Photo by Travis Rains.
KINGMAN – Finding time to use vacation days in the midst of busy schedules can be a challenge, but today, National Vacation Day, is a good time to plan for when and how to take paid time off, whether it be for an extended vacation or a one-day getaway.
According to the Arizona Office of Tourism (AOT), 41 percent of Arizonans did not take advantage of all their paid time off, in 2016. Utilizing vacation time not only gives the mind a rest, but the body as well. AOT cites studies that note letting vacation time slide by unused can have negative health impacts including raising the risk of heart disease and depression. With 11 million vacation days unused by Arizonans in 2016, starting the vacation-planning process a little early may be more beneficial than many believe it to be.
Arizonans don’t have to leave the state for a scenic or relaxing getaway from the office. Vacationers traveling to Southern Arizona can enjoy local wines and views of Sonoita, one of the state’s wine-growing regions. Gold Canyon, home of the Lost Dutchman Gold Mine, is a popular destination in Central Arizona, as are the dude ranches and horseback riding found in Wickenburg.
Kingman residents in particular don’t need to venture far for a historical or scenic vacation. Those who either come to Kingman intentionally, or while traveling through Kingman, enjoy what the City has to offer.
“With our climate, outdoor recreation is a big part of what Northwest Arizona has to offer,” said Kingman Deputy Director of Economic Development and Tourism Josh Noble.
Noble highlighted the Hualapai Mountains as a popular attraction for camping, hiking and picnicking. Mountain bikers also have the opportunity to enjoy the Hualapai Mountains with numerous available trails. In addition to Hualapai trails, some 19 miles of hiking and bicycling trails can be found at the Cerbat Foothills Recreation Area.
“In the fall and spring you’ll see license plates from out of state,” Noble said. “People come in when traveling through the state to stretch their legs and hit the trails.”
Keepers of the Wild Nature Park is located off of Route 66 and is a short drive from Kingman. Route 66 is, of course, another big draw for Kingman tourism as the city is in the middle of the longest remaining stretch of Route 66. Within Kingman Noble said popular destinations are Desert Diamond Distillery and the Cella and Stetson wineries.
Participating in local tourism is not only beneficial for Kingman residents or tourists, but for the economy as well. AOT figures show a lost economic impact of $3.2 billion for Arizona in 2016 as a result of unused vacation days. Nationally, that figure rises to $236 billion.
“Taking time to pack up and get away from it all is often associated with the open road,” said Arizona Office of Tourism Director Debbie Johnson. “Arizona’s heart of Historic Route 66, Kingman is a destination dream for explorers from both outside and within the state. Visitors can get up-close-and-personal with authentic Americana or take an adventure in the great outdoors with a scenic hike in the Mohave Desert. Whether it’s 18 holes of golf or a classic car show, visitors from all walks of life can find something to love in Kingman.”