A 1-Day Trip to Casa Grande, Arizona!
Casa Grande is a small city about an hour south of Phoenix. I visited the City in January due to work. It was sunny and slightly windy (sweater weather) – a refreshing change from the snowfall that recently hit Vancouver. I was actually in the city for a few days, but due to work, I was only able to explore in the early mornings or evenings. So here is a summary of the activities into a 1-day trip to Casa Grande!
Start your day at Deadlift Coffee. The cafe has a variety of açaí bowls on their menu (along with coffee and tea). I had never had an açaí bowl before. I ordered the Kimura açaí bowl. The açaí was slightly frozen and the bowl was topped with pineapple, mango, kiwi, coconut, chia seeds, and granola. It was very good! (Side Note: The mango tea was perfectly sweetened)
After breakfast, head to Peart Road Trailhead for a morning hike. I did not walk the whole trail, so cannot comment on the difficulty or the length of the trail, but the area looked really cool with the cacti! To get to the trailhead, there is a little bit of gravel driving required.
Next stop – the Domes of Casa Grande. The Domes of Casa Grande were originally built in the late 1970s and was meant to serve as a manufacturing facility for computers. For some reason, the domes were never completed. They are now abandoned, covered in graffiti, and are at risk of collapsing. The site has been marked off as “Private Property”, but you can still snap some pictures from the road. What a bizarre, yet fascinating bit of history.
For lunch, head to Maricopa Tacos, a no-frills food truck serving Mexican food. It is cash only. The food truck is parked in front of an abandoned building, which was strange to me. However, the food was great! I ordered the carne asada burrito, which came with hot sauce, cucumber slices, and a quarter lemon.
Casa Grande is a small city, but since you are already here, take some time to visit the downtown. Some interesting spots are the Western Trading Post, the Casa Grande Art Museum, and the Museum of Casa Grande. The Western Trading Post sells vintage jewellery and southwestern gear. They often have auctions as well. Near the Western Trading Post is the Main Street Mural. The Casa Grande Art Museum is a quirky building with colourful pieces and sculptures. This gives the building personality! The Museum of Casa Grande is easily spotted due to its stone walls. The building served as a church originally, and had its first service in 1928. Today, it tells the history of the city that is Casa Grande.
For dinner, head to BeDillon’s Restaurant. BeDillon’s Restaurant is one of the best restaurants in Casa Grande. The portions are large and the food is amazing. We ordered the calamari and quesadilla to start (I was already full at this point!). For my main, I ordered the sirloin steak which came topped with caramelized onions and blue cheese. The main also came with a twice baked potato, soup, and grilled vegetables! You can change your choice of sides as well (i.e. instead of soup, you can have salad and instead of twice-baked potato, you can have french fries, mashed potatoes, rice, etc.). In addition, they also brought out bread and butter! Everything was delicious. There was too much food, I had to pack some back to the hotel and eat it for breakfast!
About a block away is the Neon Sign Park, which lights up once dark.
If you have room for dessert, make a drive to Bosa Donuts. Bosa Donuts is open early (5am) and closes late (10pm). They are a chain only located in Arizona. I picked up two donuts – blueberry and cherry.
Full and exhausted, I headed back for the evening to the Hotel Radisson Casa Grande. The hotel stay was fine, but they were undergoing construction during my visit. If you have more time at Casa Grande, some other suggestions are the Casa Grande Ruins National Monument (not actually located in Casa Grande, but in Coolidge, which is the next town over) and the Caywood Cotton Farms.
Complete Day 1 Itinerary
*Travel times may vary. Check Google Maps for most accurate travel details.
9:00 am: Visit Deadlift Coffee and order an açaí bowl for breakfast!
10:00am: Go for a morning hike on the Peart Road Trail (9 minute drive from Deadlift Coffee).
12:00pm: Visit the Domes of Casa Grande (13 minute drive from Peart Road Trail).
1:00pm: Have lunch at Maricopa Tacos (17 minute drive from the Domes of Casa Grande).
2:00pm: Explore Casa Grande Downtown Area (16 minute drive from Maricopa Tacos). Visit the Western Trading Post, the Main Street Mural, the Casa Grande Art Museum, and the Museum of Casa Grande.
6:00pm: Have dinner at BeDillon’s Restaurant (2 minute drive from the Museum of Casa Grande).
8:00pm: Visit the Neon Sign Park (1 minute drive from BeDillon’s Restaurant).
9:00pm: Have dessert at Bosa Donuts (5 minute drive from the Neon Sign Park).