Glendale Outdoor Adventures: Family Fun and Attractions

Located only 30 minutes from downtown Phoenix, the city of Glendale provides a place for visitors to play year-round. One of the biggest draws is the area’s outdoor recreation options, which range from tours and water parks to golf courses and lake retreats. To learn more, check out the top Glendale outdoor adventures. Don’t forget the sunscreen!

Glendale Outdoor Adventures for Different Interests and Age Groups

glendale outdoor adventure vacation

Scenic Tours of Arizona

Whether renting ATVs or flying high in a hot-air balloon, scenic tours are a popular way to experience Arizona’s landscape. For example, Arizona Scenic Tours offers options such as Historic Route 66, Metro Phoenix, Sedona, Tombstone and the Grand Canyon.

Those who want more action should book a guided ATV ride with Desert Monster Tours. These two-hour excursions venture into Tonto National Forest, about 40 minutes from Scottsdale. For something more relaxing, ride with Arizona Hot Air Balloons in Glendale. The company offers sunrise and sunset flights perfect for families and special occasions. Many come with light food and refreshments.

Splash All Day

One of the best places to enjoy Glendale outdoor adventures is an area water park. Due to the warm, dry climate, water parks are easy to find, too. Many parks have splash pads where children play, and parents enjoy water fun and live entertainment.

In Glendale, visitors will find swimming and water-play options at Foothills Aquatics Center and Rose Lane Aquatics Center. Both facilities have public swimming times, slides, leisure pools with spray features and diving boards. Crystal Lagoons Island Resort is set to open as a water-lovers resort and will feature slides, leisure pools and themed islands.

glendale kid attractions zoo

Meet Wild Animals

Those interested in interacting with exotic animals have two must-see attractions. Wildlife World Zoo, Aquarium and Safari Park houses the largest number of exotic and endangered species in Arizona. At the zoo, visitors see more than 6,000 animals, live shows and feeding stations. A few include large cats, kangaroo, giraffes and buffalo. At the aquarium, explore hundreds of fish, amphibians, reptiles and invertebrates. There is also a dragon world, safari park and adventure land.

Nearby Phoenix Zoo welcomes all ages to stroll its trails. On these trails, visitors see animals from around the world such as lions, zebras, sloth, primates, and Asian elephants. For more fun, attend the animal presentations, safari cruiser, rides and farm. Phoenix Zoo also has water and play areas, including enchanted forest, caverns and a lagoon.

Play Golf

Glendale’s sunny climate provide the perfect place for golfers to enjoy friendly competition. Plus, players do not have to travel far to find a scenic, championship course.

Golf courses in Glendale include Desert Mirage, The Legend at Arrowhead and Arrowhead Country Club. Many have lakes that offer water hazards and mature trees that create a natural landscape. Each course has been designed to interact with the area’s beautiful surroundings.

For more options, head to Scottsdale, Peoria or Phoenix. A dozen golf courses are in the West Valley Region. Favorites include Copper Canyon, Peoria Pines, Estrella Golf Club and Falcon Golf Club.

glendale outdoor adventures itrip family

Hike and Bike Trails

Biking and hiking also rank among the top Glendale outdoor adventures. Visitors are welcome to explore area parks, which have mountain biking trails, hiking trails and horse-back riding trails. For a mix of everything, head to Thunderbird Conservation Park, a top place for hiking and picnicking. Skunk Creek Linear Park provides a place to ride bikes and walk. Those who prefer to play will find a disc golf course and playground at Grand Canal Linear Park.

In addition to biking and hiking trails, Glendale also has skate parks for BMX riders and skateboarders. A few favorites include Foothills Skate Park, X-court BMX Park and Peoria Skatepark.

Plan a Lake Day

Boaters and anglers love the lakes in the region. Several companies lease boats by the day, so guests can plan adventures. For more options, visitors canoe and kayak – or they can simply admire the view. Pioneer Lake, Desert Harbor Lake, Garden Lakes and Glendale Heroes Regional Park all provide access to lakes. For the best fishing options, start with Pioneer and Desert West Lake in Phoenix.