Did I mention I don't like to be cold?
While Arizona can make you reach for your sweatshirt the moment the sun goes down - the desert sure holds a special place in my heart. Also compared to California, Arizona is cheaper, but that's probably not a shock. Eating out for two is affordable, and access to tacos is as accessible as finding a Starbucks in CA. One on every corner. Ahhhh how I love Arizona.
Here is a quick guide to what do, see, eat, and pack* for your trip. Leave your suggestions in the comments below!
Itinerary: Phoenix, Arizona
*This is not a complete packing list. Use this as a guide to extra things to pack on top of underwear and your toothbrush.
Extras to Pack:
- Walking Shoes
Cartel Coffee Lab - okay I may have only picked this place for the name, but the coffee was good too! I was looking for a coffee shop that was more of an experience, and this place didn't disappoint. My goal is to find a new coffee shop each time I travel! What's your favorite?
What to See:
Desert Botanical Garden
View the desert and all of its beauty in this one location.
Can you say cactus galore! This place is something else. So many cacti it's unbelievable. It's close to the airport, so if you are looking for a stop before your flight home, this is your place.
There are various trails that you can stroll along and snag some awesome photos. Everything is self-paced, so you won't feel rushed at all. If you need a more tangible souvenier be sure to stop by the garden shop on your way out!
Gold Canyon Resort
This trip I opted to leave my golf clubs at home, and blog instead... you're welcome ;) I like this resort because Alex could golf and I got to sit outside at the bar and enjoy the sunshine. There is also a spa on site; I recommend making an appointment.
Side note: The average round of golf takes about 4 - 4 1/2 hours to complete. While I love blogging there was no way I was sitting around for 4 hours.
I was able to get a manicure at the spa, and then it was back to blogging in the sun while Alex finished his round. I would recommend this resort for any group that may want to venture off to do separate activities.
Downtown Chandler - is a close enough drive to Phoenix, and it is a cute little area to walk around. Walk off dinner as you stroll through downtown and see all the various shops. Maybe even find your way into dessert!
We stopped by the SanTan Brewing Company and huge soft pretzels - they said it was an appetizer. More like a meal!
What to Eat:
Mucha Lucha Taco - Okay while access to tacos in Arizona is unlimited. This place was able to get me to come back twice during my trip! I would suggest getting their red carnitas, in whatever you order, it was like a party in my mouth!
The taco selection was plentiful, the street tacos were authentic, and the salsas were actually spicy! My heart was full.
Ghett Yo Tacos - Great prices, and plenty of options. (remember this California girl can't get over the prices!) They also sell mini churros! The churros were different from what I'm used to, but they still melted in my mouth!
I wish I would have tried their nopals (cactus) tacos. I made sure to not make this mistake when I was in Scottsdale a few weeks later. Nopal tacos are a great vegetarian option and can usually be made vegan as well. Don't make my mistake try them!
Also be nice to the young lady working the counter, the day we went she was a server, busser, and waitress for the whole restaurant, and did it all with a smile!
Are you a Phoenix local? Do you have your favorite spots you like to frequent, share them with me and I'll make a note of them the next time I'm in town!
Also be on the lookout for my next article about Scottsdale!