Access to lots of hiking and mountain biking trails along with good brew pubs and coffee shops are among the assets that led Outside magazine to recognize Flagstaff as one of its Top 8 Best Towns in 2015.
The mountain town also has a lively music scene downtown at the Monte Vista and Weatherford hotels, and at the Museum Club roadhouse on Route 66 in East Flagstaff. The Zoo, as it is known, started as a taxidermy museum in 1931. It has been serving up cold beer and honky tonk music since 1936.
Northern Arizona University has about 20,000 students who keep things lively in town with an annual homecoming parade that showcases the giant logging wheels once used by lumberjacks to move ponderosa pines from the forest to local sawmills.
Weatherford Hotel and the Monte Vista Hotel are hubs of downtown with rooms, restaurants and music.
Macy's coffeehouse has been a fixture on South Beaver Street for more than 35 years. Across the street is Beaver Street Brewery, the town's first brew-pub that opened in 1994 in a former Food Town grocery store built 47 years earlier.
It has been joined by Lumberyard Brewery, Mother Road Brewing Co., Historic Brewing and Dark Sky Brewing Co.
Flagstaff's Museum of Northern Arizona focuses on the Colorado Plateau with exhibits and festivals celebrating the art and culture of the Hopi, Navajo and Zuni people. Admission is $12 for adults, $8 for children 10-17 and free for younger children.
Hiking to the top of Arizona on Humphreys Peak at 12,633 feet is a bucket-list challenge best accomplished in early summer and early in the day before thunderstorms and lightning threaten.