What Should You Do this Summer in Scottsdale?


This summer I visited Scottsdale, Arizona to learn how to make the most of the heat and take advantage of the amazing deals. Check out itsthathot.com to explore the great deals at resorts and the summer activities.

Watch my segment on KTLA TV about Scottsdale to learn more!

Hike to Tom's Thumb by Lisa Niver
Hike to Tom’s Thumb by Lisa Niver
See PART ONE of my videos for where to stay and dine
Are you wondering how to beat the heat this summer?
Here are my tips:
Sunrise at Fairmont Scottsdale Princess Photo by Lisa Niver
Sunrise at Fairmont Scottsdale Princess Photo by Lisa Niver
1. Wake up early, watch the sunrise and get going
Video: Sunrise at Fairmont Scottsdale Princess

2. Hike EARLY
Lisa and Jen hiking with our Super Hero Capes at Tom's Thumb
Lisa and Jen hiking with our Super Hero Capes at Tom’s Thumb
Video: Jen and Lisa hiking at Tom’s Thumb

Tom’s Thumb in McDowell Sonoran Preserve is a challenging but rewarding hike, with switchbacks that earn you your cardio for the morning, and amazing views of the Sonoran Desert at the top! It’s 2 miles UP, and 2 miles back down.

Scottsdale’s McDowell Sonoran Preserve includes the beautiful McDowell Mountains, more than 30,500 contiguous acres and more than 200 miles of trails. The Preserve is open from sunrise to sunset and there is no charge for parking or access. It is the largest urban park or preserve in the United States.

3. Kayak EARLY
Lisa and Ben as super heros kayaking Salt River
Lisa and Ben as super heros kayaking Salt River

Jen and I kayaked on the Lower Salt River with Ben, a guide from AOA.
It was beautiful and relaxing. I loved being on the water.

Video: Kayaking the Lower Salt River

This is the tour description: “Float down the Lower Salt River on our guided rafting trips and discover a scenic and relaxing desert oasis just outside Phoenix. Swim and water fight or just relax on the river and soak in the scenery ‐ our most family friendly activity has options to please everyone. This tour is NOT white water rafting but rather a casual float trip that provides an unique perspective on the Sonoran Desert. A little paddling is required, but your guide will steer the boat and provide fascinating information about the surrounding Sonoran Desert. A reliable source of water, the Salt River attracts a variety of wildlife, making it common for us to enjoy close encounters with animals in their natural habitat.”

In the afternoon, sit by the pool, enjoy a spa treatment at Well & Being or visit Wonderspaces Arizona!

Video: Well & Being Spa at Fairmont Scottsdale Princess

Treat yourself to a Spa treatment at Well & Being Spa at Fairmont Scottsdale Princess! Make sure to enjoy the adults only rooftop pool before your spa session. The bean bag floating chairs in the pool are the best. I loved my singing bowls treatment with Danielle. The sounds impact your cells and can help you heal from many issues. I highly recommend it.


This ancient sound healing and massage practice harnesses the body’s own vibrational and material properties on a cellular level. The subtler effects can include regulating energy flow in the astral body. The bowls can be used to activate the chakras and remove energy blocks to promote good health. The mind is centered and focused on the sound.

Lisa in a floating bean bag chair in the spa pool on the roof at Fairmont Scottsdale Princess
Lisa in a floating bean bag chair in the spa pool on the roof at Fairmont Scottsdale Princess

More about Well & Being Spa:

“The Well & Being Spa has captured the essence and elegance of its surroundings, the 44,000 square-foot Well & Being Spa is a luxurious retreat. From its distinctive design with river-rocked tile, Sedona sandstone interiors and waterfalls inspired by the Grand Canyon’s Havasupai Falls to the serenity of 27 soothing treatment rooms, Well & Being Spa offers an unparalleled experience inspiring greater vitality, plus an inhalation room, dry/wet saunas, Swiss shower, whirlpool, cold plunge, atrium cafe, boutique, therapeutic waterfall grotto and scenic rooftop pool.”

Watch my segment on KTLA TV 

about Scottsdale to learn more!

Friday, June 28 on the 11am news

and text to win a trip to Scottsdale, Arizona!



See you in Scottsdale!

Jewish Journal: Scottsdale ArticleRead more on the Jewish Journal

Lisa Ellen Niver

Lisa Niver is an award-winning travel expert who has explored 102 countries on six continents. This University of Pennsylvania graduate sailed across the seas for seven years with Princess Cruises, Royal Caribbean, and Renaissance Cruises and spent three years backpacking across Asia. Discover her articles in publications from AARP: The Magazine and AAA Explorer to WIRED and Wharton Magazine, as well as her site WeSaidGoTravel. On her award nominated global podcast, Make Your Own Map, Niver has interviewed Deepak Chopra, Olympic medalists, and numerous bestselling authors, and as a journalist has been invited to both the Oscars and the United Nations. For her print and digital stories as well as her television segments, she has been awarded three Southern California Journalism Awards and two National Arts and Entertainment Journalism Awards and been a finalist twenty-two times. Named a #3 travel influencer for 2023, Niver talks travel on broadcast television at KTLA TV Los Angeles, her YouTube channel with over 2 million views, and in her memoir, Brave-ish, One Breakup, Six Continents and Feeling Fearless After Fifty.

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