Flagstaff, Arizona, United States of America - January 5, 2017. Interior view of the Museum of Northern Arizona in Flagstaff, with dinosaur skeleton and exhibits.

Alizada Studios/Shutterstock

Museum of Northern Arizona

Top choice in Flagstaff

Housed in an attractive Craftsman-style stone building amid a pine grove, this small but excellent museum spotlights local American Indian archaeology, history and culture, as well as geology, biology and the arts. Intriguing permanent collections are augmented by exhibitions on subjects such as John James Audubon's paintings of North American mammals. On the way to the Grand Canyon, it makes a wonderful introduction to the human and natural history of the region.

From May through August, the museum hosts recommended Thirsty Thursdays ($6, 5pm to 9pm), with storytelling, music, dancing and hands-on events in the museum courtyard. There's a cash bar, and guests have full access to the museum. Check the website for the calendar of events, workshops and field classes.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Flagstaff attractions

1. Coconino Center for the Arts


The Coconino Center for the Arts exhibits works by local artists and hosts various performances and programs. Check its website for current exhibitions…

2. Pioneer Museum

0.96 MILES

Built in 1908 with volcanic remains from the nearby Mt Elden eruptions, this stone house served as the Coconino County Hospital for the needy and was…

3. Lowell Observatory

2.24 MILES

Astronomers, get ready to geek out! Sitting atop a hill just west of downtown, this national historic landmark – famous for the first sighting of Pluto in…

4. Thorpe Park

2.29 MILES

A great playground with plenty of grass and shade, and a dog park.

5. Heritage Square

2.68 MILES

The central square in Flagstaff's historic downtown has a handful of cafes offering outdoor seating. In summer there's weekend music and family-friendly…

6. Riordan Mansion State Historic Park

3.27 MILES

Having made a fortune from their Arizona Lumber Company, brothers Michael and Timothy Riordan built this sprawling duplex in 1904. The Craftsman-style…

7. Arboretum


This 200-acre arboretum is a lovely spot to take a break and rejuvenate your spirits. Two short trails hug a meadow and wind beneath ponderosa pines,…

8. Walnut Canyon

9.84 MILES

The Sinagua cliff dwellings at Walnut Canyon are set in the nearly vertical walls of a small limestone butte amid this stunning forested canyon. The mile…