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Prescott Travel Guide, Arizona

Prescott started as many gold rush towns when the strike of gold brought people to the area and the place eventually turned into a town.

It all happened in 1863 and since then Prescott has gone through both periods of rise and decline. When Arizona became US territory in 1854, Prescott was chosen to be the territorial capital just to pass the rights to Phoenix a few years later. This did not affect the town’s economy too much as ranching and mining were still very profitable and helped the economy survive.

Visitors with a little more time to spend, and the willingness to explore beyond the core tourist areas, can drink in the history and atmosphere of the place.

Prescott remained a small town but a charming one with several well-preserved historic district including historic hotels and a stately courthouse located in the middle of a tree-shaded plaza symbolically called Courthouse Plaza. The courthouse is the town’s centerpiece and the most loved building dating from the town’s period of glory when it was the capital of Arizona. Its big size does not match the town’s small scale, but it’s a good reminder of the town’s past. The town’s other historic buildings are surrounded by the courthouse as if pointing to the most important one. Visiting them you can have a glimpse of the town’s past and see that it was also part of the Wild West.

You can chose a self guided tour, but if you are into history it would be a good idea to choose the Prescott Historical tours, they are quite entertaining and you will have the chance to be introduced to the city’s history in Victorian costume worn by one of the guides. For the ones that are not fond of walking getting on the Old West Trolley Tours trolley is the best choice to visit historical sights.

A wide range of outdoor activities are provided by the Prescott National Forest that boasts several lakes and campgrounds; you can choose from activities as hiking and mountain biking in areas like Granite Mountain Wilderness and Thumb Butte, that is the city’s natural landmark. Rock climbers come here to one of their favorite spots. It is a pleasure to ride up to the top of the butte on the paved 1.2 mile trail for the most wonderful view of the whole region.

There’re other good views you can enjoy at the Granite Mountain and at Blair Pass and you might even see a falcon. There are also mountain biking trails. For information on both areas and for bike rentals and maps the Bradshaw Ranger Station is the place where you have to head to.

Another great area with great views and outdoor activities like kayaking, canoeing and hiking is the Granite Dell with Watson Lake in the middle. To get a real feel of the place take the Peavine Trail path that will lead you through the Granite Dells. You can also stop at the Watson Lake Park for a picnic and you can even enjoy wonderful scenery.

With its wide variety of accommodations and restaurants, a lively cultural community year round recreation, attractions, the great outdoors at the edge of town, the state's finest trails, nightlife and events to excite the interests of any visitor, the city makes an ideal base for exploring much of northern Arizona.

Whether you’re seeking sun, fun, adrenaline, or tranquility, you’ll find just what you’re looking for in Prescott.

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