Itching for some fun in the sun, but don’t need the ocean? Arizona’s desert landscapes are just the ticket, putting you amid rugged mountains dotted with cacti, where each day ends with an epic sunset in one of these resorts – bookable on Culture Trip.
These top-notch resorts near Phoenix and Tucson are a cinch to fly to and a welcome respite for jaded, city-slicker travelers. The spacious grounds offer a range of outdoor activities in the form of multiple pools, tennis courts, golf courses and spas – not to mention nearby hiking, biking, and horseback riding trails. The best part? Constant sunshine is practically guaranteed here. Maybe you’re a romantic, a multi-generational family, or simply attending a corporate event. Whatever your reason, there’s a resort on this list that’ll sort you out.
Destinations Unlocked:Let our travel expert Stefano help you find your perfect Culture trip
Looking for an expert's perspective?Uncover my top 3 recommended places from each continent on the map.
1. GuatemalaAn express adventure for those with limited time off. Prepare yourself incredible experiences. You will hike a volcano, visit mayan temples and witness a ceremony and take in beautiful colonial Antigua.
2. BelizeA quick trip not too far away for those seeking a relaxing mini break. You will have plenty of free time to relax but also some awesome activities to experience the rainforest and the caribbean sea.
3. MexicoAn exciting mini trip exploring the lesser known colonial towns of central Mexico. This is hte perfect trip for someone with limited time off and still wants to turn on explorer mode and do something different.
1. EcuadorA remarkable 8 days adventure through the Andes and the Amazon rainforest. The best choice for adventure seekers wishing to visit the 2 most iconic areas of South America, in only 1 week and no flights.
2. PeruAn alternative itinerary to classic Peru, from Cusco to Arequipa. This itinerary is great combination of highlights Cusco and Machu Picchu with the lesser known Arequipa and Colca Canyon.
1. ItalyThe ultimate Italian experience from the vibrant streets of Naples to the breathtaking sceneries of the Amalfi Coast followed by Matera and down to Puglia with its golden beaches, intense flavours and fascinating destinations.
2. ScotlandEmbark on this great adventure starting from London all the way to Scotland with a true Scottish experience made of breathtaking sceneries, whisky tasting and ..lots of fun! Ideal for train lovers and explorers.
3. PortugalA wonderful train journey around Portugal, from the romantic city of Porto to the Douro Valley, to the beautiful Aveiro all the way to Lisbon and Sintra. The perfect trip to train, culinary and culture lovers.
1. South KoreaDiscover incredible temples, mountains and modern cities on this 10 day adventure. This trip is perfect for those seeking immersion in the cuisine, culture and natural wonders of South Korea.
2. ThailandFrom Bankgok to Angkor Wat to Ho Chi Minh City and everything in between - adventure through the heart of South-East Asia. Taste the delights, see history brought to life and unwind on a Mekong River cruise.
3. Sri LankaA fantastic adventure that showcases Sri Lanka's fantastic landscapes, wildlife and flavours. With 3 epic rail journeys, 3 UNESCO heritage sites and time to relax, this trip has loads to offer at a great price
1. MoroccoAn epic journey across Morocco: from Casablanca to Marrakech, through the blue city of Chefchaouen to the wonders of the desert and deep to the High Atlas Mountains - this trip has it all! Ideal for true explorers!
2. EgyptFrom Cairo to Aswan, this trip brings the land of the pharaohs to life. You'll visit the Pyramids, Valley of the Kings and Luxor Temple and cruise down the Nile in style. This is the perfect way to explore Egypt.
This resort on the edge of Camelback Mountain exudes midcentury modernism – it first opened in 1959 and recently re-emerged in 2017 to offer a new stylish look, while retaining some of its original charm. Rooms have chic decor and huge windows to let in the views and depending on the room type, amenities may include private patios and standalone tubs, while spacious condominiums have fully equipped kitchens. Taking center stage is the elongated pool area with plenty of sun loungers, though guests spread out at the fitness center offering yoga and pilates classes and the 18-hole golf course, suitable for beginners. Casual dining is offered during the day, while a more sophisticated restaurant serves specialties like short rib agnolotti with summer succotash. Write home on one of the vintage postcards provided in the rooms.
This family-friendly retreat is less than an hour’s drive north of Phoenix in the desert foothills of Cave Creek, a charming town with flea markets and art galleries. Low-maintenance travelers will appreciate the traditional two-bedroom, two-bathroom units with fully equipped kitchens, beehive fireplaces, and soaking tubs – with shared laundry facilities also available. Spacious grounds offer winding trails to enjoy the rugged landscape, plus an outdoor pool and championship golf club surrounded by cacti and palm trees. Cook dinner at one of the BBQ areas or dine at the all-day restaurant serving Southwestern-inspired cuisine, including grass-fed Arizona beef. Free WiFi is available in the lobby, but there’s a fee for other areas.
Part of the Hyatt brand, this trendy resort overlooks Camelback Mountain with spacious rooms and even bigger bungalows decorated in contemporary mid-century furnishings and colorful accents. Spend a day relaxing around the three outdoor pools, or head to the contemporary fitness center and spa. Food and drink can be ordered poolside, while a chic restaurant offers an open kitchen and chef’s table. Enjoy breakfast items like chilaquiles verdes with bottomless mimosas – while evening options include marinated shrimp with blood orange sauce. A shuttle service is available for more dining options in and around Scottsdale.
This authentic resort is also rooted in history – yet this one lies an hour south of Tucson in the art colony town of Tubac, known for its many eclectic shops and galleries. You’ll have access to a 27-hole golf course, full-service spa, outdoor pool, tennis court and hiking and biking trails. Spanish-colonial rooms come with bright bathroom tiles and terracotta floors, while suites add fireplaces, patios and soaking tubs. Snag a saddle at the bar and observe the sombrero hat display – meanwhile, all-day dining comes in the form of hearty meals like pancakes for breakfast and pan-fried stuffed trout for dinner.
Corporate groups and wedding parties are a common sight at this huge 40-acre (16ha) resort in the heart of Scottsdale. You’ve got five outdoor pools to choose from here, along with a salon, spa and fitness center, plus tennis courts and a putting green. Accommodations have traditional decor with 404 rooms, suites and lodges that come with mini-fridges and Keurig coffee makers – while higher categories offer a range of extras that may include kitchens, fireplaces and private pools. Various dining outlets provide items like churro French toast, wood-fired pizzas, and chicken asada tacos. The resort fee includes valet service and a local shuttle for exploration further afield.
This Sedona resort is defined by its stylish decor: a combination of warm tones, dark blue statement walls and welcome pops of color in the suites, along with abstract art and fantastic views of the surrounding red rock formations. The SaltRock Southwest Kitchen is where traditional Southwestern dishes are conjured from seasonal and local ingredients. When your hunger is sated, have a Smokin’ Old Fashioned or signature margarita. The spa entices with its signature Rain Dance Massage, among other tempting offerings.
Additional reporting provided by Vesna Maric.
For more options discover our guide to the best hotels in Prescott and book now on Culture Trip.
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meet our Local Insider
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WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR JOB?
It's the personal contact, the personal experiences. I love meeting people from all over the world... I really like getting to know everyone and feeling like I'm traveling with a group of friends.
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I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!
Every CULTURE TRIP Small-group adventure is led by a Local Insider just like Hanna.
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Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world
Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.