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The Best of Fountain Hills

The Best of Fountain Hills

Located to the east of Scottsdale, you’ll find the charming town of Fountain Hills, known for great hiking, mountain biking, and beautiful sunny weather throughout the year. The town gets its name from the downtown geyser fountain, which holds the title for being the fourth-tallest public fountain in the world. While Fountain Hills is smaller than some of the other neighboring Phoenix suburbs, this charming suburb is not short on scenic views or fun activities. 

Visit The Fountain Hills Fountain!

Photo credit: ExperienceFountainHills

If you do one thing in Fountain Hills, you must stop by the iconic fountain the city is named after! The fountain goes off for fifteen minutes at the top of the hour between 10 am and 9 pm every day of the week. When the fountain goes off, it shoots a jet stream of water 560 feet into the air, and it really can be seen from miles away. It was first built to accentuate the natural beauty of the surrounding mountains and hills around the Fountain Hills area. Our favorite time to visit is at night…you can still see the fountain going off under brilliant LED lights mounted directly under the fountain and shore that illuminate the water as it shoots up into the sky. What a show! 

Fountain Hills Artists’ Gallery

Photo credit: Fountain Hills Artist Gallery

If you are in the mood to shop, the Fountain Hills Artist Gallery features over 40 local artists who have come together to show and sell their work in this communal gallery. Whether you are a local or are visiting from out of town, the Fountain Hills Artists’ Gallery is a great place to find art to give as a gift or to purchase for your own home! 

The exhibit offers a range of art with a mix of classical to contemporary pieces. You’ll find everything from sculptures, to jewelry, to ceramics for sale at the Artist Gallery. You can expect the artists to be onsite when you visit, which allows you to ask them questions about their work while you browse through the art exhibits. 

The River of Time Museum

Photo Credit: TripAdvisor

The River of Time Museum in Fountain Hills is a wonderful place to go to learn more about the local history of the Lower Verde River Valley. At this museum, you will be able to walk in the footsteps of the indigenous settlers who first occupied the Fountain Hills area, and learn more about the mystery surrounding how they disappeared. 

The museum explores how our present day lives in Arizona intersect with those of the originating settlers, and how through hard work the indigenous people were able to cultivate a home for themselves in what is now Fountain Hills. 

The museum does a great job explaining the hardships the first settlers of the area faced. It offers a blend of history, anthropology, and natural history that is fascinating for people of all ages. The museum is fairly low cost to visit, with $12 admission fees for adults, and $7 admission fees for kids. Even if you have visited the museum in years past, it has recently undergone a 18 month renovation, and is open again with new exhibits and interactive features. 

Enjoy Dessert at Chocofin Chocolatier 

Photo credit: BestThingsAZ

Fountain Hills is home to one of the finest gourmet chocolate shops you will find anywhere in the Valley! Chocofin Chocolatier is a specialty chocolate shop that is known for making small batch craft chocolates with organic cocoa beans. The shop is still owned by the original owners, a couple who have been in business in Fountain Hills since 1998. This is a great spot to stop in when you are craving a little something sweet and pick out some gourmet chocolates to try. They also have other items such as nut barks and chocolate bars that make very thoughtful gifts for friends!

Fountain Hills Desert Botanical Garden

Photo Credit: TripAdvisor

You may not know that Fountain Hills has a botanical garden of its own! It is tucked away on a quiet street between two private properties on a beautiful piece of land. The Fountain Hills Desert Botanical Garden is a great place to go if you are looking for an easy and short hike. As you hike along the trail, you will notice most of the plants have plaques attached with more information about the name of the plants and background information on them. While this botanical garden is only about 8 acres and much smaller than the one in Phoenix, it’s a peaceful retreat where you can be in nature and learn new facts about desert vegetation. Best of all, it’s completely free. 

Desert Canyon Golf Club

Photo credit: Meridian CondoResorts

It wouldn’t be a proper Phoenix suburb if there wasn’t plenty of incredible golfing! One of the best spots to play in Fountain Hills is at the Desert Canyon golf course. It was originally opened in 1971 as the Fountain Hills Golf Club, and it was the city’s only golf course at that time. Desert Canyon is still considered one of the best golfing facilities in the state. When you play this course, you can expect to see incredible mountain views. Not only that, from almost every hole you can see the Fountain Hills Fountain

After you play, enjoy a meal at DC Bar & Grill, the newly renovated restaurant attached to the course that serves lunch and dinner. The restaurant also has spectacular views, and happy hour from 4 pm – 6 pm during the week! 

Appreciate the Dark Skies

Photo credit: DarkSky.Org

One of the things that makes Fountain Hills so special is that it has been designated as an International Dark Sky Community.  Residents noticed that Fountain Hills had a surprisingly dark night sky, in part thanks to the surrounding desert and McDowell Mountain range. The community has really leaned into this, and the city takes deliberate action to preserve the night sky! Thanks to this, you can expect to see some incredible stargazing views when you step outside at night in the city. 

As part of this there are specific rules for those in the community to prevent light pollution, such as using warm tone light bulbs and minimizing bright outdoor lights when possible. Thanks to this, Fountain Hills is an incredible place to watch the stars, because there is less light pollution than some of the other cities in the Valley. At certain times of the year, you can even see the Milky Way from Fountain Hills.

The city of Fountain Hills might be adjacent to Scottsdale, but it offers its own unique experience! You can enjoy the small town lifestyle as you soak up the mountain views and desert landscape. The town truly is oriented with the fountain at the center of everything that happens, and you will find the city encourages an active lifestyle with tons of opportunities to hike, bike, or have a picnic around the fountain. 

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