10 family-friendly Places Downtown Phoenix

We left Phoenix over a month ago, and I finally got a chance to compile my favorite family-friendly spots downtown. I love that downtowns all over the country have become much more kid-friendly these days! (During the day, at least) Below are 10 places we recommend and truly enjoyed visiting with our son while we lived in the Valley of the Sun:


1. Phoenix Open Air Market & Cafe

The Phoenix Public Market happens Saturday mornings and Thursday evenings, and it's a great place to stroll and get some fresh ingredients! Their adjacent cafe, which serves fresh and season ingredients from the market, has plenty of space, an unpretentious/casual/rustic feel, and even toys for the little ones while waiting for food!

2. Desoto Central Market

DeSoto is pure charm. Originally built in 1928 as the C.P. Stephens DeSoto Six Motorcars dealership, the DeSoto building is a hub for local artists and artisans, craft events, and restaurants. The outdoor patio and wide open plan make this historic downtown building easy to navigate with little ones.

3. Cibo Pizzeria

My pal Kelsey from Stories Told Media after our blogger meet up!

Set in a restored 1913 bungalow, Cibo (pronounced "CHEE-boh") has hardwood floors, exposed brick, stained-glass, and a fireplace that make you feel at home. Plenty of outdoor seating for the cool months and a cute garden for the littles to run around! They serve delicious fresh food, and have plenty of gluten-free and vegetarian alternatives.


4. Roosevelt Row

Grabbing some ice cream at Melt with my bestie from Florida!

This funky part of town is a walkable, creative district known for its arts and cultural events, award-winning restaurants, coffee shops and ice cream parlors, galleries, boutiques and live music. First Fridays are a big thing in town, and if you go early enough, fun for the little ones too.

5. Children’s Museum of Phoenix

Speaking of First Friday, that's when we first visited the Children's museum and had a blast! There was plenty of hands-on, interactive exhibits for the older kids, but I was excited about the entire floor dedicated to the teeny tiny ones. My little guy had a blast!

6. Arizona Science Center

Image credit: Expedia.com

This was the only place in the list I didn't get to visit, but I heard great things about it! I mean, how can you go wrong with a science museum and kiddos?


7. Chase Field

We got to watch the Diamondbacks play at Chase field, and even had the awesome opportunity of stepping on the field before the game started! Ballparks are just about the most family-friendly sporting arenas I can think of, and Chase field was no different. This little guy got a certificate for attending his very first MLB game and everything. So sweet!

8. Talking Stick Resort Arena

We are definitely sports people, so we also got to watch the Phoenix Suns play Orlando Magic at  the Talking Stick Resort arena and had a blast! Although for this game, we had the chance to be baby-free for an evening. We took our date night and ran fast, but we know our little dude would've enjoyed himself too!


9. Cityscape

CityScape is a place where people come for dining, nightlife, shopping, entertainment, business, community events and celebrations of all kinds. My favorite are the free movie nights on the second Friday of each month, splash pad in the warmer months and ice skating rink in the winter.

10. Arizona Center

The Arizona Center is a little urban oasis in the middle of the Phoenix desert. Besides the movie theater, galleries, shops and restaurants, there's a lush garden grotto right in the middle of it all. The Herberger Theater Center is across the street, and the US Airways Center, Chase Field, and Phoenix Convention Center are walking distance from it.

Have you been to downtown Phoenix?

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About the Writer

I'm Louise, a Tampa Bay based Brazilian-American travel blogger. Join us as we learn and share the ins-and-outs of traveling with a toddler and our sweet rescue pup Oreo, while promoting local nonprofits and wellness along the way.