Originally Posted by caphillsea77
I've been to Denver a number of times and I like it well enough. I have good friends living there so I will likely visit again in the future. When I move to ABQ in 4 months I'd like to plan some roadtrips to Arizona down the road and I've never been to Phoenix. Phoenix doesn't get a lot of love, especially from New Mexicans. I'd like to see Sedona/Flagstaff/Grand Canyon which are totally at the top of my list for that state, but for and urban weekend away would Tucson be more intriguing? I'd like to hear some positive points about Phoenix. I know it's a new city that grew to fast but there's gotta be something worthwhile, Papago Park looks interesting. I guess I'm asking Burqueño point of view as I already know I love New Mexico, so I'm wondering if Tucson is more favorable. I don't have a lot of experience with Arizona.
Sedona/Flagstaff are definitely worth the trip. Sedona is touristy but beautiful, and Flagstaff is fun with a great historic district.
As for Tucson and Phoenix, well if you want to visit a place that is similar to Albuquerque, but about 10 or 20 degrees warmer, with palm trees, then Tucson is your place. Personally I like Albuquerque more, but Tucson and Albuquerque are fairly similar cities.
I think the issues New Mexicans have with Phoenix are the extreme heat and lack of older areas with character. Another poster mentioned Tempe as nice, but I find it kind of bland. There is an incredible amount of sprawl. Still, it offers a good deal for the visitor as far as museums, natural parks, restaurants, etc.
Thing is, if New Mexicans are looking to seek a big city experience, than Denver is just a better choice at about the same distance.