AZ Golf Trip Guide



This is kind of a mini road trip, but such a different, cool scene from Scottsdale. The towns of Carefree and Cave Creek are elevated 35 miles north of Old Town and have a true small-town/western cowboy feel.



  • The bars here are amazing. No boujee decor, loud DJs, or high heels here. Harold's, with it's two bars, red and white checkered tables, live music, and live OTB to bet on ponies, is a true gem of a bar.
  • Buffalo Chip Saloon is one of the most unique bars I've ever been to, live bull-riding Wednesday and Friday nights with a full set of bleachers (and bars) to watch, incredible live bands that usually involve a playing of Copperhead Road (IYKYK), and a huge outdoor section with fire pits. It's also a Green Bay Packers' bar and hosts Church at the Chip every Sunday.
  • Check out The Horny Toad and The Hideaway, or more fun. Lots of bikers gather here all the time. Do not piss off the locals and stay in your lane, it is a true cowboy town, and respect their local watering hole.


  • If you want to hike, Black Mountain is right in the heart of Cave Creek- it is not an easy one, so make sure you're in shape for it, takes about 2 hours to complete. Steep and rocky, but with awesome views of the city to the south and the mountains to the north! Trailhead at N School House Rd, Cave Creek, AZ 85331.
  • For a more leisurely walk, check out Brown's Ranch Trailhead just south of Cave Creek off of Dynamite for views of Brown's Mountain (the one with the flat top) and Cone Mountain (the one with the pointy top). Trailhead at 30301 N. Alma School Rd. Scottsdale, AZ 85262.
  • (For more info on this one, check out my hikes section!)


  • (Check out my shop section)


  • Rancho Manana - one of the most underrated public courses - great price, views of nature, and fun layout!
  • The Boulders - a top-rated course with the amenities to match. True target golf, don't hit driver every hole!
  • Cave Creek Municipal - a super short, old-school muni that is dirt cheap and fun to play (they have walking rates).


AZ Golf Trip Guide



The cutest town ever!

The downtown square is surrounded by local bars, restaurants, and shops. It has an old time-y feel to it, with a lot of historic spots in the town. On the outskirts, it's surrounded by forest area.

Make sure to pronounce it as Press-kit instead of Pres-Scott, you will get laughed at by the locals.


  • Must go to Watson Lake Park - a beautiful lake area to walk around or sit and enjoy the views. The loop trail surrounds the lake and is a great moderate hike.

Parking at 3101 Watson Lake Rd. You can also rent kayaks and canoes at Prescott Outdoors.


  • The oldest bar in Arizona is in the downtown square - The Palace! The staff is straight out of a Doc Holiday movie with their clothes and mannerisms. Matt's Saloon is next door, with live music on the weekends.
  • Check out Farm Provisions, Papa's Italian, and Prescott Brewing Company.
  • On your way out of town, if you're feeling lucky, stop at Bucky's Casino or Cliff Castle Casino.


  • There are a bunch of shops that sell Western gear and goods, they are fun to poke around and browse.
  • The Christmas decorations during the season are so cute - Prescott is known as one of the best Christmas towns in the country (and also the top retirement town).



AZ Golf Trip Guide


Payson is a tiny mountain town with amazing views of beautiful pine trees.

Definitely smaller than Prescott.


  • Lots of places to camp on the “rim!” I recommend the Mogollon Campground and the Rim Campground if you want amenities such as restrooms and drinking water (daily reservation fee required). I love the Fr 9350 campground because it's FREE and has the sickest views (perched on the edge of the cliffs, with no water or restrooms, however). Check out this list of all camping sites. I would definitely take a vehicle that has a 4-wheel drive.


  • There are a lot of good lakes to fish in Woods Canyon, Bear Canyon, and Willow Springs Lake, to name a few. A fishing license is required and can be purchased here. Check out the full list of lakes to see what kind of fish are in each.
  • Woods Canyon Lake is the only spot that offers boat rentals (first come, first serve), and they also offer kayaks, canoes, and paddle boards. They have a grocery store with beer, wine, and ice cream and supplies like ice, firewood, fishing and hunting licenses, and camping gear.




(If you ever get the chance to play the private clubs The Rim or Chaparral Pines, DO IT!)


AZ Golf Trip Guide



This has to be one of the most unique towns I've ever been in. Once you start approaching Jerome and driving up the side of the mountain on hairpin curves, you'll see why. It's an iconic “ghost town” that was once home to a gold mine, and it's full of history. Not to mention, the town literally sits on top of a cliff (apparently, it slides half an inch every year). You can see the red rocks of Sedona and the top of Humphrey's Peak in Flagstaff.

Walk all around town to check out the shops and restaurants - they definitely have a lot of character, and your legs will burn from all the incline walking. Read all of the plaques placed all over the buildings, as they have some interesting stories about the town's history.

I've eaten at the Haunted Hamburger and gotten a drink at the Connor Hotel.

The Jerome Grand Hotel used to be a hospital back in the 1930s but has been a hotel for a while - and it's supposed to be haunted. You can go to the front desk area and read through their visitor book, which has stories of ghost encounters. I will never stay here because I like to sleep peacefully, but some people love that kind of stuff.

You can go gold panning at The Gold King Mine Ghost Town, that's tucked into the back of the town. Lots of vintage equipment and signs are on display, and they have a gift shop as well.


AZ Golf Trip Guide


Sedona is absolutely breathtaking! You feel like you’re on another planet with the huge red rock formations and the drive through the canyons. It's a laid-back town with a relaxing feel - very different from the Phoenix/Scottsdale area. Known for having an “energy vortex” surrounding the scenery that's supposed to be rejuvenating- and there are specific spots in the canyons where it’s the strongest. It's 1 of 20 total Dark Sky Certified communities (in the world), which makes for amazing stargazing.


  • Hiking is so beautiful here, and the temperature is always cooler than in the Phoenix Valley. My favorite hikes are Devil's Bridge, Cathedral Rock, West Fork Trail, and the Bell Rock Climb.
  • Devil's Bridge starts out fairly flat and slowly works its way up and around the Devil's Bridge ledge. Don't be an idiot and be careful up here, but it's a really cool spot to snap a pic on. Park at Mescal Trailhead if you don't have 4×4 or 4-wheel drive (just a little walk to the actual Devil's Bridge Trailhead).
  • Cathedral Rock is a fairly short hike, but it's a climb up to the tall pointy red rocks for a gorgeous view. It can get crowded, so make sure to park at the trailhead early to get a spot.
  • West Fork Trail is a super unique hike and different from all of the other Sedona hikes! It goes through the bottom of a canyon and follows a river for about 6 miles. It's shaded and crosses over the river a few times, but it's amazing scenery and one of the highly-rated trails. It's a $10 fee at the gate to park.
  • The Bell Rock Climb is another really popular hike! You can make it as hard or as easy as you want. It's an incline walk up to the rock and stepping up on the ridges until you get as high as you want with a wide view of the different red rocks. Some other small side trails surround it.
  • The Seven Sacred Pools is a quick 1-mile rocky walk, but so cool to see since it's photographed a lot. Park at Soldier Pass Trailhead. If you're feeling adventurous and want more of a hike, keep going past Seven Pools to see the Soldier's Pass Cave or double back to see Devil's Kitchen.
  • You MUST see the Chapel of the Holy Cross- an amazingly beautiful church built into the side of the red rocks. Many people come here to admire the architecture and its peacefulness. You can park at the church (very limited) or the Little Horse Trailhead for a mile-and-a-half trail walk to the church. Views for days, and you can see some of the insane mansions below.


  • During the summer months, there are a couple of swimming spots that are popular.
  • If you want adventure, you MUST do The Crack at Wet Beaver Creek. Park at the Beaver Creek Work Center or on the side of the street if there's overflow (it gets crowded). It's a 3.5-mile hike (7 miles round trip) with awesome views of the bright blue watering hole. You can jump off the ledges into it, swim in the river, or sunbathe on the rocks in the beautiful canyon. Make sure to wear actual hiking shoes and bring plenty of water, many people just show up with a swimsuit and a towel. Bring a picnic, some bevy's, and a speaker if you want. It's a vibe.
  • Slide Rock State Park is a super popular spot, especially when it's hot. A lot of families and kids come here. It's a $20 fee per vehicle to enter the park at the Slide Rock Trailhead. There is a seasonal market on the property with supplies and snacks and plenty of picnic areas. Swim in the rivers or slide down the red rocks (don't worry, they are covered in soft algae).


  • Highly recommend the Pink Jeep tours! Hop in with a guide and climb all over Sedona in a literal bright pink Jeep. They are a great way to explore the backcountry and get an educational tour. They have several options and areas you can choose from. Book here.



  • There are so many places to stay. I recommend renting a cool Airbnb as there are a lot of incredible homes in the area. You can't go wrong with the hotels either...
  • The Arabella and The Orchards Inn are both moderately priced and nice.
  • Ambiente just opened up, and it is an adult-only resort! Little pricier, but they do offer assistance in booking activities like jeep tours, hot air balloon rides, wine tours, and bike rentals. Stay in a brand-new modern hotel with awesome panoramic views and amenities.
  • On the super high-end side, Enchantment Resort and L'Auberge de Sedona are two luxurious, scenic, incredible places to stay with health and wellness activities, art, spa, and more. BOUJEE!


  • There's a lot of shopping to do with a couple of hotspots. Tlaquepaque Arts and Shopping Village has some unique galleries and shops with a pretty setting. The main drag on State 89 Highway (from the shops at Pinon Pointe to Clear Creek Trading Company) can feel a bit touristy, but still fun to go and browse in, especially with the view of the canyons beyond.


  • Seven Canyons (can play if you stay at Seven Canyons Resort or Enchantment Resort). A shorter course but larger-than-life picturesque views of Sedona red rocks.
  • Sedona Golf Resort
  • Oak Creek CC - This is such a fun course to play! Lots of pine trees to navigate, elevation changes, and doglegs.


AZ Golf Trip Guide



I love Flagstaff!!! Colorado people will hate me, but it's a breathtaking ski town! Home to NAU and the ski bums. They are all about the outdoors and the brews.


  • AZ Snowbowl is the ski resort on the mountain of Humphrey's Peak, and it is the highest peak in Arizona, with almost 12,000 feet in elevation at the top!
  • Always buy tickets online and always buy in advance - lift tickets can be close to $200 on the weekends. I prefer zipping up there during the week when lift lines are short, and the runs are less crowded.
  • They have several high-speed lifts and a gondola and provide a free shuttle from downtown Flagstaff. Plenty of beer and food spots on the mountain, and they have the Basecamp Lodge to stay at as well (sometimes they offer free lift tickets if you stay with them). The season ranges from December through March, and some years I've skied in April. Make sure to check their weather report, as some days they shut down the lifts due to high winds.
  • I usually rent down here in Phoenix from Ski Pro - easy to reserve online, throw them in my car, and head up. You can rent from the mountain, however, it can be more expensive, and other shops in downtown Flagstaff have more options. If I rent up here, it's always from Ski Haus - expect a long wait on weekends.
  • They stay open during the off-season and have plenty of activities. You can take a scenic gondola ride with incredible views from afar. From the top, you can just barely see the tip of the Grand Canyon.


I love all the breweries in Flag - super authentic with tasty local beers.

  • Dark Sky Brewing is my absolute favorite- a cozy inside, crafty menu, and you can watch them make their awesome pizzas right in front of you. Lumberyard Brewing Co. is a popular spot with more of your typical bar food. Mother Road Brewing Company is a chill spot, and they make the Tower Station IPA that everyone in Arizona is obsessed with. The Corner Tavern is a little hidden gem that you could almost miss on the street - great bar with many beers, karaoke, and TVs.
  • Flagstaff Station Market Cafe Cafe is authentic, cute, and right on the way to the mountain- located inside an old Texaco gas station. Grab coffee and breakfast here before you hit the slopes. Macy's European Coffee House and The Toasted Owl are also highly rated spots. Dirty Birdie's is a sports bar right next to the highway, and I've spent a few nights in here playing pool.


  • High Country Motor Lodge just opened up- a modern yet rustic mountain hotel that looks super nice. Little America is the same vibe but is a little more pricey.
  • Good reviews from the Comfort Inn and Doubletree Flagstaff locations for a cheaper rate!
  • I've stayed at the Drury Inn many times- it's a great price, it's clean and fairly new, and they have a free happy hour every day at 5:30 pm!!!
  • I've also stayed in plenty Airbnb with a ton of friends up here.
  • This Airbnb was massive, with a huge porch and a hot tub in the back.
  • This Airbnb hosted a big group and was a little more homey, with a movie room in the basement.
  • This little guest house was so authentic, with two rooms and its own bathroom - they even provided fresh eggs right from the chicken coop outside every morning!!


(If you get a chance to play Flagstaff Ranch, Pine Canyon, or Forest Highlands, DO IT!)


AZ Golf Trip Guide


Okay, I know some people are like…why would I go see a big hole in the ground, what's so cool about it? That's exactly what I thought too, before going! The size and the beauty are truly incredible to see in person, and you need to visit it at least once in your lifetime!

You do need to purchase an entry fee when you enter the park ($35 per car) when you pull up to any of the gates.

I have pretty much stuck to the South Rim side of the canyon whenever I have visited. It can get a little touristy, but you can drive your car all the way down and stop at the different viewpoints, and there are several different paths you can walk along. Head to the South Rim Visitor Center to start. I've watched several insane sunsets from some of the viewpoints.

I've always wanted to hike here but have not done it yet. Rumor has it there's a 13-mile hike down into the canyon and back up that is supposed to be awesome. Check out the Grand Canyon National Park website for a guide on the other things you can do.

Keep in mind, cell service is very spotty around this area, including the roads to get to the Grand Canyon.

There are food and drink options, be prepared to pay a little more, and the quality is average.

If you're going to drive all the way up to the Grand Canyon, you may as well visit the town of Page, Arizona, on the Utah/Arizona border. It's home to Lake Powell and the Glen Canyon Dam. The lake and canyons surrounding it are actually insane, and yes, you go over a skinny bridge over the top of the Dam if you're going past it. You can do watersports and kayaking on the lake, and I'm fairly certain this is where the Kardashians have bopped around on a jet ski. You must see the iconic Horseshoe Bend viewpoint that is photographed all the time - truly a sight. Check out Visit Page Lake Powell for all the info.

This is also on my bucket list - the Antelope Canyon. You and a required tour guide dive down into the crevices that are literally waves of pretty red and orange rock. It's extremely popular, and you must get purchase a permit and reservation - at some times, there has been a long waiting list. Visit for more info.