Simply put, Arizona is one of the most photogenic places in the United States. Arizona natives and recent transplants can agree that we have gorgeous, federally-protected landscapes, climates for all kinds of activities, a diverse population, and ridiculously delicious regional foods. What more could you ask for in a home state?
1. Unbeatable sunsets
If there's anything that will make you fall in love with Arizona, it's the sunsets. Nature uses every color in her palette to create a masterpiece each evening and you can never take a bad picture of the sunsets here.
2. And sunrises, too!
A softer, more feminine version of sunsets, the sunrises here are just as gorgeous. We wake up to this every morning!
3. Starry skies
Not to brag but we have some pretty amazing starry nights. That’s probably why we’re home to more than a couple dozen observatories, many open to the public.
4. Hiking 365 days of the year
Feel like hiking? There are more than 300 trails scattered across the state and with several different climates, you can find a trail if it’s too hot or too cold wherever you are right now.
5. The Grand Canyon
Does this even need an introduction? Arizona is home to one of the seven natural wonders of the world, the Grand Canyon, which shows off one of the many beautiful sights Arizona has to offer.
6. Antelope Canyon
Most people see pictures of Antelope Canyon and think it’s either abstract art or not real. Yes, it is real and, yes, it is a beauty. Seriously, can this state be any more picture perfect?
7. Taliesin West
Frank Lloyd Wright’s winter home and location for his architecture school, this is one of Arizona’s most famous buildings and treasures.
There are a handful of places you can get a taste of the Wild West here but none quite takes the cake like Tombstone. The former boomtown was once the home of the famous sheriff and deputy marshal Wyatt Earp.
9. Mission San Xavier del Bac
The oldest European structure in Arizona and one of the most beautiful examples of Spanish architecture in the country.
10. Fry bread
Unhealthy, yes, but we don’t know of anyone who would turn down delicious, steaming hot fry bread. In fact, Phoenix alone has a handful of restaurants where you can buy authentic fry bread.
11. Mexican food
Drive around any city or town in Arizona and you’re bound to run into a half dozen Mexican restaurants within a couple minutes. Go cheap with Filiberto’s at 3AM or pay more for an upscale experience.
We love heat, especially when it’s in our mouths. Arizona has several huge salsa festivals each year where you can eat anything from exceptionally mild corn salsas to a mouth burning, pure chile salsa while raising money for local charities.
13. Sonoran hot dog
What do you get when you wrap a hot dog in bacon and add toppings like pinto beans, jalapenos, onions, tomatoes, mayo, and mustard? You’ve got one of the tastiest hot dogs you’ll ever eat: the Sonoran hot dog.
14. Cactus League spring training
Arizona is home to more than one dozen teams during the spring training season, including the Cubs, the Dodgers, and our hometown favorite, the Diamondbacks. These pre-season games also tend to be less expensive than during the regular season!
15. No toll roads
Toll roads, what are those? While local politicians may occasionally bring up the idea, it is always shot down by residents.
16. No time changes!
Arizona is one of the only states in the nation that does not observe Daylight Savings Time. We (not so secretly) chuckle as the rest of the country struggles to adjust their body clocks each spring because we’re waking up at our usual time every day.
17. Swimming to playing in the snow in two hours
In the spring and fall, you can quite literally go from a morning of playing in the snow in Flagstaff to swimming outdoors several hours later in Phoenix. Talk about a variety of weekend activities!
18. Sun for days
For any transplant from the Northeast or the Midwest, the main allure for moving to Arizona is how many sunny days we get each year. 296 in Phoenix, 284 in Tucson, 276 in Flagstaff, and 313 in Yuma. Just be sure to stock up on your sunscreen!
If that doesn’t convince you that Arizona is the place to be (and love), then nothing will. Did we leave anything off? Let us know in the comments!