The Old West comes to life while sharing the historic streets of Scottsdale with intriguing art galleries, modern craft breweries, foodie favorite haunts, charming wineries, and boutiques that invite you to stroll and explore their wares. Old Town Scottsdale, Arizona is steeped in cowboy history and has turned into a hip, hip destination for travelers looking for a fun adventure.
As you stroll through the streets of the Old Town, you will find unique storefronts providing locals and visitors with a unique experience in the area. Beautiful art installations adorn green spaces and street corners and embrace Scottsdale’s Native American history that intertwines with its classic cowboy legends.
Some of the information in this article was obtained during a sponsored press trip, but all recommendations are mine.
1. Sip and taste the walking tour
The best way to explore a place new to you is to walk the streets with a city dweller and sample all of the amazing local cuisine. Arizona Food Tours takes the classic happy hour and turns into a walking tour of local places, with its Sip and taste Scottsdale to visit. Learn local history, explore signature cocktails and cuisine, and immerse yourself in the Scottsdale experience.
As you stroll through the streets with your guide, learn the fascinating history of how Scottsdale became a hub of the Old West. Enjoy being greeted at each restaurant like an old friend as you taste and sip your way through the old town. Your foodie adventure can be as hot and spicy or as casual as you want it to be; accommodating your personal tastes. Get ready to taste amazing cocktails and delicious plates. Food Tours in Arizona offers a selection of tour and tasting options perfect for a small-group outing,
You will visit a selection of restaurants that may include Modern American smokehouse bootleggers, featured on “Diners, Drivin-ins, and Dives”, because their smoked meat is amazing. Ultra-modern, AZ88, a fun saloon bursting with ambiance and cocktails, you can sip a classic Moscow Mule with an AZ88 twist. The mission takes classic Latin cuisine to the next level. His signature tacos will be the standard by which all future tacos will be measured. Evo, with its sumptuous Italian flavors, will transport you out of the desert and across the ocean in a small Italian kitchen. the Brat Haus The beer garden is the center of the Old Town party, where everything is homemade, including the condiments. End your visit with a scoop of Italian sweetness at Gelato Cimmino.
2. Take a joy ride, AZ style
JoyRidesAZ will take you around Scottsdale in a comfortable outdoor golf cart. Forget the walk, this is a door-to-door service tour company that offers a wide selection of pre-planned and customizable tours. It is owned and operated by Kirk and Monica, a couple living with extensive knowledge of Scottsdale. Joy Rides is a fun and intimate way to see Old Town Scottsdale through a specific tour-driven lens.
The Brew Sampling Tour will take you on a tour of the local bars and saloons that offer a taste of Old Scottsdale history and a few frozen pints. During the urban historical tour, you will be enchanted by the stories of cowboys and gold diggers. The Instagram Tour takes you to some of Insta’s most worthy places, and since Scottsdale is home to an incredible street art culture, there are a number of beautiful facilities to choose from.
3. Contemplate life in an old Adobe mission
The Adobe Catholic Mission Church, known simply as the Former Adobe mission, is a basic adobe-style structure that welcomes everyone. Take some time out of your busy day of sightseeing to reflect in quiet contemplation by visiting The Old Adobe Mission, Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic Church. Built in 1933 when Scottsdale was a booming city, the church now welcomes visitors seeking a place of reflection and prayer.
Take a few minutes to stroll quietly in the church, there you will find many statues and icons dedicated to Our Lady of Guadalupe. The Old Adobe Mission is a beautiful church and a popular location for Catholic weddings.
4. Wine tasting with a magnificent view
Wine, the nectar of grapes, is more than a LDV cellar tasting room. Strategically located in the heart of Old Town Scottsdale, comfortable chairs invite you to sit and taste beautifully crafted wines. The rustic decor of the vineyard paves the way for tasting excellent wines.
Enjoy one of the many expert flights, sample different varieties, or share a bottle with a friend. Sip full-bodied reds or crisp whites while watching the world go by from your curbside patio. The tasting room staff provide knowledgeable descriptions of each wine; thus eliminating the guesswork from your selection. If you’re pressed for time, you can purchase a bottle to enjoy later, or a selection to ship home.
LDV also offers special events, like its Sip and Learn series, directed by LDV winemaker Curt Dunham. LDV Winery Vineyard special events bring customers closer to their wine.
5. Stay in the old town of the secret garden
An oasis courtyard in the center of the Old Town’s arts district is where outdoor tiled fountains sparkle, stylish fireplaces abound, and intimate seating treats guests like old friends. A hidden gem, the Tailor-made hostel, is more than a hotel, it is an experience. When you walk through the garden gate, you are transported to a secret garden that invites you to linger and soak up the atmosphere of the private patio. The gardens evoke feelings of European courtyards where calm and intimate conversations between longtime friends take place every day.
Bespoke’s rooms and suites are stylish and relaxed. Thoughtful touches like Smeg coffeemakers adorn the kitchenettes along with special details unique to each room. When you return from a day of sightseeing, a dip in the rooftop infinity pool is just the luxurious detail that makes your stay special.
6. An elegant dinner meets the Wild West
Sharing the elegant courtyard of the Bespoke Inn is Virtu Honest Craft, run by James Beard and chef Gio Osso, nominated for ‘Best New Restaurant’ in 2014. The changing three-course menu reflects the evolution of premium produce available seasonally, allowing Osso to create the most amazing progressive meal for his guests. Sumptuous platters like homemade chestnut pappardelle served with marsala-braised lamb neck, pomegranate and goat cheese fondue garner the highest praise from dedicated Virtu food lovers.
Dining inside is a treat; The cozy kitchen-side dining room offers a nighttime show with the staff preparing exceptionally prepared dishes for hungry guests. Dining out transports you to a beautiful café where guests linger over delicious wine and delicious food. Dining in nature, the Old West has never been so incredible.
7. Garden virtuoso
FnB Restaurant is tucked away from the hustle and bustle of the old town on a side street, surrounded by buildings. The outdoor dining area is reminiscent of a garden party with waiters busy delivering delicious food to waiting connoisseurs. The sumptuously blown plates are a feast for the eyes and a feast for the taste buds. Known for its expertly prepared vegetables that are served with unique pairings like refreshing and light sweet peas with mascarpone or fried green tomatoes which are nothing short of classics – FnB is a dining experience.
While the featured products take center stage, don’t worry, the steak, chicken, and fish are also well cared for, delivering perfection to discerning diners.
8. Explore the historic western spirit of Scottsdale
Art surrounds you in Scottsdale. Both outdoors and indoors, art is on display for all to appreciate. The respect and collection of artefacts are evident in the permanent and changing exhibits at Western Spirit, Scottsdale’s Museum of the West (SMOW). As a subsidiary of the Smithsonian, SMoW offers a wide range of local artistic works.
You can explore exhibits such as the Barry M. Goldwater Collection of Photographs and Marjorie Thomas’ paintings depicting local Indigenous peoples. Scottsdale artists capture the history of the West, allowing audiences to learn and appreciate the region’s local contributions to present-day society.
Enjoy a moment of calm in the sculpture courtyard where the exhibitions change regularly. However, the contemplative nature of modern and western court art still reflects the history of Scottsdale and its people.
9. Public art
You can stroll the streets of Scottsdale and admire interesting and contemplative public art works across the city. Scottsdale Public Art the permanent collection includes commemorative statues, intriguing waterfalls, contemporary sculptures and interactive installations. A stop at the Horseshoe Falls monument is where you can take a breather from the refreshing mist emanating from the river rock that surrounds the perfectly stacked horseshoe towers. The towers are artfully arranged in a horseshoe, reinforcing the Western theme.
Every Thursday evening from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m., the Scottsdale Gallery Association (SGA) hosts a ArtWalk. Casually stroll through more than two dozen galleries, two museums, and past several Scottsdale public art facilities, with galleries showcasing collectible artwork, native artwork and decorative works for your evening fun. Several times throughout the year, the SGA hosts festive Gold Palette themed ArtWalks for your strolling pleasure.
Pro tip: When you’re ready for a local hike, you’ll be better prepared after reading 12 Tips for Hiking Camelback Mountain in Phoenix for Success.
Scottsdale is one of the many Arizona sites that has captured the imagination of travelers: