Scottsdale
Off the beaten track

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Our most recommended Scottsdale Off the beaten track

Phoenix: Guided Self-Drive ATV/UTV Tour

1. Phoenix: Guided Self-Drive ATV/UTV Tour

Enjoy an exciting day in the famous Sonoran desert, off-roading in your single-passenger or 4-person ATV on some of the best trails in the stunning Bradshaw Mountains, located just north of Phoenix. Travel through giant Saguaro cacti, deep canyons carved by flash flooding rains, and cross the Aqua Fria River to experience the wild and vast desert terrain. Our tours create a scenic and educational journey amid some of the most rugged landscapes Arizona has to offer, with opportunities to see abundant desert wildlife such as coyotes, bobcats, deer, rabbits, quail and even rattlesnakes. The guided ATV tour begins approximately 45 minutes north of Phoenix in the Sonoran desert near the Agua Fria River Valley. This area, amidst the beautiful Bradshaw Mountains, is perfect for off-roading. There are creek crossings and places for wash riding, as well as gorgeous views of the Arizona landscape.  You’ll be accompanied by a certified guide with a vast knowledge of the plant life, wildlife, history and climate of the area. You can hear stories about the Native Americans who once farmed, hunted, survived and evolved in this unforgiving desert.

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Grand Canyon: Helicopter Ride & National Park Day Trip

2. Grand Canyon: Helicopter Ride & National Park Day Trip

Enjoy Grand Canyon National Park with a 45 to 50-minute helicopter tour over the deepest and widest part of the canyon. This tour offers time for a tour of the canyon rim with your guide as well and can be started in Phoenix, Scottsdale, or Tempe. Atop the Mogollon Rim, travel the outskirts of the Route 66 town of Flagstaff on the way to the South Rim of the Grand Canyon. Upon arrival, enjoy more than 3 hours within the national park marveling at the beauty that is the Grand Canyon. Just prior to entering the Grand Canyon National Park, your guide will check you in for your 45- to 50-minute helicopter tour over the Grand Canyon. While on the helicopter tour, be treated to views seen by less than 10% of visitors to the Grand Canyon National Park. Those views include Marble Canyon, Pointe Imperial, Little Colorado River, the Dragon Corridor, and of course the North Rim. Following your helicopter tour, reunite with your guide and explore more of the Canyon rim by foot.

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Phoenix & Scottsdale: Lower Salt River Kayaking Tour

3. Phoenix & Scottsdale: Lower Salt River Kayaking Tour

Experience the adventure of a lifetime in a desert oasis as you take a guided kayak tour through Salt River. This lush stretch of water is only a short drive from Phoenix. Spend your morning paddling along green riverbanks, and marvel at towering red cliffs. Don't forget to look for wild horses, bald eagles, and other desert wildlife along the way. Avoid crowds and take advantage of all the natural beauty the river has to offer. Enjoy a swim in the cool waters, and see the desert as you've never seen it before. This unique experience is perfect for all skill levels, and for groups, individuals, and families.

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Sonoran Desert: Guided 2-Hour ATV Tour

4. Sonoran Desert: Guided 2-Hour ATV Tour

After driving to the trail meeting point in the Tonto National Forest, hop aboard an ATV and set off on a guided excursion through the majestic Sonoran Desert. Discover the abundant flora and fauna inhabiting the Forest. Experience the thrill of navigating through seasonal creeks, sandy washes, rocky riverbeds, and rugged desert trails as your guide leads you across 25 to 30 miles of desert trails. While steering your fully automatic ATV through the Arizona wilderness, you will encounter this forbidden frontier which has remained largely untouched over time.

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Scottsdale: Tonto National Forest Off-Road H1 Hummer Tour

5. Scottsdale: Tonto National Forest Off-Road H1 Hummer Tour

Explore one of Arizona’s most picturesque trails on an off-road H1 Hummer excursion. The trail winds through the heart of the Tonto National Forest and Arizona’s most beautiful mountain ranges: the 4 Peaks and the Superstition Mountains. Enjoy beautiful views of Saguaro Lake and learn about the flora and fauna of this majestic landscape. Experience the thrill as the Hummer conquers the rugged desert terrain. If you crave excitement you’ll be sure to feel the rush of adrenalin as the H1 climbs 60-degree slopes, traverses 40-degree side slopes, and fords up to 2.5 feet of water. Even with all the thrills, this is a family friendly excursion that is suitable for all ages.

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Scottsdale: Half-Day Casual Bike Tour with Guide

6. Scottsdale: Half-Day Casual Bike Tour with Guide

Avoid the busy public transport system and take advantage of the glorious sunshine as you explore the beautiful city of Scottsdale by bike. Using an expertly maintained rental bike fleet, consisting of multi-geared touring bicycles, the tour takes you along paved bike paths, roads, canals, and the occasional hard dirt surface. In the early part of the day, ride through the lush arroyos of Scottsdale, where wildlife is abundant. Look out for desert cottontail rabbits as they hop away into the underbrush, and see if you can spot a quail crossing the path. From your knowledgeable local guide, learn about the region’s native flora and fauna, as well as the animals that live here. Follow your guide along a carefully mapped route that ensure you see the very best of the city, and enjoy it’s breathtaking natural landscapes along the way.

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Phoenix & Scottsdale: Saguaro Lake Kayaking Tour

7. Phoenix & Scottsdale: Saguaro Lake Kayaking Tour

Paddle through gorgeous Saguaro Lake on a kayak with this guided desert tour. Enjoy hours on the water with your experienced guide, splashing, relaxing, and viewing unique wildlife. The lake is an indispensable oasis in the vast Sonoran Desert, attracting a multitude of birds and wildlife.   Kayaking in Arizona is a unique experience, which offers you the chance to see desert bighorn sheep and bald eagles. Take time to appreciate the surrounding mountain peaks, giant saguaro cactus, and flora, only found in this distinctive ecosystem. Your guides are always available to teach you the natural history of the area and give you expert paddling instruction. This tour is available for individuals and groups, and is perfect for paddlers of all experience levels.

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Scottsdale: Half-Day Lower Salt River Rafting Tour

8. Scottsdale: Half-Day Lower Salt River Rafting Tour

Cool off and explore the beautiful Sonoran Desert with a guided Salt River rafting trip on the Lower Salt River in the Tonto National Forest. Arrive at 7:30 AM at the local supplier's office in North Scottdale, then travel 35 minutes to the start point just outside the eastern metro area. Get kitted out with all necessary equipment then head out onto the water.  The Salt River is a scenic, Class I (the easiest rating on the international scale of river difficulty) waterway which provides some of the best wildlife and bird watching opportunities in the Southwest. The water flow on the river varies seasonally, based on this your guide will choose from a number of put‐in/take‐out locations in order to ensure guests have the best river rafting experience. Whilst light paddling is required, your experienced rafting guide will do most of the work, so you can sit back and enjoy the view. Water temperatures are in the 60s in the winter and rise to low 80s in the summer months. Swimming is possible year‐round, but the water may be chilly in January. Tours typically last about 4 hours and water and snacks will be provided for the duration of the tour.

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Sonoran Desert: Guided 2-Hour UTV Adventure

9. Sonoran Desert: Guided 2-Hour UTV Adventure

Hop in, buckle up, turn the switch, and hit the trail in the toughest vehicle the Sonoran Desert has ever seen. The 4-seat UTV can be filled to capacity and can still climb trails, crawl boulders, and zip all over the desert without breaking a sweat. Whether you're craving adventure or simply want to enjoy some sightseeing at your own pace, this UTV is dialed in to deliver. With electric power steering, a thrilling V-Twin engine, and towing capacity to take everything with you, this exhilarating drive handles like a dream. 

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Other Sightseeing Options in Scottsdale

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What people are saying about Scottsdale

Overall rating

4.8 / 5

based on 4 reviews

We had a blast!! It was a different way to experience and see the desert and cacti. We would highly recommend an ATV Tour and look forward to doing it again next year!!

Had to wait longer than we should have to get out there but once we did it was so much fun and beautiful to see the desert. First time in Phoenix. Thank you

Amazing experience. Definitely do not recommend for a first time ATV experience since the trail is advanced! So much fun driving in the desert

So much fun!! Wish I could have stayed longer! Definitely recommend and will go back!

Great Guide Sam! Would def recommend this company!