Scottsdale, Arizona: where to go, when to go and what to see

While certainly not a metropolis, small but populous Scottsdale manages to attract visitors thanks to some incredible attractions that include parks, museums, shopping areas and concert halls.

Like the rest of Arizona, Scottsdale is also famous for scorching summer temperatures it's a landscape dotted with saguaro cactus, but there is much more: the Old Town, the Art District and cultural attractions, natural parks but also bars, restaurants and huge golf courses. Here's where it is, when to go and what to see in Scottsdale.


  1. Travel informed: useful information
  2. Where it is
  3. When to go? Info on climate and best time
  4. 10 things to see in and around Scottsdale
  5. What to do in Scottsdale: excursions and tours
  6. How much does it cost to visit Scottsdale? Prices, offers and advice
  7. User questions and comments

Travel informed: useful information

  • Inhabitants: 255.310
  • Language: English Spanish
  • Local currency: US dollar (€ 1,00 = $ 1,11)
  • Weather: the climate is arid. Temperatures range from -8,9 ° C in January to 50 ° C in June
  • Time zone: GMT-7 (-7h compared to Italy)
  • Entry requirements: Passport with residual validity of at least 6 months, round trip ticket, ESTA authorization, visa in case the latter is refused
  • Safety info: the overall crime rate is 11 percentage points below the average for American cities. The official website of the Farnesina provides useful information on the country's security.
  • Closest airports: Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport is 15 km away, the city can be reached in approximately 30 minutes. The cheapest way to do this is to take the ValleyMetro light rail, a day pass costs $ 4,00 (€ 3,63).

Where it is

Scottsdale is located in the Salt River Valley, also known as "Valley of the Sun". It is also located in the Phoenix metropolitan area, the state capital, and in Maricopa County. The city is named after its founder Winfield Scottsdale.

How to reach us

  • From the main European capitals: with the American Airlines company it is possible to depart from Paris Roissy-Charles de Gaulle and arrive in Phoenix in about 15 hours and 30 with a stopover in Los Angeles International

When to go? Info on climate and best time

  • Weather: the climate is arid, temperatures are very high in summer (average 30 °) and mild in winter (average 12,5 °). Rainfall is scarce all year round
  • Best time: spring or late autumn, when temperatures are pleasant for outdoor activities
  • Period to avoid: in summer, due to the very high temperatures and the monsoon period, night frosts are frequent in winter
  • Advice: due to temperature changes, the recommended clothing is layered. For excursions, light clothing and comfortable shoes are good, in the evening and at night something heavy. Make sure you have a hat and sunscreen

10 things to see in and around Scottsdale

  1. Butterfly Wonderland: A state-of-the-art facility with a tropical rainforest that is home to thousands of butterfly species from around the world. There are also galleries with interactive insect exhibits and educational workshops.
  2. Old Town: The historic corner of the city is filled with souvenir shops, trendy boutiques, award-winning restaurants, lively bars, great art galleries, fun and educational events that are held every Thursday night on the Art Walks.
  3. McDowell Sonoran Preserve: gateway to the Sonoran desert, thanks to over 160 km of trails to be tackled on foot or by mountain bike. Birdwatching and climbing paradise, the reserve offers things for the whole family to do.
  4. McCormick-Stillman Railroad Park: unique theme park dedicated to the history of railways with a variety of objects and artifacts related to the railway sector. The park has play areas, rides and picnic areas in which to relax with the family.
  5. Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center: a center that rescues and rehabilitates injured wildlife and frees animals once they are restored. It is home to black bears, lynxes, coyotes, jaguars, mountain lions, Mexican gray wolves and porcupines.
  6. Scottsdale Historical Museum: Tell the history and cultural heritage of Scottsdale through a fantastic collection of photographs, artifacts and thematic exhibits.
  7. Western Spirit: Scottsdale's Museum of the West: Celebrates and displays the history of the American West, including mistakes made, with interpretive experiences, traveling galleries, and an intimate sculpture courtyard to relax and cool off.
  8. Arizona Taco Festival: takes place in mid-October and attracts an average of over 40.000 people. It involves over 60 tacos restaurants, musicians, a Tequila and Margarita exhibit, wrestling and competitions to eat more hot peppers and burritos.
  9. Arizona Cowboy College: have you ever imagined being a cowboy or a cowgirl? Arizona Cowboy College has been organizing daily courses in horse riding and breeding techniques since 1969, an experience for the family and suitable for all ages.
  10. Chocolate Tour: to taste the tastiest chocolates ever, of all shapes and tastes, from truffles to cakes and more, with the beautiful city center as the backdrop for this sweet journey.

What to do in Scottsdale: excursions and tours

How much does it cost to visit Scottsdale? Prices, offers and advice

A vacation to Scottsdale during the recommended periods, spring and fall, costs on average $ 180,00 per day (about € 163,00).
The main cost is for the return flight to Phoenix Airport, which starts at € 480,00, and for the car rental (about $ 26,00 per day, € 23,50) although it is possible to use the Scottsdale Trolley, a free bus which travels through the nine blocks of downtown but also to the southernmost area of ​​the city and surrounding areas.

Food is quite cheap, thanks to the abundance of kiosks and small restaurants that prepare good and cheap street specialties. Entrance to parks and museums costs, on average, $ 15,00 (€ 13,60). Scottsdale isn't that extensive either the offer for overnight stays is not very wide, for this the average cost for sleeping is $ 96,00 (about € 87,00).

  • Hotel and b & b starting from € 90,00 per room -
  • flights to Phoenix (18 km) starting from € 479,00 -
  • Return flight + 7 days / 6 nights from € 1.350,00 per person -
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