Beating the Heat in Scottsdale: The Best Places to Cool off in the Area

Want to hear something kind of crazy? The average summer temperature in Arizona typically reaches 100 to 104 degrees. So…it’s pretty hot around here. While you could crank up the air conditioning and sit in your house to stay cool, you might go a little stir-crazy. Luckily, there are plenty of spots around the Scottsdale area for getting out and cooling off!

From lakes to pools to waterparks, here are our favorite aquatic remedies for beating the Arizona heat!

Bartlett Lake

Lake in Arizona.

Surrounded by desert foothills, cactus blooms, and wildflowers, Bartlett Lake is the second-largest lake in the area, coming in right behind Lake Pleasant. Located just over an hour away from Scottsdale, the lake is a favorite stop for many locals.

Although you can go swimming in the water, the depth makes it more popular for things like jet-skiing, boating, and tubing. If you don’t have a boat, the Bartlett Lake Marina offers rental options!

Lake Pleasant

A person wake boarding on a lake.

Lake Pleasant is the largest lake in the area—with over 23,000 acres of water surrounded by stunning desert views—and it’s just under hour trip north of Scottsdale. The sparkling cool waters offer plenty of aquatic recreation, including swimming, fishing, kayaking, wake boarding, boating, and even scuba diving!

Since the lake is so large, many people choose to take a boat out and enjoy a little peace and quiet away from the crowds on the beach. Luckily, you can find rentals just off the water, including fishing boats, pontoons, kayaks, paddle boards, and more.

Saguaro Lake

A person swinging into a lake.

Just 45 minutes from Scottsdale, Saguaro Lake is a reservoir located along the Salt River. The water is surrounded by canyon walls and the Sonoran Desert. The lake is the perfect spot to cool off, with scenic views and blue waters, and it’s also known as a hot spot for fishing and boating!

McDowell Mountain Ranch Fitness & Aquatic Center

A pool.

The McDowell Mountain Ranch Aquatic & Fitness Center is one of the most popular pools in the Scottsdale area—and it’s easy to see why. The 8-lane lap pool is expansive, with plenty of room to spread out. It also features four diving boards, a tube water slide, a lazy river, and a play pool and spray pad for the kiddos.

In addition to the aquatic attractions, you can also find plenty of shade and seating, as well as a snack bar.

Big Surf Waterpark

A water slide.

Celebrating their 50th anniversary this year, the Big Surf Waterpark is a local favorite. The wave pool, Waikiki Beach, is the first-ever and third-largest wave pool in the country. Visitors are free to take boogie boards, rafts, and surfboards out to ride the tide!

The park also offers a large number of both body and tube slides, filled with thrilling plunges, twists, and turns. Headed to the park with kids? Be sure to check out attractions like Bora Bora Bay and Captain Cook’s Landing.

Find Your Home in Scottsdale

When you live in Scottsdale, you might get a little hot under the summer sun, but you’ll never get bored! Thinking of making a move to the area? Take some time to explore our in-depth guides, browse our buying resources, and use our specialized search tool to narrow down your options.

Ready to get started on your buying journey? Just give the S4 Group a call!

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