Originally founded in 1888 under the name of Sidney, Buckeye is the westernmost suburb in the Phoenix metropolitan area, with an old west charm.
Located in Arizona’s Maricopa County, it was renamed in 1910 Buckeye due to the importance of the nearby Buckeye Canal.
With a population of almost 60,000 people, Buckeye is considered one of the fastest-growing cities in the United States.
A heaven for wildlife and outdoor enthusiasts of all ages, Buckeye offers hikers, mountain bikers, equestrians and campers the chance of exploring dozen of miles of trails around the city.
Let’s explore the best things to do in Buckeye:
1. Historic Gillespie Dam Bridge
Constructed over the Gila River in 1927 and restored in 2012, the Gillespie Dam Bridge is a unique reminder of Arizona’s rich past and America’s transportation history.
This 1,662 foot long bridge was one of the longest bridges and the largest steel structure in Arizona.
While the bridge no longer serves as a segment of the Old U.S. 80 highway, it is continually used by locals and tourists.
By driving just a quarter of a mile west of the bridge, on the west side of the river, an impressive display of petroglyphs can be found at the base of the cliffs.
2. Skyline Regional Park
With more than 16 miles of trails for hiking, biking and horseback riding, Skyline Regional Park is a very popular park among the people of Buckeye.
Located in the southern White Tank Mountains, Skyline Regional Park is 8,700 acres and features 5 ramadas and 7 camping sites, offering amazing views of the surrounding mountains.
Opened in January, 2016, this brand new park is dog friendly and offers fresh and new amenities.
Each campsite includes a parking stall, two graded tent pads, a picnic table, cooking grill and a fire ring.
Due to minimal light pollution it is also an excellent spot for stargazing.
3. Desert Botanical Garden
Established in 1939, the Desert Botanical Garden has more than 50,000 plants, with one third of them native to the area.
Located 40 miles away from Buckeye, the garden can be found in Papago Park.
As volunteers were essential in the creation and development of the Garden, they are still considered an important asset.
Working closely with the staff, they share their time, talents and professional expertise in the working and care of the garden and with guests.
4. White Tank Mountain Regional Park
Located in west-central Maricopa County, Arizona, the White Tank Mountain Regional Park is a mix of desert and mountain landscapes.
With nearly 26 miles of hiking trails and an extension of 29,271 acres, this is the largest regional park in the county.
The majority of the park is undeveloped and prohibited to motorised vehicles but in the developed portion of the park picnic areas and campground can be found.
Perfect for stargazing due to regular clear weather and dark skies, the park hosts various stargazing events through the year.
5. Verrado Golf Club
Designed by the Ryder Cup Captain, Tom Lehman, the Verrado Golf Club lies 36 holes of championship golf in two different layouts.
Located in the shadows of the White Tank Mountains, golfers can delight in its amazing views and wildlife while playing an enjoyable round.
Following golf, players can enjoy an unforgettable meal at the Verrado Grille Restaurant, which combines impeccable service, a lively atmosphere, and incredible views.
Weddings and other events can be celebrated in this high-quality golf club.
6. Robbins Butte Wildlife Area
From the top of Robbins Butte hill, located south of the Gila River, visitors can get a broad overview of the river corridor.
Featuring diverse habitats that draw large populations of resident and migratory wildlife, Robins Butte is a popular area to watch the mule deer, bighorn sheep and many other small animals like cottontails.
Although overnight camping is prohibited, the area is also popular for hiking, hunting and birdwatching.
Caution is advised while hiking as several species of rattlesnakes can be found in the area.
7. Buckeye’s Air Fair
Celebrated annually at the Buckeye’s Municipal Airport, Buckeye’s Air Fair features aviation exhibits, aircraft displays and air demonstrations.
Part of the Arizona SciTech Festival where children of all ages can learn about the science of aviation, the Buckeye’s Air Fair is a day of fun for the whole family.
From the latest in space exploration to remote control demonstrations, Top Gun lovers can even book a ride on an authentic World War II aircraft at one of Buckeye’s largest and most exciting events.