Hike to the Hole in the Rock at Papago Park



0.2 miles

Elevation Gain

200 ft

Route Type


Added by Grant Thomas

The popular Hole in the Rock at Papago Park is the perfect place to take in the views and capture some unique photos!

Papago Park is located right next to the Phoenix Zoo. The park is known for its rock formations and short hiking / running trails.

The main attraction, the Hole in the Rock, at the top of the short trail, is a great place to take pictures as it is one of the highest points in the area and it offers great views of the rest of the park. To get there, simply park in the parking lot (if the small parking lot is full, don't fret. The Phoenix Zoo is right next to the park and you can find room to park there) Once parked follow the Hole In The Rock trail around the back of the rock formation. The trail is short and only gains about 200 feet of elevation so even children can do it. Just make sure to be careful, as the trail is rocky and it can be easy to trip or twist an ankle.

From the lookout area at the end of the trail you will be able to look through the hole and see a few small lakes where you can fish. If you turn around and face away from the hole in the rock you will also be able to see a few other trails that meander around the park. A detailed map of the rest of the trails in the park can be found below.

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Known for

Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Picnic Area



Leave a Review

Not much of a hike

I wouldn't say this was much of a hike. You probably won't break much of a sweat unless you are hiking it during the summer. Being in the middle of the city, it is expected that this place gets CROWDED!

great trail for after work

This urban park built into a wilderness area makes this quick but steep hike full of awesome views.

Fun Family Friendly Hike

The hike to the cave in Papago Park is a short hike in the city that offers good views and is for all experience levels.

Easy and Quick!

Great place to watch the sunset! But as this is INCREDIBLY short, I wouldn't say it's much of a hike :) Very popular when the weather is nice and there's picnic spaces nearby. Last time I went there was a ton of trash, so please make sure to be respectful if you visit.

Super Short Perfect for Kids

Super short hike, pretty easy, something to do with the kids. There is a great view at the top.


It was a decent hike, especially for a beginner like myself. Hiked it at night a few years back with my wife, had a great time, except it was still far too hot. Bring lots of water even if you hike it in the winter!


Not really too much of an adventure but there is a decent view of the city lights if you go up at night.


It is extremely simple if you go to the main hole in the rock but if your looking for a bit of a challenge go around the far side and climb to the top! It was beautiful and great for pictures.


This spot was great as a little kid. As an adult, all I can remember is the smell of beer and urine. You aren't missing anything if you don't make it here. Unless, I guess, you're one of the people at night causing the putrid smells that are amplified in the desert heat. You'll have more fun anywhere else in Papago Park.

Awesome Chill Spot

The Hole in The Rock is a great place to spend an hour or so in the shade overlooking the valley... The breeze that blows through is refreshing even on a 98 degrees temperature day. (And I'm not talking Nick Lachey)

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Leave No Trace

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on.

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