Planning a trip to the Valley of the Sun?
Consider these fun facts about Phoenix so you'll be in the know before you go!
According to legend, Phoenix gets its name from Cambridge-educated pioneer Darrell Duppa, who saw the ruins and prehistoric canals of the Hohokam and believed another civilization would rise from the ashes.
Phoenix is the United States’ fifth-largest city with a population of over 1.6 million.
Greater Phoenix (which includes, among others, the cities of Chandler, Glendale, Scottsdale and Tempe) has a population of nearly 4.5 million and covers 2,000 square miles.
Maricopa County—where Greater Phoenix is located—covers 9,266 square miles, making it about the size of New Hampshire.
Phoenix's elevation is 1,117 feet.
Greater Phoenix is located in the Sonoran Desert, which is one of the wettest and greenest deserts in North America, thanks to 3-15 inches of annual rainfall.
According to data compiled by the National Climatic Data Center, Phoenix basks in sunshine more often than any other major metropolitan area in the U.S. The sun shines on Phoenix during 85 percent of its daylight hours.
Phoenix has an average annual rainfall of 8.04 inches, an average temperature of 75.05 degrees and an annual high temperature of 86.7 degrees. The average high temperature in winter is 67 degrees.
Greater Phoenix has more than 62,000 guest rooms at more than 450 hotels and more than 40 resort properties.
Greater Phoenix is home to nearly 200 golf courses.
Greater Phoenix consistently ranks among the nation’s top cities in the number of Five Diamond and Four Diamond and Five Star and Four Star resorts.
More than 22 million people visit metropolitan Phoenix each year.
More than 44 million people visit Arizona each year.
Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport, dubbed America's Friendliest Airport, is the main airport for the Greater Phoenix area. It serves more than 40 million passengers a year, and goes to more than 100 domestic and international destinations, making it one of the 10 busiest airports in the nation. With about 1,200 daily flights - about 500 nonstop - Sky Harbor is one of the most convenient airports.
Sky Harbor is a hub for two major low-fare carriers (American Airlines and Southwest Airlines).
Phoenix is one of the few U.S. cities with franchises in all four major professional sports leagues: Phoenix Suns (NBA), Arizona Diamondbacks (MLB), Arizona Cardinals (NFL) and Arizona Coyotes (NHL).
Greater Phoenix hosted Super Bowl XXX on Jan. 28, 1996, Super Bowl XLII on Feb. 3, 2008 and Super Bowl XLIX on Feb. 1, 2015.
The Phoenix Suns have brought the NBA playoffs to Talking Stick Resort Arena (formerly US Airways Center) 29 times.
15 Major League Baseball teams conduct spring training in the Cactus League, which in 2015 drew a record 1.89 million fans.
Greater Phoenix is currently home to 15 Cactus League franchises: Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, Chicago Cubs, Chicago White Sox, Cleveland Indians, Cincinnati Reds, Kansas City Royals, Los Angeles Dodgers, Milwaukee Brewers, Oakland Athletics, San Diego Padres, San Francisco Giants, Seattle Mariners and Texas Rangers, Arizona Diamondbacks and Colorado Rockies.
University of Phoenix Stadium, home of Super Bowl XLII and Super Bowl XLIX, features both a retractable fabric roof and a roll-out grass field.
The University of Phoenix Stadium will be the host of the 2017 NCAA Men’s Basketball Final Four and recently hosted the 2016 College Football Playoff National Championship Game (formerly BCS).
The Waste Management Open, played each February at the TPC Scottsdale, is the best-attended event on the PGA Tour, averaging more than 500,000 spectators.
The Phoenix Open set records attendance in 2015 with 564,368 fans attending the event.
Greater Phoenix is home to college football’s Fiesta Bowl and Cactus Bowl. The 2007 and 2011 BCS National Championship games were played at University of Phoenix Stadium. University of Phoenix stadium also hosted the 2016 College Football Playoff (formerly BCS). In addition, Greater Phoenix hosted Pro Bowl in 2015.
ISM Raceway plays host to two NASCAR events each racing season.
Greater Phoenix’s major industries are (1) high-tech manufacturing, (2) tourism and (3) construction.
Greater Phoenix is the corporate headquarters of four Fortune 500 companies: Freeport-McMoRan, Avnet, Republic Services, and Insight Enterprises.
Phoenix is home to the largest municipal park in North America. South Mountain Park and Preserve covers more than 16,500 acres and has more than 50 miles of hiking, biking and equestrian trails.
There are six lakes within a 75-minute drive of Phoenix.
Phoenix has museums to suit nearly every taste. The Heard Museum (Native American); Desert Botanical Garden (the world's largest collection of desert plants); Taliesin West (home of the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation); the Phoenix Art Museum (the Southwest's largest art museum); the Fleischer Museum (American Impressionism); the Arizona Science Center; the Hall of Flame (featuring the world's largest collection of fire-fighting equipment); Pueblo Grande Museum and Cultural Park (Native American) and the Musical Instrument Museum (MIM) are among the cultural hot spots.
The Heard Museum has an extensive collection of American Indian artifacts, including the largest kachina doll collection (donated in part by the late Arizona Senator Barry Goldwater) of any museum in the country.
Arizona is home to 22 American Indian tribes.