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For the last 10 years or so, I have been able to call Phoenix my home. Having grown up in suburban Massachusetts, moving out West to Arizona was an exciting and completely extraordinary feat. But since the day I have moved here, I have felt like I have lived in America's best-kept secret; Phoenix is such an incredible city and has so many unique quirks to it. This city is vivacious--not only is it a great place to live, but it's an even better place to take a road trip!
#1 The weather is perfect 10 months of the year!
Seriously, have you ever been outside and thought that the weather felt like nothing? It's a peculiar and amusing phenomena you experience when the weather is so perfect outside that it feels as if there is no weather at all! The air and temperature feels so comfortable that it's essentially nonexistent. This is what Phoenix feels like for a majority of the year--this part of Arizona has a comfortable warmth for about ten months of the year.
The only time of year we do not reccomend taking a road trip is in the summer when we have triple digit temperatures, as you may run into an issue with the tires popping from the immense heat on the pavement.
#2 The lush, desert landscape is beautiful!
It's more than just dirt and cacti, y'all! I know when we were all learning about the desert landscape in grade school we were taught that it's just dry and hot. I would be lying if I said Phoenix wasn't dry and hot (because it is), however, it is much much more than just a bunch of dirt and some cactuses! There are lush neighborhoods spread all around the city filled with citrus trees, and the mountains that surround the Phoenix valley are stunning!
#3 Phoenix has some of the best resorts in the country
Adam and I frequently take staycations--that is basically taking a vacation, but not leaving where you live! Since Phoenix has some of the best resorts in the United States, we like to take a few days off to unwind at a local resort. And if you can brave the summer heat (I'm talking about those 100 degrees days), I guarantee you that you will get one of the most luxurious vacations of your life--all of the 4 and 5 star resorts drop their prices dramatically in the summer, and the vacation savings are amazing!
#4 All of the food you love is here
I cannot tell you how many times I've been in the car on a road trip and craving something--and almost every time that happens, we plug the destination into our GPS and there aren't any locations near by. Well, in Phoenix, that almost never happens! Basically, any kind of food you want, whether it be a favorite fast food chain or your go-to Starbucks order, this city has it all.
Before we head on a road trip and leave Phoenix, we always like to stop at Starbucks and pick up something for the road. My usual go-to roadtrip snacks include: coffee, snacks, and something sweet. Lately, I've been ordering iced coffee since it's been warm outside and I have been enjoying Creminelli Fine Meats™ as a mid-afternoon snack while we're on the road. Since we can use our GPS to find a Starbucks location near us, I like to use the Starbucks app on my phone to place our order ahead of time so we can grab our snacks and head back on the road!
One of our favorite spots to drive to in the Greater Phoenix area is Papago Park! There are loads of picnic tables all around the perimeter of the park, both near the water and the "hole in the rock" (which is a popular place people like to hike up to--click here to see some more of our pictures).
Adam and I like to stop here and enjoy lunch at a table next to the water, and we enjoy watching the ducks and geese swim around in the water. The beauty of the water, desert sand, and the large amount of palm trees makes for a rather scenic and picturesque spot in the valley.
#5 It's a more affordable version of Los Angeles (with less traffic)
Los Angeles is a nightmare--too many cars, too many people, and not enough space! If you're looking for the LA vibe without the hassle, come to Phoenix! We have the same gorgeous streets lined with hundreds of palm trees, beautiful weather, a large population that's spread out across the large city, amazing and photogenic sunsets, extravagant mansions to swoon over--just like you would want from Los Angeles. Except it's not LA. The people here are also significantly nicer and staying here is way more affordable!
#6 It's just a few hours drive from The Grand Canyon
The Grand Canyon is stunning and a must-see! If you're interested in checking The Grand Canyon off of your bucket list, vacation here in Phoenix! It's only a few hours drive away, and there are a variety of bus shuttle services that will take you (so you don't have to necessarily rent a car if you do not want to). Also, if you want to see The Grand Canyon to go hiking, you don't even have to drive to The Grand Canyon! There are a number of mountains you can hike right here in Phoenix (Camelback Mountain is a local favorite!)
#7 Experience the heart of the Southwest
The Southwest is unlike any other part of the United States! It's truly something that every person should see at least once, and Phoenix is the heart of the Southwest!
Want to see more Arizona inspiration? Click here to see more of our adventures around the valley and all over the state!
Next time you're at your local Starbucks, keep an eye out for Creminelli in the area below the pastry case! This Creminelli Felino & Manchego Sliced Charcuterie Tray is great for road trips, afternoon snacks at home or at work, as well as a last-minute appetizer if you're running late when meeting up with a friend; it's a great alternative to other road trip snacks, because Creminelli is made without synthetic nitrates, and is made with milk without added rBST. With a hint of nutmeg and pepper, it gives the Felino a mild, accessible flavor and sheep's milk cheese from Spain creates a perfect pairing right from the package.