Showlow, Arizona

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If you live in the valley and want a quick getaway Showlow is a great place to go. It has the charm of a small town and an endless array of outdoor opportunities such as hunting, fishing, camping, and hiking.


Show Low is in the eastern part of Arizona.  The name of this city is said to have come from a poker game between two men who had become concerned the land was getting too crowded and feeling like they were encroaching on each other’s privacy. In order to determine who would stay on the land, they played a common frontier card game called, “seven-up.”  The winner would get to stay on the land and the other would have to move. However, there was no clear winner and one of them stated the words “show low to win.”  The other had the deuce of clubs, which was the lowest card possible in the game they were playing, and he stated: “show low it is.”  He won the ranch and the town earned its name and the main street in Showlow is called the Deuce of Clubs.


This area is surrounded by majestic white mountains, which offer more than one hundred and twenty miles of trails that are perfect for hiking and biking.  Of course, anyone that loves to ride ATVs or OHV will love riding along the maintained OHV Trail Riding Areas that were created for those activities.

I fell in love with this city when I was there, not only because of all the trails, but the two million acres of national forest land filled with lakes, streams, Fishing and an abundance of wildlife.  Showlow has elk, deer, antelope, bears, turkeys, and mountain lions.

One of the favorite places to hang out amongst the locals and visitors is the Fool Hollow Lake Recreation Area.  People love hanging out with family and friends while spending time in the lake.

The Sunrise Park Resort is only thirty-six miles away from Show Low and it is a fabulous destination for both the winter and the summer.  During the winter, everyone can ski, snowboard, ice fish, go tubing, and explore the backcountry on a sleigh ride.  The warmer summer months bring scenic lift rides, horseback rides, zip line tours, mountain biking, boating along Sunrise Lake, and more.

Inside the Show Low Museum, visitors can see sixteen rooms that all have their own unique theme.  Some of the rooms are the Train Room, Jail Room, The Rodeo Chedeski Fire Room, EB Lewis Room, and the McNary Room.  While all those rooms are fascinating, some people will be thrilled that admission is free.


As I was searching for accommodations for my trip to Show Low, I discovered that there are a plethora of VRBO and Airbnb places to stay in addition to the hotels.  This means that people can stay somewhere that meets their needs as well as their wants.  Anyone that wants to have a little more space or a kitchen to cook meals, can rent a house, while those who just want a place to lay their heads at night can stick with a hotel.



There are quite a few places to eat in Show Low and I tried many of them while I was there.  Aunt Nancy’s was a few blocks of the Deuce at 21 N 9th St, Ste 13, Show Low, Az 85901. Phone 1-928-537-4839. This is a great little go-to place for breakfast and lunch, as they served delicious food in a pleasant homestyle atmosphere. I had the biscuits and gravy. I liked the biscuits and now looking for a nice biscuit recipe I can try at home.

The House Yard Bar & Eatery can be found within the White Mountains and their yard is the perfect spot to enjoy a drink with a meal while having a fabulous time outside.  Often times there is live music and guests gathered by the fire pits or playing a rousing game of corn-hole. It’s not just a place to eat but to gather, talk and have fun late into the night.

If you are craving Mexican food there are a plethora of choices. I suggest a stop at Sal and Teresa’s Restaurant.  Live music plays in the background throughout the week, although it is usually later in the afternoon, long after breakfast and lunch.

My splurge dinner in Show Low was at the Cattlemen’s Steak House.  The smells coming from the kitchen were heavenly, and the homemade loaf of bread delightful.

During my time in Show Low, I was able to do a little shopping as I ventured in and out of all the stores.  I must say that for a small town, they have plenty of shopping options!

I really enjoyed my time in Show Low, and if you have never been, you may want to plan a trip there for your next getaway.

About The Author

Karie Babbitt

Karie Babbitt is a Lifestyle and Family Travel Writer. Mother of three boys and one girl. She has raised a family of six on a single income for over twenty-five years. She will share how she budgets so she can travel to show her kids all fifty states before they leave her home. Her parenting fails and successes, budgeting tips, food and living life in bliss.


  1. Angela | 3rd May 18

    My son loves places we can take the atv. I’ll add this to the list. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Alison Netzer | 3rd May 18

    I love the exploration of the US. Show Low sounds so interesting.

  3. Kristie | 3rd May 18

    Looks like a fun place to play and eat! We love VRBO rentals.

  4. Tif | 3rd May 18

    Wow I have never heard of this place but you mke it sound lovely!! I’ll just add it to my travel bucket list, which is never ending!! Lovely!

    • Karie Babbitt | 30th May 18

      Haha, yes travel bucket lists can get so long. So much to see and so much to do.

  5. Jocelyn | 3rd May 18

    I’ve never heard of Showlow, but it looks like a great little getaway destination!

    • Karie Babbitt | 30th May 18

      It is great. If ever in the Northern Arizona area I would highly recommend it.

  6. jamie | 3rd May 18

    My family has land right near showlow so we go every couple of years!

    • Karie Babbitt | 30th May 18

      So lucky! We are looking for land over there now because we just loved it so much.

  7. Rae | 3rd May 18

    That sounds fantastic and those burgers look delicious

    • Karie Babbitt | 30th May 18

      The burgers were amazing. I am looking forward to taking my teens there and seeing if they are going to try the donut burger. I want to try it but I am too afraid to order it. lol 🙂

  8. DeAnna | 3rd May 18

    Sounds like a great gettaway!

    • Karie Babbitt | 30th May 18

      It was perfect for us.

  9. caitlyn | 3rd May 18

    This looks like a great place to visit. I’ll add it to my list. Thank you

    • Karie Babbitt | 30th May 18

      Yes, it’s a cute little place to visit.

  10. Candi Randolph | 4th May 18

    I love how the town acquired it’s name! Thanks for sharing, it would be a fun place to visit.

    • Karie Babbitt | 30th May 18

      Yes, it’s got lots of history and peaceful place.

  11. gail | 4th May 18

    We are pretty close to Showlow, we need to add it to the list. We always say we need to explore our own state more….

    • Karie Babbitt | 30th May 18

      Haha, ya it’s amazing what is in our own home state. My family has decided it’s a good idea to explore our Arizona home state because we hear so many amazing things but are always looking outside our own backyard at different states. lol

  12. Stacey | 4th May 18

    This looks like a fun place to visit! I haven’t made it to Arizona yet, but I’m hoping to in the future. We are kind of planning a road trip to California, so I hope to be able to see at least a little bit of the state on that trip.

    • Karie Babbitt | 30th May 18

      I hope you get to see a glimpse of Arizona it has a lot to offer. Enjoy your road trip!

  13. Trudy | 4th May 18

    Thank you for sharing! We are buying an off road side by side this month! This sounds like a wonderful place to go and explore 🙂

    • Karie Babbitt | 30th May 18

      Have fun!

  14. Carol | 4th May 18

    I am planning a trip to Arizona early next year. I’ll have to see if I can add Showlow to the trip.

    • Karie Babbitt | 30th May 18

      Oh, there is so much to do in Arizona. Good luck choosing what to do. lol Have fun!

  15. Kristi Ann | 4th May 18

    I visit Arizona frequently and didn’t even know this are existed. It looks really nice so I will be sure to check it out.

    • Karie Babbitt | 30th May 18

      Arizona has so much to see and do. It’s incredible what is out there.

  16. Louise Long | 4th May 18

    My husband and I love to travel and this sure sounds like a place we’d enjoy visiting! Thanks!

    • Karie Babbitt | 30th May 18

      It was so peaceful and relaxing and such a quaint little town. We sure loved it!

  17. Nicole | 4th May 18

    Love it! Adding this to our travel plans.

    • Karie Babbitt | 30th May 18

      I hope you enjoy this as much as we did.

  18. Heidi | 4th May 18

    Looks like a fun place to visit! 🙂

    • Karie Babbitt | 30th May 18

      We can’t wait to get back. 🙂

  19. Carmen | 5th May 18

    Great article! Sounds like a quaint place a true western place to visit. And what a fun history for their town name!

    • Karie Babbitt | 30th May 18

      Yes, I loved learning about how the town got its name. I’d always wondered why their main street was such an odd name. 🙂

  20. Monica | 6th May 18

    Never heard about this town in Arizona but looks like fun. A nice change from Vegas 😉

    • Karie Babbitt | 30th May 18

      Oh yes, it’s a nice change. I love Vegas but Showlow sure had a nice relaxing way about it. 🙂

  21. Laura | 7th May 18

    This looks like a great place to stop on my next road trip out west. Thanks for sharing!

    • Karie Babbitt | 30th May 18

      It’s a cute little place to stop by if you can pass through it.

  22. Shanna | 9th May 18

    Cute story! and I love all the food pics!

    • Karie Babbitt | 30th May 18

      Thanks, We sure had fun and enjoyed our stay.

  23. Melina | 9th May 18

    I find this article very useful! I never know what to do in Showlow!

    • Karie Babbitt | 30th May 18

      There’s so much more to do in Showlow I don’t think I touched half of it. It’s pretty cool.

  24. Tricia | 11th Oct 18

    My uncle loves this area. I need to check it out!

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