10 Breathtaking Hikes In & Near Phoenix In 2023 for All Levels

Welcome, fellow wanderers and trail blazers! If you’re reading this, you’re either a seasoned hiker or a novice filled with an adventurous spirit, or perhaps somewhere in between. No matter your skill level, Phoenix, Arizona, is a hiker’s wonderland just waiting to be explored.

With its diverse topography that spans rugged mountain trails to peaceful desert paths, you’ll find an abundance of trails that suit your taste. In this blog post, we’re going to embark on a journey together, exploring the top 10 breathtaking hikes in and around Phoenix.

10. 32nd Street Trail Head

The 32nd Street Trail Head, located in the heart of Phoenix, is perfect for hikers seeking a quick but stimulating hike.

The trail presents various elevation changes, which can be both challenging and rewarding. At the end of the approximately 30-minute hike, a fantastic view of Phoenix awaits.

Nearby attractions: The Arizona Biltmore Golf Club and the Piestewa Peak Park are nearby attractions worth visiting.
Pros Cons Price Difficulty Level
Quick hike, varied elevation, great views Limited parking, can be crowded Free Moderate

9. Desert Vista Trailhead

Found in North Phoenix, the Desert Vista Trailhead leads to the Dixie Mountain Loop, offering spectacular views and a chance to spot wildlife like birds, owls, and turtles. For a more challenging hike, try the pinnacle trail.

Nearby attractions: The Cave Creek Golf Course is a great place to unwind post-hike.
Pros Cons Price Difficulty Level
Wildlife sightings, great views, additional challenging trail Can be strenuous for some Free Moderate

8. Reach 11 Recreation Area

Situated in North Phoenix, Reach 11 Recreation Area offers well-maintained trails amidst scenic fields. The area also has ample parking, though it can get crowded during large tournaments.

Nearby attractions: Check out the Musical Instrument Museum and the Desert Ridge Marketplace for a post-hike retreat.
Pros Cons Price Difficulty Level
Ample parking, well-maintained trails Can be crowded during big tournaments Free Easy to Moderate

7. Pima Canyon Trailhead

Located in South Mountain Park, Pima Canyon Trailhead is the place to see wildlife, with potential sightings of wolves, rabbits, and quail.

Nearby attractions: Visit the Mystery Castle and enjoy the panoramic views from Dobbins Lookout nearby.
Pros Cons Price Difficulty Level
Wildlife sightings, beautiful scenery None Free Moderate

6. Shaw Butte Trailhead

Shaw Butte Trailhead, in North Mountain Park, has well-marked trails and good surfaces, save a few spots with loose material. Note that the trailhead is currently under construction.

Nearby attractions: Consider exploring the North Mountain Visitor Center situated nearby.
Pros Cons Price Difficulty Level
Well-marked trails, great views Trailhead under construction Free Moderate

5. Mormon Trailhead

The Mormon Trailhead, located in South Mountain Park, offers a moderate hike with a certain level of elevation gain. Although it’s not a loop trail, you can extend your hike if you’re up for more adventure.

Nearby attractions: The Mystery Castle and the Arizona Grand Golf Course are worth a visit after your hike.
Pros Cons Price Difficulty Level
Moderate difficulty, option to extend the hike Not a loop trail Free Moderate

4. Lookout Mountain Preserve

Lookout Mountain Preserve, located in North Phoenix, offers trails for all hikers, from flat ones for less adventurous hikers to challenging ones for the more experienced.

Nearby attractions: The Musical Instrument Museum and the Paradise Valley Mall are nearby attractions.
Pros Cons Price Difficulty Level
Variety of trails for different skill levels, beautiful scenery None Free Easy to Difficult

3. Apache Wash Trailhead

The Apache Wash Trailhead, found in the Phoenix Sonoran Preserve, features a variety of well-signed trails. Hikers need to bring their own water, as none is available onsite.

Nearby attractions: Visit the Pioneer Living History Museum, which is close by.
Pros Cons Price Difficulty Level
Variety of trails, well-signed trails No water onsite Free Easy to Difficult

2. Cholla Trail

Cholla Trail, located on Camelback Mountain, is currently closed for restoration. Once it reopens, it will provide a challenging hike with spectacular views.

Nearby attractions: Consider visiting Echo Canyon Recreation Area and the Phoenix Zoo.
Pros Cons Price Difficulty Level
Challenging hike, breathtaking views Currently closed for restoration Free Difficult

1. Echo Canyon Trail and Recreation Area

Finally, the Echo Canyon Trail and Recreation Area, also on Camelback Mountain, offers a rigorous hike with incredible views. However, this challenging trail requires proper preparation and gear.

Nearby attractions: The Phoenix Zoo or the Desert Botanical Garden are great places to visit after your hike.
Pros Cons Price Difficulty Level
Challenging hike, amazing views Requires proper gear and preparation Free Difficult



Which trail offers the best wildlife sightings?

The Pima Canyon Trailhead and the Desert Vista Trailhead both provide good opportunities for wildlife sightings.

I’m looking for a challenging hike in Phoenix. Which trail should I consider?

Echo Canyon Trail and Recreation Area and Cholla Trail (once reopened) are both difficult trails offering a challenging hike.

What trail offers a quick hike for a busy day?

The 32nd Street Trail Head offers a quick hike, usually taking about 30 minutes.

Are there any trails that are currently closed?

Yes, as of the time of writing this post, Cholla Trail is currently closed for restoration.

What trail would you recommend for someone seeking a trail with various elevation changes?

The 32nd Street Trail Head offers varied elevation changes for those seeking a stimulating hike.

Which trails in Phoenix have ample parking facilities?

Reach 11 Recreation Area is known for its ample parking space.

Which trail allows me to extend my hike if I feel like it?

The Mormon Trailhead offers the opportunity to extend your hike as it is not a loop trail.

Which trail provides a variety of difficulty levels to choose from?

Lookout Mountain Preserve and Apache Wash Trailhead both offer a variety of trails ranging from easy to difficult.


guide to the top 10 breathtaking hikes in and around Phoenix

And there you have it, adventurers – our guide to the top 10 breathtaking hikes in and around Phoenix. As we journeyed through this guide together, we’ve navigated through the city’s diverse trails, each offering its unique thrills and stunning views.

From quick, invigorating hikes to trails that present a more challenging adventure, there’s truly something here for every hiker. So what are you waiting for? Pack your hiking gear, slather on that sunscreen, and choose the trail that calls out to your adventurous spirit.

Phoenix, with its majestic landscapes and varied trails, awaits you. And remember, every step you take is a memory in the making. Here’s to discovering new paths, conquering new heights, and creating unforgettable experiences on the trails of Phoenix. Happy hiking!