Arizona is the epitome of the wild wild west. We have explored the area around the Grand Canyon and trekked along Route 66 through Kingman and on to Laughlin. We still have yet to explore Tuscon and Phoenix and their environs but we hope to do so soon since it isn't that far from Southern California where we live. It's really interesting to see how the architecture here is built to reflect heat and to keep people cool like using adobe mud bricks back in the day to the newer stucco buildings painted in cool desert tones. There are tons of cactus in some areas but you just cannot escape those beautiful reddish brown rocks. We also were very aware of the Mexican influence in the this state particularly in the food. Southwestern cuisine is spicy and delicious and though my kids weren't huge fans of it, I am glad they were introduced to it...one more thing to add into their diversity bucket.