Arizona itself is full of amazing sights and things to do. Usually, when you consider going on a trip and exploring the natural beauty of this state, there’s a glaringly obvious place to visit. Yes, the Grand Canyon attracts the majority of tourists, but a short drive southeast will take you to the vast Coconino National Forest.
This is one of the 154 national forests in the country, and it’s one of the best places you can visit in Arizona. The forest itself covers over 1.8 million acres, so there is plenty to do while you’re here. If you’re looking for a nature adventure that’s full of thrills and exciting sights, here’s what you can do while you’re in the Coconino National Forest:
Take a hike
As you can imagine, there are plenty of hiking trails throughout this vast forest. However, you need to try the Devil’s Bridge Trail. It’s 3.9 miles long, which is fairly short for most hikes in the area. Nevertheless, this didn’t stop it from being named number two on the list of best hikes in the US by seasoned hiker Brian McPeek. You get to experience one of the best desert hikes around, and there are so many amazing views for you to enjoy.
Take the Oak Creek Canyon Scenic Drive
Walking is great, but what if you want to do something that lets you see as much of this forest as possible without getting too tired? The Oak Creek Canyon Scenic Drive is a brilliant way to do just that. It lets you take your car throughout the forest, seeing some immense views the whole time. You also get to see some other cool sights in the area, like the place where American astronauts once trained for the moon landing.
Enjoy the water
There are countless rivers, creeks, reservoirs, and lakes throughout Coconino National Forest. A great way to spend the day is by spending a bit of time on the water. You can fish at a lot of the rivers and lakes, and you can even paddle through some of the larger stretches of water, or hire a boat! These are some super fun activities to help you feel at one with nature in this gorgeous forest.
Ski at The Snowbowl
It may surprise you to know that one of the best skiing destinations in Arizona is located in this forest. The Snowbowl gets a lot of snow every winter, and it is a brilliant place to enjoy a spot of skiing. Obviously, you have to go there during the ski season, which usually runs from mid-November to the end of April. Passes can be purchased online, and you can book now for 2022/23.
As you can see, there are loads of fun things to do in one of America’s best national forests. It just goes to show that Arizona has a lot going for it, and that the Grand Canyon isn’t the only attraction that deserves a lot of your attention.