If you’re looking to go on vacation and avoid the winter cold, consider Scottsdale, Arizona as your refuge for pampering and rejuvenation. Known for its spa resorts and luxury golf courses, Scottsdale’s desert climate ensures you’ll be kept warm during your stay while basking in the sun. As the more affluent part of the greater Phoenix metro area, expect art galleries, fine dining, bars, nightclubs, pool clubs, and upscale shopping, for an even more luxurious winter escape.
Old Town Scottsdale
Go shopping, enjoy fine dining, and have a glimpse into the city’s past in Old Town Scottsdale. Browse the district’s high-end shops and chic boutiques offering traditional hand-crafted jewelry and products from glamorous labels. The city’s robust restaurant scene means there’s an abundance of cafes, bars, gastropubs, and markets for you to satiate whatever cravings you might have. Take a trolley or walking tour for an inside look at everything the district has to offer and learn about the city’s Old West history along the way.
Visiting Scottsdale almost requires a game of golf. A paradise for those who enjoy teeing off, there are approximately 50 golf courses ranging from championship courses to the humble budget and easier courses. Wintertime weather in Scottsdale is ideal for playing golf since your options of both indoor and outdoor courses or ranges are available. Never played before? Take a few lessons before whacking the golf ball.
Architecture lovers will be happy to know that the 600-acre Taliesin West complex is located just northeast of Scottsdale in the Sonoran Desert. Designed and built by Frank Lloyd Wright, the complex is a National Historic Landmark and UNESCO World Heritage site and houses the School of Architecture at Taliesin. Visit the former home of the American architect and see the intricate details applied to the building itself down to the furniture inside. Select from a variety of tours to explore the complex or discover how it was built with native materials.
Relax at a luxury resort spa. You won’t even realize it’s wintertime while sitting in an outdoor whirlpool or being pampered with a revitalizing massage. Scottsdale is known for its wide selection of award-winning spas and is a popular retreat for those looking for a vacation geared towards unwinding. Have access to pools and fitness centers or experience Asian-inspired treatments or other forms of spa therapy. The bright sunshine, gorgeous weather, and stunning desert are the perfect ingredients for a winter spa vacation.
Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art
Scottsdale isn’t just all about golfing and spas, it has a vibrant arts scene and is host to an extensive collection of art. The Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art (SMoCA) features exhibitions on modern and contemporary art, architecture, and design. Located in the Old Town district, the museum is home to Arizona-based artist James Turrell’s piece, Knight Rise. Check out the SMoCA for its permanent collection, events, and visiting exhibitions.
McCormick-Stillman Railroad Park
For those with younger travel companions or who are just interested in trains, visit the McCormick-Stillman Railroad Park. Ride the Paradise & Pacific Railroad – a miniature railway and the park’s oldest and first attraction – or the restored Charro Carrousel. The 40-acre railroad park houses various train and railroad exhibits and a museum. Learn about the park’s past and see the Swiss Railway Clock, the Navajo Hogans, the Roald Amundsen Pullman Car, and various other historical artifacts. The park also includes two children’s playgrounds designed in a Southwestern theme for some fun times in the sun.