Flagstaff, Arizona, is the largest city located in Northern Arizona. Given its prominence in this remarkable region, it is home to a significant assortment of dining options, hotel accommodations, and local attractions. Many visitors choose to come to Flagstaff in order to experience its beautiful scenery and unique landscapes, as well as it is proximity to the area’s most famous landmarks: well-known and beloved places like Grand Canyon National Park; Williams, Arizona; Sedona, Arizona; and Page, Arizona, are all just short drives away from Flagstaff.
The proximity of Flagstaff to the majority of Northern Arizona’s most popular attractions is highlighted by the number of different guided tours that depart from within its city limits. From Flagstaff, you can take a wide variety of tours to several different iconic places; whether you are excited to explore the majestic South Rim of the Grand Canyon or ready to hike the mystical red-rock terrain of nearby Sedona, there’s a Flagstaff-based tour-company excursion that’s right for you (and/or your group/family). What’s more, there are tours available out of Flagstaff that specialize in everything from guided hikes to coach-van outings to even helicopter rides.
There is so much to see and do in the greater Flagstaff area. The city is home to the campus of Northern Arizona University, and you’ll find throughout its many vibrant neighborhoods a fun mixture of terrific restaurants and cozy hangout spots. Right in Flagstaff you’ll encounter such beloved attractions as Lowell Observatory, the Museum of Northern Arizona, and the Riordan Mansion State Historic Park. If roaming around outside and getting your hands dirty is more your style, then you don’t have to go far to have fun: Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument, Walnut Canyon National Monument, and Wupatki National Monument are all a straightforward 30-minute drive or less from the heart of Flagstaff.
Of course, another one of the major draws of Flagstaff is how it is centrally located squarely in the midst of all the best Northern Arizona has to offer its visitors. World-famous Grand Canyon National Park is only about 75 miles north of Flagstaff, while Williams, Arizona, a frequent desirable jumping-off point for travelers to the South Rim of the Grand Canyon, is just 30 miles or so due west of Flagstaff. Meanwhile, the breathtaking beauty of Sedona, Arizona, is similarly an easy 30-mile drive to the south.
Popular Flagstaff Attractions:
Lowell Observatory: Built on the outskirts of Flagstaff, Arizona, in 1894, Lowell Observatory is world-famous for being the site where Pluto was first discovered. Today it remains a working astronomical observatory. Guided tours are available daily, and visitors will also find here a museum, gift shop, and a whole host of evening programs devoted to sharing the wonders of astronomical study with the general public.
Museum of Northern Arizona: Founded in 1928, the Museum of Northern Arizona is home to an impressive collection of artifacts documenting the rich history of the Northern Arizona and Colorado Plateau region. Here you’ll encounter an assortment of exhibits highlighting the area’s natural beauty and cultural diversity.
Riordan Mansion State Historic Park: The centerpiece of this small, five-acre state park is the historic Riordan Family mansion, originally built in 1904. At some 13,000 square feet, the home stands today as a wonderful example of American Arts and Crafts-style architecture. Guided tours of the home are available, self-guided tours of the grounds are encouraged, and a small museum is found here, too.
Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument: Located within the boundaries of Coconino National Forest, just about 20 miles northeast of Flagstaff, Arizona, Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument is comprised of 3,000 acres of protected land defined by over a thousand years of volcanic activity. The centerpiece of this unique stretch of lava fields is Sunset Crater, where a volcano spectacularly erupted in the 11th century.
Walnut Canyon National Monument: Located just ten minutes from Flagstaff, Arizona, Walnut Canyon National Monument encompasses some 3,500 acres of federally protected land. Visitors to Walnut Canyon will be able to explore a unique, attractive landscape—one that includes the remains of dwellings once lived in by the Sinagua tribe; these ruins are said to be some 900 years old.
Wupatki National Monument: Located some 30 miles northeast of Flagstaff, Arizona, Wupatki National Monument is home to the preserved ruins of several ancient Native American settlements. As a stretch of protected land containing roughly 35,000 acres overseen by the National Park Service, Wupatki National Monument encompasses a region rich in archaeological wonders that date back nearly 900 years.