What is the largest city in Arizona

Arizona - State of canyons and desert landscapes

23 national parks, national monuments and nature reserves, 67 lakes, 25 historical sites and recreation areas and last but not least the Grand Canyon. All of this and more is Arizona, the Grand Canyon State in the southwestern United States.

Table of Contents
Arizona in numbers, data and facts | Geographical location and extent | Weather and Climate in Arizona | Population of Arizona | The 10 Biggest Cities of Arizona | Arizona for tourists | Arizona Economy and Infrastructure | Arizona and Politics | History of arizona

Antelope Canyon | Apache Trail Historic Route | Canyon de Chelly National Monument | Golfing in Arizona | Grand Canyon Skywalk | Lake Powell | Mesa | Monument Valley | Phoenix | Sedona and Red Rock Country | Tonto National Monument

It is a state that is also great to explore by motorcycle. Because the world famous Route 66 runs through Arizona (Az). It is not entirely clear where the name Arizona comes from. It is believed that it comes from the O’odham language. But a Basque origin is also possible.

Arizona in numbers, data and facts

  • surface: 295,254 km²
  • Residents: * 7,171,646 (estimated 2018)
  • Member of the USA since: February 14, 1912
  • Time zone: UTC − 7 (MST). There is no daylight saving time in Arizona with the exception of the Navajo Reservation)
  • Highest elevation: 3851 m (Humphreys Peak)
  • Deepest point: 21m (Colorado River)
  • Average height: 1250 m
  • Capital: Phoenix
  • State motto: Ditat Deus (Latin: God enriched)


Geographical location and extent

Arizona is located in the southwest of the United States. In the south lies the border with Mexico. All other borders are internal. In the southwest lies California, northwest lies Nevada. In the north, the state borders on Utah and is located on the four-country corner of the USA, the Four Corners Point, where Arizona borders Colorado in the extreme northeast. Arizona shares the eastern border with New Mexico. The US state is divided into 15 counties.

Almost half of the state is made up of mountains and plateaus. Worth mentioning here are the San Francisco Mountains, the Colorado Plateau, the Mogollon Rim, the White Mountains and the Superstition Mountain.

Arizona - at the quadrangle of the USA

Arizona is one of the states where the borders of four states meet. The states of Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona and Utah make up the Four Corner States of the USA. The point at which the borders of the respective states meet is in the area of ​​US 160 and is indicated by simple signs. The monument is a popular photo opportunity. After all, here in this area at the four borders you have the opportunity to stand in the states of New Mexico, Utah, Arizona and Colorado at the same time.

Weather and Climate in Arizona

Arizona has a dry desert or steppe climate. This makes the winters mild and the summers very hot. However, it can also get really cold at night in summer. The highest daytime temperatures are to be expected in July, sometimes over 40 degrees. The coldest month is January with around 19 degrees Celsius. Most of the precipitation falls in December, the least with only 3 mm in May and June. June is also expected to have the most hours of sunshine, at 13.6 hours. The city of Yuma has around 4,000 of them per year, which makes the community one of the sunniest places in the world. Snow is the exception in Arizona.

Population of Arizona

An estimated 7,171,646 people lived in Grand Canyon State in 2018. That is a few more than those counted in the official 2010 Census. At that time, a total of 6,392,288 people were determined, which corresponds to a population increase of 12.2 percent.

The majority (82.2 percent) are white, with 31.6 percent being Hispanic. Other populations make up only a small proportion of the US state's population. Afro-Americans are represented with 5.1 percent, American or Alaskan natives with 5.3 percent, Asians with 3.7 percent and people with Hawaiian roots or an origin on other Pacific islands with 0.3 percent. At 50.3 percent, the female population is slightly larger than the male population (49.7 percent). The population is predominantly urban.

As for religious affiliation, most of Arizona's residents are Christian (80 percent). The Catholics and Protestants are strongly represented here. In addition, a relatively large number of Mormons live in Arizona. Other religions are of little importance in Arizona. 18 percent of the population are considered non-religious.

With the Navajo Nation Reservation, Arizona is the largest Indian reservation in the United States. The Hopi Reservation is an enclave within the Navajo Nation Reservation.

The 10 largest cities of Arizona

There are quite a few big cities in Arizona. Phoenix is ​​by far the most populous city and probably most US visitors are familiar with it.

List of major cities at a glance:

  1. Phoenix (1,617,917)
  2. Tucson (530,706)
  3. Mesa (484,587)
  4. Chandler (247,477)
  5. Scottsdale (246,645)
  6. Glendale (245,895)
  7. Gilbert (237,133)
  8. Tempe (182,498)
  9. Peoria (164,173)
  10. Surprise (132,677)

Arizona for tourists

The Grand Canyon State has many other attractions to offer besides the Grand Canyon itself. The main attractions include the metropolis Phoenix, Route 66, the desert, the pine forests, the red stones of Sedona, well-known sites such as the Chapel of the Holy Cross, the Vermillion Cliffs, the Meteor Crater, the Antelope Canyon and Monument Valley.

Tickets for attractions and activities

Tickets for sights and activities in Arizona can be found at www.getyourguide.de.

Phoenix - pulsating metropolis in the southwest of the USA

Nature, animals and plants, many sports and leisure activities, but also a lot of culture with Spanish and Indian influence, that is what the southern capital of the US state has to offer its visitors. The "Phoenix Museum of Art" on North Central Avenue or the "Arizona Museum of National History" on 5th Street are worth seeing. Many exhibits from prehistoric times can also be seen here.

The Musical Instrument Museum (MIM) is undoubtedly the top attraction in Phoenix, where you can immerse yourself in the world of music and musical instruments. The museum is one of the 15 best museums in the United States. For hikers, the Marcos de Niza Trail near the big city is worthwhile. Maricopa is also not far away and, in addition to a very unique flair, offers sights such as the Ak-Chin Hi-Dak Eco-Museum or the Dwarf Car Museum.

But there are also museums in other places in Grand Canyon State that are worth seeing. Among them, for example, the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, which combines the world of zoo, aquarium, natural history museum, botanical garden and art in a special way. The museum with various live animals is located in Tucson and is worth a visit for young and old.

National parks and natural landmarks in Arizona

Up, up and away! Arizona is a nature lover's paradise and there are countless ways to spend wonderful days outdoors. Of course, the national parks and natural monuments of the state invite you to visit.

These include, for example, the following sights:

  • Grand Canyon National Park: The famous Grand Canyon is undoubtedly one of the greatest natural wonders on earth and was rightly added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1979. The 1.6 kilometer deep and 446 kilometer long gorge and sight with the Colorado River in northern Arizona can ultimately be described with just one word: breathtaking!
  • Canyon de Chelly National Monument: These gorges have been inhabited by people for almost 5,000 years. Much longer than any other part of the Colorado Plateau. Today, at this place called Tsegi, their houses and pictures still tell stories from those days. The National Monument is administered together with the Navajo tribe who live there, raise cattle and farm the land in the canyons.
  • Petrified Forest National Park: Petrified Forest National Park is located in northeast Arizona and is best known for its fossilized wood. This wood also earned him the nickname Petrified Forest. You can hike in the hinterland, visit the Red Basin or Martha’s Butte or learn more about the unique forest in exhibitions.
  • Saguaro National Park: Tucson has the largest cacti in the country. The giant saguaro is the universal symbol of the American West and the majestic saguaro cacti are only found in a small part of the United States. They are protected by this national park, which is located east and west of Tucson. Admire the giant cacti and be sure to watch a desert sunset there.
  • Glen Canyon National Recreation: Find Lake Powell Reservoir, Page On The Reservoir Town, and More! The Glen Canyon National Recreation Area offers countless opportunities for an active vacation on and in the water and in the hinterland. It's a vast recreational area that stretches from Lee's Ferry in Arizona to the Orange Cliffs in southern Utah. Great landscapes, geological wonders and a decent piece of human history.
  • Agua Fria National Monument: The 71,000-acre Agua Fria National Monument is located about 40 miles north of Phoenix and includes two mesas and the Agua Fria Canyon. The landscape with its plateau is beautiful and one of the most important systems of prehistoric sites in the American Southwest. It is also a fantastic place to see animals such as coyotes, lynxes, antelopes, eagles and other animals.
  • Monument Valley: Monument Valley is one of the most majestic and most photographed places on earth. The sandstone masterpieces that soar into the desert sky here in Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park, framed by picturesque clouds, create a landscape that is simply magnificent. The John Ford Point, a lookout point named after the director, whose name is inextricably linked with the well-known western actor John Wayne, is very beautiful.
  • Cococino National Forest: The Cococino National Forest is one of the most diverse national forests in the country, with landscapes ranging from the famous Sedona Red Rocks and majestic Cathedral Rock to the Ponderosa pine forests and from the southwestern desert to alpine tundra. An excellent place to hike mountains and gorges or fish in small lakes.
  • Antelope Canyon: Antelope Canyon is the most-visited slot canyon in the southwestern United States and is located near Page, Arizona. A visit to this natural wonder is definitely worthwhile for young and old, and if it's just about taking unforgettable holiday photos.
  • Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument: Look and listen carefully! Life pulsates in the Sonoran Desert, an international biosphere reserve and national monument. And if you listen carefully, you can hear the thousand-year history of the unique desert landscape. Take a scenic tour of the reserve, hike the wilderness, or spend a night or more camping. It is worth it ..
  • Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument: The volcanic crater is an impressive example of the destruction and rebirth of a landscape. When the volcano erupted in 1085, it changed not only the landscape, but also the people who lived there. Today it is an impressive example of how nature and man can influence one another.
  • Vermilion Cliffs National Monument: The Vermillion Cliffs are a geological treasure that includes the Paria Plateau, Vermillion Cliffs, Coyote Buttes, and Paria Canyon. The visit to the remote landscape is rewarded with a picturesque view of towering cliffs and deep gorges. And with a little luck you can spot the California condor there too. The absolute highlight is definitely “The Wave”.
  • Barringer Crater: Barringer Crater is minutes from Interstate 40 and Route 66 in northern Arizona near Winslow. It is the best preserved meteorite impact site in the world. Today the crater is a popular destination for the whole family. The attraction has an extensive visitor center with a 4D experience room and other attractions.

Hotels, apartments and holiday homes

Find hotels, apartments and vacation rentals in Arizona at www.booking.com.

Worthwhile activities in Arizona

Arizona is a paradise for those who enjoy active vacations. Whether touring the national parks on foot, on horseback or by jeep or winter sports in Flagstaff, there is a lot possible in the Grand Canyon State. If you want, you can also drive on Route 66 by car or motorcycle or admire the Grand Canyon and the unique landscape of Arizona from dizzying heights by helicopter.

A trip on the Apache Trail, which offers an incomparable western experience, is unforgettable. The trail follows an ancient Indian path through the canyons of the Salt River and was once laid out as a supply route for the construction of the Theodore Roosevelt Dam. Today the Apache Trail leads in the footsteps of the Indians through an extremely scenic area, past several state parks and former ghost towns such as Goldfield Ghost Town. There is also a rattlesnake zoo here that you can visit.

In addition, Arizona is an excellent starting point to explore the wild west of the USA. A road trip through California, Arizona, and Nevada is an experience you won't forget in life. For such a round trip through Nevada, Arizona and California you can start from Los Angeles, for example. You should plan at least three weeks for the route from Los Angeles.

Arizona has beautiful lakes

Do you love water and are you looking for a source of relaxation? Then why not pay a visit to the state's beautiful lakes? In addition to Lake Powell, which is well known to most, the lakes Lake Havasu, Lake Mohave, Sanguaro Lake, Watson Lake and Granite Basin Lake are worth seeing.

And if you are enthusiastic about airplanes, you should definitely visit the Pima Air and Space Museum in Tucson. Here in the Pima Air and Space Museum, visitors can expect countless aircraft and other aircraft from all eras and types of use.

Arizona economy and infrastructure

Agriculture plays an important role economically in Arizona. The state has the largest farms in the USA on which cattle are kept. Sometimes you can also work on these farms as part of Work & Travel. In addition, citrus fruits, cereals, cotton and winter vegetables are grown in irrigation crops. In addition, the mining of copper, coal and crude oil, fine electronics and of course tourism are important. Copper, called "Copper" in English, was named the official "state metal" of Az in 2015.

Viticulture is particularly important in the southeastern part of the state and has a long history in Arizona. Because it was the Spanish missionaries who planted numerous vineyards a few hundred years ago to produce the grapes for their mass wine.

The unemployment rate in Arizona was 5.0 percent in 2019 and the gross domestic product in 2016 was $ 267.472 billion. All in all, Arizona is one of the poorer states in the United States.

The infrastructure in Arizona is good. In addition to a well-developed road network, a route network of 2,700 kilometers is available across nine railway companies. Major east-west routes through the state are operated by BNSF Railway and Union Pacific. There is an intercontinental airport with the Sky Harbor International Airport in Phoenix. The airport has a passenger volume of around 40 million passengers a year. Another international airport can also be found in Tucson.

Arizona and Politics

In the presidential election, Arizona is considered a Republican-dominated state. From 1952, with the exception of the 1996 election, the votes always went to the Republicans. In the last election, Donald Trump had a lead of 3.54 percent. The governor has been Republican Doug Ducey since 2015, and Democrat Kyrsten Simena and Republican Martha McSally currently sit in the Arizona Senate. The now deceased Republican John McCain came from Arizona.

Arizona has one of the loosest gun laws in the United States. Every second adult has at least one firearm. What appears to outsiders as the “Wild West” in its purest form is normal for the people here. Even the children learn how to handle weapons here. As far as gun laws are concerned, Arizona is administratively an "open carry state", which means that if you have a license, you can openly carry a gun with you.

History of arizona

The first Indians reached Arizona as early as the Neolithic between 16,000 and 10,000 BC. Until the 12th century, the Hohokam Indians lived in the area of ​​today's Arizona before colonization between 300 and 1200. The first European in the area was Álvar Núñez Cabeza de Vaca in the 16th century, more precisely in 1535. It was followed in 1539 by the Spanish Franciscan Marcos de Niza. The falsified reports by Franciscan Marcos de Niza are the source for the legend of the "Seven Golden Cities of Cibola".

Colonization was then carried out by Catholic-Spanish missionaries who wanted to convert the Indians of the tribes living there to the Catholic faith. Most of the missionaries of the Catholic Church who promoted colonization belonged to the Jesuits who were supposed to convert Indians to the Christian faith in the northern provinces of Mexico at that time and to educate them to be Christian workers. However, with limited success. Nonetheless, missionaries often managed to turn their missions into prosperous businesses. With the Indians of the tribes living there as cheap labor. Some of these missionaries' sites can still be visited today. For example the Mission San Xavier del Bac.

It was also the Spaniards who founded the first fortified cities, Tubac and Tucson. Tubac was founded by Spain in 1752 as the fortress Presidio San Ignacio de Tubac and was the first colonial garrison in present-day Arizona.

From 1821 Arizona belonged to Mexico

From 1821 Arizona belonged completely to Mexico and had to be ceded to the USA in 1848 after the Mexican-American War. All areas north of the Gila River went to the United States for an amount of 15 million dollars. The area north of the Gila River extended in addition to Arizona at that time over the today's states of California, Nevada, Utah, the west of Colorado and the southwest of Wyoming. In 1853, with the Gadsden purchase, another area in the south of the Gila River of Mexico was acquired. On February 28, 1859, the first Indian reservation was established in the Arizona Territory with the Gila River Indian Reservation.

Grand Canyon State has been a US state since February 14, 1912, i.e. only since the 20th century. When refrigeration and air conditioning systems became widely available after the Second World War, Arizona experienced a real boom and Phoenix in particular became one of the fastest growing cities in America. Today Arizona is the sixth largest state in the United States of America by area. The Spanish-Mexican influence is still omnipresent today.