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Phoenix trip, need a little help........
Old 05-13-2008, 10:57 AM   #1
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Phoenix trip, need a little help........

I am taking the family plus my BIL to Phoenix (Mesa) next week. We are leaving early on the 22nd, and flying back on Memorial Day.

DW wanted to try to get to the Grand Canyon, but I think that's too much driving for the short trip.

One of my friends suggested a day trip to "old Tucson",so I was wondering what folks on here think of that. My kids are 9 and 6.

We want to spend a lot of time with her aunt,who is in poor health,so that is why I ruled out the Grand Canyon.

Lastly,I am still hobbling around in my Aircast boot with a cane, so I'm not in the mood for walking for miles in 100 degree heat..........
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Old 05-13-2008, 11:04 AM   #2
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The kids will like Old Tucson. The Grand Canyon is a good overnight trip with a room in Flagstaff and it is cool there due to the elevation. If I can answer any questions just pm. I have lived here for about 25 years in total.
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Old 05-13-2008, 11:15 AM   #3
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The kids will like Old Tucson. The Grand Canyon is a good overnight trip with a room in Flagstaff and it is cool there due to the elevation. If I can answer any questions just pm. I have lived here for about 25 years in total.
Thank you, I will..... DW and I went to the Grand Canyon in 1997. We stayed in a hotel in Flagstaff right next two large hills and the next day got up early, went to Meteor Crater, and then to the GC. That was a LONG, COLD, BLUSTERY day, and then I got caught in a blizzard on the way back from the GC in a Nissan Maxima..........I barely made it out before they closed the road...........of course it was february.......
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Old 05-13-2008, 12:28 PM   #4
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I visit Phoenix about 10 times a year. Check out azcentral.com for area info. Also think about checking out Sedona about 2 hours north, very scenic, and about 20 degrees cooler. Excellent driving tours in that area.
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Old 05-13-2008, 02:39 PM   #5
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If you want a quick and inexpensive day trip out of Mesa, try the Mammoth Mine Ghost Town. It is between Apache Junction and Tortilla Flats. Kind of a tourist trap but the kids will love it- wild west gunfights in the streets, mine tour, little train ride, etc... Free admittance, but you pay for the train tour. When you are done there, drive out to Tortilla Flats for a picnic on Canyon Lake. Great AZ scenery- and the desert is in full bloom right now. Or, try the Lost Dutchman State Park (half mile past the Ghost town) for a little desert nature walk and the best views of the Superstition Mts. Bring your camera. Dinner at the old Mining Camp restaurant is good too- family style, tin plates, western entertainment, etc... It is also out there in Apache Junction- ten minutes from Mesa.
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Old 05-13-2008, 07:49 PM   #6
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FinanceDude,

From central Mesa to Old Tucson studios is well over two hours in light traffic, longer during rush hour, for what would basically be a couple hours of wild-west flavored entertainment. If you're going that far, perhaps you might enjoy driving a little further to Tombstone (I took my Mom there a few months back, pretty fun) and then an overnight in Bisbee. Southern Arizona is one of my favorite places in the world. Have fun in our lovely state.
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Old 05-13-2008, 10:18 PM   #7
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We have lived here for 12 years. I would pick the Grand Canyon over Old Town Tucson. We didn't care for it, it was a bunch of aging movie sets. I would even go to Rawhide or Sahuaro National Park first. The Grand Canyon is at least 8 or 9 hours of driving, 3.5 up and 3,5 back plus 1 to 2 along the rim.

In Phoenix, I would recommend the Heard Indian Museum or the Frank Lloyd Wright place, Taliesen West. In addition to Tombstone there is Kartcher Caverns, if you are into that.
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Old 05-14-2008, 11:08 AM   #8
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Looks like we are doing a half-day trip to Mammoth Mine Ghost Town, and a full day trip to Sedona.

I think those choices will go over well, and leave plenty of time for "visiting".........
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Old 05-14-2008, 01:06 PM   #9
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Make sure you post some pictures
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Old 05-14-2008, 03:32 PM   #10
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The botanical gardens in Phoenix (sort of into Scottsdale?) are amazing!

Might not be a big hit with the kids, but then again....
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Old 05-14-2008, 07:26 PM   #11
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We did a jeep tour in Sedona . Great for the adults but I'm not sure if the six year old would enjoy it . Sedona was a beautiful town .
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Old 05-14-2008, 09:05 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by FinanceDude View Post
I am taking the family plus my BIL to Phoenix (Mesa) next week. We are leaving early on the 22nd, and flying back on Memorial Day.

DW wanted to try to get to the Grand Canyon, but I think that's too much driving for the short trip.

One of my friends suggested a day trip to "old Tucson",so I was wondering what folks on here think of that. My kids are 9 and 6.

We want to spend a lot of time with her aunt,who is in poor health,so that is why I ruled out the Grand Canyon.

Lastly,I am still hobbling around in my Aircast boot with a cane, so I'm not in the mood for walking for miles in 100 degree heat..........
We left scottsdale early one morning drove up to the Grand canyon, spent the afternoon then drove back. Sure was a bit of driving BUT what a neat sight!
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Old 05-15-2008, 12:02 AM   #13
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We left scottsdale early one morning drove up to the Grand canyon, spent the afternoon then drove back. Sure was a bit of driving BUT what a neat sight!
Ya thats some hole. I plan on going back and doing some camping. I was driving cross country and only had time to stay for a day.
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Old 05-15-2008, 09:30 AM   #14
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We left scottsdale early one morning drove up to the Grand canyon, spent the afternoon then drove back. Sure was a bit of driving BUT what a neat sight!
DW and I were not that daring in 1997, but still packed a lot in:

We left Phoenix at 10:00am and drove to Sedona. We toured the art galleries, had an EXPENSIVE lunch on the second floor of a fancy art gallery, and then left a little before dark and drove the "Scenic Road" to Flagstaff.

We went out to dinner and a couple bars in Flagstaff, and then crashed at the hotel around 2:00 am. Next morning we were up at 7:00 am, and after breakfast we drove to Meteor Crater and toured that. Around 11:30, DW mentioned she would like to see the Grand Canyon, so we drove there. It was a longer drive than I thought.

When we got to the GC, the temp had dropped on the South Rim to 38 degrees, and there was a 20 mph wind...... DW was so cold I bought her a fleece GC jacker that she still wears today........ I got some AMAZING pics, because there were a lot of clouds, so I got different plays of light on the rocks.

We left there when they closed the visitor's center. On the way back to Flagstaff, it started snowing like a banshee. There were drifts across the road on the way down, pretty dicey. Once I got to Flagstaff, the storm abated, and the rest of the trip down to Phoenix was smooth. We were exhausted, and fell into bed around midnight and slept forever........but it WAS worth it!!!
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Old 05-15-2008, 11:12 AM   #15
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We took the train from Willliams ,Az to the grand canyon . It was a relaxing way to go . They have a wild west show before you depart and there is entertainment on the train . They serve a continental breakfast on they way there and Champagne and appetizers on the way back . It was a fun easy way to get to the Canyon .
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Old 05-15-2008, 12:48 PM   #16
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We took the train from Willliams ,Az to the grand canyon . It was a relaxing way to go . They have a wild west show before you depart and there is entertainment on the train . They serve a continental breakfast on they way there and Champagne and appetizers on the way back . It was a fun easy way to get to the Canyon .
Neat! that would be something I would love to do.
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Old 05-16-2008, 10:17 AM   #17
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If you are up towards Sedona, Williams & the GC you may want to see Jerome, just a wonderful old mining town on the side of a hill. Full of art, music & antiques.
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Old 05-17-2008, 07:43 AM   #18
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I wonder how they got that "J" on the mountain at Jerome.

Here's another train:

The Verde Canyon Railroad: It's not the destination it's the jouney
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Old 05-22-2008, 10:52 AM   #19
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There's an interesting aircraft museum in Tucson. I believe it's near what the locals call The Boneyard. Also, if you're up near flagstaff, I've heard that Sunset Crater is good and if you don't mind a little more of a drive Meteor Crater is interesting. Sabino Canyon in Tucson is a beautiful hike during the part of the year when the desert flowers are blooming. And don't forget Karschner Caverns a couple of hours from Tucson. I've wanted to go to that but haven't had a chance. A little past that is Tombstone, which is interesting. There's also the Chiriquawa (sic?), famous for birdwatching.

Oops! I just realized that you left today, but I guess I'll leave the post in case someone else can use the information...
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Old 05-23-2008, 08:35 AM   #20
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Trip report - i was in sedona on Wednersday and live in Phoenix. Local weather has rain till Sunday... Close to mesa there is the Mammoth Mine Ghost Town which may keep the kids interested... but also driving down to apache lake Dolly Steamboat Sightseeing Cruises - Arizona's Junior Grand Canyon Tour of Canyon Lake near Phoenix, AZ is a nice way to spend some time since youre in that area. On highway 87a between I17 and Sedona - that whole stretch of road is under construction and slow going... if you are doing grand canyon and sedona on return you can come into Sedona from the north out of flagstaff on the return and get more daylight viewing sites instead of traffic barriers.
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