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What You Need to Pack for your Trip to Arizona

Updated: Dec 4, 2023

Welcome to our ultimate packing guide for an incredible trip to Arizona! Whether you are visiting the Grand Canyon National Park, exploring Sedona's red rock formations, or embarking on a thrilling Arizona road trip through Route 66, we got you covered with everything you need to pack for your visit!

Person packing their travel duffel bag

Packing for a trip is one of the most loved and dreaded things to do. For instance, I love shopping for new outfits and items I need for my trip. However, I dread having to pack it all together and make sure I am not missing anything. The feeling of not being fully prepared is nerve-wracking, so I have compiled this list to assist you in your packing journey!

Arizona Scenery

Arizona is a beautiful, outdoorsy state. In the summer, the temperature rises to about 120 degrees Fahrenheit, and in the winter, the temperature drops to about 10 degrees Fahrenheit. However, this all depends on where you are in the state. For instance, if you are visiting Phoenix during the winter, the coldest it may get is in the 40s. Moreover, if you are visiting Flagstaff in the summer, the hottest it may get is in the 90s during the day and 50s during the night. Check out the weather before your trip to have a better idea of what type of weather you may be facing. Either way, packing a light sweater and focusing on layers is a good idea!

Arizona Scenery - Grand Canyon

No matter the time of year, protecting your skin from the sun is essential. Wearing sunscreen, clothing that covers your skin (especially if it has an SPF rating), and a hat are great ways to do this. Another important thing is to stay hydrated! Carrying a reusable insulated water bottle is incredibly helpful to keep you hydrated at all times.

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links. Meaning that, at zero cost to you, Dale, Let's Travel! LLC may receive a small commission if you finalize a purchase through the below links. Thank you for supporting the blog!

The Ultimate Arizona Packing List

(Each product image below is a link to purchase the product on Amazon.)

1. Sun Protection

A wide-brimmed hat, sunglasses, sunscreen, and lip balm will help shield you from the intense desert sun. These are essentials that you probably have readily available if you live anywhere there is sunlight. However, if you are running low or are wanting new ones, here are a few suggestions!

2. Water Bottle

Hydration is crucial, especially during summer or during strenuous activities like hiking. A great way to address this issue is by carrying an insulated water bottle with you. It ensures that water is readily available, and the insulated bottle helps keep your water cool on hot days. Electrolyte drinks are also an excellent option to stay hydrated!

3. Tank Tops, Tee Shirts, and Shorts

During the warmer months, tank tops, tee shirts, and shorts are great options for staying comfortable under the desert sun. I always pack shorts and tank tops since I get hot easily. However, do not forget to apply sunscreen where ever your skin is exposed to the sun.

4. Lightweight, Long-Sleeved Shirts

Shirts with long sleeves help provide protection from the sun and are ideal for outdoor activities like hiking and horseback riding. Another good option is a rashguard - these are typically made from spandex, nylon, or polyester and provide SPF protection from the sun. These are great to add to your bathing suit set as well!

5. Light Jackets and Sweaters

Arizona's weather can be unpredictable, even in the summer season. Pack a light jacket or sweater to be prepared for cool evenings or higher elevations. The higher in elevation you are the cooler it gets during the evenings, so layering is important.

6. Long Pants and Jeans

For cooler temperatures or to protect your legs from the sun and elements during outdoor activities, bring long pants or pack jeans. Leggings are a great alternative if you do not like to wear jeans like me.

7. Sturdy Footwear

Comfortable walking shoes (like tennis shoes) or hiking boots with good traction are a must for exploring Arizona's rugged landscapes. In Arizona, there is a high probability of walking and hiking to witness the natural beauty there is to offer. As such, you will need comfortable shoes that will allow you to conquer those rugged terrains. Moreover, if you plan on spending most of your time hiking and going on long hikes on moderately advanced trails investing in hiking boats may be essential for you!

8. Trekking Poles

Alongside investing in hiking boots, if you plan on hiking through Arizona, bring trekking poles. Trekking poles assist with stability and can take the stress off your joints.

9. Bathing Suit

Everywhere we go, we usually pack a bathing suit with us because you never know what you may encounter. However, when visiting Arizona, you do not want to miss out on the fun at Slide Rock State Park or enjoy a relaxing dip in your hotel's hot tub after a long day of exploring.

10. First Aid Kit

Be prepared for minor injuries during hikes with a small first aid kit. There is a good chance that someone may scrape their leg on a rock or branch, so it is a good idea to bring a first aid kit with triple antibiotic cream and bandages. Seek medical attention, and do not solely rely on a First Aid Kit if you majorly hurt yourself on your adventure.

11. Cell Phone Charger

There is so much beauty in Arizona that you will not want to miss out on capturing the moment to look back on and reminisce, or to show your friends and family when you return home. Also, having a charged phone is essential for emergencies. However, keep in mind that sometimes, while in the middle of the desert, reception may be scarce or nonexistent. Another good tip is to let someone know where you are before venturing too deep into your explorations!

12. Bug Spray

While not as prevalent in certain areas, bug spray can come in handy, especially during evenings or near bodies of water. I am a mosquito magnet, so I always carry insect repellent with me. However, I did notice that I did not need it as much over there, but keep in mind it all depends on the areas you visit.

13. Backpack

When hiking and exploring, you do not want to carry all of your items loosely. It is a hassle and can cause you to lose things. Bring a backpack to carry your light jacket, small first aid kit, sunscreen, bug spray, insulated water bottle, cell phone charger, and anything else you want to use on your adventure!

14. Personal Items

These are items you use on a daily like undergarments, hygiene products, skin creams, medicine, etc. Sometimes the most used items get forgotten in the rush of getting everything ready!

Image depiciting personal items like purse, cash, sunglasses, orange, medicine, etc.

Seasonal Considerations:

Although the above listing includes items for any time of the year, here are some seasonal considerations to further reassure you why these items are listed above, along with some new items you should consider bringing depending on the season.

Summer Months (June to August):

Sunscreen,, sun, lemons, flowers, and beach set up depicting summer

- Lightweight, breathable clothing to beat the summer heat.
- Extra water and electrolyte drinks for staying hydrated.
- Good walking/hiking shoes for exploring.

Quick tip: Early mornings are the best time for outdoor activities before the temperatures soar.

Winter Months (December to February):

Winter Box with cozy socks, a candle, mug, and other winter items

- Layered clothing to adapt to fluctuating daytime temperatures.
- A fleece jacket, beanie, and gloves for chillier days.
- Warmer clothing for cold nights, especially when staying in higher altitudes.

Quick tip: The best time for intense hiking are during the fall and winter seasons when temperatures are milder.

Early Spring (March to May) and Late Fall (September to November):

This section may sound a bit repetitive, but it is to emphasize the changing weather conditions in Arizona throughout the year. So again, make sure to pack:
- Light layers for changing temperatures throughout the day.
- Comfortable shoes for exploring hiking trails.
- Thin sweaters or a light jacket for cooler nights.

Time to Explore!

Arizona Scenery

Arizona's natural beauty and outdoor adventures offer a great time no matter the time of year. From the Grand Canyon to Sedona and everything in between, this state will leave you with unforgettable memories. If you are prepared for the weather conditions and plan your trip accordingly, you will get the most out of your experience and come home with a new love for nature! However, if you are still missing something, do not worry - there are plenty of places to make a pit stop and gather the items you need.

Route 66 Arizona Wigwam Motel with old rusted antique cars

Have you been on an Arizona adventure before? If so, is there anything we missed in this list that you found absolutely essential for your Arizona trip? If you have not been to Arizona yet, are you planning a trip to go? Share this article with the person or people you want to go with! Either way, SUBSCRIBE below to learn about other places you should add to your "To Visit" List! Ready? Okay, vamos. Time to have fun!

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* This article is not directly sponsored by Amazon or any other businesses and products mentioned above or their affiliates. However, Dale, Let's Travel! LLC is an Amazon Associate and may receive monetary compensation if you purchase an item using the above affiliate links. Dale, Let's Travel! LLC is not responsible for anything purchased on Amazon. If there are any issues or concerns with the Amazon product(s), contact Amazon directly. Check out our Privacy Policy for more information about our relationship with Amazon Services LLC. *

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