Arizona Science Center#11 in Best Things To Do in Phoenix
Seek refuge from the broiling Phoenix weather in the Arizona Science Center, where interactive displays teach kids about everything from electricity to weather patterns to outer space. Other topics covered across the center's four levels of exhibits include sound, gravity and psychology, among others. An IMAX Theater also offers family-friendly, educational entertainment.
Recent visitors were pleased with the activities offered here, especially the temporary exhibits. However, some felt the tickets were pricey, especially for families. Reviewers also suggested purchasing your tickets online in advance to avoid having to wait in long admission lines.
As the highlight of downtown Phoenix's Heritage and Science Park, the Arizona Science Center is open every day from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission costs $18 for adults and $13 for kids 3 to 17. Parking isn't free, but you can get your ticket validated at the center. For more information, check out the Arizona Science Center 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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