Follow along as I visit Mesa, Arizona next week — or use the itinerary to plan your own outdoor getaway with hiking, kayaking, an urban farm, and the Fresh Foodie Trail.
Check in: Delta Hotels by Marriott Phoenix Mesa
Delta Hotels Phoenix Mesa is a 12-story high-rise hotel located in the heart of
Downtown Mesa with a design inspired by the local area’s robust art scene, as well as
the surrounding Sonoran Desert landscape. With newly refreshed interiors throughout
all 274 guest rooms, corridors, lobby and common areas feature a color palette and
textiles that reflect the desert. The Delta Hotels Phoenix Mesa is adjacent to the Mesa
Convention Center and Amphitheatre, the internationally-renowned Mesa Arts Center
and just minutes away from vibrant Downtown Mesa.
Dinner at Postino East Wine Café
At Postino guests can expect thirty-six unique, approachable wines; simple, delicious
food prepared with local ingredients such as bruschetta, paninis, salads and soups; and
a warm, friendly culture that brings people together. Build with a thought in mind that it
would be an urban space within a suburban area. The 2.5000 square foot building
incorporates elements from their original location along with a versatile layout that
includes an indoor-outdoor bar, wrap-around patio, and a green space for events.
Cocktails at The White Rabbit
Chic cocktail bar with a 1920’s speakeasy theme. Includes a secret door and a password
upon entrance. The White Rabbit
Sonoran Desert Hike at Usery Mountain Regional Park / Wind Cave Trail
The best views of the valley can be seen from the halfway point. The park contains a large variety of plants and animals that call the lower Sonoran Desert home. Along the most popular feature of the park, the Wind Cave Trail, water seeps from the roof of the alcove to support hanging gardens of Rock Daisy. The Wind Cave is formed at the boundary between the volcanic tuff and granite of Pass Mountain. Breathtaking views from this 2,840-foot elevation are offered to all visitors. Hike the VistaTrail which is not too high in elevation and offers a wonderful view of the Superstition Mountains.
Olive Oil 101 Tour at Queen Creek Olive Mill
Just east of Mesa is the Queen Creek Olive Mill, Arizona’s only family-owned and
operated working olive mill and farm, where olives are grown and pressed to produce
high quality extra virgin olive oil. Grown at the base of the San Tan Mountains, an area
known for its fertile soil, this flood plain region is famous for its high-quality fruits and
vegetables. The combination of long sunny days and cool desert nights provide the ideal
growing conditions for the olive trees. After the tour, enjoy Tuscan-inspired eatery
featuring fresh gourmet sandwiches, paninis, soups, salads, gelato and espresso. When
the weather is ideal, guest can dine in the olive grove.
Tour of Agritopia
Agritopia is a community on the edge of the rural/urban interface. It is an “urban farm”
designed to flourish in the urban setting. Instead of a huge field of one crop, you find a
patchwork of numerous specialty crops. New York Times named Agritopia the leading
‘agri-hood’ in the country in 2014. Here, the same-day harvest is sold at The Farm Stand,
as well as the being served at Joe’s Farm Grill and The Coffee Shop. All the produce
grown on the farm is grown under the USDA organic protocol. Their family homestead –
a ranch-style, slump block home – has been converted into a 60’s era mid-century
modern diner, Joe’s Farm Grill. The 100-year old trees have remained and features like a
butterfly roof and open breezeway that make for an airy patio with shade. Featured on
Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.
Arizona Wine Tasting at Garage-East in Barnone at Agritopia
Barnone, Arizona’s Craftsman Community located inside a rustic Quonset hut built with
metal from WWII planses that served the nearby Air Force base, has been brought back
to life as an innovative artisan collective on the urban agriculture campus. Barnone
features 12 resident crafts men and women across a wide array of disciplines including
Arizona winemakers Todd and Kelly Bostock and their micro winery Garage East. Who
says drinking wine at lunch is a crime?
The Beer Research Institute
Home brewers and longtime friends Matt Trethewey and Greg Sorrels have been
conducting Beer Research one pint at a time for the last decade. After successfully home
brewing for several years, they decided to bring their craft to the public with the B.R.I..
They are both heavily influenced by some of the top breweries in the industry that focus
on Belgian Styles and West Coast American Styles. The B.R.I. is a local gathering place
where people can share a pint, enjoy food made from scratch and conversation. The
menu focuses on the flavor profiles of Southern BBQ and the spicy side of the South
West, which both pair amazingly with our beer.
Arizona Salsa & BBQ Tasting at Jalapeno Bucks
The search for Buckin’ Good BBQ and burritos ends as you walk-up to Jalapeno Bucks situated between citrus groves. Join Mesa locals in line for a hearty meal of Arizonastyle BuzzSaw Brand BBQ and New Wave Mexican Soul Food to enjoy on their covered patio. Food & Wine Magazine ranked them as the best BBQ in Arizona in their 2020 Best Barbecue in Every State issue.
Kayaking tour through the Salt River at Saguaro Lake Guest Ranch
The closest river to Mesa, most leisure recreation takes place in the lower and upper
portions where outfitters operate guided water tours via kayak, raft and inner tube. The
river winds through the Tonto National Forest and offers a convenient day trip for Mesa
visitors. After kayaking, return to the Saguaro Lake Guest Ranch to hike to the petroglyphs.
Breakfast – stop for breakfast on your way to the Apache Trail
Several options including Sunnyside Café and What’s Crackin Café at Power Road.
Depart for the Apache Trail – First stop: Superstition Mountain Museum
One of the most popular day trips for anyone visiting Mesa is up the historic Apache
Trail through the mysterious Superstition Mountains and into the foothills of the Tonto
Natural Forest – the fifth largest forest in the United States. To this day, the area
continues to pay homage to its Western roots which took shape in the late 1800s. On
this scenic drive guests will encounter an authentic old west stagecoach stop, a mining
town, the famous Elvis Presley Chapel, and the majesty of a mountain lake, all nestled in
the beautiful Sonoran Desert landscape that captures the true essence of Arizona.
Explore Goldfield Ghost Town
In its heyday, Goldfield was a busy bustling little town perched atop a small hill
between the mighty Superstition Mountains to the east and the Goldfield Mountains
to the west. The first gold-strike was made in 1892, and it took just a little under a
year before the town came to life. After more than 115 years, travelers from all over
the world still visit this gold mining town to enjoy the excitement and grandeur of
Arizona’s Wild West! Activities include daily gunfights presented by the Goldfield
Gunfighters, underground mine tours and the only narrow-gauge railroad in
operation in Arizona.
Explore and grab Lunch at Tortilla Flat Saloon
Tortilla Flat is an authentic remnant of an old west town, nestled amid the Tonto
National Forest, Superstition Mountain Range. As well as being home for six
adventurous people, Tortilla Flat has a charm that has surpassed time. Tortilla Flat
started out as a stage stop in 1904 and neither fire nor flood has been able to remove
this historic stop along the Historic Apache Trail. Real saddles serve as bar stools where
you can enjoy a cold brew or sarsaparilla. The unique wallpaper is really dollar bills from
visitors worldwide. Plan on Killer Chili, Big Burgers, Prickly Pear Ice Cream and so much
Scenic Nature Cruise aboard the Dolly Steamboat
Canyon Lake is the smallest of the Salt River Projects lakes. The manmade lake is less
than an hour drive from Phoenix at an elevation of 1,660 feet and a popular spot for
swimming and boating. The lake features more than 28 miles of cactus-dotted shoreline,
wondrous rock formations, private coves and countless species of birds, Big Horn sheep,
deer, and javelina roaming freely through the landscape. Dolly Steamboat
Downtown Dine Around Media Event
About the event: Join us as we travel by foot to different restaurants around
Downtown Mesa. In between enjoying a variety of quick bites and sips, guests
can check out the latest establishments and shop along the way.
6:15pm: Herb n’ Smoke
6:45pm: Cider Corps and Mykes Pizza
7:45pm: 12 West Brewing