Tempe, Arizona is a beautiful place to visit. There are so many great things to do in the city that you can’t help but have a good time. Whether you’re looking for something fun to do with your family or want to explore all that Tempe has to offer, you’ll find plenty of activities to keep you busy. Here are some of the best experiences in Tempe.
The Best Things To Do In Tempe
Downtown Tempe is on South Mill Avenue near ASU. Its brick sidewalks, bars, entertainment venues, microbreweries, restaurants, boutiques, and nightlife are famous. This is a good place to start exploring Tempe today.
Downtown Tempe is pedestrian-friendly and organizes unique events like the Tempe Arts Festival, 4th of July Fireworks Celebration, and the New Year’s Eve Block Party on Mill Avenue. Gammage Auditorium hosts concerts and Broadway shows like Cats, Phantom of the Opera, and Wicked.
Kiwanis Park is a favorite Tempe gathering site. The park features a wide green space, including Kiwanis Lake, perfect for picnics or yard games. Rentable boats, a playground, and sports fields are also available. Everyone can enjoy the indoor wave pool. Kiwanis Park is open later than others in the region, until midnight. Take a late-night stroll after dinner.
Arizona State University Art Museum
The Arizona State University Art Museum has more than 12,000 permanent pieces. These include art from Arizona and the Southwestern U.S., Latin American art, including Mexican folk art and ceramics, 3,500 American ceramics, contemporary art including new media, historical and current American and European prints, and more.
The art museum offers education outreach programs in schools and neighborhoods. The museum organizes yearly events.
Hohokam Native Americans carved 500 petroglyphs around the butte in 750 AD. Many nature trails make exploring the petroglyphs and landscape easy. Hayden Butt is popular with sunset watchers. An easy trek to the mountain offers broad valley views and beautiful desert sunsets.
Tempe History Museum
The Tempe History Museum presents Tempe’s history. Tempe: Distinct, Diverse, Dynamic covers Tempe’s history through many media. The Community Room Art Gallery and Changing Exhibits Gallery present temporary art exhibits, and the Community Room can be booked for meetings and performances.
The museum offers children’s programming. It offers children’s plays, concerts, movies, and Tempe Historical Society Lunch Talks.
Tempe Diablo Stadium
Spring training is in full swing at Tempe Diablo Stadium. 15 MLB teams play in Arizona’s Cactus League. The stadium hosts all-LA Angels “home” games, so you can see your favorite players and rising stars.
Papago Park features stunning sandstone buttes and other sights. The famous Hole in the Rock. Hikers can enjoy spectacular views from within the unique rock formation after a strenuous hike with some short but hard sections.
The “hole” acts as a natural telescope and is a great place to see the sunrise. Other pathways, including paved ones, show off the surroundings.
Big Surf Waterpark
Big Surf Waterpark provided something new to the US in 1969. The country’s first wave pool impressed then and still does now. Big Surf Waterpark now has extra water attractions to offer on hot Tempe days. The Hurricane and Black Hole are more thrilling coasters.
Kids can ride the Otter Slide as the family floats along the lazy river, reflecting on past water adventures.
Tempe Town Lake
Tempe Town Lake divides Tempe and Scottsdale and offers outdoor activities. It’s one of Tempe’s most photographed areas and a beautiful place to walk. You can leave a pedal boat to explore further.
Tempe Beach Park is another lake attraction. The one-acre green space on the river provides a wonderful kayak launch. The park’s Splash Pad has a slide, a spray cannon and a waterfall. Tempe has some great sunset sites.
Sea Life Arizona Aquarium
Arizona Mills is one of Tempe’s top family-friendly attractions. Sea Life Arizona Aquarium features several marine animals to see. You’ll see sharks, stingrays, and unusual species like lionfish and angelfish in the aquarium.
The Interactive Rockpool lets kids touch marine stars and crustaceans. Sea Life Arizona Aquarium focuses on rehabilitating damaged aquatic species for conservation. Ziva, a green sea turtle, lives in a 161,000-gallon tank.
LEGOLAND Discovery Center
LEGOLAND Discovery Center is a fun family destination. Your kids will appreciate this play-and-learn wonderland. Miniland has Lego replicas of iconic landmarks, like the Grand Canyon. There’s a build-and-play, a Lego 4D theater, Merlin’s Apprentice Ride, and a Kingdom Quest Ride. Plan to attend a Creative Area Workshop where your kids can learn from skilled Lego builders.
ASU Gammage Auditorium
ASU Gammage is an auditorium on campus. It was Frank Lloyd Wright’s last public commission. The theater is named for Dr. Grady Gammage, university president from 1933 to 1959, and Frank Lloyd Wright’s buddy. The 3,000-seat theater has three floors. Its acoustics and folding orchestra shell are well-known. The auditorium hosts operas, symphonies, and organ recitals.
The Tempe Marketplace is located on East Rio Salado Parkway beside the Salt River. The 2007 shopping mall has 1 million square feet of retail space on 130 acres. The shopping center has more than 120 merchants, entertainment venues, and restaurants in two areas: an outer ring of huge stores and an inner ring dubbed the District.
The district’s huge courtyard contains a stage for musical concerts and a giant screen for local sports.
Riverbound Sports sells and leases paddleboards, longboards, kayaks, and more. The shop provides paddleboard and yoga classes. Paddleboarding is for all ages, skill levels, and fitness levels.
The shop sells garments and accessories, including auto accessories, board accessories, paddle accessories, dry bags, gadgets, and PFDs.
Simply Smashing Rage Release Room
Simply Smashing is elusive. Tempe’s “Rage Release Room” located on University Drive. It’s a safe, shielded, air-conditioned room where people can smash, crush, and shatter objects to relieve frustration, fury, and rage. It’s a hybrid gym, therapeutic facility, anger management room, and entertainment park that’s becoming popular nationwide. Each exercise lasts around 25 minutes, and clients can use glassware, plates, computers, TVs, vehicle windshields, baseball bats, and hockey sticks to unleash their restrained wrath. 18-year-olds must wear goggles, gloves, and coveralls.
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