Flagstaff, Arizona is a wonderful year-round vacation destination for families. It’s an especially exciting place for outdoor enthusiasts, thanks to incredible natural beauty and pleasant weather. The summers are mild enough for outdoor exploration, and the winter weather makes a variety of snow activities possible. During the spring and fall seasons, the Flagstaff area is vibrant with color. Be sure to visit the Coconino National Forest, where you’ll be treated to a wide range of sights, including red rocks, pine forests, deserts, alpine tundra, lakes, and other breathtaking nature. Book a stay at a Flagstaff vacation rental today. Here are nine of the best kid-friendly attractions in and around Flagstaff.
1. The Grand Canyon
While most of the other popular local attractions are less than an hour’s drive from the heart of Flagstaff, the Grand Canyon is worth the 73-mile drive. It’s a landmark that everyone should see at least once in their lifetime, and the sheer size of it is sure to impress visitors of all ages. The Grand Canyon is also home to a number of family-friendly activities, including a Junior Ranger program for the kids. The Grand Canyon’s majestic Colorado River is also a great place for a leisurely boating or rafting trip.
2. Meteor Crater
The Grand Canyon and the Meteor Crater make the perfect double feature. Located in Winslow 37 miles east of Flagstaff, the Meteor Crater is the world’s best-preserved meteor impact site. It’s 2.2 miles in circumference, nearly a mile across and 550 feet deep. The impact occurred approximately 50,000 years ago, and the meteorite was traveling roughly 26,000 miles per hour. In addition to viewing the stunning crater, the whole family will enjoy the various interactive exhibits at the Meteor Crater Interactive Discovery Center.
3. Arizona Snowball
While Arizona typically conjures images of hot deserts, the Arizona Snowball is much different. It’s a wonderful place to bring the kids during the winter, thanks to the excellent skiing, snowboarding, tubing, and other snow activities. During the summer, it’s the perfect place to escape the Arizona heat and play some disc golf or enjoy a bird’s eye view of the picturesque the San Francisco Peaks from the scenic chairlift. The Arizona Snowball also offers excellent mountainside dining for the whole family. Whether your children are hiking or tubing the mountain’s kid-friendly novice trails or taking skiing or snowboarding lessons, they’re sure to have a blast in this cool Flagstaff hot spot.
4. Buffalo Park
Whether you’re traveling with toddlers or teens, Buffalo Park is a fantastic place to relax or take a hike. There, you’ll find challenging trails for the adults and older kids and plenty of paths that are stroller-friendly. The park offers gorgeous views of wild flowers and the surrounding mountains, and it’s a great place to pack a picnic and just relax. If you’re traveling with a four-legged friend, they’re welcome on the trails with a leash.
5. Lowell Observatory
The Lowell Observatory is a short drive from Flagstaff and a fantastic place for your kids to have a blast while learning. The observatory offers a day-camp program for kids called LOCKs (Lowell Observatory Camps for Kids). There are LOCKs available for preschool, elementary, and middle school children. The kids get to enjoy hands-on exhibits, science projects, story time, and much more. The facility also offers a variety of exhibits, programs, and tours for adults, including solar and telescope viewing.
6. Starlite Lanes
You can never go wrong with bowling. From young children to the young at heart, everyone loves this classic American pastime. If your children have trouble keeping the ball on course, keep them happy with a lane with bumpers. If you really want to take the bowling experience to the next level, try Starlite’s cosmic bowling. With disco lights and party music, you may find you’re too busy dancing to bowl!
7. Bearizona Wildlife Park
Located just a half hour’s drive from your Flagstaff vacation rental, Bearizona Wildlife Park is like a zoo and a safari combined into one exciting family-friendly attraction. Drive through 3 miles of natural terrain, where you can see animals such as bison, mountain goats, bears, and wolves in their natural habitats form the safety of your vehicle. After the drive-through section, you can walk through a separate section that features smaller and baby animals. There’s also a thrilling birds of prey show that features hawks, falcons, owls, and other fascinating bird species.
8. Museum of North Arizona
If you have kids from various age groups, the Museum of North Arizona is a perfect solution to keep everyone entertained. In addition to providing a variety of exhibits related to Native American artifacts, natural science, dinosaurs, and fine arts, the museum has the Discovery program, which is suitable for kids ages four through 18. Kids will have so much fun with the hands-on exhibits and fun classes that they’ll forget they’re even learning.
9. Hitchin’ Post Stables
Your kids are going to love playing cowboy and cowgirl at Flagstaff’s Hitchin’ Post Stables. Take a ride on horseback through the scenic Coconino National Forest, and then finish the trip with a meal of classic cowboy foods such as burgers, hot dogs, and baked beans. If your kids are too young for horseback riding, or if you simply prefer it, a covered wagon ride is also available. The wranglers offer options for ages 5 through 85, so you should have no problem finding an appropriate adventure for your family.
Ready to go? Check out these amazing FlagStaff vacation rentals on Tripping.com.