No, you can’t truly experience Arizona overnight. Or in a month of overnights. So many amazing adventures and stunning sites await you there. It’s especially great in the cold months. Stake out a spot at Riverbound Custom Storage and RV Park and get to adventuring. Part 1 directed you to Grand Canyon West, Flagstaff, Sedona, and Page. Arizona has so much to do that you might want to consider domiciling here. Beyond a doubt, Arizona is the perfect state for RVers. But now let’s see what the rest of the state holds.
Native American Reservations
From Page, head southeast on U.S. Hwy 89 to U.S. Hwy 98. This is a high, wide country that will show you just how big the United States is. Make sure the water tanks and cupboards are full. Cell service is less than reliable here, so plan ahead. Towns are few and far between. You are heading into land where its residents are lightly touched by modern life. If you appreciate authentic, handmade art treasures or indigenous cultures, this will be a fascinating experience. Trading posts don’t just exist in the movies. Local artisans often sell their creations—from silver jewelry and pottery to intricate weavings—at trading posts.
Native reservations, especially the Navajo Nation, where RVers are warmly welcomed, have their own laws and police forces (which interact with surrounding police departments) as well as their own language (most residents are bilingual). Tourists are advised to respect local customs and guidelines. Vandalism, littering, public inebriation, unleashed pets, and trespassing on sacred sites are taken very seriously. Pueblos may restrict the number of visitors or require guides. You will see native-run casinos, which have been specifically permitted by the U.S. government, largely to provide employment. Be cautious with street photography.
In some ways, you are entering a different country, one with incredible vistas, a distinctly different lifestyle, and fascinating people and art. Families may live substantial distances from town centers, often managing herds of sheep, and traveling in for school or shopping. GPS may not be the most reliable everywhere, like cell service. If you want to venture down remote dirt roads, a map and compass are good back ups.
Eastern Arizona Highways
If you want to reach this region from Lake Havasu City, head for Flagstaff. From here you have two excellent choices: north on Hwy 89, and then east on Hwy 160 to Tuba City, a trip of at least 4.5 hours. This route is best if you plan on seeing the more northern areas, as it continues 1.25 hours to Kayenta (close to the picturesque Monument Valley). Or take I-40 east to Winslow and Holbrook (1.5 hours from Flagstaff), near the Petrified Forest.
Hwy 160 (from Tuba City) eventually meets Hwy 191. Heading south, this long, remote highway travels through Many Farms, Chinle, and Ganado before crossing I-40. All are quintessential Navajo towns, each with distinctive styles of art determined by long family traditions. Taking I-40 back to Holbrook will get you to Hwy 77, then south to Show Low (1 hour). From there, Hwy 60 crosses the Fort Apache Reservation to Globe, in the Tonto National Forest and eventually to Phoenix (3 hours from Show Low).
The Phoenix metropolitan area encompasses Chandler, Mesa, Scottsdale, and Surprise. And deserves its own post. Amazing food, unique museums, theater, resorts and spas, terrific RV parks, golf, superb shopping, enthralling nightlife, water parks, desert gardens, and zoo, all great family entertainment. Outside the city, jeeping, hiking, biking, or climbing will keep you busy.
Tucson masquerades as a cozier version of Phoenix. Don’t let that fool you. Tucson will keep you busier than you may want to be. Tucson is home to the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, the Pima Air & Space Museum and the famous Mission San Xavier del Bac and more. The Saguaro National Park showcases this unique cactus, which grows nowhere else but is used in “typical” desert images. This was the first city to be named a “City of Gastronomy” by UNESCO, which tells you what you might want to spend your evenings doing.
Honestly, these two blogs are but scratching the surface of all the variety and adventure Arizona has to offer. A year-long stay might not be long enough! Consider establishing a home base in Lake Havasu City and staying a year. With an RV, why not? Riverbound Custom Storage and RV Park offers the best of both worlds. You can transform one of their generous-sized units into a serious expansion of your living space. Check out the possibility of converting a unit into a climate-controlled “man cave,” or an oversized living room. It doesn’t get any better than this!