the middle of January. This auction brings collectors and spectators from around the world to Scottsdale to see the world’s finest collection of classic cars. If you can’t make it to the auction, you can watch it live-streamed on the Discovery Channel. It’s a must-see event for all car enthusiasts during the Scottsdale winter season.

Barrett-Jackson Classic Car Auction
West World
16601 North Pima Road
Scottsdale, AZ

Day 5 – The Heard Museum World Championship Hoop Dance Contest

And, now for something completely different. Each February, top American Indian and Canadian First Nations hoop dancers compete at the Heard Museum in Phoenix for cash prizes and the chance to call themselves World Champion for a year. Each dancer presents their own interpretation of this traditional intertribal dance, and individual dancers use from four to fifty hoops at a time. Watch this amazing display of artistic expression, traditional ceremonies, athletic ability, and imagination as dancers vie for the title.

The Heard Museum
2301 North Central Avenue
Phoenix, AZ
602-252-8840

Day 6 – Scottsdale Arabian Horse Show

Who doesn’t love to watch the beautiful prancing of Arabian horses! With their distinctive wedge-shaped heads held high, arched necks and high tail carriage, they are beautiful in motion. Since 1955, the Arabian Horse Show has been held every February in Scottsdale. With over 2,000 horses on display and competing, the top owners, trainers, and breeders from all over the world come to the show. Whether you come to buy or just marvel at their beauty, intelligence, and agility, the Arabian Horse Show is the place to watch the best of these magnificent animals shine during the Scottsdale winter season.

Scottsdale Arabian Horse Show
West World
16601 North Pima Road
Scottsdale, AZ

Day 7 – The Waste Management Phoenix Open

Known in golfing circles as “The Greatest Show on Grass,” The Waste Management Phoenix Open is held in Scottsdale each February. The best-attended tournament in the world on a PGA course, the Stadium Course at TPC Scottsdale provides its spectators with exciting golf year after year and a great party. Come early or stay late for the opportunity to play on the course or just grab some tickets and watch some world-class golf. If you can’t make the tourney, you don’t have to miss out on the golf. Winter is the perfect time of year here in Scottsdale for golf and there are many premier golf courses in the area like the Troon North Pinnacle and Monument courses.

The Waste Management Phoenix Open
TPC Scottsdale
17020 North Hayden Road
Scottsdale, AZ

Day 8 – Arizona Fine Art Expo

The popular Arizona Fine Arts Expo takes place in January through March. Besides browsing through booths and galleries, you have the opportunity to meet the artists in their studios. Watch them as they create their masterpieces, then browse some more. Sculpture, fine art, ceramics, jewelry and more –there will be something here for every collector.

Arizona Fine Art Expo
26540 North Scottsdale Road
Scottsdale, AZ

Day 9 – Waterfront Fine Art & Wine Festival

February is a busy month here in Scottsdale! One of the many festivals taking place this month is the Waterfront Fine Art & Wine Festival. Strung out along the banks of the Waterfront in downtown Scottsdale, the festival combines two popular indulgences –wine and fine art. The waterfront bustles with activities, live music, tasting booths overflowing with award-winning wines, and artists offering their works of art for viewing and sale.

Waterfront Fine Art & Wine Festival
Downtown Scottsdale, Waterfront
7135 Camelback Road
Scottsdale, AZ

Day 10 – Scottsdale Western Week

Another popular festival beginning in February is Western Week when Old Town turns back history. This weeklong festival has expanded over the years to include the Western Spirit Gold Palette ArtWalk, the Hashknife Pony Express, the Parada del Sol Parade, the Trail’s End Festival, and the Arizona Indian Festival. Striving to provide a better understanding of Arizona’s Native American communities, WesternWeek is an inter-tribe event highlighting the culture, traditional art, crafts and foods of local Native American tribes and the spirited Old West. Western Spirit: Scottsdale’s Museum of the West also offers free admission to the museum for several days during Western Week.

Day 11 – The Desert!

With average daily temperatures in the high to mid-sixties, the winter months are a great time to experience the Sonoran Desert. Hiking, mountain biking, riding ATVs and horses –no matter how you get out into the desert, the weather is perfect. The McDowell Sonoran Preserve and Pinnacle Peak Park have miles of dusty, rocky trails leading through towering cacti and around hulking boulders up to peaks with amazing panoramic views. It’s a great time to enjoy the desert since it’s not too hot or too cold, and all those pretty rattlesnakes are off hibernating.

The Best Places to Stay During the Scottsdale Winter Season

While it never gets too cold in Arizona, the rentals offered by Parsons Villas are sure to keep you warm and cozy! Browse our available selection, and book your stay today!

Arizona Vacation Rentals

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