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Ultimate Guide to Scottsdale Summer & Fall Activities

When you need an escape from everyday life, or a warm, sunny environment this summer or fall, consider Scottsdale. There are plenty of enjoyable Scottsdale summer and fall activities to make your Scottsdale escape as fun and exciting or as serene and relaxing as you like. From world-class shopping and dining to fun and exciting activities like hiking, biking, or ATV tours through the Sonoran Desert. No matter when you come or what you decide to do while you’re here, you’ll enjoy every moment of your Scottsdale summer or fall getaway.


When you’re out and about enjoying your Scottsdale vacation, you’re bound to hear your stomach rumble. You’re in luck, no matter where you happen to be in town and no matter what you’re in the mood for. If you’re looking for pizza, order your favorites at Grimaldi’s, a Scottsdale-based restaurant offering coal-fired pizza, including gluten friendly menu items. Enjoy a romantic, luxurious dinner at the Capital Grille, or grab a burger at Hopdoddy. If you’re looking for breakfast, check out Butters Pancakes & Cafe, Perk Eatery, or Breakfast Club, where you’ll find your favorites to satisfy your hunger before a day full of fun and activities.


When you’re on vacation in Scottsdale, you’ll want to bring home some souvenirs to remember your time here. There is plenty of world-class shopping throughout Scottsdale any time of year. Stop at the Promenade for shops like Sugar Sugar and Gift-Ology. Visit Old Town and the many local shops, some of which reside in some of the first buildings in Scottsdale! Other shopping options include Kierland Commons, Scottsdale Quarter, and Scottsdale Fashion Square, where you can find local shops as well as some of your favorite national brand stores.


Scottsdale is home to many world-class golf courses. Troon North joins courses like Grayhawk Golf Club and Kierland Golf Club. You might want to spend some time at the range, at either Crackerjax or Top Golf, or the practice bays at the PGA Superstore. For the ultimate golf experience, challenge yourself to a round at the TPC Stadium Course, the home of the Waste Management Phoenix Open.


Scottsdale has some of the best hiking trails in the area. Trek through the Sonoran Desert on its many trails. The Scottsdale McDowell Sonoran Preserve has several trails that vary in difficulty and length so you can find a family-friendly hike the kids will enjoy as well as harder climbs for hikers who want a challenge. No matter what time of year you strike out, you’ll want to make sure to pack plenty of sun protection, trail snacks, and water to keep you hydrated. If you’re here in the summer, rise with the sun or shortly after to take advantage of the cooler morning temperatures, or save the hike for the evening when the hot temperatures of the day begin to cool as the sun goes down. If you’re here in the fall, you can sleep in a bit, but still make sure to pack the sunscreen, trail snacks, and water. Hiking is one of the top fall things to do in Arizona, especially once the temperatures drop a bit!


You can explore the Sonoran Desert on foot by the many hiking trails that run through it. Go deeper, where your feet can’t take you, on a guided ATV tour. You’ll control your own ATV throughout the tour, and be escorted to some of the most interesting, beautiful, and scenic spots of the desert beyond the borders of Scottsdale’s streets and trails. As with any outdoor activity in the Scottsdale area, make sure you bring plenty of water and sun protection so you can enjoy the experience to the fullest. If you’re ready to strike out on your own after the guided tour, ask about ATV rentals so you can blaze your own trail.

Segway Tour

For a different way to tour Scottsdale, head out on a Segway. Segway of Scottsdale offers tours on the unique vehicles for two-hour tours through historic Old Town Scottsdale. Practice safety first and secure your orange helmet, with a built-in mic and headset so you can hear the guide’s informative talk during the six-mile ride. Pass art galleries, the Civic Center Mall, Scottsdale Waterfront, and much more. The company recommends riders be between 12 and 75-years-old. Choose from specialty rides, including sunset, culinary, and city lights tours.

Spa Day

If the goal for your Scottsdale vacation is “relaxation” or “rejuvenation,” there are several local day spas that can help you achieve your goal. Choose your favorite spa and a menu of services from massages and facials to mani/pedis, body wraps, and other refreshing services. Some spas even offer a salon so you can add a new ‘do to your agenda, or yoga and Pilates classes to relax your mind and spirit as well as your body.

Frank Lloyd Wright Taliesin West

Architectural history fans can find a dose of fun year-round on a trip to Scottsdale. Famed architect Frank Lloyd Wright kept a winter home in Scottsdale for many years before his death in 1959. You can see the mark of his work around Scottsdale and the Phoenix area, but the most impressive is Taliesin West. Wright was known for his concept of “organic architecture,” meaning his buildings grew out of and blended with the surrounding landscape. At Taliesin West, you’ll be able to tour the property, including Wright’s winter home and studio. A separate building on the property houses offices currently in use to train today’s budding architects in Wright’s concepts and designs. The property is designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site and National Historic Landmark.

MacDonald’s Ranch

Travel to the Old West with a visit to MacDonald’s Ranch. The ranch, located on Scottsdale Road, offers horseback rides through the Sonoran Desert, stagecoach rides, and moonlit rides. Fill your cowboy stomach with a Cowboy Cookout or take part in a special event like a hay bale maze, pedal car and track, pony ride, petting zoo, or various lawn games.

Penske Racing Museum

Car racing fans can find out more about the history of their favorite sport while shopping for a new Lamborghini or other exotic car along Scottsdale Road. The Penske Racing Museum showcases many of the winning Penske Racing vehicles, as well as memorabilia chronicling the team’s many successes. Over 50 years of racing, the Penske team has participated in over 400 races, and has racked up 17 Indianapolis 500 victories. Marvel at relics of vehicles such as the 1963 Pontiac Catalina, the vehicle which Roger Penske drove to victory in the 1963 Riverside 250 race, as well as the winning 2009 Dallara Honda driven by Helio Castroneves in the Indianapolis 500.

Scottsdale Stadium

Baseball fans can get their dose of America’s Favorite Pastime at Scottsdale Stadium. The first stadium was built in 1956, but today’s stadium was completed in 1992 on top of the old site. Up to 12,000 fans can cheer on their favorite teams at the stadium located in Old Town Scottsdale, surrounded by the many other area attractions. Fans of teams like the Chicago Cubs, Texas Rangers, Los Angeles Dodgers can visit the stadium that hosts their team’s spring training games. The San Francisco Giants have called the stadium ‘home’ during spring training since 1984. The stadium hosts the summer games of the Arizona League Giants, and in the fall you can cheer on teams of the Fall League in the championship. As Scottsdale summer activities go, there is nothing more American than baseball!

Octane Raceway

Speed around the track that’s the first of its kind in the U.S. Great for summer or fall, the track is an indoor/outdoor track that takes adult and junior racers around the 1/3-mile track. Adults win by completing 14 laps around the track, and their junior counterparts win in just 10 laps. Adults can put the pedal to the metal and reach speeds of 45-miles-per-hour, while juniors can get up to 25-miles-per-hour. When you’re finished racing, stick around for the virtual reality games, arcades, laser tag, mini bowling alley, and various outdoor games and attractions available at the site. Zipping around this indoor raceway is one of our favorite things to do in the summer in Arizona!

Medieval Times Dinner & Tournament

Transport yourself back in time on your trip to Scottsdale with a visit to Medieval Times! Take a break for an authentic Medieval dinner and jousting tournament in one. Enter the castle, which is an 80,000 square foot arena, and go back ten centuries to be the guest of the queen for a four-course royal dinner. Devour turkey legs and other traditional feast foods during the two-hour dinner and show as you watch six knights battle one another in jousting matches and sword fights to protect the queen and the royal bloodline. A dramatic musical score, theatrical lighting, and more add to experience. You’ll even get to see the flight of the royal falcon!

McCormick-Stillman Railroad Park

If you’re traveling with kids, the many Scottsdale area parks are a must-do on your itinerary. Add some extra fun to a park visit and head to the McCormick-Stillman Railroad Park, where you’ll find real engines and cars from the Paradise & Pacific rail company. Ride the miniature train on a track that takes you around the park. You can also take a ride on an authentic 1950-vintage Allen Herschell carousel, which includes two wheelchair-accessible chariot style benches. Kids can play on the playground equipment, including an Old West themed area with facades of Old West buildings like a bank and jail. If your trip is in the summer, make sure to bring plenty of sun protection and water and go early in the morning to beat the sun and heat. If you arrive in Scottsdale in the fall, sun protection is still a must, but the park adventure can be scheduled later in the day.

Chocolate Tour of Scottsdale

Chocolate lovers will want to add this stop to the itinerary. Take a tour with a local who knows the best chocolate spots in Old Town Scottsdale. Satisfy your sweet tooth as you get to know the city’s best chocolatiers, like Godiva Chocolatier and Chocolade van Brugge and taste samples of all kinds along the two-mile walking tour around Old Town.


Take an undersea adventure at OdySea. Wander the two-story, more than 200,000 square foot facility housing six-thousand animals from 300 different species. There are over 70 exhibits to keep you busy for hours on end. Pet the rays, listen to a lecture, or take a ride on the world’s only rotating aquarium experience, where each rotation teaches you about another section of the aquarium and the animals that live there. Make sure you visit the penguins and otters for an entertaining show!

Butterfly Wonderland

Step into a rain forest environment at one of the largest butterfly conservatories in the country. See many species of butterfly, birds, and even lizards that call the rain forests of the world. Learn about honey bees, edible insects, and the other residents as you wander the facility, or take in the 3D show.

Arizona Boardwalk

Along with OdySea and Butterfly Wonderland, the Arizona Boardwalk includes shopping, dining, and other attractions to keep you busy for hours. Be amazed at Ripley’s Believe It or Not, the dino-themed Pangea, the laser and mirror mazes, and more. Taste delicious eats and treats at restaurants like Johnny Rockets, Frozen Penguin, and Pangea Dinosaur Grill. There are plenty of things to keep you busy all throughout your stay.

Why Book with Us?

When you stay in a Scottsdale area vacation rental provided by Scottsdale Rentals, you’ll enjoy easy access to the town’s many amazing attractions, shopping, dining, and all the fun and excitement you’re looking for to make your stay all you expected and more. No matter what your vacation needs or style, we have a vacation rental for you, from a cozy two-bedroom for a sweethearts’ getaway to a six-bedroom home great for a family or group reunion. Our Scottsdale units come with fully equipped kitchens, comfortable furnishings, and everything you’ll need for your Scottsdale respite. Indulge in a premium unit and enjoy upgrades like a putting green, sport court, luxury master suite, and more.

Contact us today to book your trip to Scottsdale and enjoy all of these fun Scottsdale summer and fall activities!


Fort McDowell Adventures

This unique company offers a wide range of activities from kayaking, land and river tours, desert Segway adventures and so many more. Whether you are looking for an adrenaline rush or something more serene, you’ll find it with Fort McDowell Adventures. You can schedule corporate, special event, retreats, and even wedding parties at Fort McDowell.
14803 N. Hiawatha Hood Road, Scottsdale

Butterfly Wonderland

Butterfly Wonderland, in the heart of the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community houses a tropical rainforest that is home to thousands of butterflies from around the world. In addition to the butterflies, there are several galleries with interactive exhibits, a modern theater, and even educational laboratory spaces. This is a perfect place for a family adventure or even a romantic stroll through the gardens. 9500 E. Via de Ventura, Scottsdale, 480-800-3000

McCormick-Stillman Railroad Park

McCormick-Stillman Railroad Park is a unique railroad park offering a look at the history of the railroad. The park is home to a one-of-a-kind Model Railroad Building, housing a model railroad, four model railroad clubs, and a Magma Arizona Railroad locomotive. This interactive railroad museum offers a variety of objects and artifacts related to the railroad industry including the Roald Amundsen Pullman Car, the Merci Train, and the Model Railroad. The park also has several playgrounds, picnic areas, and a charming antique carousel, making it perfect for visitors of all ages.
7301 E. Indian Bend Rd, Scottsdale

Octane Raceway

Octane Raceway is an indoor/outdoor racing venue offering a casual and competitive kart racing for all ages. Octane Raceway features a third-mile track, which winds indoors and outdoors, with European electric race karts that travel up to 45 mph. Visitors can come in, register and race, and their race is scored in a Fastest Lap format. Octane Raceway also caters private and special events such as corporate and team building events and birthday parties. The Raceway also has a Trackside Bar & Grill, and several other entertainment facilities, including a Pit Crew Challenge, bowling alley, a games arcade, and billiards.
9119 E Indian Bend Rd, Scottsdale

Chocolate Tour of Scottsdale

Those with a sweet tooth will love exploring the sweet side of Scottsdale on a guided walking tour that visits all the town’s best chocolate destinations. You’ll visit a variety of chocolatiers and local shops where you’ll have the opportunity to discover the history of this confectionery and how the products are made and sample varieties of the world’s most popular treat, including truffles, hot chocolate, ice-cream, cupcakes, and other baked goods made with or from chocolate and meet the owners and chocolate-makers of some of Scottsdale’s best chocolate stores, while at the same time soaking up the wonderful ambiance of this vibrant town.
4225 N Marshall Way, Scottsdale

Desert Splash Adventures

Desert Splash Adventures is your go-to source for scenic flights over some of Arizona’s most dramatic, breathtaking landscapes, ending in an exhilarating water landing on Roosevelt Lake or Lake Powell. Operated by Island Air Express, Desert Splash Adventures provides an exclusive and unique desert adventure experience from the comfort of a Cessna Caravan Amphibious Seaplane. Highly experienced commercial bush pilots, (who are based in Alaska in the off season), fly the planes, and they guarantee absolute safety throughout the journey. Start your adventure conveniently located near the Scottsdale Airport, in an executive lounge that is a luxurious space to relax before the flight. Desert Splash Adventures also offers a range of other adventures ranging from gourmet brunches on a private island to canyoneering in the magnificent rock formations of the Sonoran wilderness.
15115 N Airport Drive, Landmark Aviation (FBO), Scottsdale