We sent AFAR Ambassador Ryan Neal Cordwell on a mission to uncover the diverse experiences that his hometown of Scottsdale has to offer—with his camera at the ready.
“The beauty of the Sonoran Desert is certainly a draw, but this assignment gave me a richer appreciation for the people who are making this a destination for art, cuisine, relaxation, and adventure,” says Cordwell.
But why should he have all the fun? You can explore Scottsdale for yourself by setting out on our first-ever Scottsdale Instagram Adventure, featuring highlights and photographs from his whirlwind week in nine categories—from where to find your zen to how to get your adrenaline pumping in this outdoor playground.
As you tap each Instagram tile, beginning @scottsdale_instaadventure, you’ll uncover fun facts and travel tips. For starters, Scottsdale counts more than 330 days of sunshine annually and offers up nearly as many Insta-worthy photo ops. One of the most unique is the sunset bagpipe ceremony around the fire pit at Dreamweavers Canyon, part of The Westin Kierland Resort & Spa.
You’ll also learn about marquee events worth planning a trip around, like the cutting-edge Canal Convergence Water + Art + Light, which brings dramatic installations to Scottsdale’s Arizona Canal each fall and spring. Whatever your timing, you’ll come to appreciate there are plenty of ways to toast your adventures, with your pick of local craft beers or wines from one of Arizona’s 100 award-winning wineries.
And your next visit may be closer than you think: As you tap around, you’ll have the chance to enter to win prizes, including the grand prize of a three-night stay at Hotel Valley Ho, a $600 Amex gift card, tickets to the Desert Botanical Garden, a morning balloon ride with Hot Air Expeditions, and dinner paired with wine at FnB restaurant for one lucky Instagrammer and their guest.
So head on over to Instagram and let the #scottsdaleinstaadventure begin!