Monday, January 19, 2009

Vacation... Arizona

Downtown Phoenix palm trees.

Taken from the trail of the Piestewa Peak/ Dreamy Draw recreation area.

We thought of Urban Indy Kevin when we saw their Metro light rail system.

The Big Unit at Cooperstown.

At El Bravo, they just bring you this sweet crispy treat with the check. We loved them.

We also had a nice meal at Tradiciones (and got there as the sun was setting on their cute building).

A torta is a HUGE Mexican sandwich and this is how they serve it up at Los Reyes de la Torta.

The Mammoth Saloon at Goldfield Ghost town.

The Dolly Steamboat.

The view of Canyon Lake from the Dolly Steamboat.

We're not going to lie, it was hard to leave Arizona and come back to Indiana. There are palm trees there, temperature readings in the 70s, sunshine, and the bluest sky we've ever seen. We went for a few days for no other reason than to feel warmth and we certainly did. It was Mrs. WYA!'s first trip to the southwest so she was excited to see cacti in its natural setting as opposed to a zoo or botanical gardens. Besides the great weather, we enjoyed some really good food too. We're not really into loud, sports bar/restaurant kind of places but a mandatory stop for us was Alice Cooper's Cooperstown. When we started thinking about a January trip months ago, we saw an interview with Alice Cooper about his restaurant in Phoenix and he mentioned one of his unique menu items, The Big Unit, which is a 2 foot long hot dog. Mr. WYA! decided that he wanted to tackle that as soon as we landed (after we picked up our rental car at the brilliant consolidated rental car center by the airport- you don't have to watch for the particular shuttle bus for your rental car company because all buses go to this centralized car rental building). It was a good dog but he couldn't quite finish it.
Mrs. WYA! had done her internet homework before the trip to find unique and tasty restaurants. We loved the green corn tamales and Navajo taco at El Bravo (8338 N. 7th St. Phoenix, AZ), and the tortas at Los Reyes de la Torta (9230 N. 7th St. Phoenix, AZ). Luckily, both of these modest little places were pretty close to our lovely resort, Pointe Hilton Squaw Peak Resort. The resort was also conveniently located right by the Piestewa Peak/ Dreamy Draw Recreation area which we really enjoyed hiking through.
One day, we took a little drive east to Apache Junction to board the Dolly Steamboat which cruises through Canyon Lake. It was nice to be out on the water and to be able to admire the mountains from a different angle. We even saw some bighorn sheep. If you are in the area, we highly recommend sightseeing from the Dolly Steamboat.

On our way to catch the Dolly Steamboat, we happened upon Goldfield Ghost Town which was a welcome sight. We were ready for some chow (excuse us while we slip into cowboy talk) before the boat ride and this cute, lost in time, little town served up a great breakfast burrito and open- faced omelet. It was very touristy of course but fun for photo ops and cheesy souvenirs.

All of those activities, along with basking in the warm air by the pool everyday, pretty much took up all of our time. Of course, we did visit Taliesin West but that deserves its own blog entry which we'll post later.


nora said...

I'm sorry I'm so far behind in reading your blog - my lovely sister and brother-in-law live in central Phoenix and I've imagined that you are an awful lot alike. Next time....

WYA! said...

Nora, it is always so nice when we get a flurry of your comments to post. We loved Arizona (maybe it is just because it is winter here and so gorgeous there). We'll always take any tips about food or sights or even general observations about what it is like to live there.