Subject: Re: Must see in Mesa !
Hi Jan,

I know you said you didn't want to do a lot of driving, however, you should be aware that the roads north and south from Phoenix are major divided highways and you can cover distances very quickly.

I highly recommend a trip south to Casa Grande (only 50 miles). A wonderful abandoned adobe village of uncertain age. It is so valued, that they have built a roof over the main structure. If I remember correctly, there is also the remains of an ancient sports arena (the ball game involving only using feet and hips to hit the ball toward a ring high up on the wall at one end).

Less than a hundred miles north of Phoenix is Montezuma's Castle. This is a village built into the cliff face under an overhanging cliff. This is absolutely spectacular, with the river running past close to the base of the cliff. Another village to the west of the highway, just before Montezumas Casle is also spectacular. Built into the top of a hill, with access to all of the buildings only accessed by ladders through the roofs, it is surrounded by the excavated fields. There is also an archaelogical museum.

If you want more info. let me know.

Despite your reluctance for a long drive, it would be tragic not to drive through the Petrified Forest and Painted Desert in particular (probably 200 miles from Phoenix, to the east of Phoenix). Why not drive up to Montezuma's Castle one day, and stay overnight at Winsolw, then drive the circuit of Petrified Forest and Painted Desert and back to Phoenix the next day. Please!!!!!

Cheers Gavin (Sydney, Australia)