Golf Courses#8 in Best Things To Do in Phoenix
Despite its desert surroundings, Phoenix is emerging as a premier golf destination. In fact, the Valley of the Sun is home to several hundred courses with difficulty levels ranging from beginner to expert.
Finding the right course may be a feat in itself, thanks to all of the options. For an authentic Phoenician golf experience, follow in the footsteps of movie stars and politicians and head to the Arizona Biltmore Golf Club. Constructed in 1928 and known as "the granddaddy" of Phoenix country clubs, the Arizona Biltmore is home to two 18-hole PGA Championship courses, as well as a driving range, a putting green, a pro shop and a full-service restaurant. Because of its reputation, you'll want to reserve tee times well in advance, plus, you should plan your tee time for early morning or later in the evening to avoid the Arizona heat. The club is part of the Arizona Biltmore Resort in downtown Phoenix. Reserve your tee times online at the course's website. Prices and availability may vary.
Other traveler-approved courses include the two courses at Gold Canyon Golf Resort on the eastern side of the Valley, which has been referred to by both experts and travelers as some of (if not THE) best public courses in Arizona; the Phoenician Golf Club at the base of Camelback Mountain and the Papago Golf Course, which can be found nestled among the red buttes of Papago Park. For a full list of area golf courses, check out the Visit Phoenix website.
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#1 Desert Botanical Garden
The desert may seem like the last place you'd expect to find flora. Yet the Desert Botanical Garden is home to thousands of species of cacti, trees and flowers from all around the world. The garden's brightly colored plants sharply contrast the Sonoran Desert's cinnamon-red buttes, and numerous hiking trails – like the Plants and People of the Sonoran Desert and the Harriet K. Maxwell Desert Wildflower Loop trails – allow you to experience the region's natural wonders the way early settlers once did. The Desert Botanical Garden also hosts numerous events, including culinary demonstrations and outdoor concert series.
Recent visitors said the garden is fascinating and highly recommended seeking out the special exhibits when available. Several reviewers suggested visiting after the sun sets to see the garden illuminated, while others appreciated the groomed paths and well-marked signs. However, some travelers bemoaned the entrance rates and were disappointed the zoo and the garden do not offer a combined admission since they sit less than 2 miles from one another.
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