Payson is surrounded by National Forest with breathtaking mountain vistas. Creeks and trout streams flow from the Mogollon Rim. A 35-mile drive encompassing 7 lakes provides numerous trails (hiking, biking, and Equestrian), camping,hunting, and fishing. This natural beauty and rugged landscape is what attracted the late American Western Novelist Zane Greyto this area. Payson also holds the distinction of being one of only three pure air ozone belts in the world and offers star gazersa perfect environment for searching the stars.
Local attractions include the Tonto Natural Bridge, Shoofly Indian ruins(an archaeological site), Rim Country Musuem, the Tonto Fish Hatchery, the Electric Light Parade, and a 45-acre Green Valley Park lake system. The Payson Airport has a recreational fly-in campground, a unique facility in the State of Arizona.
For over 125 years, Payson has hosted the "World's Oldest Continuous Rodeo" as well as many other rodeo events including the Spring Rodeo in May. As the "Festival Capital of Arizona" Payson showcases a classic Auto Show in April, the Payson Arizona Mountain High Games in June, a State Fiddlers Contest in September and many other festivals and events in between. To view upcoming events please visit the Activities & Event Calendar. Below you will find links to attractions that are simply "must do's" while visiting Payson, Arizona.