Indoor activities in Tempe to stay cool this summer

Stay cool in Tempe with indoor summer activities.

What is the best way to stay cool in Tempe during the heat of the summer, you ask? By trying out one of Tempe’s many stellar indoor activities and attractions, of course. Tempe has a wide variety of indoor activities and adventures — from museums and gaming to bookstores and axe throwing— that offer hours of fun for the entire family, with a bonus of amazing air conditioning. Explore the best spots to enjoy fun activities during the summer months.

Kiwanis Wave Pool
6111 S. All America Way, Tempe, AZ 85283 | (480) 350-5201
Enjoy all the fun without the dreaded sun at Tempe’s only indoor wave pool located at Kiwanis Park! Intermittently throughout the day, swimmers will ride waves that soar! Rent an innertube to use not only in Kiwanis’ calm waters but for the waves as well. Swim lessons and water fitness sessions are also available throughout the week. For additional details and pool hours, visit the Kiwanis Pool website. 

Shop at Arizona Mills
5000 S. Arizona Mills Cir., Tempe, AZ 85282 | (480) 491-7300
You can easily spend the whole day at Arizona Mills. This indoor mall is home to a mile of retail stores, outlets and entertainment venues, including LEGOLAND® Discovery Center Arizona and SEA LIFE Arizona Aquarium.

While visiting Arizona Mills, check out the Rep Your Brand Monthly Market, a Black-led effort to amplify small, local businesses. Shop fresh produce, flowers, candles, food, music and more from 2 to 9 p.m. in the Arizona Mills parking lot near LEGOLAND® Discovery Center Arizona on the following dates:

May 20 | June 10 | July 22 | August 19 | September 30 | October 21 | November 25 | December 22

  • Tilt Studio
    5000 S. Arizona Mills Cir., Ste. 669, Tempe, AZ 85282 | (480) 648-1222 
    While you’re in Arizona Mills, visit Tilt Studio. Enjoy virtual reality games, laser tag, and fun for all age groups. It’s a great place to host a birthday party or any other celebration with a ton of people or just by yourself! 
  • LEGOLAND® Discovery Center Arizona
    5000 S. Arizona Mills Cir., Ste. 135, Tempe, AZ 85282
    LEGOLAND® Discovery Center Arizona, located inside Arizona Mills, is where families with children aged 3 to 10 can enjoy a world of creativity, color and building fun in the ultimate indoor LEGO playground. Get hands-on with the thousands of LEGO bricks in themed build-and-play areas where kids’ imaginations can run wild with the endless possibilities that LEGO offers.
  • SEA LIFE Arizona Aquarium
    5000 S. Arizona Mills Cir., Ste. 145, Tempe, AZ 85282
    Located inside Arizona Mills, come and see Arizona’s only 360-degree tunnel! Encounter a vast array of creatures, including seahorses, sharks, rays, tropical fish and more. There are more than 30 display tanks with 5,000 sea creatures.

Shop at Tempe Marketplace
2000 E. Rio Salado Pkwy., Tempe, AZ 85281 | (480) 966-9338
While Tempe Marketplace is an outdoor mall, you’ll find dozens of of ways for the entire family to keep cool and entertained in and around this shopping oasis. In addition to the retail stores, restaurants, coffee shops, bars, and more, you’ll also find:

  • As You Wish at Tempe Marketplace
    2000 E. Rio Salado Pkwy, Tempe, AZ 85281 | (480) 557-9100
    Located within the District at Tempe Marketplace, As You Wish is a place where you can discover imaginative possibilities. At As You Wish, you pick out a piece of pottery and decorate it as you please with store-provided paints. Classes are available for special projects for adults and kids.
  • Dave & Busters
    2000 E. Rio Salado Pkwy, Tempe, AZ 85281 | (480) 281-8456
    There’s always something new and exciting waiting for you at Dave & Buster’s. Don’t miss their Eat & Play Combo, drink specials and large variety of games. Located at Tempe Marketplace.
  • Splash Pad at Tempe Marketplace
    2000 E. Rio Salado Pkwy., Tempe, AZ, 85281 | (480) 966-9338
    Open year-round and daily until 11 p.m., the Splash Pad at Tempe Marketplace is the ideal family-friendly spot for children to splash, play and cool off outdoors. Check the events calendar for special themed events.

Group Activities
This summer, sharpen your skills and your wits with and axe-throwing or escape room challenge. Tempe is home to several options for each, and the more participants you bring with you, the more fun these indoor adventures are.

  • Alcatraz Escape Games
    1290 N. Scottsdale Rd., #103, Tempe, AZ 85281 | (480) 719-1234
    At Alcatraz Escape Games, you and your teammates are locked in a themed room filled with puzzles and riddles that will guide your escape. With only 60 minutes on the clock, it is up to you and your teammates to work together to decipher clues and free yourself from the room.
  • United Escapes of America
    414 S. Mill Ave. Suite #112, Tempe, AZ 85281 | (480) 744-6469
    The time is now to test your skills at United Escapes of America in Downtown Tempe. You will have the choice to stop a compromised train from crashing, break out from a jail cell or try to uncover a hidden inheritance that your grandparents left behind. Each theme has its own storyline, puzzles and a series of problems to solve.
  • Inferno Escape Room
    2155 E. University Dr. #210, Tempe AZ 85281 | (480) 567-0190
    What can you expect at this escape room? It’s a live-action game and you are the hero! You’ll have to use teamwork and communication to solve clues and puzzles before 60 minutes is up. Each room has its own theme and objective. Reservations are private and are only for you and your friends and family — you won’t be matched up with anyone else.
  • LumberJaxes Axe Throwing
    2000 E. Rio Salado Pkwy. Suite 2105, Tempe, AZ 85288 | (480) 773-6551
    Lumberjaxes is an indoor axe-throwing facility very similar to a shooting range, except your weapon of choice is an axe! Each bay has a Lumberjaxes axe-throwing specialist to ensure all participants are safe and learn proper axe-throwing techniques.
  • Hotshots Axe Throwing
    290 N. Scottsdale Road, Ste. 102, Tempe, AZ, 85281 | (480) 591-9118
    The premier axe throwing venue in Arizona; our coaches will teach you how to have fun and be safe throwing axes on projected targets! 10 and up, BYOB, we welcome the whole family, date nights, friends or the whole company!
  • Class Axe Throwing
    1625 W. University Drive, 122 B, Tempe, AZ 85281 | (480) 676-3386
    Spend an hour whirling wood and metal as you learn, practice and then finally square off toe to toe in a group tournament that will result in the crowning of an Axe Throwing Champion. Beginners are welcome, and staff will have you hitting the bullseye in no time!

Fun & Games

  • Main Event Entertainment
    8545 S. Emerald Dr., Tempe, AZ 85284 | (480) 753-1200
    Main Event is home to 26 high-quality recreational bowling lanes, laser tag, a gravity high ropes course, billiards and shuffleboard tables, more than 125 interactive games and a tempting array of food and beverage.
  • Phoenix Rock Gym
    1353 E. University Dr., Tempe, AZ 85281 | (480) 921-8322
    Experience the vertical world of climbing as never before – indoors at the Phoenix Rock Gym. Explore the thirty-foot high walls with over 15,000 sq. ft. of climbing surface.
  • Snakes & Lattes Tempe
    20 W. 6th St., Tempe, AZ 85281 | (480) 361-6644
    Play a game or two at Snakes & Lattes. This fun Downtown Tempe spot is home to hundreds of board games, from classic to brand new, for all ages. Order delicious food and drinks and choose a game to play. It’s like having a fun house party without the hassle.
  • Painting with a Twist
    219 E. Baseline Rd., Ste. H3, Tempe, AZ 85283 | (480) 758-7928
    Beyond the average pottery painting spot, Painting with a Twist offers a wide variety of activities for all creative levels and abilities. Sign up for an in-studio class, order an at-home paint kit or book a group for a virtual class. We recommend the in-person experience, in which case, BYO snacks, beer or wine to add to the fun. Advance registration is required.
  • Changing Hands Bookstore
    6428 S. McClintock Dr., Tempe, AZ 85283 | (480) 730-0205
    Changing Hands Bookstore is one of the best independent bookstores around. It has a wonderful selection of children’s toys and books. Check out their event calendar for online events.
  • Mullett Arena
    411 S. Packard Dr., Tempe, AZ 85281 | (480) 564-3497
    One bucket list item that may seem peculiar to find in the desert, is Tempe’s new ASU multipurpose ice arena, Mullett Arena. Home to ASU men’s hockey and the NHL’s Arizona Coyotes from fall to spring, this venue also hosts concerts, conferences, youth competitions and more throughout the summer. Also located here, the Mountain America Community Iceplex hosts a variety of skating opportunities that are open to the public all summer long.
  • Tempe Improv Comedy Theatre
    930 E. University Dr, Tempe, AZ 85281 | (480) 921-9877
    Tickle your funny bone all summer long by heading over to the legendary Tempe Improv Comedy Theatre. Tempe Improv brings some of the hottest talents from around the country and puts them center stage right here in Tempe.
  • Catch a summer flick
    Need a place to keep cool during higher temps? Seeing a summer flick will do the trick! Catch the latest blockbuster, independent and classic films at Majestic PhoenixHarkins Tempe Marketplace or Harkins Theatres Arizona Mills. Enjoy state-of-the-art amenities, power recliners, endless amounts of popcorn and the best summer movies on the big screen!

    Majestic Neighborhood Cinema Grill – 1140 E. Baseline Rd., Tempe, AZ 85283 | (480) 795-6622
    Harkins Tempe Marketplace – 2000 E. Rio Salado Pkwy., Tempe, AZ 85281 | (480) 557-0027
    Harkins Theatres Arizona Mill 18 w/ IMAX – 5000 S. Arizona Mills Cir., Tempe, AZ 85282 | (480) 820-0387

Arts & Culture

  • ASU Art Museum
    51 E. 10th St., Tempe, AZ 85281 | (480) 965-2787
    Plan a visit to the ASU Art Museum this summer. Located on the ASU Tempe Campus, ASU Art Museum features rotating exhibits with national and international contemporary artists. The Museum houses the largest collection of Cuban art in the U.S. and an award-winning print collection. Museum admission is always free!
  • Hall of Flame Fire Museum
    6101 E. Van Buren St., Phoenix, AZ 85008 | (602) 275-3473
    Visit the Hall of Flame Fire Museum to complete your childhood dreams of becoming a firefighter. See fire trucks and equipment dating back to the 18th century.
  • ASU Gammage
    1200 S. Forest Ave., Tempe, AZ 85281 | (480) 965-3434
    Treat yourself to a Broadway show at ASU Gammage. Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, ASU Gammage is a beautiful landmark in Tempe and a terrific place to see a performance. The 2023/2024 Desert Financial Broadway Across America–Arizona series includes six Tempe premieres, a pre-Broadway tour of THE WIZ, a family favorite PETER PAN, and back by popular demand HAMILTON and LES MISÉRABLES.
  • Tempe Center for the Arts
    700 W. Rio Salado Pkwy., Tempe, AZ 85281 | (480) 350-2822
    Plan a visit to The Tempe Center for the Arts (TCA), located on the south bank of Tempe Town Lake. The TCA features a 600-seat theater, a 200-seat studio theater and a beautiful gallery space with rotating, themed exhibits.
  • Tempe History Museum
    809 E. Southern Ave., Tempe, AZ 85282 | (480) 350-5100
    Tempe History Museum displays Tempe’s history through collections, research services, exhibits and programs that captivate and connect with the community. Visitors will be pleased to find new and exciting experiences around every turn, including a changing gallery space and live musical performances throughout the summer.
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