weekend in arizona

Travel Guide: Carefree, Arizona

Ela Arizona

Ela, from Event Espresso, made her way across the country to the desert town of Carefree, Arizona and is sharing her travel tips and tricks with us! Get ready to suffer from some serious wanderlust as you read about her incredible trip! 


Day 1:

Woke up in this gorgeous desert home that belongs to my boyfriend’s magnificent Aunt & Uncle! They have a beautiful view that overlooks Black Mountain and since we were exhausted from the flight the night before, we laid by the pool all day! Carefree is a gorgeous, quiet city filled with breath-taking desert views, coffee shops and surrounded by Mid-Western themed restaurants and bars.


Day 2:

The Sedona Desert has been on my bucket list for years now. I highly recommend the Pink Jeep Tours, where a lively guide takes off-roading to some favorite Sedona sites. You’ll need to buckle in and hold on tight because the ride can get super bumpy (and nerve-wracking, in a good way!) After the Sedona tour, we stopped to see The Chapel of The Holy Cross that was built into rock in 1956. The church design was approved by Frank Lloyd Wright and has more amazing views. On the way home, we stopped at some art galleries and craft shops-Sedona is very artsy with lots of unique shops to explore.


Day 3:

We were up bright and early to go ATVing through Salt River Valley with an Extreme Arizona Motorsports Adventure guide. It was an unforgettable day scattered with blood, sweat, and almost tears. Some of the trails were scary, rocky, and even over-looked cliffs! But the views were unbeatable while riding around in the valley. On our last loop, we climbed up a rocky cliff to see Indian Mesa Ruins, a rock wall from 1,000 years ago built by the Hohokam Puebloans.


Day 4:

There’s nothing quite like riding a convertible through the desert. On our last day, we took a relaxing drive to Lake Pleasant, a huge outdoor recreation area where you can jetski, boat, picnic, swim, and host events around the bright blue reservoir. On our way back, we had a great view of “The Boulders”-a cluster of rocks left behind from when this area was covered in water millions of years ago. To finish off the trip, we wandered around Old Town Scottsdale which is filled with art galleries, bars, and restaurants.


Tips & Tricks

-Bring water & chap stick EVERYWHERE! Since the air is so dry, you hardly feel yourself sweat and get dehydrated very easily!

 -Although it seems counter-productive since it’s so warm, a light long sleeved shirt and pants can really help keep you cool. If I wasn’t wearing long sleeves while ATVing, I would have completely fried!




- Janey’s Coffee Co. & Bodega: Cute coffee shop & lunch spot with a relaxing outdoor patio

- Harold’s Cave Creek Corral: Western bar & grill with great martinis and delicious bar food

- Indigo Crow: Yummy American restaurant & bar in a cool atmosphere (and the best carrot cake we’ve ever had!)

- The Mission Old Town: Modern Latin American restaurant with a dark, romantic vibe