Arizona is a great place to continue the next chapter of your sobriety journey. The “Grand Canyon State” is known for its beautiful desert landscape, breathtaking rock formations, natural wonders, artistic community, warm climate, and relaxing Southwest culture. Arizona is the kind of place that’s good for your physical body as well as your mental and emotional health. The state’s wide range of outdoor activities can help restore your physical strength and encourage you to step away from the hustle and bustle of life. Arizona’s 300 sunny days a year can help ward off symptoms of depression and improve your mood. In addition to the Grand Canyon and the state’s serene landscape, there are many sober activities you can enjoy.
What to Do While Sober in Arizona
1. Embrace Your Love Of Music at The Musical Instrument Museum
If you love music, you should certainly visit Arizona’s Musical Instrument Museum (MIM). Even though the museum opened in 2010, this Phoenix attraction is the largest museum of its type in the world. After visiting a musical museum in Brussels, Belgium, Robert Ulrich was inspired to create a museum that displayed musical instruments from all over the world closer to home. Today, the museum houses an estimated 15,000 instruments from every continent and 200 countries.
Walking through the museum is like taking a music-themed road trip around the world. The state-of-the-art facility features interactive media that allows you to not only see the instruments but also hear their sounds. You can also watch the instruments being played in their original contexts. The entire experience is focused on the sensory nature of music and how it affects emotions.
Some of the museum’s most popular galleries include the:
- Artist Gallery which features instruments, video concert footage, photographs, performance outfits, and other items linked to notable musicians from around the world such as John Lennon, Taylor Swift, Elvis Presley, Pablo Casals, and King Sunny Ade.
- Experience Gallery which allows guests of all ages to touch, play, and hear instruments from cultures all over the world.
- Mechanical Music Gallery which features pianos, cylinder music boxes, zithers, and other instruments that can essentially “play themselves.”
You can also enjoy a concert at the MIM Music Theater, a 300-seat performance space that serves as a concert hall for musicians from all around the world.
2. Explore The Great Outdoors at Papago Park
This iconic park not far from downtown Phoenix features 1,500 acres filled with hiking and biking trails, picnic areas, and lagoons. Throughout history, Papago Park has been home to indigeneous tribes, a fish hatchery, a prisoner of war camp, and a VA hospital. Today, the park, which is mostly made of sandstone, is an ideal location for:
- Mountain biking
You can also enjoy a round of golf at Papago Golf Course or visit the world-class Phoenix Zoo and the stunning Desert Botanical Gardens, two of the region’s most popular attractions, which are located near the park.
You can also use Papago Park to access the:
3. Explore The Wild, Wild West In Tombstone
If you enjoy watching movies about the Wild West, Tombstone is a must-visit city. Even though the most notorious gunfight of the Wild West is said to have only lasted 20 seconds, the shootout at the O.K. Corral in Tombstone has lived on in Western lore for more than a century. Visiting Tombstone is like taking a literal step back in time.
While there, you can:
- Visit the O.K. Corral where you can see a live reenactment of the gunfight and walk through stables as they appeared in the 1880s.
- Venture inside the Tombstone Courthouse State Historic Park that houses artistic drawings of the gunfight and the town’s colorful past.
- Shop for western souvenirs. The Silver Hills Trading Company has semi-precious stone sets in silver or gold, t-shirts, hats, southwestern accessories, and books on everything from cooking to Wyatt Earp to Doc Holliday. You can also grab a bit of western wear at the Shady Lady’s Closet.
- Experience the cowboy life at Tombstone Monument Ranch. A stay at the ranch includes learning to play five-card draw or Texas hold ‘em, dancing to live music, horseback riding, hiking, cattle penning, and archery lessons.
4. Go Scuba Diving and Explore An Underwater Town At Canyon Lake
If you enjoy spending time near the water, take a trip up to Canyon Lake. Just a little more than an hour away from Phoenix, the reservoir on the Guadalupe River offers breathtaking waterfront and lake views. You can swim, fish, scuba dive, water ski, relax on the beach or sail along the lake as you enjoy nature’s beauty. Legend has it that there’s also an underwater ghost town in Canyon Lake.
You can also:
- Visit parks around Canyon Lake where deer, gray and red foxes, roadrunners, and a wide range of migratory birds live.
- Explore Canyon Lake Gorge where you can go fossil hunting and find dinosaur footprints that have been undisturbed for millions of years.
- Road trip River Road which takes you through 4 river crossings, campgrounds, tree tunnels, farmlands, ranches, and Overlook Park.
5. Enjoy An Unforgettable Hot Air Balloon Ride
Riding in a hot air balloon is an unforgettable experience. The views from the sky are spectacular, but the feeling you experience as you slowly rise into the air is unmatched and completely thrilling. Additionally, being one with the wind and sky is a lovely feeling that can only be truly understood once experienced. At the same time, riding in a hot air balloon can also speak to your sobriety. Every positive change you make in your life, whether it’s big or small, creates a higher, more confident sense of self. Looking back down on the ground can help you figuratively and literally see how far you have come.
There are many hot air balloons companies throughout Arizona. Some near the Mesa/Phoenix area include:
Helping You Enjoy and Fully Embrace The Sober Life
Here at Soba Recovery, we’re proud to call Arizona home. Our state’s beautiful landscape, historic attractions, iconic museums, ideal climate, sunny weather, and unique cities make Arizona a wonderful place to fully enjoy and embrace sober life. You don’t need drugs or alcohol to have fun. You can scuba dive, hike, swim, sail, and hop in a hot air balloon ride instead. Whether you’re looking to start, continue, or maintain your recovery journey, let us help you live the sober life you deserve. Contact us today to learn more.