As the gateway to Arizona’s dramatic high country, Payson offers four-season recreation.

Right Now

Arizonans call it “The Rim.” That’s short for the Mogollon Rim, the rugged, far-reaching landscape of the Colorado Plateau. Cutting across the state, the Rim is a picturesque destination for wilderness adventurers of all ages. 

This land, where the Ponderosa Pine forest meets desert canyon country, has exerted a magnetic pull on early Mormon settlers, Western novelist Zane Grey, and actor/rancher John Wayne. Seven sparkling lakes are the centerpiece of scenic mountains, where you can ride horses in the morning and fly-fish in the afternoon. Plan a hike to wonder at Tonto Natural Bridge, believed to be the world’s largest natural travertine bridge. And once the first snow falls, strap on your skis and find a trail for cross-country skiing. 

Payson also boasts a lively festival calendar. There’s big-time broncin’ in this small town setting at the World’s Oldest Continuous Rodeo, established in 1884. Annual outdoor events lure thrill-seekers from across the Southwest, and the Old Time Fiddlers Contest celebrates the area’s rich musical heritage. Don’t worry about seeing it all – this alpine playground is guaranteed to lasso you back for future trips.

Visit City Site

Just The Facts

For Visitor information

Rim Country Regional Chamber of Commerce and Visitor Center | 100 W Main St. | Payson, AZ | (928) 474-4515 |

County It all started How High? Head Count
Gila 1882 4,921ft 15,301

Get the Scoop on Payson

These stories have brought the sizzle lately

History and Nature

History and Nature

by Arizona Office of Tourism

Get a feel for the forested side of Arizona on this tour of high-country destinations and enchanting natural areas.

Come Celebrate Arizona’s 100th Birthday

Come Celebrate Arizona’s 100th Birthday

by Elena Acoba

Join in on Arizona's special and traditional Centennial celebration events. It's one big party through 2012!

Hiking the Arizona Trail

Hiking the Arizona Trail

by Bill Norman

Traverse the state on a journey through outback and history along the Arizona Trail.

Small Town Romantic Escapes

Small Town Romantic Escapes

by Lori K. Baker

Turn any day into a special "holidate" with an Arizona romantic getaway.