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Situated at an elevation of 1,117 ft., Arizona’s Phoenix and Central Cities region is located in the Sonoran Desert. Expect to see red rock buttes, forests of cacti and scenic parks perfect for family hikes. Phoenix is the sixth largest city in the United States with a population of over 1.6 million. The Greater Phoenix area is comprised of 20 central cities with a population of 4.5 million. With an average high temperature in winter of 67 degrees, Phoenix draws snowbirds from the colder states for sunny vacations. Temperatures the rest of the year average 75 degrees. May-September is the warmest season, but you’ll find plenty of swimming pools and water parks for cooling off. Six lakes are within a 75-minute drive of Phoenix.
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Known for year-round balmy weather and an average rainfall of only 8 inches, Greater Phoenix attracts avid golfers who have more than 200 courses to play. The Waste Management Open in Scottsdale is the most popular event on the PGA Tour. The Phoenix Open draws more than 560,000 fans annually. The region is also home to four major professional sports leagues including the Phoenix Suns (NBA), Arizona Cardinals (NFL), Arizona Diamondbacks (MLB) and Arizona Coyotes (NHL). Fifteen Major League Baseball teams conduct spring training in the Greater Phoenix area.
No matter what time of year you visit, you’ll find plenty of fun things to do. Visit South Mountain Park and Preserve and explore more than 50 miles of hiking, biking and equestrian trails. Choose from a variety of museums to please all ages and interests. The Heard Museum features fascinating exhibits on Native American history, the Desert Botanical Garden boasts the world’s largest collection of desert plants, and the Phoenix Art Museum is the largest art museum in the Southwest. Kids love the Arizona Science Center, and you won’t want to miss the unique Musical Instrument Museum.
Engage in retail therapy at shopping malls, boutiques and specialty shops, savor award-winning Southwestern cuisine, or pamper yourself at spas known for soothing massages and rejuvenating herbal treatments. Take a day trip to see the majestic Grand Canyon, soar above the desert in a hot air balloon, or enjoy water sports on nearby lakes and rivers.
Getting to Phoenix is easy. Sky Harbor Airport serves more than 100 domestic and international destinations and it’s ranked as one of the friendliest airports in the nation.
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