What Can You Do in Prescott, Arizona | A Comprehensive Guide

Nestled in the heart of Arizona, you’ll find a hidden treasure trove of adventures waiting to be explored – Prescott, Arizona. But what can you do in Prescott Arizona? More than you might imagine! This city offers a unique blend of natural beauty, rich history, and vibrant culture that’s sure to captivate any traveler. Prescott is not just a place, it’s an experience.

With every turn, you’ll find reminders of its colorful past, as this was once the capital of the Arizona territory. It boasts a thriving downtown area, outdoor recreational activities, a delightful food and drink scene, intriguing festivals and events, a variety of accommodations, and even promising day trips to nearby locations.

So, whether you’re a history buff, an art enthusiast, an adrenaline junkie, or a foodie, Prescott has something for everyone.

Exploring Downtown Prescott

Downtown Prescott offers a rich blend of history and contemporary culture. Wander through historic Whiskey Row, enjoy local eateries, browse through unique shops, and immerse yourself in the local art scene.

Stepping onto Whiskey Row is like stepping back in time. Once known for its high concentration of saloons in the late 19th century, today’s Whiskey Row has become a beloved landmark in downtown Prescott.

Despite a devastating fire in 1900, Whiskey Row’s spirit (quite literally) remained unbroken. This resilient street rose from the ashes and continued to thrive, offering a blend of old and new that’s distinctly Prescott.

Today, you’ll find a charming array of shops, eateries, and watering holes lining the historic street. It’s not just about libations; Whiskey Row is home to art galleries, boutiques, and even the famous Palace Restaurant and Saloon, considered the oldest frontier saloon in Arizona. Here are some highlights that you must visit:

  • The Palace Restaurant and Saloon: Experience the old-world charm while savoring a delicious meal.
  • Jersey Lilly Saloon: Enjoy live music with a drink in hand.
  • The Old Sage Bookshop: Lose yourself in a wide selection of books.

Learn more about the fascinating history of Whiskey Row

Sharlot Hall Museum: Delving into Arizona’s Past

If you’re looking to dig a little deeper into Arizona’s roots, the Sharlot Hall Museum is an absolute must-visit. Named after Sharlot M. Hall – a poet, activist, and the first woman to hold a territorial office, this museum is one of the oldest establishments of its kind in the state.

The museum is located on the site of the historic Governor’s Mansion and is spread over a sprawling four-acre campus, featuring multiple buildings that house a vast array of exhibits. Here, you’ll find fascinating artifacts, photographs, and documents that narrate the history of Prescott and the wider region of Arizona.

From Native American culture and the Victorian era to the region’s natural history, the Sharlot Hall Museum provides a comprehensive look into Arizona’s past. Be sure to check out the Territorial Women’s Memorial Rose Garden on the premises.

Muse over the exhibits at the Sharlot Hall Museum

Outdoor Activities

From hiking in the Prescott National Forest to bird-watching at Watson and Willow Lakes, the city offers countless outdoor activities. Explore the beauty of nature, enjoy recreational sports, or simply soak in the picturesque views

The Prescott National Forest: A Hiker’s Paradise

For nature enthusiasts, the Prescott National Forest offers more than 450 miles of hiking trails ranging from gentle strolls to challenging hikes. This forest’s diverse ecosystem and dramatic landscape make it a prime location for outdoor enthusiasts.

On the trails, you can immerse yourself in nature’s beauty and discover Prescott’s rich biodiversity. If you’re lucky, you may even encounter local wildlife. For adventure seekers, the forest offers off-road vehicle trails, horseback riding, and even rock-climbing sites. Don’t forget to stop by Lynx Lake, a popular recreational spot, perfect for boating, fishing, and picnicking.

Watson and Willow Lakes: Bird Watching and More

Prescott’s Watson and Willow Lakes are other excellent destinations for outdoor lovers. Known for their stunning blue waters and majestic Granite Dells, these man-made reservoirs offer a unique blend of natural beauty and recreational activities.

The lakes are popular for fishing, boating, and hiking. However, they’re particularly well-known for bird watching. Over 300 species of birds have been observed at these lakes, making them a bird watcher’s paradise. The ‘Peavine’ and ‘Iron King trails surrounding Watson Lake offer panoramic views and glimpses of the area’s history.

Food and Drink Scene

Prescott’s food and drink scene caters to a variety of tastes. Indulge in locally sourced dishes, enjoy a sophisticated dining experience, or discover the local craft beer and wine scene.

When it comes to dining, Prescott delivers. The city offers a wide array of options, from casual eateries to fine dining establishments. If you’re looking for a relaxed lunch spot, check out the Farm Provisions, known for their locally sourced, farm-to-table dishes.

For a more upscale dining experience, the Prescott Station Grill and Bar offers a fusion of international and American flavors, served in a sophisticated setting. Don’t leave without trying their signature dishes, which include a variety of fresh seafood, choice cuts of meat, and a delectable dessert menu.

Local Breweries and Wineries: Tasting Arizona’s Terroir

Arizona might not be the first place that comes to mind when you think of wine and beer, but Prescott will surprise you. The city boasts an array of breweries and wineries, perfect for those who appreciate a well-crafted drink. Superstition Meadery, located right in downtown Prescott, has gained international acclaim for its innovative meads and ciders.

As for wine lovers, Granite Creek Vineyards, located a short drive from Prescott, is one of Arizona’s oldest wineries. Their wines, made using organic farming techniques, showcase the unique flavors of the region. Their tasting room, set in a picturesque farm, is the perfect setting to savor their wines.

Prescott’s Festivals and Events

Experience the vibrant culture of Prescott through its various festivals and events. From the exciting Frontier Days and Rodeo to the Prescott Film Festival, there’s always something happening in this city.

Prescott’s vibrant history and culture come to life in its many festivals and events. One of the standout events is the Prescott Frontier Days and the World’s Oldest Rodeo. Established in 1888, this week-long celebration takes place around Independence Day and is filled with parades, dances, arts and crafts shows, and of course, the main event — the rodeo.

Experience the exhilarating spirit of the Wild West and the charm of Prescott during this exciting event.

Another significant cultural event in Prescott is the Prescott Film Festival. This annual event celebrates independent films and filmmakers, offering a platform for them to showcase their work. The festival features film screenings, workshops, and even gourmet dinners, providing a unique blend of culture and cuisine for attendees.

Accommodation Options

Prescott provides a variety of accommodations to suit every preference. From historic hotels that transport you back in time, to cozy bed and breakfasts that make you feel at home, you’re sure to find the perfect place to stay.

Prescott offers a wide range of accommodations to suit every budget and preference. For those who appreciate a bit of history with their stay, Prescott’s historic hotels like the Hassayampa Inn offer a unique experience. Built in 1927, this hotel is an icon of downtown Prescott and offers an authentic taste of Southwestern hospitality.

If you prefer a homier touch, Prescott’s bed and breakfasts offer comfortable accommodation with a personal touch. Properties such as the Pleasant Street Inn provide cozy rooms and a hearty breakfast, perfect for starting your day of exploring Prescott.

Day Trips from Prescott

Prescott’s prime location allows for exciting day trips to places like Jerome, America’s largest ghost town. Explore the intriguing history, unique art scene, and breathtaking views that lie just beyond Prescott’s borders.

Prescott’s location makes it an excellent base for exploring other exciting destinations in Arizona. One such place is Jerome, located just over an hour’s drive from Prescott. Once a thriving mining town, Jerome is now known as America’s largest ghost town.

Despite this moniker, Jerome is teeming with life, offering quirky shops, local art, wineries, and stunning panoramic views.

Family-Friendly Attractions

Prescott isn’t just for adults; it’s a great place for the whole family! A variety of family-friendly attractions ensure everyone from the little ones to the teens will have a memorable time in this charming Arizona city.

At the Heritage Park Zoological Sanctuary, you’ll come face-to-face with a range of animals, each with a unique story. The sanctuary is dedicated to the conservation and protection of species, providing interactive and educational experiences for all ages.

Encourage your child’s artistic side at the Prescott Center for the Arts. The center offers a variety of performances, art exhibitions, and workshops designed to inspire and nurture creative minds.

Prescott Nightlife

When the sun sets, Prescott’s nightlife scene comes alive with a mix of laid-back lounges, lively bars, and historic saloons. Whether you’re looking for a quiet night out or a bit of excitement, Prescott’s nightlife has something to offer.

For a taste of Prescott’s old west charm, head to Matt’s Saloon, one of the oldest bars on Whiskey Row. Enjoy live country music, refreshing drinks, and a friendly crowd at this iconic establishment.

Looking for something more contemporary? The Raven Café offers a vibrant atmosphere, innovative cocktails, and regular live music performances, making it a popular choice among locals and visitors alike.

Health and Wellness in Prescott

For those seeking a bit of rejuvenation, Prescott offers a number of wellness retreats, spas, and fitness centers. Here you can relax, recharge, and reconnect with your inner self.

Experience serenity with Aloha Yoga and Hula, offering classes for all skill levels. Their blend of yoga and Hawaiian hula dance provides a unique approach to fitness and wellness.

Indulge in a day of pampering at Spa Botanica, where you can enjoy a variety of revitalizing treatments designed to soothe your body and mind.

Shopping in Prescott

Whether you’re searching for the perfect souvenir, a new outfit, or unique antiques, shopping in Prescott is an adventure in itself. The city offers a mix of boutique shops, art galleries, and traditional malls.

For antique lovers, Cortez Street offers a variety of shops filled with unique finds. Here, you can spend hours discovering hidden treasures and one-of-a-kind items.

In the heart of downtown Prescott, you’ll find Bashford Courts and the surrounding Gurley Street shops. This area offers a wide variety of retail options, from high-end boutiques to local artisans.

Prescott’s Art Scene

Prescott’s vibrant arts scene is on full display throughout the city. With numerous galleries, studios, and art festivals, there’s always something for art enthusiasts to explore.

On the first Friday of every month, art comes alive during the Prescott Art Walk. This event offers a chance to explore local galleries, meet artists, and purchase unique artwork.

The historic Elks Theatre and Performing Arts Center hosts a variety of performances, from concerts to plays, providing a cultural staple in Prescott


In this section, we will be delving into some of the most common inquiries and curiosities that surround our topic.

What is the best time to visit Prescott?

The best time to visit Prescott is typically from late spring to early fall, when the weather is warm and the city hosts a variety of events and festivals. However, Prescott’s mild climate makes it an attractive destination year-round.

What are some must-try foods in Prescott?

Prescott offers a diverse culinary scene. Be sure to try the locally-sourced dishes at Farm Provisions, and for dessert, try a slice of the signature whiskey pecan pie from the Prescott Station Grill and Bar.

Are there any guided tours available?

Yes, Prescott offers a variety of guided tours. These include historical tours, ghost tours, hiking tours, and even brewery and winery tours.

How can I best experience the outdoors in Prescott?

Prescott is known for its outdoor activities. Explore the Prescott National Forest, visit the beautiful Watson and Willow Lakes, or take part in one of the many outdoor events and festivals.

What are the transportation options within the city?

Prescott is a walkable city, especially downtown. However, for longer distances, there are options like taxis, rideshare services, and the local bus system.

Conclusion: What Can You Do in Prescott, Arizo

This concludes our comprehensive guide on what you can do in Prescott, Arizona. From its rich history to outdoor activities, food scene, and family-friendly attractions, Prescott truly has something for everyone.

Whether you’re a first-time visitor or a seasoned traveler, there’s always something new and exciting to discover in this Arizona gem.

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About the author

Hi, I'm Teri Franks, the voice behind Prescott Voice. I've spent years immersing myself in all that Prescott has to offer, and I love sharing the unique stories and experiences I've discovered. When I'm not writing, you'll find me exploring Prescott's trails or tasting our local cuisine. I believe that the vibrant lifestyle here in Prescott inspires us to live a healthier, happier life. Come join me on this exciting journey as we explore Prescott together.

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