Things to do in Flagstaff

About Flagstaff

Flagstaff is filled with must-see attractions for any traveler. The Lowell Observatory offers celestial insights and history, while Walnut Canyon National Monument provides a look into ancient cliff dwellings. The majestic San Francisco Peaks are perfect for outdoor enthusiasts, and the historic Downtown and Railroad District offers a charming exploration of Flagstaff's past.
Families with kids can enjoy Flagstaff's mix of educational and adventure-based activities. The Museum of Northern Arizona sparks curiosity about natural history, while the Flagstaff Extreme Adventure Course challenges with thrilling zip lines and rope bridges. Bearizona Wildlife Park is a drive-through wildlife observatory that will fascinate children and adults alike.
The beauty of Flagstaff's landscape is best enjoyed through its outdoor activities. Hiking, biking, or skiing on the Arizona Snowbowl, exploring the trails of Coconino National Forest, and enjoying the views from the Lava River Cave are among the highlights. Each provides a different way to immerse oneself in the natural wonders of Flagstaff.
For indoor fun, visitors can explore the educational exhibits at the Museum of Northern Arizona, experience the heritage at the Pioneer Museum, and engage with science at the Lowell Observatory. These venues offer entertainment and knowledge, making for great indoor activities regardless of the weather.
The best tours in Flagstaff cater to a variety of interests. Self-guided tours of the historic downtown area, guided astronomy sessions at Lowell Observatory, and immersive nature expeditions through Walnut Canyon are among the best Flagstaff tours that offer memorable experiences of the city.
In Flagstaff, popular museums that captivate visitors include the Museum of Northern Arizona with its focus on regional history and culture, and the Pioneer Museum, which provides a glimpse into Flagstaff's pioneering past. These museums are essential for understanding the rich tapestry of the area's heritage.
When the weather turns damp, the best tours in Flagstaff are those that take place indoors. The Lowell Observatory's indoor exhibits, the Museum of Northern Arizona, and the Pioneer Museum all offer sheltered educational experiences that are perfect for overcast days.
For those pressed for time, a rapid tour of the Lowell Observatory offers a quick and enriching experience. Additionally, visitors can opt for a concise visit to the Flagstaff Visitor Center or take a brisk self-guided walking tour through the historical downtown district, each promising a satisfying snapshot of Flagstaff in under an hour.

Best Things to Do In Flagstaff

Discover the serene beauty and exciting attractions that Flagstaff has to offer through our immersive audio tours.

Flagstaff: Riordan Mansion State Historic Park

What is it?
An early 20th-century estate offering a glimpse into the lives of a pioneering Flagstaff family.
Why you should go?
Riordan Mansion State Historic Park serves as a portal to the past, showcasing the Arts and Crafts movement in American architecture. The mansion, with its original interiors and furnishings, tells the story of the prominent Riordan family and their impact on Flagstaff's development. Guided tours reveal the intricacies of this historic residence, making it one of the more educational Flagstaff excursions for history enthusiasts.

Flagstaff: Coconino National Forest

What is it?
A vast expanse of diverse landscapes ranging from deserts to ponderosa pine forests.
Why you should go?
Adventurers and nature aficionados will find the Coconino National Forest to be a playground of natural wonders. Whether you're into hiking, mountain biking, or scenic drives, this spot offers an escape into the wilderness. Home to a plethora of wildlife and breathtaking vistas, it stands out as one of the best places to visit in Flagstaff for anyone wishing to connect with the great outdoors.

Flagstaff: Wupatki National Monument

What is it?
An ancient site where visitors can explore the ruins of Puebloan villages dotting the landscape.
Why you should go?
Wupatki National Monument spans thousands of years of history, where the remnants of the Puebloan people's lives and culture are preserved. The landscape is a tapestry of red-rock outcroppings and expansive skies. Tourists find it an enlightening experience for its historical narratives, and it ranks highly on the list of educational and inspiring Flagstaff tours.

Flagstaff: Pioneer Museum

What is it?
A local institution housed in an original 1908 hospital, dedicated to preserving regional history.
Why you should go?
For those curious about the rugged origins of Northern Arizona, the Pioneer Museum offers in-depth insights through its artifacts and stories. The exhibits trace the lives of lumberjacks, ranchers, and early settlers of the region. A visit here complements the best Flagstaff tours by featuring the heritage and resilience of its early residents.

Flagstaff: Lava River Cave

What is it?
An underground lava tube forming a mesmerizing cave, created by volcanic activity.
Why you should go?
The Lava River Cave presents a unique opportunity for exploration, where adventurers can embark on a subterranean journey along a mile-long lava tube. This geological feature adds an unconventional twist to the typical things to do in Flagstaff, challenging visitors to navigate its rocky terrain and darkened paths with a provided light source, making for an unforgettable excursion.

Flagstaff: Lowell Observatory

What is it?
A premier astronomical research institution and a designated Historic Landmark.
Why you should go?
Famous for the discovery of Pluto, Lowell Observatory offers a stellar experience where space and science enthusiasts can gaze into the vast universe. With state-of-the-art telescopes and exhibits on cosmic discoveries, visitors can step into the world of astronomy. Daytime solar viewings and nighttime stargazing sessions make it one of the most intriguing things to see in Flagstaff for families and solo explorers alike.

Flagstaff: Walnut Canyon National Monument

What is it?
A breathtaking canyon providing insight into ancient pueblo dwellings.
Why you should go?
For a journey back in time, Walnut Canyon National Monument is unmissable. The site offers visitors a chance to explore prehistoric cliff dwellings nestled along the canyon walls. Hiking trails provide panoramic views of the canyon and the opportunity to contemplate the lives of the former inhabitants. Engaging and scenic, it stands out among the things to do in Flagstaff for history buffs and nature lovers.

Flagstaff: The Museum of Northern Arizona

What is it?
A cultural repository showcasing the natural and cultural history of the Colorado Plateau.
Why you should go?
The Museum of Northern Arizona is a treasure trove of knowledge, presenting fascinating collections of Native American art and artifacts, as well as geology, biology, and paleontology exhibits. Interactive displays and educational programs make this museum a captivating experience for all ages. It's considered one of the prime what to see in Flagstaff highlights, offering a deep dive into the rich tapestry of the region.

Flagstaff: Historic Downtown and Railroad District

What is it?
The cultural heart of Flagstaff, steeped in vibrant history and charm.
Why you should go?
The Historic Downtown and Railroad District is the pulse of Flagstaff, brimming with local shops, eateries, and galleries. Architecture enthusiasts can marvel at the preserved historic buildings while strolling through the lively area. Seasonal festivals and events add to the allure of this district, making it one of the fun things to do in Flagstaff, whether you're seeking retail therapy, gastronomic delight, or cultural entertainment.

Flagstaff: Arizona Snowbowl

What is it?
A premier ski destination offering year-round outdoor recreation.
Why you should go?
In the winter, skiers and snowboarders can enjoy the powdery slopes of Arizona Snowbowl, while summer visitors can hike or take a scenic chairlift ride to savor the panoramic views. Adventure-seekers and families alike will appreciate the outdoor Flagstaff activities available here, which rank as some of the best things to do in Flagstaff for thrill-seekers and nature enthusiasts seeking a mountain escape.

TOP-5 tours in Flagstaff for first-time visitors

  • Explore the wonders of the historic downtown area, learning about local legends and architectural marvels, making it one of the best things to do in Flagstaff.
  • Delve into the mesmerizing landscapes of the surrounding nature trails, a must for anyone pondering what to do in Flagstaff for an authentic outdoor experience.
  • Embark on an insightful journey through the esteemed local observatory and discover why it's considered one of the top places to visit in Flagstaff.
  • Experience the vibrant local arts scene with a tour that highlights why these cultural hubs are regarded as fun things to do in Flagstaff.
  • Cap off your adventure with a tour of Flagstaff's famed Route 66, complete with its rich history and role in American culture, a quintessential item on the Flagstaff activities list.

Fun things to do in Flagstaff with kids

Nestled amongst the scenic beauty of Northern Arizona, Flagstaff offers a plethora of family-friendly activities that promise a memorable experience for the little ones as well as adults. Discover the enchanting world of science and space at Lowell Observatory, where interactive exhibits and kid-friendly guided tours will capture the imagination of aspiring young astronauts. Just a short drive away, the wildly exciting Bearizona Wildlife Park allows families to drive through a variety of North American wildlife habitats, observing animals such as bears, bisons, and wolves from the safety and comfort of their vehicle.

Embrace the great outdoors with a visit to the Flagstaff Extreme Adventure Course, featuring ziplines and an obstacle course that kids and teens will love, all set within the beautiful ponderosa pines. Each of these destinations provides an educational yet thrilling addition to any Flagstaff visit, ensuring that your trip is filled with joyous laughter and smiles from your cherished little explorers.

Things to do in Flagstaff with family

Flagstaff is a treasure trove of family-friendly attractions that blend education with excitement. One of the top Flagstaff activities for families is a trip to the Grand Canyon, just a short distance away, where awe-inspiring vistas and hiking opportunities abound. For a slice of adventure, the Flagstaff Extreme Adventure Course offers treetop obstacle courses that challenge and delight both kids and adults—safety harnesses included. The whole family can also learn and play at the interactive exhibits at the Museum of Northern Arizona, highlighting the region's cultural and natural history. Each attraction is designed to deliver quality family time, set against the backdrop of Flagstaff's natural beauty and historical significance, making them essential experiences for the perfect family getaway.

Free things to do in Flagstaff

Embrace the natural beauty and rich culture of Flagstaff without spending a dime at some of the city's best no-cost attractions. Bask in the majestic surroundings with a visit to Buffalo Park, where well-maintained trails provide ample opportunity for hiking, wildlife viewing, and breathtaking views of the San Francisco Peaks. Art and history come alive when exploring the Flagstaff Historic Downtown, where you can enjoy a self-guided walking tour amidst charming century-old buildings and public art installations, truly one of the fun things to do in Flagstaff. For astronomical observations and daytime picnics, head over to the campus of Northern Arizona University, which often hosts free stargazing nights through its observatory. Each of these venues offers a chance to delve into the unique character of Flagstaff, making them must-visit spots for budget-conscious travelers and locals alike.

Cheap things to do in Flagstaff

Exploring Flagstaff doesn't have to break the bank, as the city offers a variety of affordable attractions that promise rich experiences. Immerse yourself in local history at the Pioneer Museum, where for a nominal fee, you can delve into Flagstaff's past through exhibits housed in a former hospital from the 1900s. For nature lovers, the Lava River Cave presents an escape into the cool depths of a volcanic lava tube, offering a unique adventure with only a flashlight and sturdy shoes required. Enjoy the art scene by visiting the First Friday ArtWalk, occurring monthly, providing a cheerful, budget-friendly evening filled with art, music, and local cuisine. These attractions highlight the best things to do in Flagstaff, allowing visitors to savor the culture and natural wonders of the area while being mindful of their travel expenses.

Things to do in Flagstaff for couples

Flagstaff offers an array of romantic yet adventurous things to do for couples seeking memorable experiences together. Start with a leisurely stroll through The Arboretum at Flagstaff, a beautiful botanical garden where you can absorb the tranquil surroundings and enjoy seasonal flower displays in a peaceful setting. Wine enthusiasts will love spending an afternoon touring and tasting at the local vineyards and wineries, such as the Arizona Stronghold Vineyards tasting room, which offers a selection of fine wines that capture the essence of the region. For an evening of stargazing, escape to the dark skies of Flagstaff, designated as the world’s first International Dark Sky City, and unravel the mysteries of the cosmos together at Lowell Observatory. These activities solidify Flagstaff as a destination brimming with things to see and places to visit for couples desiring both connection and adventure.

Things to do in Flagstaff at night

Evenings in Flagstaff illuminate a different side of the city, offering unique attractions for night owls and cosmic adventurers. A quintessential experience is a visit to the historic Lowell Observatory, where the night sky reveals its secrets through powerful telescopes and guided stargazing sessions, thus turning it into one of the best Flagstaff activities after dark. For live entertainment, the Orpheum Theater hosts a variety of shows ranging from local bands to national acts, making it a vibrant spot to enjoy music and performances. Alternatively, downtown Flagstaff comes alive at night with an array of bars and breweries serving local craft beers and specialty cocktails, perfect for those wondering what to do in Flagstaff to experience its bustling nightlife. These attractions promise an evening filled with discovery and enjoyment set against the backdrop of Flagstaff's cool, starlit sky.