There’s a reason why Cave Creek, Arizona is such a popular tourist destination – the town has something for everyone! Whether you’re looking for great food, shopping, or outdoor activities, you’ll find it all in downtown Cave Creek. Plus, you’ll be able to stay in comfort thanks to the town’s many incredible vacation rental homes.
In this blog post, we’ll provide an overview of the best things to do downtown. So pack your bags and get ready to explore the town of Cave Creek!
Things to Do In Downtown Cave Creek Arizona
1. Visit The Cave Creek Museum
The Cave Creek Museum’s primary purpose is to present and preserve the rich history of the western town. It opened in 1970, making it over 50 years old. It’s run by the historical society and a team of passionate volunteers and is a great way to get a deep understanding of the area.
It touches on the history of the early settlers in the area, the miner’s communities, as well as military history. You’ll also get a look at what life was like in the early days of the town.
For art buffs, there is a collection of pottery, paintings, artifacts, and tools from the indigenous people who used to live in the area.
2. Enjoy One Of the Town’s Art Galleries
If you’re a fan of fine art, there are a handful of galleries in downtown Cave Creek that are worth visiting. The galleries showcase a variety of art forms, including paintings, sculptures, photography, and more.
If you want to visit a gallery dedicated to one of the well-respected artists from the area, swing by the Sergio Ladron de Guevara Gallery. This artist painted landscapes and portraits that represent the landscape of this frontier town alongside its natural beauty.
3. Check Out Some Live Music
If you want to tap your toes or dance the night away, there are plenty of options for live music in downtown Cave Creek.
The Buffalo Chip Saloon has music most days of the week and is a steakhouse, so you can grab a hearty meal and cold drink when stopping in.If you’re looking for something a little more low-key, The Grotto Cafe may be more your style.The Grotto Cafe offers a tantalizing happy hour as well as live music throughout the month. This lineup features local as well as touring musicians.
4. Indulge In Fine Dining
Fine dining has a laid-back western vibe in this town, perfect for those who want to step back in time and enjoy a romantic or special meal. With so many great restaurants in Cave Creek, you’ll have plenty to choose from.
For an amazing outdoor dining experience with a great view of the black mountain range, visit the Tonto Bar & Grill. This restaurant features Italian food and American Southwestern food that is fresh, well-plated, and creatively seasoned.
The English Rose Tea Room is perfect for those who want a more genteel dining experience. This tea room offers light fare such as sandwiches, salads, and soups. It’s in the town of carefree, just 1.8 miles away from downtown Cave Creek
If you’re looking for something laid back for the family in the center of downtown, try Harold Cave Creek Corral which features fantastic sandwiches, salads, burgers, tacos, and drinks.
5. Play the Cave Creek Golf Courses
There are plenty of gorgeous golf courses in the area, including the Rancho Manana Golf Club. This range provides jaw-dropping views of the nearby mountains and Sonoran Desert. The grounds are well-maintained and the staff is extremely friendly. So, even if you’re not a pro, you’ll still have a great time.
Want to get out of the downtown area and try another famous course in the area? The Dove Valley Ranch Golf is about a 45-minute drive but is definitely worth it. This course has been rated as one of the best in the state and offers a great challenge for players of all levels.
6. Visit the Cave Creek Cave
This cave is a mere 1.5 miles from the city center and is a great way to experience the geographical history of the area.
This is a great activity for those who want to learn more about the area and get a taste of its unique history. The cave is also a great place to cool off on hot days as it stays about 20 degrees cooler than the outside temperature.
The property is now privately owned by a land trust, but there are times when public tours are given. These typically happen a few times per year, so be sure to check the website for more information.
7. Take a Hike In the Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area
If you’re craving even more nature, luckily, there is plenty you can find in the heart of Cave Creek. The Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area spans throughout the Sonoron desert in Maricopa county and is a great place to explore.
There are plenty of hiking and walking trails that will allow you to take in the stunning landscapes. You might even see some local wildlife if you’re lucky! The Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area is a great place to camp, and you can enjoy your mornings watching the wildlife or taking in the views.
8. Shop at the Stagecoach Village Center
What’s better than sweeping mountain views paired with a day full of shopping? The Stagecoach Village Center is an outdoor shopping center that features a variety of stores and restaurants.
You can find everything from household goods to clothes to jewelry. And when you need a break, stop by one of the cafes or restaurants for a bite to eat. Want to relax? Spa and massage services are available in the area as well.
The Stagecoach Village Center is the perfect place to find souvenirs, clothing, and home furnishings for locals. You can enjoy walking through the open-air courtyards and there are seasonal events at the gazebo and plaza area of the property.
9. Rummage Through Antiques at Arizona Territorial Antiques
When you’re on the main street in Carefree, Cave Creek’s sister town only a few minutes away, you shouldn’t miss the large red-roofed building that is home to Arizona Territorial Antiques. This store is packed with all sorts of treasures from different periods in history.
You can find everything from vintage clothes to antique furniture to old books. It’s the perfect place to find a unique piece for your home or a one-of-a-kind gift for a friend. so be prepared to spend a few hours rummaging through all the different items. But trust me, it’s worth it!
10. Sample Craft Liquor at Carefree Spirits Distillery
If you’re looking for a quality bottle of liquor to take home with you or just want to try something new, then head on over to the Carefree Spirits Distillery. This woman-owned downtown business offers a relaxing tasting room where you can try their craft-cultivated Carefree Bourbon and Chakra Vodka.
11. Have a Wild West Experience Horseback Riding
This one-time frontier town has many experiences that are reminiscent of small old west towns such as bull riding and important Native American history.
An equestrian center located on the outskirts of town offers horseback riding experiences with beautiful views of the area. You can book a guided ride between 1 to 3 hours with a tour that can be tailored to your group’s needs.
Both beginner and advanced riders are welcome to come out and enjoy this activity. You can even go on a sunset ride which is a perfect way to end a day in Cave Creek.
While there is plenty to do in downtown Cave Creek, there are many nearby attractions that are a day trip away. For those seeking an urban experience, there are several nearby towns, each offering its unique culture and attractions. Some popular choices include Phoenix, Scottsdale, Flagstaff, Maricopa, and Sedona.
If you’re looking for some of the most striking nature in the area, popular day trips include the Tonto National Forest, Sedona, the Sonoran Desert, and the Grand Canyon. These trips are a bit further, but worth the drive!
There are plenty of small towns with their own unique character that deserves a stop if you feel like buying a cup of Joe or a local souvenir. You can pick up a travel guide or brochure at any of these towns to find more hidden gems!
Cave Creek is a picture-perfect town in the desert foothills that brings together history, culture, and nature together in a unique atmosphere. The downtown area has plenty to offer for the full family, and the city is surrounded by many other destinations that you don’t want to miss out on.
So what are you waiting for? Start planning your trip to Cave Creek today! You won’t regret it and once you experience Cave Creek Road, you’ll know why Arizona is truly the Wild West.