24 May About the Town of Gilbert
Gilbert is central to many of Arizona’s scenic attractions. Northeast lies the Superstition Mountains, location of the legendary Lost Dutchman’s Gold Mine, as well as the Tonto National Forest which contains scenery ranging from rugged desert to cool pines. South lies Saguaro National Park, home to the giant saguaro, a plant found in only a small portion of the United States. But you don’t have to travel outside of Gilbert to discover the outdoors. Considered the premier bird watching facility in the Phoenix metro region, the Riparian Preserve located within Gilbert features hiking and equestrian trails and provides an opportunity for wildlife and bird watching (approximately 250 species of birds have been sighted).
Once known as the “Hay Shipping Capital of the World,” Gilbert, Arizona has evolved into one of the fastest growing communities and the largest town in the United States. Encompassing 72.6 square miles, just southeast of Phoenix, Gilbert has transformed from an agricultural community into a contemporary, urban community with a relaxed but vibrant atmosphere.
Incorporated in 1920, Gilbert owes its beginnings to William “Bobby” Gilbert who provided land to the Arizona Eastern Railway in 1902 to construct a rail line between Phoenix and Florence, Arizona.
As the 2nd Safest City and the 22nd Best Place to Live in the country, you can experience all the West has to offer in an environment that makes you feel like you’ve come home.
The iconic water tower stands tall in downtown Gilbert in an area that once housed little more than the post office. Today, you will find the downtown bustling with shops, restaurants, a theater, art galleries, and is now home to Saint Xavier University.
Gilbert offers several shopping venues from unique boutiques in our Heritage District to the SanTan Village Shopping Center. At SanTan Village, you can find everything from Macys, Dillards, Apple, and Coach to Sephora and Barnes & Noble, along with many delicious dining options to satisfy everyone’s taste.
If your pleasure is more along the lines of nature, relax at one of our outdoor parks. Gilbert is home to six golf courses, five major parks, four community pools, four community recreation centers, three theatres, and an indoor ice arena. Throughout the year, Gilbert is host to numerous festivals, youth and amateur sporting events, academic conferences, sports tournaments, an art walk, and farmers markets.