The sun shines 299 days a year in the golfer’s paradise of Scottsdale, Arizona — but you don’t have to be a linksman to soak up some vitamin D in this dynamic desert city, which feels surprisingly outdoorsy. Scottsdale is one of the few U.S. destinations travel writer Kelsey Ogletree (@kbogletree) visits over and over again, not least for its wellness attributes. After a year of staying home, it’s high atop our bucket list for a trip this year. Here’s what to do.
Find Instagrammable moments everywhere at this boutique resort, from the picture window framing Camelback Mountain to two 75-foot pools connected by waterfall. Local instructors frequently host outdoor classes like astrology yoga by moonlight and sound healing with Tibetan singing bowls. (And if you do golf, try the resort’s par-3 Short Course.)
All you need to know at this Old Town Scottsdale hot spot are two words: chopped salad. James Beard-nominated chef/owner Bernie Kantak is famous for his take on this classic, which includes smoked salmon, dried sweet corn and asiago.
This sustainable-cuisine-focused spot gives new meaning to “eat the rainbow,” with a plethora of healthful dishes that are as fun to photograph as they are to devour. The cheerful patio is the perfect perch for kombucha cocktails and brunch, served every day (!) until 3 p.m.
Choose your own adventure across more than 225 miles of hiking trails across this protected desert habitat. First-timers, opt for the Gateway Trail Loop, which covers 4.5 miles and 650 feet elevation round trip
Book the seriously reinvigorating Phoenix Rising scrub and massage, then take a challenging aerial yoga class before relaxing at the spa-guest-only rooftop pool. Snag a handful of chocolate-covered coconut from the relaxation room to snack on.
Scottsdale welcomed its first resort in a certified Dark Sky Community resort perched in the McDowell Mountains last fall. Practice mindfulness beneath the stars from the new SkyTop cocktail lounge, opening in May.