Located in Verde Valley, the center of Arizona, Cottonwood is a charming small town situated below the high country chill and above the desert heat. Surrounded by the Mogollon Rim in the northeast and the stunning red rocks of Sedona in the west, the town’s low elevation and mild climate make it an idyllic destination year-round.

1. Dead Horse Ranch State Park

Dead Horse Ranch State Park
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Dead Horse Ranch State Park is situated along the Verde River just north of the small town of Cottonwood. Home to an abundance of plant and animal life, the area is filled with Willow, Cottonwood, Arizona Ash, Cattail, Netleaf Hackberry, and Mesquite trees as well as coyotes, Javelina, grey fox, jackrabbits, and cottontail rabbits.

The park is also home to an extensive list of birds including several sensitive, endangered, and threatened species.

There are four trailheads within the park that lead into Coconino National Forest and 20 miles of shared-use, single-track and double-track pathways.

Visitors to the park can engage in several outdoor recreation activities including canoeing, kayaking, boating, fishing, hiking, horseback riding, and mountain biking. Browse our romantic weekend getaways in Arizona guide for more ideas.

675 Dead Horse Ranch Road, Cottonwood, AZ, Phone: 928-634-5283

2. Blazin' M Ranch, Cottonwood, Arizona

Blazin' M Ranch, Cottonwood, Arizona
© Blazin’ M Ranch

For over 20 years Blazin’ M Ranch has been providing visitors with an Old West experience in the heart of Historic Old Town Cottonwood. A perfect replica of a Western Frontier Town, the Ranch features a boardwalk lined with Western shops, saloons, a museum, a shooting gallery and the Old-Tyme Photo Studio.

Visitors can participate in various interactive adventures including a vintage tractor pull ride, ropin’ lessons, shootin’ lessons, and a critter walk; where they can interact with goats, miniature horses, donkeys, peacocks, turtles, and geese. After a day exploring the town, guests will end the day in their expansive, climate-controlled barn for a traditional chuck-wagon dinner serving baby-back ribs and chicken with all the cowboy fixin’s.

1875 Mabery Ranch Road, Cottonwood, AZ, Phone: 928-634-0334

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3. Verde Valley Wine Trail

Verde Valley Wine Trail
© Verde Valley Wine Trail

The Verde Valley Wine Trail is located in Northern Arizona, roughly 100 miles from Phoenix, the state’s capitol.

A popular destination for wine enthusiasts it was established in 2009, the area is known for its beauty, rich history, and wine production.

The Trail originally consisted of just seven tasting rooms and four wineries, but over the years this has grown exponentially to include approximately 20 cellars, wineries, tasting rooms, vineyards, and bodegas.

Alcantara Vineyard & Winery, Burning Tree Cellars, Four Eight Wineworks, Pillsbury Wine Company North, and Bodega Pierce are just a few of the stops along the way. Each provide a collection of skillfully and artfully crafted wines to satisfy any palate.

849 Cove Parkway, Cottonwood, AZ, Phone: 928-634-7593

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4. Alcantara Vineyards and Winery, Cottonwood, Arizona

Alcantara Vineyards and Winery, Cottonwood, Arizona
© Alcantara Vineyards and Winery

Alcantara Vineyards is a sustainably-farmed, family-owned winery located in the foothills of the Verde Valley.

Surrounded by the Verde River and Oak Creek on three of its sides, Alcantara is an expansive 87 acre property opened in 2005 by husband and wife, Barbara and Bob Predmore.

There are more than 13,000 vines on the property producing 16 different varietals creating a diverse assortment of red, white, and dessert wines.

They offer 1.5-hour long guided tours of their impressive grounds where they share information on the philosophy of growing grapes, irrigation, trellising, and varietals along the way.

The winery also offers wine tastings in their rustically designed tasting room, they include five 1oz samples of the guest’s choice.

3445 S. Grapevine Way, Cottonwood, AZ, Phone: 928-649-8463, (website link)

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5. Burning Tree Cellars Tasting Room, Cottonwood, AZ

Burning Tree Cellars Tasting Room, Cottonwood, AZ
© Burning Tree Cellars Tasting Room

Burning Tree Cellars creates small batch, boutique wines made with patience, quality oak, and only the finest fruit available. Located in the charming town of Cottonwood, Burning Tree is housed in a quaint storefront with attached patio boasting an earthy, rustic design. Their small courtyard welcomes patrons at the entrance with contemporary lounge furniture, stone and brick finishes, and futuristically designed heat warmers. Inside expansive windows bathe the tasting room in natural light highlighting the lovely wood-paneled wine bar, oversized light-brown leather sofas, and large decorative wood tables. The warm and welcoming ambiance is only elevated by their eclectic selection of rose, red, and white, wines.

1040 N Main Street, Cottonwood, AZ, Phone: 928-649-8733

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6. Things to Do in Cottonwood, Arizona: Pillsbury Wine Company North

Things to Do in Cottonwood, Arizona: Pillsbury Wine Company North
© Pillsbury Wine Company North

Pillsbury Wine Company North is a dream-come-true project by Sam Pillsbury, native of New Zealand and award-winning film director and wine maker. With a desire to make 100% regional Arizona boutique wines, Pillsbury established his company in 2005 and began growing red, white, and pink varietals in Cochise County. Today his unique wines can be found in several stores and restaurants in Cottonwood, Phoenix, Sedona, and Tucson as well as his tasting rooms in Cottonwood and Wilcox. The former boasts a modern elegance with red-wine painted walls, wood finishes, tile flooring, stylish area rugs, oversized leather furniture, and intricately carved barrel chairs. Tastings include five pours and a complimentary crystal wine glass.

1012 N Main Street, Cottonwood, AZ, Phone: 928-639-0646

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7. Clemenceau Heritage Museum

Clemenceau Heritage Museum
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Managed and supported by the non-profit organization Verde Historical Society, Clemenceau Heritage Museum preserves and exhibits the heritage and artifacts of the Verde Valley. It is housed in the south end of the former Clemenceau Public School, a historic building originally built in the early 1920s. The museum’s exhibits include displays of early 20th century kitchens, bedrooms, and classrooms as well as a collection of photographs and artifacts used by European settlers in the early days of farming, ranching, and mining during the 19th century. Clemenceau is free to enter and offers guided group tours by appointment only. They also have an onsite gift shop where visitors can purchase apparel and Cottonwood souvenirs.

1 N. Willard, Cottonwood, AZ, Phone: 928-634-2868

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8. Things to Do in Cottonwood, Arizona: THAT Brewery

Things to Do in Cottonwood, Arizona: THAT Brewery
© THAT Brewery

Owned and operated by husband and wife team Steve and Tamara Morken, THAT Brewery was created for beer enthusiasts, foodies, and nature fanatics. A hidden gem, visitors will find it located in the rear of an industrial park in Cottonwood, far removed from the bustling energy of Old Town. Housed in a 5,000-square-foot warehouse, it features both a production facility and a taproom. The industrially-chic taproom features cool design elements like and exposed beam ceiling, mixed-wood furnishings, oversized leather sofas, and chalkboard order menu. It also features a few fun games like corn hole and foosball. The brewery typically has 10 to 12 brews on tap including six mainstays, Arizona Trail Ale and Roadrash IPA, its two best-sellers among them.

300 E Cherry Street, Cottonwood, AZ, Phone: 928-202-3013, (website link)

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9. Verde River Greenway

Verde River Greenway
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Wild and untouched, the Verde River Greenway in Cottonwood is a lush oasis against Arizona’s desert landscape. While tourism is encouraged in the area, many efforts are also made to conserve the river and its thriving ecosystem. As such, visitors are welcome to enjoy soft recreation activities such as swimming, kayaking, hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding, and picnicking. Whatever the activity, a variety of wildlife can be admired in the area including black hawks, bald eagles, river otters, and many more. Visitors with a valid fishing license are also welcome to fish along the river. Camping is not allowed within the greenway, however a number of campsites and cabins are available nearby.

2011-B Kestrel Road, Cottonwood, Arizona 86326, Phone: 928-639-0312

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10. Old Town Center for the Arts, Cottonwood, AZ

Old Town Center for the Arts, Cottonwood, AZ
© Old Town Center for the Arts

Located just 20 miles from Sedona, Old Town Center for the Arts is located in Historic Old Town Cottonwood. It is the premier live music and entertainment venue for comedy, theater, music, and the performing arts in the Verde Valley area of Northern Arizona. The space consists of two venues, the main theater and Studio B, they can comfortably accommodate up to 130 people. Equipped with a cute Marquee outside, the historic theater is a beautifully renovated with a state-of-the-art, professional lighting and audio systems. Adjacent to the theater is Studio B, a smaller indoor space boasting magnificent wood floors, a cool mirrored wall, private dressing area, and an intimate courtyard area ideal for receptions.

633 N 5th Street, Cottonwood, AZ, Phone: 928-634-0940

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11. Riverfront Park, Cottonwood, AZ

Riverfront Park, Cottonwood, AZ
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The largest park in Cottonwood, Riverfront Park in an expansive property consisting of two sand volleyball courts, a five court horseshoe pit, a four field softball compound for adults, and a grassy area ideal for field sports. It also features an 18-tee disc golf course, a skateboard park, a four-field youth baseball compound, and an inline skating and hockey rink. Five gazebos equipped with picnic tables and a barbecue area can also be found at the park. There is also a scenic dirt pathway winding between Riverfront and the Verde River as well as the Old Town Jail Trail which connects to the park to both the river and Historic Old Town Cottonwood.

1284 E River Front Road, Cottonwood, AZ, Phone: 928-639-3200

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12. Things to Do in Cottonwood, Arizona: Verde River Adventure Center

Things to Do in Cottonwood, Arizona: Verde River Adventure Center
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For more than a decade the Verde River Adventure Center has had the honor of providing incredible Verde River adventures that are both exhilarating and educational. The once relatively unknown River is now a thriving outdoor oasis boasting 10 public access points for year-round entry to enjoy boating, tubing, fishing, and birding. Various tours are provided by the Adventure Center including tubing excursions, kayaking trips, and combination adventures like Classic Water to Wine. This tour includes a 1.5-hour Ducky kayak journey down the Verde River ending where the river meets Oak Creek. From here guests will head out on a gravel footpath to the Tuscan-inspired farmhouse of Alcantara Vineyards to enjoy some award-winning wine tasting.

849 Cove Parkway, Cottonwood, AZ, Phone: 877-673-3661

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13. Things to Do in Cottonwood, Arizona: Pizzeria Bocce

Things to Do in Cottonwood, Arizona: Pizzeria Bocce
© Pizzeria Bocce

A trendy restaurant and lounge located in Old Town Cottonwood, Pizzeria Bocce is owned by Italian Culinary Professional, Michelle Jurisin and her husband Eric. Trained and certified by Associazione Verace Pizza Napoletana, Jurisin learned the art of pizza-making in Naples, Italy, the birthplace of pizza and the home of her familial roots. Using traditional techniques, each pizza is made with Italian imported Caputo flour and hand-kneaded before it gets fired up in the wood-burning oven. Pizza options include Pesto Chicken, Carbonara, and Pomodoro made with extra virgin olive oil, tomatoes, bocce hand-stretched mozzarella, parmigiano, fresh garlic, and basil. The menu also offers salads, Panini’s, and Antipasti’s such as fondue, Mediterranean ceviche, and Italian meat stuffed bread.

1060 N. Main Street, Historic Old Town Cottonwood, AZ, Phone: 928-202-3597

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14. Crema Craft Kitchen Bar, Cottonwood, AZ

Crema Craft Kitchen Bar, Cottonwood, AZ
© Crema Craft Kitchen Bar

The sixth restaurant for restaurateurs Michelle and Eric Jurisin, Crema Craft Kitchen Bar is located in Historic Old Town Cottonwood. Housed in two historic prohibition-era buildings with an attached courtyard the eatery boasts a modern design with decorative touches that highlight its storied past. Hanging, lantern-style light fixtures, old school swivel stools, stunning hardwood floors, dark wood furniture, and modern art, create a vintage coolness with a contemporary edge. The courtyard boasts an earthy, sustainability with a bright orange shipping container turned coffee bar serving as its centerpiece. Their innovative menu consists of brunch and lunch options as well as a wide selection of freshly baked pastries, gelato, and sorbets made at their in-house creamery.

917 N. Main Street, Cottonwood, AZ, Phone: 928-649-5785

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15. Cottonwood Recreation Center

Cottonwood Recreation Center
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Much loved by locals, Cottonwood Recreation Center provides a wide variety of activities and gathering spaces for families and guests of all ages. Sports enthusiasts and athletes will enjoy the fitness training area, sport gymnasium, and climbing wall. The center also has an indoor leisure pool for those looking for a laid-back afternoon. Open all year round from Monday to Sunday, visitors may also partake in the center’s various exercise, movement, and dance classes. Some of the group classes include yoga, zumba, aquatics, toning, and cycling. Daily passes are available to enter the recreational center as well as 10-visit passes, 1-month passes, and 3-month passes.

150 S 6th Street, Cottonwood, Arizona 86326, Phone: 928-639-3200, (website link)

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16. Arizona Stronghold Tasting Room, Cottonwood, Arizona

Arizona Stronghold Tasting Room, Cottonwood, Arizona
© Arizona Stronghold Tasting Room

Situated in the center of Old Town Cottonwood, Arizona Stronghold Tasting Room boasts a fun and quirky décor with handcrafted wood furnishings and comfortable, oversized leather furniture. The relaxed atmosphere is reminiscent of a cool, corner coffee shop encouraging guests to sit down and play a game of Connect-Four while sipping one of their award-winning wines. They offer a selection of tasting flights ideal for first-timers, these are guided by their knowledgeable staff and include five samples. The Tasting Room also features a beautiful attached outdoor oak-wood patio and a full kitchen serving a small menu of tapas, skewers, cheese plates, and a decadent Brule Cheesecake.

1023 N. Main Street, Cottonwood, AZ, Phone: 928-639-2789

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17. Things to Do in Cottonwood, Arizona: Nic’s Italian Steak & Crab House

Things to Do in Cottonwood, Arizona: Nic’s Italian Steak & Crab House
© Nic’s Italian Steak & Crab House

Located along Main Street in Historic Old Town Cottonwood, Nic’s Italian Steak & Crab House brings an East Coast style to the Old West. Rich dark woods, polished brass, plush green upholstered furniture, and a beautiful 40-foot long mahogany bar lend the restaurant its Hollywood movie set good looks. The regal and vibrant atmosphere is only highlighted by Chef Michelle’s incredible menu of mouthwatering steaks, juicy chicken, fresh seafood, and steamed crab options paired with a side of the guests choosing. A variety of authentic Italian dishes and a selection of savory appetizers can also be found on the menu. This includes her delicious New England-style clam chowder, a local favorite.

925 N. Main Street, Cottonwood, AZ, Phone: 928-634-9626

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18. Things to Do in Cottonwood, Arizona: Old Town Red Rooster Cafe

Things to Do in Cottonwood, Arizona: Old Town Red Rooster Cafe
© Old Town Red Rooster Cafe

Old Town Red Rooster Café was originally opened by good friends Jet Tennant and Shane Smith in 2010. Over the next five years they turned the little café into a local staple before amicably parting ways to continue their successes independently. Today, the Red Rooster continues to be a thriving local favorite serving traditional American and Southwest style dishes for breakfast and lunch. Breakfast menu selections include options eggs benedict, buttermilk pancakes, huevos rancheros, and a build your own breakfast sandwich section. The latter is made with two eggs and gives guests the choice of bread, meat, and cheese. The lunch menu consists of salads, sandwiches, and wraps like the Southwest Steak Wrap.

901 N. Main Street, Cottonwood, AZ, Phone: 928-649-8100, (website link)

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19. Coyote Trails Golf Course

Coyote Trails Golf Course
© Coyote Trails Golf Course

Based at the foot of Mingus Mountain, the Coyote Trails Golf Course provides a dreamy playing experience with its amazing views and course conditions. The Par 33, 9-hole course features bent grass greens and ryegrass fairways meticulously maintained optimal playing conditions. As players make their way through the course, they’ll be pleased with the picturesque views which include abundant wildlife. Both the course’s surroundings and pristine conditions have made it a favorite amongst locals with numerous positive reviews online. Players of all levels are welcome on the course as well as the driving range where they can warm up and perfect their swing.

1480 Annas Avenue, Cottonwood, Arizona 86326, Phone: 928-634-1093

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20. Constant Evolution Escape Rooms

Constant Evolution Escape Rooms
© Constant Evolution Escape Rooms

Favorably reviewed by many of their previous clients, Constant Evolution Escape Rooms offers fun and exciting experiences for anyone who walks through their doors. On top of their online reviews, the veteran-owned establishment also received three Winnie Family Favorites Awards in 2018. They offer six escape rooms designed with different stories and themes such as time travel, military operations, mining, crime investigation, and others. Rooms can accommodate various group sizes from 2 to 8 people with rates charged per person. Whether looking for an exciting date night activity, a bonding experience with the family, or simply enjoying a night out with friends, be sure to stop by Constant Evolution Escape Rooms.

551 S. Main Street, Cottonwood, Arizona 86326, Phone: 928-593-9828

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