Arlington Estates is a cozy, family-oriented community located on the northeast corner of 43rd Ave. and Baseline Road in Phoenix, Arizona, only 10 miles west of Phoenix Sky Harbor National Airport with convenient access to Interstate I-10. The other great thing about Arlington Estates is its close proximity to so many fun things to enjoy in the Phoenix Metro area. Following are the top 15 activities in the area:
The Heard Museum is unique not only in the exhibits that are displayed but also the style and grace with which it displays them. The museum boasts more than 32,000 pieces of cultural and fine art. There are permanent exhibits, like the famous Barry Goldwater collection of Kachina Dolls, as well as special exhibits year-round. Some of the special annual events include the World Championship Hoop Dance Contest which is held each February, and the Heard Museum Guild Indian Fair and Market each March. The museum also includes 11 exhibition galleries, free guided tours, outdoor sculpture gardens, a renowned café, art gallery, trading-post style shopping and more! For more information call: 602-252-8848.
The Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix has one of the world’s finest collections of desert plants. It is one of only 44 botanical gardens accredited by the American Association of Museums. At the Desert Botanical Garden you will find 50 acres of beautiful outdoor exhibits. Home to 139 rare, threatened, and endangered plant species from around the world, there is no finer place to enjoy desert beauty than the Desert Botanical Garden. The Garden is located in Papago Park in Central Phoenix. For more details contact: 480-941-1225.
The Boyce Thompson Arboretum brings together plants from the Earth’s many and varied deserts and dry lands. Approximately 3,200 different desert plants can be found within the arboretum, and most of them can be seen along the 1.5 mile main trail. During wildflower season, the Boyce Thompson Arboretum is especially beautiful, displaying all the wonderful colors of the desert. Are you a bird lover? More than 250 species of birds have been recorded at the Boyce Thompson Arboretum. You can also attend classes, nature walks, and guided tours. There is fun for everyone! For more details call: 520-689-2723.
The Phoenix Zoo in Arizona is one of the younger zoos in the country. Not only is it a successful zoo, but it is a privately owned, nonprofit zoo. That means that it operates strictly without any government funding – the Phoenix Zoo is totally supported by donors and private organizations. Recognizing the important role that zoos must play, the Phoenix Zoo has been very active in wildlife conservation programs. The Phoenix Zoo is open every single day of the year, including December 25th. In the summer it is advisable to get there as early as possible, since many animals head for shade and hide during the heat of the day. The zoo offers a camel rides, a giraffe encounter, a petting zoo, pedal boat rides and much, much more! For more information call: 602-273-1341.
Acting on the principle that learning is a joy, the Children’s Museum of Phoenix’s mission is to engage the minds, muscles and imaginations of children and the grown-ups who care about them. With hands-on, interactive exhibits designed for children ages birth to 10, the Museum focuses on learning through play, with emphasis on early childhood education and school-readiness. The Children’s Museum of Phoenix is located at 215 N. 7th Street, Phoenix, Arizona. For more information call: 602-253-0501.
Childsplay theater sets out to create theater so strikingly original in form, content or both, that it instills in young people an enduring awe, love and respect for the medium, thus preserving imagination and wonder, those hallmarks of childhood which are the keys to the future. There is a wide variety of performances and events that can be found on the link above. For more information call: 480-921-5700.
The Arizona Science Center offers hands-on, eye-opening fun with more than 300 interactive exhibits, a state-of-the-art planetarium, five-story giant-screen theater, live demonstrations, and traveling exhibitions. Explore 350 hands-on exhibits, a five-story theater and a planetarium in a unique setting. Group rates and facility rentals available. For more information, call 602-716-2000.
Metropolitan Phoenix’s newest museum opened in spring 2010, billing itself as the first in the world dedicated to the celebration of global instruments. Upon entering the airy, acoustically thoughtful building, you’re issued a wireless headset. When you approach a displayed instrument, voila—its sound plays clearly in your ears. The museum emphasizes instruments that have been used for folk and tribal occasions, and the collection includes instruments from over 200 different countries and territories. Unless you’re the world’s expert on this subject, we figure you’ll be seeing and hearing instruments you’ve never even thought of before. Musicians will especially dig the Experience Gallery, where you can touch and play exotic instruments. For more information call: 480-478-6000.
9) Tovrea Castle
Tovrea Castle was built about 70 years ago by Italian immigrant Alessio Carraro as a grand hotel, intended as the centerpiece of an upscale housing developement. Tovrea Castle was built without working plans, and the final structure bears little resemblance to the intended design. Construction of the castle was interrupted frequently, sometimes for long periods of time, due to the extensive landscaping taking place in the 277 acres surrounding the building. Hundreds of cacti were transplanted along with 2,600 truckloads of river stones, which were whitewashed and used for retaining walls, terraces, and edging for the roads and trails. Mr. Carraro’s dreams were ended by the stock market crash of 1929, and he sold the castle to Edward Tovrea, a business man who owned a meat packing plant on adjoining acreage. The castle was lived in by the Tovreas until Mrs. Tovreas’ death in 1969. The house was opened to the public only once, for one weekend in 1984. In 1993, the City of Phoenix bought the castle along with 40 acres, and is planning to restore the castle for use as a visitors center. For more information call: 602-262-6412.
10) Mystery Castle
This unusual piece of architecture, built from recycled bottles, granite and bricks in 1930, is a tribute from a father to his daughter. Located near South Mountain, you may take tours through the castle. Largely constructed of native stone, the 8,000-square-foot castle contains 13 fireplaces, 18 rooms and various features of interest. Southwestern antiques furnish this unique facility. For more information call: 602-268-1581.