Jul 4, 2019 - Jul 5, 2019
2 guests - 1 room
Phoenix has grown to become one of America's largest metro areas, and it's also added many hotels to accommodate business travelers and vacationers. You'll find most of the hotel options within Phoenix city limits, and in the smaller adjacent cities just to the east and southeast. If you want to stay to the west of the city, suburban Glendale is thin on options, but Avondale has a collection of higher-end chains. If you're flying into Sky Harbor International Airport, you won't find any hotels directly on site, but there are many options clustered around its edges ranging from budget to luxury.
Phoenix is one of America's premier destinations for "snowbirds", or part-time residents who ride out the winter there. Many snowbirds either own homes or travel with an RV, but you'll still see higher traffic than usual to hotels during the winter months, especially on weekends. While much of the country is buried in snow, Phoenix enjoys daily temperatures that average in the high 60s. Though tourism is high throughout the winter due to the climate alone, there's a particular peak in March when the desert wildflowers are in bloom.
The low season in Phoenix is the inverse of much of the rest of the country. Tourists tend to stay away during the summer when the temperature is usually over 100 degrees every day (and can range up to 120 at the highest). Thunderstorms are also frequent in late July and August, though they are sometimes welcome as they can bring temporary relief from the heat! Hotels have trouble filling their rooms while the summer sun is this intense, and you'll find the best prices at this time of year. The fall and spring months are a good compromise between these two extremes. Hotel rates tend to be reasonable, but the weather is like summer in much of the rest of the country with days averaging in the high 80s.
The Phoenix metro area is one of the country's largest, so you can expect there to be many major events and festivals there throughout the year. The year kicks off in January with the PGA Tour's FBR Phoenix Open, college football's Fiesta Bowl, the Barrett-Jackson Antique Auto Auction and the Arizona National Boat Show. February brings the Arizona Travel Show, the Arabian Horse Show, and Phoenix is also a frequent choice to host the Super Bowl due to the consistently mild weather. March is the start of spring training in the area for many professional baseball teams. April is usually when Phoenix has its LGBT Pride Week, and NASCAR comes to town with the Subway Fresh 500. May and June are usually relatively quiet, but you'll see a big turnout in July for the Independence Day celebration. October brings big crowds for the Arizona State Fair, and you'll also see significant Christmas crowds in December for the Nautical Parade of Lights and the Fiesta Bowl Parade.
Phoenix has several suburbs and can take a good hour or better in the worst traffic to get from the airport to the farthest edges like Surprise, Peoria or Sun City. Scottsdale & Mesa are a bit closer. Great Restaurants & shopping. And scenic views. Drive North an hour to Sedona for great boutique shopping & cultural flavor. Fantastic views from patio bars & hotel rooms at reasonable prices off season. Bring your walking shoes. It is handicapped accessible most everywhere, but lots of inclines & ramped access. A few restaurants were not ideal for scooters or wheelchairs, but could accommodate with effort. There are also many scenic lookout stops for photos on the drive to & from Sedona. Don’t miss them! The Grand Canyon is just a short drive away too or book a helicopter tour over or train ride down into the canyon!
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I nabbed an internship in Phoenix last summer, and lived here for 12 weeks. The problem with Phoenix (from an East-Coaster's perspective), is that there is a downtown, but there's no vibrancy. If you're looking for some nightlife in this area, head to Scottsdale. Don't even think about using the public transportation system here. Yes, the light rail is nicer than most modes of public transportation in cities around the U.S., but since it doesn't really stop at any major attractions, it's not ideal for those who want to really explore the city. You must have a car.