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The 5 Best Places to See the Sunset in Scottsdale

5 Best Places to See the Sunset in Scottsdale
If you’re like most people, you know that Scottsdale boasts some of the world’s most amazing sunsets – but where are the best places to see them? Check out this list of the five best places to watch the sunset in Scottsdale to plan your next few weekend evenings.

The 5 Best Places to See the Sunset in Scottsdale

Naturally, the most spectacular Scottsdale sunsets occur during monsoon season, which is usually between mid-June and mid-September. However, you can catch a fabulous sunset in Scottsdale during any time of year at these five places:

  1. Pinnacle Peak Park
  2. Turrell Skyspace at the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art
  3. McDowell Sonoran Preserve
  4. Desert Botanical Garden
  5. Orange Sky at Talking Stick Resort

Here’s a closer look at each.

#1 Place to See the Sunset in Scottsdale: Pinnacle Peak Park

Pinnacle Peak Park is a truly spectacular place to catch an explosively colored sunset in Scottsdale. The hike to the top is fairly easy, with a cumulative elevation gain of 1,300 feet over 1.75 miles (one way). At the top of the trail, you’re 2,889 feet above sea level – and you get panoramic views of the entire sky.
Pro Tip: Hike the trail before sunrise, too. If you time it right, you’ll be able to catch the sun peeking over the horizon when you make it to the summit.
Related: 5 can’t-miss Scottsdale attractions

#2 Place to See the Sunset in Scottsdale: Turrell Skyspace at SMoCA

Inside the Turrell Skyspace at the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art is a breathtaking enclosure called Knight Rise. Designed by Arizona-based artist James Turrell, you can observe the sky through an elliptical opening in the ceiling; the opening’s shape creates a breathtaking illusion that the sky is actually descending on you. Lights in the walls change your color perception, too, so it’s the most unique place in Arizona to watch the sun go down.

#3 Place to See the Sunset in Scottsdale: McDowell Sonoran Preserve

The McDowell Sonoran Preserve, a large and permanently protected sustainable desert habitat, is packed with fabulous hiking and multi-use trails – and there are plenty of perfect vantage points to catch the sunset. The best places for sunset viewing within McDowell Sonoran Preserve include:

  • Tom’s Thumb Trail
  • Ringtail Trail
  • Brown’s Ranch

Pro Tip: Rattlesnake season typically runs from May through October, although you may run into snakes at any time of year. Stay alert, stick to the trails and never put your feet where you can’t see them. Rattlers won’t chase you, but you should definitely move backward slowly and deliberately, and alert Preserve staff if you see one on the trail.
Related: 5 amazing coffee shops to try in Scottsdale

#4 Place to See the Sunset Near Scottsdale: Desert Botanical Garden

The Desert Botanical Garden in nearby Phoenix is an idyllic, peaceful spot where you can catch the sunset while surrounded by a natural desert landscape. You can explore large-scale floral and plant sculptures in the late afternoon and linger until dusk to make it a really special event.

#5 Place to See the Sunset in Scottsdale: Orange Sky at Talking Stick Resort

The Orange Sky restaurant at the Talking Stick Resort was literally designed for sunset dining. Located on the 15th floor of the hotel, the restaurant’s floor-to-ceiling windows provide you with a 360-degree view of the Valley’s famed sunsets.
Related: Scottsdale’s best ice cream shops

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