Local Activities 2018-10-11T16:11:24+00:00

Enjoy these local activities in Carefree & beyond.

Town of Carefree

  • The Carefree Sundial is the most popular, historic tourist attraction in the area. Designed by architect Joe Wong and solar engineer John I. Yellott, it was built in the Sundial Circle Plaza in 1959. This beautiful landmark is one of the largest sundials in the US.
  • Carefree Desert Gardens makes for an amazing desert oasis to visit. Couples and families can stroll through and enjoy rare, fascinating desert plant species, all while connecting with nature’s beauty. The Historic Spanish Village remains as the main cultural art hub.
  • MacDonald’s Ranch, just south of the Town of Carefree, offers western hayrides, cowboy cookouts, and guided horseback rides.
  • Annual Fairs, Weekly Markets, and Events are happening often in the Town of Carefree. Check the Official Website for more details.

Cave Creek

  • The Town of Cave Creek is known for its western lifestyle, rural development patterns, and dramatic views.
  • Horseback Riding Tours, exploring Cave Creek Regional Park, and delicious dining are top picks when visiting.
  • Cave Creek’s Historic Spur Cross Ranch is a popular conservation area, which includes fascinating archaeology sites.
  • Visitors to the area also enjoy hiking the Black Mountain Trail during the cooler months of the year.


  • Town of Carefree – 10+ Stores & Historical Shops – 3 miles
  • Cave Creek – 3 miles
  • Outlets at Anthem – 20 miles
  • Kierland/Scottsdale Quarter – 15 miles


  • Cave Creek Museum and see the restored 16th century old stone mill
  • M.I.M Musical Instruments Museum – 15 min away
  • Heard Museum – downtown Phoenix


  • Tonto National Forest
  • Bartlett Lake – Within the Tonto National Forest and approximately 18 miles from the Resort , Bartlett Lake has a boatable surface area of 2,815 acres
  • Cave Creek Regional Park
  • McDowell Regional Park
  • Sonoran Desert Preserve

Hiking Trails

The Carefree/Cave Creek area embraces its natural assets and offers a variety of trails for visitors to explore:

  • Black Mountain – Black Mountain Trail is a 2.2 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Cave Creek, Arizona that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.
  • Go John Trail – the 4.8-mile Go John Trail, which is good for hiking, mountain biking and horseback riding. Guided trail rides through the park on horseback are available from late autumn through the spring. Rangers provide a variety of guided hikes and activities for visitors of all ages throughout the year.
  • Spur Cross Ranch has several trails from an easier, flat trail to a more strenuous hike up Black Mountain. Many of these trails are open to mountain bikers and horseback riders.
  • Seven Springs Recreation Area is another home to several hiking trails, and it has been a popular destination since the early 1900s. In Seven Springs Recreation Area, hiking trails lead from the desert floor to higher elevations within the mountains.
  • Sears Kay – Sears Kay Ruin offers the visitor a glimpse of a distinctive lifestyle that existed long before Columbus. Self-guided 1-mile loop trail will take you through Hohokam Ruins. The site of Sears Kay Ruin was first occupied about 1500 AD. The ruin is a point of Interest along the Great Western Trail.  Listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Biking Trails

  • McDowell Sonoran Preserve – Minutes from the Resort, McDowell Sonoran Preserve offers 195 miles of Mountain Bike trails, hiking, trail running and horseback riding over a 31,000-acre area.  The trails are open from sunrise to sunset and parking is free in designated areas.
  • Cave Creek Regional park sits on 2,922 acres and offers mountain biking as well as hiking and horseback riding.
  • Road cycling is abundant in this area with miles of bike lanes throughout Carefree, Cave Creek and Scottsdale.


Carefree is adjacent to several golf courses accessible to our guests.  Our concierge can book you at the following courses:  Rancho Manana, Legend Trail Golf Course, The Boulders,  Tatum Ranch and Dove Valley.

Our Concierge can assist you in booking the following outdoor tours and activities:

  • Gold Mine Tours
  • Jeep tours into the Sonoran Desert
  • Hot Air Balloons
  • Desert Trail Rides and Horseback Riding
  • Mountain Bike Tours
  • Scenic Flights over the valley or Grand Canyon