Arizona Overview

Justin and I visited Arizona earlier this month for our honeymoon. We arrived on Friday, December 15 and headed home on Tuesday, December 19. Over the next few days I'll be sharing individual posts highlighting...
  • The Desert Botanical Gardens in Phoenix
  • Tonto National Monument
  • Catalina State Park
  • Saguaro National Park

Hopefully these posts will be helpful in case you/someone you know is planning a trip to the southwest! We really loved it and are brainstorming ways it could possibly be an annual adventure!

Today's entry is a more general post focusing on some of the special odds and ends from the trip - places we stayed and ate and visited along the way...

The Hyatt in downtown Phoenix: Justin found a great deal online for this downtown hotel. FYI: Parking is not included so you'll have to pay that separately. It's a beautiful hotel with a great view of the city. Terrific location. We caught a lovely view of the sunrise on the way out Saturday morning. 

Laura's AirBNB in Tucson: My brother and sis-in-law gave us an AirBNB giftcard for our wedding, and we were grateful to be able to use it on this trip! Laura's place in Tucson was lovely, quaint, and just what we were looking for. It isn't too far from downtown, and it's quite charming inside. Laura also loves essential oils & salt lamps, so those were a delightful bonus. Full kitchen!

Tucson Visitor's Center: A must-stop if you go to Tucson! It's on the University of Arizona campus. The two individuals who were working the morning we visited were full of helpful information. We ended up purchasing the Tucson passport book which provides a lot of 2-for-1 details for museums & parks. If you're going to be around for more than a day, it's probably worth getting the passport book! It's good for a full year. 

El Charro (we ate at the downtown & Oro Valley locations): We are still talking about El Charro and will be for the rest of our lives. The food was so phenomenal! And they are VERY gluten-free friendly! Everything was so clearly marked on the menu! Vegan and vegetarian-friendly, too. I am still dreaming of my tamale platter. 

Westward Look Wyndham Grand Resort and Spa (with 1-hour horse ride): Justin found another great deal with this gem! I was initially skeptical because when we arrived it seemed desolate and dreary. But by the following day when the skies cleared, we both realized what a gem we had discovered! Awesome food at GOLD, the restaurant. We ate breakfast there. Lots of hot tubs and gardens. A lovely gym. And an outstanding view of the Catalina mountains. We also did a 1-hour horse ride! It was a big highlight of the trip. Here's a link to some awesome history of the resort! We read about the history while we were there, and it really added to our enjoyment of the facility! 

Museum of the Horse Soldier: This place is a bit off the beaten path, and don't be surprised if you don't interact with any other human while you're there. The displays are getting dated. When we visited, we just walked right in and saw no workers the whole time. All that being said, it's worth a stop! There is some really fascinating history and memorabilia at this place! I walked away with a much-expanded understanding of the roles horses played during past wars/conflicts in the country. 

Scottsdale Goodwill: A great place to get a wine bottle opener, sunglasses, hats, and anything else you may have forgotten to pack! 

Tucson Trader Joes: We grocery shopped a couple times on the trip, and it definitely saved us a lot of money (as opposed to eating out every meal). Peanut butter, gluten free bread, baby carrots, and snow pea pods were staples! Granola bars, too! There are several TJs locations in Tucson. 

Visit Tucson & a stop at the Visitor's Center!

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