Trying to decide the best time to visit Phoenix and Scottsdale? This post will take you through the best seasons and months to visit for weather, crowds, and prices.
It didn't take long for Phoenix and Scottsdale, Arizona to become a regular weekend getaway for Jake and I. Endless sunshine, desert hikes, affordable hotels and restaurants, and a quick flight from Dallas, TX makes this an easy vacation. Phoenix and Scottsdale can appease every type of traveler. Whether you are a luxury or budget traveler who is looking for adventure or relaxation this is a great destination.
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Make sure you pick the right time of year to visit this desert destination before you book your flights. Baseball spring training, sizzling summer heat, and “snowbird season" are just a few things to be aware of when planning your trip. Also understand that Scottsdale and Phoenix are pretty much one and the same when it comes to weather as they are right next to each other. This post will focus on Scottsdale but can also be used to learn the best time to visit Phoenix as well. Keep reading to learn the best time to visit Phoenix and Scottsdale.
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Spring and Fall in Scottsdale and Phoenix are ideal seasons
March – May is the best time to visit Phoenix and Scottsdale
April is the best month to visit Scottsdale. It brings the perfect combination of ideal weather, ranging from the mid 50s to mid 80s, without having to overpay for hotels. April is a pretty quiet time for the Phoenix/Scottsdale region with few festivals and events. The main events are to look out for are the Phoenix Pride Festival, Nirvana Food and Wine Festival, and the Scottsdale Culinary Festival.
March will bring temperatures in the high 40s at night to mid 70s...perfect for outdoor activities. Unfortunately, this is also a peek travel time with high hotel rates because of baseball spring training and a calendar filled with events. Festivals and events to note include the NASCAR FanSheild 500 Race, LPGA Tour's Founders Cup, Phoenix Film Festival (usually continuing into early April), and M3F Music Festival. If you're visiting during these events make your restaurant reservations in advance and start any activities or hikes first thing in the morning to avoid crowds.
If you’re ok with warmer weather in the low to mid 90’s, May is also a nice month. I’ve been able to find really good hotel rates this time of year; excluding Memorial Day weekend. If you decide to visit in May start any activities in the sun, like hiking, for early morning and spend the rest of the day cooling off by the pool. May is also a great time to visit Phoenix and Scottsdale if you're a foodie since Restaurant Week takes place mid to late May.
I would also say spring is the best time to visit Arizona in general if you are planning on visiting other areas like Sedona or Tucson.
Late September – November is also the best time to visit PHoenix and Scottsdale
Fall, specifically late fall, is also the best time to visit Scottsdale and Phoenix, Arizona. October and early November bring ideal temperatures with highs in the 80s. Very similar to April. If you visit in October or November you will have perfect weather for hiking, lounging by the pool, and patio dining.
Fall is also a great time of year to snag some great hotel prices. In general, fall sees fewer events than spring. The Arizona State Fair starts in October, the Rainbows Festival is in November, and the only notable event in September is Restaurant Week. These events typically don't bring many outside tourists to Arizona, which means you can have more luck finding a hotel deal in fall compared to spring. Keep in mind that you will start to see hotel prices increase towards the end of November as Northerners and people from cooler states come for a sunny getaway.
September is nice, but on the hotter end and with a chance of the intense summer heat continuing. Highs are typically in the 90s and it's not uncommon to see a few days with temperatures in the low 100s. If finding a hotel deal is a priority, September is the best month to visit Scottsdale and Phoenix during fall. The hot temperatures, kids going back to school, and lack of events means low crowds.
The Next Best Time to Visit Phoenix and Scottsdale is Winter
December – February make for perfect winter escapes
Winter in Phoenix and Scottsdale feels more like a warm fall. The weather is sunny and perfect for hiking but not quite warm enough for the pool. Temperatures range from the low 40s to high 60s during the winter season with December seeing the highest chance of rain. If you are looking for a more active vacation, this is the best time to visit Scottsdale and Phoenix.
Try to avoid late December as hotel prices are the highest with winter break travelers and those attending the Fiesta Bowl after Christmas. Keep in mind that baseball spring training starts at the end of February (see the dates here) and the Waste Management Phoenix Open typically falls around the end of January. Both these events mean steep hotel prices.
The Worst Time to Visit Scottsdale and Phoenix is Summer
June – August is unbearably hot
Unless you enjoy melting in the sun, avoid summer. Summers in Phoenix and Scottsdale can get hot enough to shut down airport runways. Highs can soar above 110 degrees and there is little respite from the heat in the evening. It is true that Arizona has a dry heat, so it’s not quite as miserable as it sounds. Hotels slash their prices and offer incredible deals to try and get tourists to visit during their slow season. If you plan to stay in the pool or relaxing at a spa the majority of the time, enduring the heat might be worth the hotel deals you will find. Also note that late summer is Monsoon season, which can bring unpredictable storms and heavy rainfall.
Keep in mind that summer is NOT the best time to visit Arizona in general. Even Sedona sees temperatures in the high 90s. Residents of Scottsdale and Phoenix will generally try to escape to the cooler areas during summer which means you will have a hard time finding a good hotel deal.
I hope this helps in planning your trip to Arizona and learning the best time to visit Phoenix and Scottsdale!
Now that you've learned the best time to visit Phoenix and Scottsdale it's time to start booking your tours and activities!
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When do you think is the best time to visit Scottsdale and Phoenix? Let me know in the comments below!
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