Download GPX file for this article
33.5000-111.9333Full screen dynamic map

From Wikivoyage
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Scottsdale is a city in the state of Arizona. It is east of Phoenix and part of the Phoenix Metro Area.


Scottsdale is home to many galleries, high quality resorts, and golf courses. It is also one of the wealthier parts of the Phoenix Metro Area.

High end shopping destinations are one of the primary attractions of the city. For example, the Fashion Square Mall is near downtown Scottsdale and is one of the biggest malls in the United States. The extensive galleries to the west of the downtown also offer upscale shopping and strolling. The galleries in this area display works both from local artists and from around the world.

The view from northwest
Saloons and shops in the Old Town area

The Old Town section of Scottsdale is to the east of the gallery district. It showcases the ironic attempt of Scottsdale to both embody swank upscale style as well as a caricature of the gruff American West. This part of town is undeniably kitschy. Well over half the shops are gift shops. However, it is fun enough for a browse in a Disneyland sort of way.

The canals[edit]

The valley of the sun has over 130 mi (210 km) of canals. Most of them were built in the last 100 years to provide water for the irrigation of farm land. However, now that the valley is much less agrarian the canals are primarily used to carry away storm water. Some are also used to generate hydroelectric power.

These often overlooked gems are open to the public. One can take in the beautiful desert scenery and fresh air while strolling along them. They provide walkers, joggers, and bikers with a nice refuge from traffic. But don't try swimming in the canals, aside from being an obvious bad idea because the sides are so steep it is also illegal, along with motorized vehicles.


Be sure to try one of the 200 golf courses in the Scottsdale area. Although most of the green fees are relatively high during the high season (Nov - Apr) there are a few good courses that can be played year round at a reasonable rate. Green fees are very cheap during the summer ($10 - $50 per round with cart) and if you tee-off early in the morning the heat doesn't become too bad before you finish your round.

Visitor information[edit]

Get in[edit]

Map of Scottsdale (Arizona)
See also: Phoenix#Get in

By plane[edit]

The Phoenix metro area has several airports.

  • 2 Scottsdale Airport (SCF IATA) (9 miles north of downtown, about 20 minutes from downtown Scottsdale). For smaller planes and private jets. Scottsdale Airport (Q17567) on Wikidata Scottsdale Airport on Wikipedia

Alternative airports[edit]

  • 3 Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport (AZA IATA). In the southeast East Valley, east of Chandler and south of Mesa. It is served mainly by Allegiant Air, although Vision Airlines also offers service from North Las Vegas. This is a small airport that is being redeveloped into a major regional airport. Phoenix–Mesa Gateway Airport (Q493759) on Wikidata Phoenix–Mesa Gateway Airport on Wikipedia

Get around[edit]

Scottsdale is undoubtedly a car-centric place. Most of the city is too spread out to reasonably walk, far more people use their own cars than ride the bus, and the light rail does not come to Scottsdale.

By car[edit]

Scottsdale is laid out for cars. The roads are large and the parking, even downtown, is usually more than ample.

To keep the speed limits and traffic signals well enforced, the city of Scottsdale extensively uses photo radar. Residents often learn where the cameras are and slow down near them. However, sometimes they slow down a bit abruptly. Drivers are often well served by expecting this from time to time.

There are 3 types of cameras.
  1. Intersection cameras These cameras monitor for both speeding and the running of red lights.
  2. Stationary freeway Cameras These monitor for speeding and are intended to keep the speed reasonable. They generally are triggered 11 mph over the speed limit.
  3. Mobile Van cameras These cameras monitor for speeding from the back of white vans on the side of the road. These are harder to spot because they move locations regularly and park inconspicuously.

Generally it is easiest and safest to simply drive the speed limit and not run red lights.

By foot[edit]

Getting around by walking can take a bit of planning. Not all roads have sidewalks and distances that seem reasonable can become quite uncomfortable in the warmer months. If you have time, messing around with something like Google's street view can be well worth it.

By public transit[edit]

Downtown Scottsdale, and some other parts of the city, are each served by trolleys. All routes are free and usually come by every 15-20 minutes while running. However, the downtown trolley route is suspended as of May, 2022, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The rest of Scottsdale that is not covered by the trolleys are covered by Valley Metro's regional bus network.


Taliesin West
Atrium of the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Arts


Old Town Scottsdale
McCormick-Stillman Railroad Park



  • 1 Scottsdale Fashion Square, 7014 E Camelback Rd (Car: Camelback Rd & Scottsdale Rd; Valley Metro Bus: 50, 72, and 68CM.), +1 480-945-5495. M-Sa 10AM-9PM, Su 11AM-6PM. One of the biggest malls in the US, this is an upscale place to fill your wardrobe. It can also be fun just to wander around and see what other people are wearing. free. Scottsdale Fashion Square (Q7438186) on Wikidata Scottsdale Fashion Square on Wikipedia


  • 1 Ocean 44 (Dominick’s Steakhouse), 4748 N Goldwater Blvd (north of Camelback Rd), +1 480-867-0044. Su-Th 5-10PM; F Sa 5-11PM. Upscale restaurant originally modeled on a classic New York steakhouse, and then re-imagined into a seafood restaurant (with the steaks still available!). Open kitchen and lively bar. The dress code expects at least business casual.
  • 2 Eddie V's Prime Seafood, 15323 N Scottsdale Rd, #E1-160, +1 480-730-4800. Su-Th 4PM-11PM, F Sa 4PM-midnight. The food is great, and Eddie's has something for everyone, in comparison to the meat-centrism of common steakhouses. Try the Parmesan encrusted sol. Call ahead for a reservation.
  • Fleming's Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar. Fleming's is known for its prime steak and elegant, cherry wood atmosphere. Its wine list features over 100 wines available by the glass. This steakhouse also offers bar menu specials until 7PM.
  • 5 Mastro's Steak House, 8852 E Pinnacle Peak Rd, +1 480-585-9500. Su-Th 5-10PM, F Sa 5-11PM; Su brunch 11AM-3PM. Mastro's also has a restaurant in Beverly Hills, with a plethora of well-known visitors that frequent it. Call ahead, as you'll most likely need a reservation.
  • 6 Old Town Tortilla Factory, 6910 E Main St, +1 480-945-4567, fax: +1 480-945-0815, . Su-Th 5-9PM, F Sa 5-10PM. Modern Southwest cooking with Sonoran touches. Try the Red Chile Pork Chop, with an unlikely but tasty ancho-raspberry sauce. Patio seating, heated in winter, misted in summer. Reservations only accepted for groups of 6 or more, so prepare to wait (preferably in the adjacent tequillaria). $30.
  • 7 Salt Cellar Restaurant, 550 N Hayden Rd, +1 480-947-1963, fax: +1 480-941-0929. Su-Th 5-11PM, F Sa 5-midnight. Highend seafood in a unique, historic underground location.
  • 8 Uncle Sal's, 3370 N. Hayden Rd, +1 480-990-2533. M-F 11AM-3PM; Su-Th 4-9PM, F Sa 4-10PM. Nice Italian restaurant, reminiscent of an old-time New York restaurant, with a hint of the Old West.
  • 9 Vito's Pizza & Italian Ristorante, 10999 N. Frank Lloyd Wright Blvd Scottsdale, Arizona 85259, +1 480-664-8260. Su-Th 11AM-9PM, F Sa 11AM-10PM. Italian restaurant, includes a bar, and offers catering and banquet services. $$.


  • Kazimierz, 7137 East Stetson Dr, +1 480-WINE-004 (9463-004), fax: +1 480-WINE-055 (9463-055). Nightly 2:30PM - 2AM full menu served until 1:45AM. A great nook of a place to drink wine, eat flatbread, and decompress on kooshy couches in their dimly lit main room. The massive (over 2000) wine list is well experienced in their nicely-selected and presented three-wine flights. Add a flatbread (a fancy word for a fancy pizza) and a few friends and it's easy to lose the whole evening in a place like this. It's also easy to run up a big bill ($40-60 per person) if you don't restrain yourself with the wine menu. $20-$30.


  • The Boulders Resort & Golden Door Spa, 34631 N Tom Darlington Dr, PO Box 2090 (Carefree, Arizona 85377), toll-free: +1-866-397-6520.
  • Comfort Inn, 7350 E. Gold Dust Ave (Scottsdale Road & Shea Blvd.), +1 480-596-6559. Check-in: 3PM, check-out: noon. Offers guests a fitness center, an outdoor pool and a deluxe continental breakfast. $70-$200.
  • The Saguaro Scottsdale 4000 N Drinkwater Blvd, Scottsdale, AZ 85251 +1 480-308-1100. Check-in: 4PM, check-out: 10AM. Offers outdoor pool, bar, patio and a poolside DJ. Facilities also include golf, fitness center, hot tub, and of course air conditioning. Colorful and Mexican-inspired. You can see this inspiration all around the hotel. $98-149.
  • Hilton Scottsdale Resort & Villas, 6333 N. Scottsdale Rd, +1 480 948-7750, fax: +1 480-948-2232. Check-in: 4PM, check-out: noon. A fairly typical Hilton hotel, though prettier than most. Quite comfortable, but housekeeping services are erratic. Good business services with $10/day wireless. $99-120.
  • Hotel Indigo, 4415 north civic center plaza, +1 480-941-9411.
  • 1 Orange Tree Golf Resort, 10601 N 56th St, +1 480-948-6100. Check-in: 4PM, check-out: 11AM. Suites with patio or terrace. Facilities include an 18-hole golf course, fitness center, restaurant and bar, outdoor pool, and sauna. Doubles $139+ (minimum 2-night stay).
  • Scottsdale Plaza Resort, 7200 N Scottsdale Rd. Paradise Valley. Large resort with swimming pools, tennis courts, fitness center, racquetball.
  • Scottsdale Resort, 7700 E. McCormick Parkway. The resort is surrounded by a 36-hole golf course, a spa and fitness center, salon services, tennis, and two pools. Resort features 326 spacious guest rooms, casitas and suites.
  • [dead link] Smoke Tree Resorts & Bungalows, 7101 East Lincoln Drive, Paradise Valley (Near the intersection of Scottsdale Rd. and Lincoln Dr.), +1 480-948-7660, fax: +1 480-948-7661, . "Restaurant REM" is at the resort, a two-minute drive away from the Railroad Park (a park with a small train children can ride).
  • Westin Kierland Resort and Spa, 6902 E. Greenway Parkway, +1 480 624-1000. Beautiful property, with a great kids pool area, including a lazy river. They also have an adults-only pool area. Great service. Attached to a golf course and shopping mall.
  • Radisson Fort McDowell Resort and Casino, 10438 North Fort McDowell Rd, +1 480 789-5300. Check-in: 4PM, check-out: noon. Offers amenities including free wireless Internet, fitness center, swimming pool, We-Ko-Pa Golf Club, Fort McDowell Casino, Fountain Hills Spa and Salon, and Ahnala Restaurant and Lounge.
  • Scottsdale Marriott Suites Old Town, 7325 East 3rd Ave, +1-480-945-1550. Check-in: 4PM, check-out: noon. An all-suite hotel, located in the heart of Historic Old Town.
  • Hilton Garden Inn Scottsdale North/Perimeter Center, 8550 East Princess Dr, +1 480 515-4944. Located on Scottsdale north side close to Scottsdale airport and several businesses. Enjoy breakfast and dinner at the Great American Grill, free hi-speed Internet access, business center, meeting/banquest facilities, outdoor pool & whirlpool, fitness center and an Unconditional 100% Satisfaction Guarantee.</sleep>
  • Valley Ho, 6850 E. Main, +1 480 248-2000. This modern hotel exceeds expectations for accommodations and food/beverage (don't skip breakfast). Service may vary, especially during high season. This property welcomes pets and goes the extra mile to welcome man's best friend. Green grass and fountains provide a rare desert oasis for you and fido. $175.00.
  • The Hermosa Inn, 5532 North Palo Cristi Road, Paradise Valley, toll-free: +1-800-241-1210. The Hermosa Inn is a boutique hotel featuring 34 hacienda-style, single-story casitas.
  • JW Marriott Scottsdale Camelback Inn Resort & Spa, 5402 E. Lincoln Dr, +1 480-948-1700. 279.
  • 2 Hyatt Place Scottsdale / Old Town, 7300 East Third Avenue, +1 480 423 9944.
  • Parsons Villas, 7129 E 6th Ave, +1 480-781-0717.
  • Stay With Style Scottsdale, 6501 E Greenway Pkwy #103-313, +1 480-818-6559, . Short-term rentals. They own all the properties listed on their site.
  • Porter Vacation Rentals, 7014 E Camelback Rd, Ste 1452, Scottsdale, AZ 85251, +1 866-468-2531. Vacation rentals in the Scottsdale area with various amenities.



Stay safe[edit]


It doesn't rain very frequently in Scottsdale. However, when the rain does come many lakes swell, bike paths are submerged, and roads become impassable.

If there is a notable amount of water on the road, don't drive through it. Drivers frequently become stranded in the middle of flooded washes. Cars can be swept away in a deceptively small amount of water. As you might guess, attempting to drive across such flooded roads is dangerous.

Arizona also has what they like to call a "Stupid Motorist Law." It says that if someone drives around a barricade to enter a flooded road they will be charged for their rescue.


In the summer it can get quite hot. Dehydration, heat stroke, and sun stroke become notable risks.

Drink plenty of water and stay indoors in the afternoon, during the hottest parts of the day.

Outdoor activities are usually far more pleasant in the early morning when it is still cool. Because the temperatures in the desert swing so much between night and day, morning temperatures can be quite pleasant even during the height of the summer.

Go next[edit]

  • Downtown Tempe has a lively night life, being a college town
  • There are many museums and other cultural venues in Phoenix
Routes through Scottsdale
GlendalePhoenix  W  S  TempeChandler

This city travel guide to Scottsdale is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.