Arizona is a photographer and traveler’s dream, so it’s no surprise that plenty of places in our state have been photographed and visited repeatedly. But what about those lesser known and often hidden locations? Today, we’re highlighting a few places that are hidden away or rarely visited.
1. Aravaipa Canyon
This beautiful location is found in the eastern portion of the state near Safford and is a protected wilderness. A permit is required to for any kind of recreational use, which can be found at the
Bureau of Land Management's website
2. Arizona Hot Spring
This natural hot spring is only accessed through hiking in the Lake Mead Recreational Area. The hike is a six-mile roundtrip, which can be strenuous, so plan to spend about five to six hours total for this adventure.
3. Cave of the Bells
This beautiful yet delicate cave is found deep within Coronado National Forest along the Santa Rita Mountains. In order to protect the cave's environment, a reservation is required as well as a $100 deposit to obtain keys to enter the cave, which will be refunded when the keys are returned.
4. Gila Box
This riparian area is managed by the Bureau of Land Management and is located near Safford. It is home to four waterways, cliff dwellings, old homesteads and an abundance of wildlife.
5. Hall of Flame Fire Museum
This unassuming place sits in the same neighborhood as the Phoenix Zoo and the Desert Botanical Garden and is a hidden treat for adults and children. It features history of firefighting and has a lot of vintage fire equipment on display.
6. Mystery Room at the Arizona Biltmore
The Prohibition ended 83 years ago, but there are still small hints of its influence lingering in the state. One example is the Mystery Room in the Arizona Biltmore, a speakeasy that is still a difficult find these days. Access requires a password and the Biltmore occasionally posts clues on their social media accounts.
7. Navajo Code Talkers display at Burger King
Located in Kayenta in the Navajo Nation, this display is found in an unusual place: the local Burger King. However, this also means that it is easily accessible and brings history to the public.
8. Secret Canyon
At first glance, most people would assume this is a picture from Antelope Canyon, but it's actually of another slot canyon in northern Arizona. Found near Page, this one is less crowded since the touring company that drives people to the location limits visitors to 10 per day.
9. Underground suite at Grand Canyon Caverns
If this hotel room isn't hidden away, I don't know what is. Located 220 feet below ground, this suite offers a unique (though pricey) hotel stay and the darkest, quietest sleep you can imagine.
What are some other secret places you know of that offer a new perspective of Arizona? Share your thoughts and suggestions in the comments section below or on our Facebook fan page!