With temperatures averaging a pleasant 68 degrees in the city of Scottsdale and all over central Arizona, January is the perfect month for a one-day road trip. While you may have a bit less daylight to explore these great places (all of which are just a few hours away from your Scottsdale vacation rental), it’s almost a given that you’ll be blessed with perfect weather. So wake up early, get on the road and check out these incredible destinations.
Saguaro National Park: Only two hours and fifteen minutes down I-10, one of the jewels of the Southwest awaits you. Saguaro National Park, just east of Tucson, is more than a majestic preserve for the giant saguaro cactus. It’s a place that’s just chock full of wildlife and spectacular vistas. On Cactus Forest Road, you’ll experience a leisurely, winding drive through miles of stunning giant cacti, each with a personality of its own. Numerous hiking trails give visitors a chance to stretch their legs amongst the park’s most famous residents.
Meteor Crater: Approximately 50,000 years ago, a meteorite the size of your Scottsdale vacation rental blazed through the Earth’s atmosphere and hit prehistoric Arizona with the energy of a 10-megaton bomb. The result is the best-preserved impact crater in the world. Located just south of I-40 between Flagstaff and Winslow, this mammoth depression in the Earth’s crust is well worth the three-hour drive. A newly renovated visitor’s center helps tell the tale of the meteorite with interactive displays and a 3-D movie.
Wickenburg: One of the last bastions of the Wild West, Wickenburg may only be an hour and a half northwest of the city of Scottsdale, but you’ll feel as if you’ve been transported a century into the past. Tour Wickenburg’s famous downtown, check out the tree that once served as the town jail (prisoners were simply chained to it) or head out to the old Vulture Gold Mine to see what 1880’s Arizona Territory was all about.
With so much to do in the city of Scottsdale, it can be hard to squeeze in time for all that the rest of Arizona has to offer. With a little planning and a picnic basket, however, you can leave your Scottsdale vacation rental at sunrise, have an unforgettable day and be back home to catch your favorite programs at night.