Located in central Arizona near a hub of highways, Chandler is within convenient proximity to scenic mountains, verdant forests, majestic canyons, and inviting rivers and lakes. If you’re seeking a picturesque getaway spot, then the area surrounding Chandler is where you should go. When you stay at Arizona vacation rentals near Chandler, you can look forward to opportunities for restful relaxation, awesome sightseeing, thrilling water sports, hiking, cycling, and other activities. Here are the most noteworthy weekend vacation destinations from Chandler.

1. Williams, Arizona

The city of Williams, known as the Gateway to the Grand Canyon, lies in scenic pine country in north-central Arizona about 3 1/2 hours from Chandler. The Grand Canyon Railroad leaves from Williams and takes you through breathtakingly beautiful countryside to the Grand Canyon National Park South Rim. Once you’re there, the park service provides guided walks and a shuttle service to take you to various panoramic overlooks. If you want an experienced guide to point out fascinating details you might overlook, take a day trip with Canyon Dave’s Nature and Geology Tours out of Williams. Family-friendly attractions closer to town include the Grand Canyon Deer Farm & Petting Zoo, which allows you to touch and feed the deer, and Bearizona Wildlife Park, a drive-through park where you see bear, bison, big horn sheep, and other wildlife in their natural habitats.

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2. Sedona, Arizona

Located in the upper Sonoran Desert in central Arizona about 2 1/2 hours from Chandler, Sedona is renowned for the spectacularly beautiful red sandstone rock formations around the city. Trail Sports rents mountain bikes and also offers guided tours of the many scenic trails around Sedona. Alternatively, join a jeep tour of the red rock country back roads with Sedona Offroad Adventures. For an unforgettable thrill, take a helicopter tour of the landscape surrounding Sedona with Sedona Air Tours. Sedona Wine Adventures leads you to the best of the numerous wineries in the region for tastings. To view fascinating exhibits that highlight the history of the area, check out the Sedona Heritage Museum.

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3. Indio, California

The city of Indio, located in the beautiful Coachella Valley in Southern California just over four hours from Chandler, is within minutes of numerous world-class golf courses, including the Desert Willow Golf Resort and the Palm Desert Country Club. For some great family-friendly fun, check out the Wet ‘n’ Wild Water Park in nearby Palm Springs. The Coachella Valley History Museum has exhibits on the pioneer history of the valley as well as flamboyant gardens that include a rose garden, a Japanese Memorial Garden, a desert garden, and a date garden. The site also houses the California Date History Museum, which highlights the importance of the date palm from its Middle Eastern origins to its importance as a crop in California. To sample date products, head for the Oasis Date Garden, which offers a date palm arboretum, a cactus garden, and sales of dates and products made with dates.

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4. Lake Havasu City, Arizona

Lake Havasu City lies on the eastern bank of the Colorado River near the border with California about 4 1/2 northwest of Chandler. The city’s defining landmark is the original London Bridge, which city founders bought from the city of London, shipped to Arizona, and reassembled to connect the mainland with an island in the Colorado River. Lake Havasu City has several beautiful beaches for swimming and sunbathing, including London Bridge Beach, Rotary Community Park Beach, and the beach at Lake Havasu State Park. Rent a pontoon boat or power boat from Lucky Pirate Boat Rentals at Lake Havasu State Park to explore the lake and enjoy water sports. Join Southwest Kayaks Fishing Expeditions for guidance to the best spots to angle for largemouth and smallmouth bass.

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5. Pinetop-Lakeside, Arizona

Pinetop-Lakeside is a beautiful town in the midst of the Ponderosa pine forests of the White Mountains in eastern Arizona about four hours northeast of Chandler. The surrounding wilderness has hundreds of miles of hiking and cycling trails and numerous lakes and streams. J&T’s Wild-Life Outdoors offers rentals of mountain bikes, canoes, and kayaks to help you explore these scenic locations. Alternatively, enjoy an exciting trail ride through breathtaking forests and meadows with Porter Mountain Stables. The White Mountain Nature Center at Woodland Park provides insight into local flora and fauna and has an interesting nature trail through Ponderosa pine forest to lovely Woodland Lake. The White Mountain Family Fun Park offers go-karts, mini-golf, a laser maze, and arcade games.

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6. Yuma, Arizona

The city of Yuma lies near the Colorado River in the southeastern corner of Arizona about 3 1/2 hours from Chandler. The 110-acre West Wetlands Park offers an expanse of soft sand for swimming and sunbathing at Centennial Beach, a butterfly and hummingbird garden, walking trails, picnic facilities, and a disc golf course. For an exciting excursion, rent an ATV at Jet Rent ATV Rentals, and head for nearby Imperial Sand Dunes National Recreation Area to speed over the dunes. The Cocopah Museum offers insight into the history and culture of Native Americans from the lower Colorado River region, while the Sanguinetti House Museum and Gardens focuses on the pioneer history of an influential local family.

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7. Sierra Vista, Arizona

Sierra Vista sits between the Huachuca Mountains and the San Pedro River in southeastern Arizona near the Mexican border, just over three hours from Chandler. The city is dubbed the Hummingbird Capital of the United States, and avid birdwatchers come from all over the country to observe hummingbirds and other species in locations such as Ramsey Canyon Preserve and San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area. Rent a mountain bike from M&M Cycling, and explore the many cycling paths within the city and the scenic trails in the Huachuca Mountains. At Kartchner Caverns State Park, visit the interpretive center, then take fascinating guided underground tours of the local cave systems. Cool off at the Cove Aquatic Center, which features water slides, a shallow kids’ lagoon, and a diving pool.

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