More Phoenix Neighborhoods
Find the Best Things to Do in Tempe
By Patricia Escarcega
Phoenix, Scottsdale, and Tucson Local Expert
Named after an ancient Greek Valley and frequently mispronounced, Tempe (Tehm-pee) is a vibrant college city located at the eastern edge of the Phoenix city limits. The city is home to Arizona State University, one of the largest universities in the country and boasts a large student population.
See & Do
Tempe is a relaxed college town with a large student population, many of which you'll see traversing the streets on skate boards, bikes, scooters and, yes, on foot. There's no better place to people-watch than at Tempe Town Beach Park and Lake, where couples enjoy the desert sunshine on the green lawn and joggers enjoy the weather to do a run around the lake.
Eat in style at this venerable Tempe cafe, a popular Mill Avenue mainstay known for its fresh and inventive menu featuring local and organic ingredients. The Mediterranean-inspired menu at Caffe Boa includes fresh pastas made in-house daily, salads, and entrees. Homemade desserts, including a luscious tiramisu, and hand-crafted drinks are well worth the wait. The cafe's well-edited wine list is one of the best in the city.
Tempe's Best Restaurants
Every college town has its prized pub, and Tempe is no exception. Casey Moore's Oyster House, located in a historic house a few blocks south of Arizona State University, is famous for its college atmosphere, satisfying pub grub, and of course, ice cold beer on tap. This storied Irish pub even boasts its share of ghost stories, celebrated by locals every fall come Halloween.
Tempe's Best Bars
A good bookstore is hard to find these days, but Tempe's Changing Hand Bookstore fills the void with a large selection of books and gift items. This independent book store has played host to a range of authors, from Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama to KISS drummer Peter Criss, all who have made a stop at this well-loved bookstore to promote their books.