Blake Walsh

15 Best Things to Do in Avondale, AZ

  • Published 2022/11/28

Avondale has grown from populated farmland to a bustling suburb on the outskirts of Phoenix in Maricopa County, Arizona.

This small city nestled along the shores of the Agua Fria River is one of the region’s most populated cities.

Despite its growing population, Avondale maintained its charming appeal, making it an idyllic travel destination.

Like most parts of Arizona, this city has splendid warm weather year-round.

It’s also a stone’s throw away from Phoenix’s metropolitan area.

However, there’s more to Avondale than its warm weather and scenic location.

It’s a beautiful city with local gems and fantastic attractions.

Watch world-class racing events, climb steep hills, or relax at one of its gorgeous community parks.

Here are the best things to do in Avondale, Arizona.

See World Class Racing at the Phoenix International Raceway

Exterior of the Phoenix International Raceway

Thomas Trompeter /

The Phoenix International Raceway is one of the major venues of NASCAR.

You can visit this international raceway along Jimmie Johnson Drive.

This raceway is where two annual NASCAR races happen, featuring some of the world’s best racers.

Aerial view of Phoenix International Raceway

Grindstone Media Group /

At the same time, it’s also where the USAC and the Verizon IndyCar Series happen.

Of course, dozens more top-notch racing events are happening at the Phoenix International Raceway.

Whether you’re a huge racing fan or a casual tourist, visiting this international raceway will surely give you a memorable experience.

Pit stop at Phoenix International Raceway

action sports /

Discover the Avondale Historic Corridor

Check out the Avondale Historic Corridor to start your Avondale travel adventure.

This district in the city is where you’ll find many of its small-time and independent businesses.

These locally owned businesses are part of the Historic Avondale Merchants Association.

Their group aims to maintain and promote the city’s welcoming cultural environment.

Strolling through this historic corridor allows you to see up close an eclectic collection of charming local businesses lining up the streets.

Along the way, you’ll see various merchandise and products such as handicrafts, flowers, food, apparel, and artwork.

At the same time, the Avondale Historic Corridor is home to various services, making it an ideal place to see.

In addition, it’s also where Avondale’s significant events, such as the Billy Moore Days, happen.

See the Latest Flicks at the Harkins Theaters Gateway Pavilions 18

The Harkins Theatres Gateway Pavilion 18 is Avondale’s best place to see a movie.

If you’re not in the mood to explore Avondale’s attractions outdoors, this movie theatre is your go-to place.

Like most top-notch movie theatres, this cinema features state-of-the-art visual and audio cinema technology for an immersive movie experience.

Besides being a wonderful place to enjoy a movie, Harkins Theaters Gateway Pavilion 18 is a stone’s throw away from the rest of Avondale’s attractions.

Have an Awesome Time at Main Event Entertainment

The Main Event Entertainment is an indoor family-oriented themed arcade along W. McDowell Road.

It’s one of Avondale’s top places for kids to hold their birthday parties.

It features top-notch arcade games and activities, including a laser tag arena, a 26-lane bowling center, gravity ropes, and a billiards hall.

In addition, it has an entire dining area with a bar where you can order delicious food after a fun activity with your family.

Don’t forget to drop by Main Event Entertainment for a wholesome activity with your family.

See Avondale’s Natural Beauty at the Tres Ríos Base and Meridian Wildlife Area

The Tres Ríos Base and Meridian Wildlife Area covers over 200 acres of protected natural area in Avondale.

You can visit this place along S. Avondale Boulevard to see the city’s unspoiled natural area filled with the local flora and fauna.

You’ll surely appreciate this area’s natural beauty, whether you’re a nature enthusiast or not.

It’s home to various wildlife and native plant species.

Go out and hike through the Tres Ríos Base and Meridian Wildlife Area trails, which take you to various upland habitats with gorgeous views.

Hang Out at the Avondale Friendship Park

The Avondale Friendship Park is a multi-use community park with various amenities.

You can visit this park along W. McDowell Road.

This park has ten multi-use fields for sports where many locals play softball and baseball.

At the same time, it has a pond that contains various fish species for anglers to catch.

Also, it has a gorgeous picnic area and a children’s playground where you can bring your family for a worthwhile outing.

There are plenty of activities at Avondale Friendship Park, a recommended place to visit in the city.

Climb the Monument Hill

Scenic view from Monument Hill

Marine 69-71, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Monument Hill is a famous spot for race fans to see the Phoenix International Raceway’s major racing events because of its excellent vantage point.

This popular spot is situated along W. Mountain View Drive.

You can join fellow NASCAR fans to see the race from afar with a lower ticket price.

However, it’s more than being a popular viewing spot for NASCAR races.

A marker at Monument Hill's summit

Marine 69-71, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Monument Hill is also on the edge of the Sierra Estrella.

It has a monument erected to mark the original land survey for Arizona.

The United States Geological Survey still uses this monument today.

Don’t miss checking out this unique attraction in Avondale for its view and geological significance.

Sample Local Food at Flavors of Louisiana

Despite its size, Avondale is home to an eclectic collection of delicious local eateries.

Explore the city’s local food scene with these recommended places to eat.

Check out the Flavors of Louisiana along W. Rancho Santa Fe Boulevard.

This southern-style restaurant is one of Avondale’s top restaurants.

It mainly serves delicious traditional Cajun dishes such as crawfish, boudin, and jambalaya.

Of course, many more restaurants and eateries are worth checking out in Avondale.

Celebrate the Tres Rios Nature Festival

The annual Tres Rios Nature Festival is a one-of-a-kind celebration displaying the Gila River Drainage’s rich history, culture, and diverse wildlife habitat.

Gila River runs through Avondale and comprises the Aga Fria River, Salt River, and Gila River.

This river system has significance to Maricopa County’s history and wildlife.

Avondale’s locals celebrate the Tres Rios Nature Festival for two days to promote and preserve its heritage and value.

The festival features various activities such as guided birdwatching tours, fishing, hiking tours, canoeing, and various nature-related programs.

It’s a fun festival drawing thousands of nature enthusiasts and outdoor adventures, making it a must-attend event in Avondale.

Bring Your Child to the Uptown Jungle Fun Park

The Uptown Jungle Fun Park along N. Dysart Road is an all-inclusive, vast indoor playground for children.

It has many play facilities, fun activities, and interactive programs for kids.

Bring them to this indoor attraction if your kid grows bored from exploring parks and nature preserves around Avondale.

The facility has an indoor trampoline with a city-style theme.

It also has climbing walls, spider towers, mega-play structures, a ninja course, and a ball blaster area.

Spend quality time with your child at the Uptown Jungle Fun Park for quality family time.

Join the Billy Moore Days Festival

Avondale celebrates the Billy Moore Days Festival annually.

It mainly highlights the city’s history and heritage through a multi-day festival.

This festival every October draws hundreds of thousands of visitors throughout Maricopa County to celebrate.

It has a carnival, a parade, live music, stunt shows, a fire hose frenzy, and plenty more during the festivities.

Of course, delicious food and drinks also serve as one of the centerpieces of the festival.

Historically, this festival celebrates Billy Moore.

He was the pioneer who put up a stage stop, a saloon, and a store in the 1800s that eventually grew into Avondale city.

The Billy Moore Days Festival is Avondale’s founding celebration, making it a memorable holiday and occasion.

Chug a Beer at the 8-Bit Aleworks

8-Bit Aleworks’ craft beer and design are outstanding.

To taste what this microbrewery is all about, visit it along N. Fairway Drive.

It’s a famous hand-crafted beer in Avondale.

It’s mainly because of the nostalgic and 8-bit theme design of its beer cans and bottles inspired by classic video games.

You can taste its top-notch craft beer at its microbrewery, which has a tasting room full of classic arcade cabinets.

Enjoy its signature craft beer flavors created in small batches with your friends or loved ones at its tasting room.

Visiting 8-Bit Aleworks isn’t just a satisfying experience but also brings back lots of nostalgia from your younger years.

Other Things to Do Nearby

Seize the opportunity to widen your travel adventure by visiting the cities near Avondale.

Here are some of Avondale’s nearby attractions that guarantee you a worthwhile experience.

Commune with Nature at South Mountain Park Preserve

Bench overlooking scenic views from South Mountain Park Preserve

visualLEH /

South Mountain Park Preserve is 30 minutes southwest of Avondale in Phoenix, Arizona.

It’s the nation’s most extensive municipal park, making it a recommended attraction.

You’ll enjoy outdoor activities from hiking, sightseeing, and biking, to picnicking and leisure driving while visiting this park.

Landscape of South Mountain Park Preserve

antsdrone /

The castle ruins and the ancient petroglyphs are some of the best spots at the South Mountain Park Preserve.

Or perhaps explore deeper into the park through its 50-mile trail that treats you to the natural beauty of the Arizona desert.

A large cactus at South Mountain Park Preserve

antsdrone /

Step Back in Time at the Musical Instrument Museum

Exterior of the Musical Instrument Museum

Paul R. Jones /

Another top attraction in Phoenix is the Musical Instrument Museum.

You can find it 37 minutes from Avondale.

This museum opened in 2010, showcasing some of history’s rarest and most famous musical instruments.

It has over 15,000 musical instruments displayed at its permanent exhibits.

These instruments were collected from over 200 countries, making this museum a fascinating tourist attraction.

While exploring the Musical Instrument Museum, you’ll come across various galleries.

Trumpet exhibit in Musical Instrument Museum

Kontrabasstubamann, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

One of the best galleries is the Geographic Gallery, which interactively features various musical cultures.

Otherwise, check out ancient musical instruments collected from Peru, China, and other places.

Of course, you can also check out some of the signature musical instruments of famous singers like Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Carlos Santana, and plenty more.

To complete your experience, watch a live musical performance at the museum’s theatre.

Exhibit in Musical Instrument Museum

Marine 69-71, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Stroll through the Historic Downtown Glendale

Houses along the Historic Downtown Glendale

Marine 69-71 at English Wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Head to Historic Downtown Glendale to wrap up your adventure.

You can visit this famous attraction in Glendale, Arizona, 23 minutes or 17 miles northeast of Avondale.

This part of Glendale is famous for the Catlin Court, one of the oldest buildings in the city.

While strolling, marvel at the street’s brick-trimmed sidewalks and classic gaslights that take you back to the olden days.

An old schoolhouse at Historic Downtown Glendale

Marine 69-71, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Along the way, you’ll come across charming restaurants, cafes, gift shops, and art galleries housed in centuries-old buildings.

The Historic Downtown Glendale spans ten square blocks, making it a perfect location for afternoon hikes.

A house at Historic Downtown Glendale

Marine 69-71 at English Wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Final Thoughts

Avondale is an excellent alternative travel destination to Phoenix.

It’s less crowded, full of local gems and surprises, and a few minutes away from Phoenix and other major cities in Arizona.

Start planning your adventure with this list of the best things to do in Avondale, Arizona!

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