Arizona National Parks And Monuments: 31+ Spectacular Sites

The Grand Canyon National Park is legendary across the globe and the most recognized of the Arizona National Parks. A surprising fact: there are a total of 32 national parks, monuments, historical parks, memorials, historic sites, recreation areas, historic trails and heritage areas scattered throughout the Grand Canyon State.

We are working our way through the list of National Parks and National Monuments in Arizona. And, we’ll continue to share our road trip experiences and the best places we visited along the way while camping in Arizona!

Arizona National Parks And Monuments by CampingForFoodies features a collage of photos from various locations. An expansive view of the Grand Canyon National Park under a blue sky with puffy clouds, a teetering rock under a blue sky at Chiricahua National Monument, the historic building at Tumacácori National Historical Park, reddish brown rock landscape at Vermilion Cliffs National Monument, golden sunset at Saguaro National Park and boats on the blue waters of Lake Powell with mountains in the distance at Glen Canyon National Recreation Area.

Psst we’re compensated…see our disclosures.

National Parks

1. Grand Canyon National Park

Grand Canyon, AZ

Grand Canyon National Park by CampingForFoodies features the red, brown and gray canyon walls as far as the eye can see. Fluffy white clouds hang in a blue sky over the canyon on a partially sunny day.

The north rim is closed in the wintertime but the south rim is open year round. Our opinion: The Grand Canyon – There’s no better place to get edgy!

We have seen the Grand Canyon from just about every angle (for years my husband and I were pilots flying sightseeing tours of the south rim of the Grand Canyon.)

Our recent RV trip took us to the north rim where we camped at the North Rim Campground enjoying cool summer temperatures. This location has phenomenal views, great hiking trails and was only a short walk to the Grand Canyon Lodge.

In 1979 the Grand Canyon was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization designation for having cultural, historical, scientific or other significance.) It is also one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World. But, it’s almost like two different destinations. The canyon splits the park in two sections. The north rim (approximately 8,000 feet above sea level) sits about 1,000 feet higher than the south rim (approximately 7,000 feet above sea level) producing totally different flora, fauna and weather.

Don’t expect to visit both rims in one day. To drive from one rim to the other in a car, you will be taking a 220 mile (354 km) trip. The best way to see both rims is to plan it like two back-to-back vacations.

The park is positioned on the ancestral homeland of 11 Associated Tribes and covers 278 miles (447 km) of the Colorado River and adjacent uplands.

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  • Location: Northern Arizona, approximately 225 miles north of Phoenix
  • Camping: Yes
  • Managing Agency: National Park Service (NPS)
  • Official Website: Grand Canyon National Park

2. Petrified Forest National Park

Petrified Forest, AZ

Petrified Forest National Park by CampingForFoodies features a piece of petrified wood laying on the ground covered with rocks and sparse desert plants. The large petrified piece is colorful with an exterior made up of browns and reds while the exposed interior also has yellows, oranges and purple tones.

We experienced the Petrified Forest National Park via a 4-day motorcycle tour throughout northeastern Arizona, through Springerville and down the 191 highway to Safford. Although it was raining during our time at the Petrified Forest, we enjoyed every minute of it! The huge petrified Redwood trees displayed an awesome rainbow of colors.

If you have time to take backcountry hikes, don’t miss Red Basin and the Devil’s Playground. Horseback riding is allowed in the Painted Desert Wilderness Area. Bring your own trusty steed to explore.

  • Location: Northeastern Arizona, approximately 200 miles northeast of Phoenix
  • Camping: Only backpacking/hiking into the designated Petrified Forest National Wilderness Area, permit required. Holbrook is the nearest town with camping.
  • Managing Agency: National Park Service (NPS)
  • Official Website: Petrified Forest National Park

3. Saguaro National Park

Tucson, AZ

Saguaro National Park by CampingForFoodies features a forest of saguaro cacti and other desert plants with a small mountain in the distance. The landscaped is bathed in a golden color for the setting sun.

The scenery at this southern Arizona park is phenomenal! It’s a great place to explore by car, bike or foot! We experienced it on a day trip while we were staying at Catalina State Park.

The saguaro cactus is an iconic symbol of the American Southwest. They are only found in a few areas of the United States. The best time to see these enormous saguaro cacti is during sunrise or sunset hours. But, make sure you plan to spend the entire day at the park if you plan on hiking and taking advantage of the guided programs.

The Tucson Mountain District is on the west side of Saguaro National Park and ranges in elevation between 2,180 – 4,687 feet.

The Rincon Mountain District is on the east side of Saguaro National Park and ranges in elevation between 2,670 – 8,666 feet. Because of the higher elevation, the Rincon district has more diversity in plant and wildlife viewing.

  • Location: Southeastern Arizona, approximately 100 miles southeast of Phoenix
  • Camping: Backcountry camping is available by permit, no vehicle camping is permitted. Tucson is the nearest town with camping.
  • Managing Agency: National Park Service (NPS)
  • Official Website: Saguaro National Park

National Monuments

4. Agua Fria National Monument

Black Canyon City, AZ

Of the hundreds of archaeological sites in the Agua Fria, Pueblo La Plata is one of the most prominent and easily accessible ruins to explore. At one time, this was an 80-90 room village. The canyon below can be seen from the high location of the settlement. While you’re here make sure you go to the confluence of the Badger Springs Wash and the Agua Fria River where you’ll find an ancient rock art site.

  • Location: Central Arizona, approximately 40 miles north of Phoenix
  • Camping: Dispersed/primitive camping is allowed, no campgrounds
  • Managing Agency: Bureau Of Land Management (BLM)
  • Official Website: Agua Fria National Monument

5. Canyon De Chelly National Monument

Chinle, AZ

Canyon de Chelly Arizona USA by CampingForFoodies features views from the Spider Rock Overlook and Antelope House Overlook along the scenic self-guided rim drives.

We had this place on our bucket list for a long time and finally experienced it! The landscape features expansive canyon rims towering above magnificent canyon walls dotted with ancient ruins, arches, ladders and pictographs. See our VIDEO and entire Canyon De Chelly Camping & Itinerary.

Take a self-guided ride along the north and south rim drives. To see the canyon floor, you’ll need to take a tour with a Navajo guide. The rock formations look totally different from this vantage point. You’ll also get a great view of the White House Ruins and learn about the native American culture while you’re experiencing their tribal land.

Navajo people have lived in these canyons for nearly 5,000 years. To this day, families make their homes, raise livestock and farm the lands within the canyon.

If you don’t get to this area often, it is worth the 95 mile trip to the northwest to visit Monument Valley. This is another location within the Navajo Nation Parks jurisdiction. Many people believe the Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park is another one of Arizona’s National Parks but it is not. It is exclusively owned and operated by native Americans, there is no partnership with the U.S. government here. It is truly one of the most stunning places in the state. And, the only place to really experience the land where so many of John Wayne’s western movies were shot. When we visited here, we camped on Bureau of Land Management (BLM) property and boondocked for FREE at Valley of the Gods.


6. Casa Grande Ruins National Monument

Coolidge, AZ

Casa Grande Ruins National Monument by CampingForFoodies features the ruins of the preserved “Great House” under a sunny blue Arizona sky.

The Casa Grande Ruins are a bit of a mystery. It is unknown if this was a gathering place for the ancient people or just a waypoint marker in a system of extensive irrigation canals for the farming community.

Follow the posted signs to take a walking self-guided tour around the Casa Grande. And, make sure you see the preserved “Great House” during your stay. Enjoy the visitor center with information desk, monument bookstore, museum exhibits, movie theater and the picnic areas. For large groups, the park’s outdoor kitchen can be reserved in advance.

  • Location: South-central Arizona, approximately 55 miles southeast of Phoenix
  • Camping: No camping is available at this location, the nearest city with facilities is Coolidge
  • Managing Agency: National Park Service (NPS)
  • Official Website: Casa Grande Ruins

7. Chiricahua National Monument

Willcox, AZ

Chiricahua National Monument by CampingForFoodies features one of the rock pinnacles as it balances on its small base with many other formations in the background under a sunny blue sky.

Neil and Emma Erickson were Swedish immigrants who raised their three children in a home in the Chiricahua Mountains. In the early 1900s, the two sisters, Lillian and Hildegard, turned the family homestead into a guest ranch they named Faraway Ranch.

Eventually Lillian and her husband Ed Riggs discovered the “Wonderland of Rocks” while they managed the ranch and began promoting it for the business. In 1924 the rock formations officially became protected as Chiricahua National Monument. Visit the Faraway Ranch Historic District to learn more about its history.

This 12,025 acre site has 17-miles of day-use hiking trails for exploring on foot. Get your camera ready to capture the views of the rhyolite rock pinnacles that look like they are ready to fall over as they balance on their small bases.

This is a great place to visit especially if you are traveling with people who are unable to hike. The 8-mile paved scenic drive allows everyone the opportunity to see these majestic rocks.

  • Location: Southeastern Arizona, approximately 230 miles southeast of Phoenix
  • Camping: Yes, for tents and RVs up to 29 feet. There are lots of camping options in the Coronado National Forest
  • Managing Agency: National Park Service (NPS)
  • Official Website: Chiricahua National Monument


8. Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument

Northwestern Arizona, AZ

Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument is the extreme next door neighbor to the Grand Canyon National Park. The monument borders Grand Canyon National Park to the south, the state of Nevada to the west, and encompasses a portion of Lake Mead National Recreation Area.

Parashant is remote, isolated and rugged. The Park Service warns: Parashant is for 4×4 trucks/SUVs only, not cars, minivans, etc. A high clearance 4×4 with tires designed for off-pavement use is the most important safety item you need.

There are many scenic drives here, some of them have views of the Grand Canyon. All of the drives require 4×4 vehicles, some require very high clearance 4x4s or UTVs. Hiking, backcountry camping and astronomy (night sky viewing) are popular activities here.


9. Hohokam Pima National Monument

The Hohokam Pima National Monument is owned by the Gila River Indian Community and is located on the Gila River Indian Reservation. It is closed to the public. There is no park brochure, passport stamp, picture stamp etc.


10. Ironwood Forest National Monument

Marana, AZ

This 129,000-acre national monument is what a “forest” looks like in the Sonoran Desert. Ironwood, mesquite and palo verde trees dot the landscape along with creosote bushes and saguaro cacti. The rugged mountain ranges climb up to 4,200 feet to create the desert valleys below.

Visitors enjoy primitive camping, hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding, hunting, wildlife and plant viewing, as well as historic and archaeological sites, fossil and geologic sightseeing.

  • Location: Southern Arizona, approximately 100 miles south of Phoenix
  • Camping: Primitive camping is available at this location, the nearest cities with full facilities are Marana and Tucson
  • Managing Agency: Bureau Of Land Management (BLM)
  • Official Website: Ironwood Forest National Monument

11. Montezuma Castle National Monument

Camp Verde, AZ

Montezuma Castle National Monument by CampingForFoodies features a large shelter structure built into the surrounding towering limestone cliff. The brown, yellow and white tones of the rock are complimented by the green trees below.

This site has one of the best preserved ancient cliff dwellings in North America. The main attraction is a 20-room living/shelter structure built into a towering limestone cliff.

Make sure you visit Montezuma Well while you’re here too. This sub-unit of Montezuma Castle is a quick 15 minute drive with easy access off of I-17. While you’re there you’ll see the irrigation canal, picnic areas and the historic Back ranch house.

The Verde Valley’s desert climate is unforgiving in the summer months. It’s best to visit in the winter, spring or fall seasons. No matter what time of year you explore here, make sure you bring plenty of water.

  • Location: Central Arizona, approximately 95 miles north of Phoenix
  • Camping: No camping is available at this location, the nearest city with facilities is Camp Verde
  • Managing Agency: National Park Service (NPS)
  • Official Website: Montezuma Castle National Monument

12. Navajo National Monument

Shonto, AZ

Navajo National Monument by CampingForFoodies features many ancient cliff dwellings that were built into the natural sandstone alcoves with tones of red, brown and orange colored cliffs. Some of the wooden ladders and rooftops are still intact.

Hopi, San Juan Southern Paiute, Zuni and Navajo tribes built homes to inhabit the canyons for many generations. Living quarters were built in the natural sandstone alcoves.

Navajo National Monument’s purpose is to preserve three specific 13th century cliff dwellings in Northern Arizona. Betatakin, Keet Seel and Inscription House have not been occupied since approximately 1300 AD. Certain dwellings are only accessible on foot with a National Park Service guide.

Three self-guided trails offer short hikes for viewing:

  1. Sandal Trail is a roundtrip 1 mile trail and the only self-guided trail offering views of cliff dwellings. You’ll see the Betatakin cliff dwelling village from this trail.
  2. Aspen Trail is a 0.8 mile round trip hike offering views of forest trees: Quaking Aspen and Douglas Fir.
  3. Canyon View Trail is a 0.8 mile roundtrip nature trail connecting the visitor center with the Canyon View Campground. It begins at the visitor center and ends at the park’s historic ranger station.
  • Location: Northeastern Arizona, approximately 280 miles north of Phoenix
  • Camping: Yes, 2 campgrounds offer FREE first come, first served camping for tents and RVs under 28 feet. Larger rigs can find facilities in Tuba City or Monument Valley.
  • Managing Agency: National Park Service (NPS)
  • Official Website: Navajo National Monument

13. Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument

Ajo, AZ

Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument by CampingForFoodies features a sandy-colored dirt path surrounded by organ pipe and saguaro cacti, the surrounding mountains are dotted with green brush and brown rocks, under a sunny blue sky.

With over 500 square miles of lush GREEN Sonoran Desert, you never know what types of sights you’ll see in the natural areas of this southern Arizona landscape.

This land experiences extreme weather conditions ranging from heat and droughtfreezing and floods. That means the plants and animals that survive here have learned to adapt to the severe conditions of the surrounding area.

With a name like “Organ Pipe Cactus”, it’s pretty easy to guess this landscape is covered with Organ Pipe cacti. You’ll also see other species like the Saguaro, Teddy Bear Cholla, Pincushion, Arizona Barrell and more.

Wildlife is just as diverse. Keep your eyes open for the various species of bats, birds and snakes. If you’re lucky enough you may even see some of the mountain lions, desert bighorn sheep and mule deer that live in the area.

The most popular way to experience this place is by driving the scenic roads. You’ll find paved roads as well as gravel/dirt roads. There are 5 main roads to experience the area in passenger vehicles or on bicycles:

  • Ajo Mountain Drive
  • Puerto Blanco Drive
  • Bates Well Road
  • Pozo Nuevo Road
  • Camino de Dos Republicas to Gachado

Hiking, equestrian trails and park ranger programs are other ways to enjoy the sights and sounds of one of the best Arizona desert landscapes.

  • Location: Southwestern Arizona, approximately 125 miles southwest of Phoenix
  • Camping: Yes, can accommodate RVs up to 45 feet
  • Managing Agency: National Park Service (NPS)
  • Official Website: Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument

14. Pipe Spring National Monument

Kaibab, AZ

The Visitor Center and Museum, guided tours, talks and demonstrations expose visitors to the rich history of the Kaibab Paiute and Mormon settlers of the area.

  • Location: Northwestern Arizona, approximately 350 miles northwest of Phoenix
  • Camping: No camping is available at this location, the nearest city with facilities is Fredonia, Arizona. The Kaibab Paiute RV Park and Campground is located 1/4 mile north of the monument and is operated by the Kaibab Band of Paiute Indians
  • Managing Agency: National Park Service (NPS)
  • Official Website: Pipe Spring National Monument

15. Sonoran Desert National Monument

Maricopa, AZ

You’ll see extensive forests of the iconic saguaro cactus nestled among several mountain ranges. There are miles of roads for mountain biking and motorized vehicle tours (some require 4-wheel drive vehicles), hiking and equestrian trails.

  • Location: Central Arizona, approximately 60 miles southwest of Phoenix
  • Camping: Dispersed camping is available at this location, the nearest cities with full facilities are Maricopa and Gila Bend
  • Managing Agency: Bureau Of Land Management (BLM)
  • Official Website: Sonoran Desert National Monument

16. Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument

Flagstaff, AZ

Sunset Crater National Monument

You don’t typically think of volcanic eruptions in Arizona but it is estimated that the year 1085 was when Sunset Crater erupted. Scientists believe the eruption lasted anywhere from a few weeks to a few months. The volcanic ash enriched the area’s soil which was great for farming and caused the population to increase.

Cinder cones typically only erupt once. So, although Sunset Crater Volcano is not an active volcano, it is one of approximately 600 volcanoes in northern Arizona which is considered an active volcanic field.

While you’re there, take a walk along the Lava Flow Trail which will take you to the base of Sunset Crater Volcano where you’ll get a closer look at the Bonito Lava Flow and numerous volcanic features. This trail is great because it accommodates wheelchairs, walkers and strollers.

We loved our visit to Sunset Crater National Monument which was a day trip from our dispersed camping location in Coconino National Forest. We happened to be there at a time of year when the wildflowers were going WILD! That added a spark of extra color to the volcanic rocks and lava landscape!

We loved our visit to Sunset Crater so much so that I had to write a short blog post about it! Sunset Crater National Monument: The “Cinders” name is not reserved for my husband’s grilling skills!

  • Location: Northern Arizona, approximately 165 miles north of Phoenix
  • Camping: No camping is available at this location, there are many camping locations in Coconino National Forest, the nearest city with facilities is Flagstaff
  • Managing Agency: National Park Service (NPS)
  • Official Website: Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument

17. Tonto National Monument

Roosevelt, AZ

This area is one of our favorite places to hang out in the fall and winter months. The Tonto National Monument has fascinating cliff dwellings but has a limited number of spots for the guided tour so make sure you plan accordingly.

This monument is a short distance from the Tonto National Forest Burnt Corral Campground which requires you to drive down a narrow winding mountain road, the views are fantastic but some parts of this drive are not for the faint at heart.

This was also the location where I tested our first camping Thanksgiving dinner which includes turkey and all the trimmings!

  • Location: Central Arizona, approximately 110 miles northeast of Phoenix
  • Camping: No camping is available at this location, there are many options for camping in the Tonto National Forest, the nearest city with facilities is Roosevelt, AZ
  • Managing Agency: National Park Service (NPS)
  • Official Website: Tonto National Monument

18. Tuzigoot National Monument

Clarkdale, AZ

Tuzigoot National Monument by CampingForFoodies features the remnants of an ancient building made of stacked stones, there are distant mountain views on a sunny day under a blue sky.

Tuzigoot’s ancient pueblo was built by the Sinagua people who were farmers are artists. This monument let’s you imagine it’s former occupants through the remnants of an ancient village and a small museum.  

We’ve actually been here a couple of times, once we stayed at a retro motel and another time was a camping experience at the Dead Horse Ranch State Park. Both of our visits to the area included a trip on the Verde Canyon Railroad which was AWESOME!

  • Location: Central Arizona, approximately 105 miles north of Phoenix
  • Camping: No camping is available at this location, the nearest cities with facilities are Clarkdale and Cottonwood
  • Managing Agency: National Park Service (NPS)
  • Official Website: Tuzigoot National Monument

19. Vermilion Cliffs National Monument

Marble Canyon, AZ

Vermilion Cliffs National Monument by CampingForFoodies features a multi-colored rock landscape with tones of red, orange, brown and yellow under a partially cloudy sky.

This 280,000-acre monument is remote and diverse. It borders Kaibab National Forest to the west and Glen Canyon National Recreation Area to the east. Here you can experience the Paria Plateau, Vermilion Cliffs, Coyote Buttes and Paria Canyon. Plan to see some of the most stunning scenery on planet earth!

  • Location: Northern Arizona, approximately 270 miles north of Phoenix
  • Camping: No camping is available at this location, the nearest city with facilities is Page
  • Managing Agency: Bureau Of Land Management (BLM)
  • Official Website: Vermilion Cliffs National Monument

20. Walnut Canyon National Monument

Flagstaff, AZ

Walnut Canyon National Monument by CampingForFoodies features stacked stones under a large overhanging rock, cliff formations on a sunny day under a deep blue sky.

You’ll see curved canyon walls and awesome cliff formations at this monument. Hiking the trails, bird watching and picnicking are popular activities here.

  • Location: Northern Arizona, approximately 155 miles north of Phoenix
  • Camping: No camping is available at this location, the nearest city with facilities is Flagstaff
  • Managing Agency: National Park Service (NPS)
  • Official Website: Walnut Canyon National Monument

21. Wupatki National Monument

Flagstaff, AZ

Wupatki National Monument by CampingForFoodies features brownish orange ancient ruins with distant mountains in the background under a darkened sky with thunderstorms in the distance.

This is one of the warmest, driest places on the Colorado Plateau. Guided tours and interpretive programs will teach you about the people and ancient activities of this area including the trade items that were discovered from the Pacific to the Gulf of Mexico!

  • Location: Northern Arizona, approximately 175 miles north of Phoenix
  • Camping: No camping is available at this location, the nearest city with facilities is Flagstaff
  • Managing Agency: National Park Service (NPS)
  • Official Website: Wupatki National Monument

National Recreation Areas

22. Glen Canyon National Recreation Area

Page, AZ

Glen Canyon National Recreation Area by CampingForFoodies features a landscape view of the shore and blue waters of Lake Powell. People on the shore are looking down toward the lake where several boats are anchored. The surrounding mountains in the distance frame the lake under a sunny sky.

The recreation area crosses into two states: northern Arizona and southern Utah. It is breathtaking! You will pass the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area if you are headed northbound on highway 89 toward the Grand Canyon North Rim or points beyond, it is worth stopping to explore for a few hours or a few days.

The bridge and the dam are both engineering marvels with stunning views. Water recreation fun on Lake Powell is non-stop too so make sure you allow enough time to experience it all. On our visit we saw Horseshoe Bend, took one of the tours of Glen Canyon Dam, and took one of the boat tours on Lake Powell that stopped at the Rainbow Bridge with time for hiking the magnificent trails. They are definitely bucket list items!

  • Location: Northern Arizona, approximately 280 miles north of Phoenix
  • Camping: Yes, there are many campgrounds in various locations spread throughout the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area
  • Managing Agency: National Park Service (NPS)
  • Official Website: Glen Canyon National Recreation Area

23. Lake Mead National Recreation Area

The Mojave Desert, AZ / Near Boulder City, NV

Lake Mead National Recreation Area by CampingForFoodies features a boat with a small wake maneuvering between the rock formations protruding from the water, there are mountains surrounding the water under a blue sunny sky.

This is America’s first and largest national recreation area. It covers 1.5 million acres of mountains, canyons, valleys and includes two large lakes.

If you are into water sports, Lake Mead is a great place to recreate. One caution, with the drought conditions of the last few years, the water level at Lake Mead has been at record lows so if you are boating you need to be careful. It is also a short distance to Hoover Dam which accommodates visitors with interesting tours.

There are nine wilderness areas here and visitors enjoy swimming, boating, hiking, cycling, fishing and camping.

  • Location: Northwestern Arizona, approximately 270 miles north of Phoenix
  • Camping: Yes, there are many campgrounds in various locations spread throughout the Lake Mead National Recreation Area
  • Managing Agency: National Park Service (NPS)
  • Official Website: Lake Mead National Recreation Area

National Memorials

24. Coronado National Memorial

Hereford, AZ

Coronado National Memorial by CampingForFoodies features a vast landscape of mountains dotted with green desert trees and bushes, off in the distance is a valley floor surrounded by more mountains. The southern Arizona scene is set in the daytime under a sunny sky.

Visit the Coronado Cave, go for a scenic drive, hike, birding and picnicking at this location.

  • Location: Southern Arizona, approximately 210 miles south of Phoenix
  • Camping: No camping is available at this location, the nearest city with facilities is Sierra Vista
  • Managing Agency: National Park Service (NPS)
  • Official Website: Coronado National Memorial

National Historic Sites

25. Fort Bowie National Historic Site

Bowie, AZ

Fort Bowie National Historic Site by CampingForFoodies features the foundation remnants of the old fort ruins with brown and green desert grasses and distant mountain views under a sunny blue sky.

At the time we were at this historic site we were alone, there were no other visitors which actually felt a little eerie knowing all that took place in this area so many years ago. This was the location of conflict between the Chiricahua Apache and the US Army.

The surrounding town is so peaceful today it’s hard to imagine the hostile conflict of its history. Make sure you take time to explore the history of Fort Bowie and Apache Pass. Take a hike to the visitor center and old fort ruins.

  • Location: Southeastern Arizona, approximately 230 miles southeast of Phoenix
  • Camping: No camping is available at this location, the nearest city with facilities is Bowie
  • Managing Agency: National Park Service (NPS)
  • Official Website: Fort Bowie National Historic Site


26. Hubbell Trading Post National Historic Site

Ganado, AZ

We really felt like we were walking back in history and it was a privilege to meet some of the artisans creating the Native American Art and honoring their heritage and culture.

You can purchase groceries, dry goods, rugs, jewelry and more at this operating trading post. The park store is located inside the trading post and has books, postcards and souvenirs.

  • Location: Northeastern Arizona, approximately 310 miles north of Phoenix
  • Camping: No camping is available at this location, the nearest city with facilities is Holbrook
  • Managing Agency: National Park Service (NPS)
  • Official Website: Hubbell Trading Post National Historic Site

National Historical Parks

27. Tumacácori National Historical Park

Tumacácori, AZ

Tumacácori National Historical Park by CampingForFoodies features the mission building in the distance which is framed by looking through an arched doorway, the grounds are brown while the trees are bright green under a blue sky on a sunny day.

In 1691, Father Kino made history when he established Mission Tumacácori during a visit to an O’odham village.

It was at this location that O’odham, Yaqui, and Apache people met European Jesuit and Franciscan missionaries, settlers and soldiers. There were meetings of conflict and of cooperation between these diverse people and their cultures.

  • Location: Southern Arizona, approximately 160 miles south of Phoenix
  • Camping: No camping is available at this location, the nearest city with facilities is Tubac
  • Managing Agency: National Park Service (NPS)
  • Official Website: Tumacácori National Historical Park

National Scenic Trails

28. Arizona National Scenic Trail

Full Length Of The State Of Arizona

Arizona National Scenic Trail by CampingForFoodies features a directional signpost for the Picketpost Trailhead and the Arizona National Scenic Trail with lush green desert and a distant mountain range under a clear blue sky.

The Arizona National Scenic Trail is commonly referred to as the “Arizona Trail” which is a fitting name because this trail stretches over 800 miles across the entire state. The non-motorized path trail runs north/south and extends from the U.S./Mexico border on the south end of the state to Utah on the north end.

The trail is divided into 43 passages and passes through various federal lands, including 4 national forests:

  1. Coronado National Forest
  2. Tonto National Forest
  3. Coconino National Forest
  4. Kaibab National Forest

There are 29 Gateway communities along the Arizona Trail including:

  1. Sierra Vista
  2. Patagonia
  3. Sonoita
  4. Green Valley
  5. Sahuarita
  6. Vail
  7. Tucson
  8. Summerhaven
  9. Oracle
  10. San Manuel
  11. Mammoth
  12. Kearny
  13. Florence
  14. Superior
  15. Globe
  16. Roosevelt
  17. Tonto Basin
  18. Payson
  19. Pine
  20. Strawberry
  21. Mormon Lake Village
  22. Flagstaff
  23. Tusayan
  24. Grand Canyon South Rim
  25. Grand Canyon North Rim
  26. Jacob Lake
  27. Page
  28. Fredonia
  29. Kanab
  • Location: Entire state of Arizona
  • Camping: Camping is available at many locations along the trail
  • Managing Agency: Various agencies manage different locations along the trail
  • Official Website: Arizona National Scenic Trail

Here’s a link to the USDA/Forest Service Arizona National Scenic Trail GIS Map.


National Historic Trails

29. Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail

Nogales, AZ to San Francisco, CA

In the late 1700s, Juan Bautista de Anza led over 240 people on a 1,200 mile journey from Nogales, Arizona to the San Francisco Bay area in California to establish a settlement there. Experience historic sites and recreation hiking trails along the Anza Historic Trail.

  • Location: Southern Arizona, approximately 180 miles south of Phoenix
  • Camping: No camping is available at this location, the nearest city with facilities is Nogales
  • Managing Agency: National Park Service (NPS)
  • Official Website: Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail

Here’s a link to the NPS Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail GIS Map.


30. Old Spanish National Historic Trail

AZ, CA, CO, NV, NM, UT

The Old Spanish National Historic Trail crosses six states from Santa Fe, New Mexico to Los Angeles, California. This is the path New Mexican traders traveled to move their merchandise to trade for mules and horses. The AZ section of the trail runs along the northern border of the state and has several different sites to visit in Arizona.

  • Location: Northern Arizona, approximately 350 miles north of Phoenix
  • Camping: No camping is available at this location, the nearest city with facilities is Fredonia
  • Managing Agency: National Park Service (NPS)
  • Official Website: Old Spanish National Historic Trail

Here’s a link to the NPS Old Spanish National Historic Trail GIS Map.


National Heritage Areas

31. Santa Cruz Valley National Heritage Area

3,300+ Miles Across The Southern Part Of The State Of Arizona

The Santa Cruz Valley National Heritage Area extends over 3,300 miles across Southern Arizona. It includes two scenic driving routes that are near the cities of Tucson and Nogales:

  1. Sky Island Scenic Byway
  2. Patagonia-Sonoita Scenic Road

The heritage area contains many points of interest including:

  1. San Xavier del Bac Mission, National Historic Landmark
  2. Historic Canoa Ranch
  3. San Xavier Co-Op Farm
  4. Tubac Presidio State Historic Park
  5. Catalina State Park
  6. Patagonia-Sonoita Creek Preserve
  7. Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum
  8. Mission Garden
  9. Presidio San Agustín del Tucson Museum
  10. Agua Caliente Park

Here’s a link to the Santa Cruz Valley National Heritage Area Map.


32. Yuma Crossing National Heritage Area

Yuma, AZ

In 1540, the first Europeans arrived in this area to mark the beginning of the development of the Southwest and California. Significant events occurred over 5.5 centuries at this location to help build the nation. Today you’ll find:

  1. Yuma Crossing and associated sites
  2. Two state historic parks
  3. Two riverfront parks
  4. A multi-use path
  5. 400 acres of restored wetlands
  6. An interpretive plaza
  • Location: Southwestern Arizona, approximately 190 miles southwest of Phoenix
  • Camping: No camping is available at this location, the nearest city with facilities is Yuma
  • Managing Agency: National Park Service (NPS)
  • Official Website: Yuma Crossing National Heritage Area

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Where to stay and more…

Many of the places on this list have lodging and camping facilities but for those that don’t you have other options…

If you are camping your way through the state to visit the Arizona-based national treasures, you will find loads of information from the Arizona State Parks.

The Arizona Office of Tourism has lots of information for all of your Arizona traveling needs including Hotels and Lodging, Events Calendar, Travel Information and more.

Have fun…be safe and enjoy your trip!


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