Dobbins Lookout is one of the best views over Phoenix, especially at sunset, and it's incredibly easy to get to. Located on Summit Road in South Mountain Park, you can drive here at any time. This makes it a decent outdoorsy activity even when temperatures are far too hot to hike. You can stay safe in the air conditioning of your car for most of the time. Hiking or biking to Dobbins Lookout is an even more rewarding option if the weather is tolerable. Take Holbert Trail either from the bottom of the mountain or as a spur from National Trail.
A little bit of shade is provided at the lookout within the stone lookout building. This historic structure was built by the Civilian Conservation Corps during the Great Depression. It was part of the city's initiative to purchase South Mountain from the federal government and turn it into a public recreation area. South Mountain Park is now the largest municipal park by area anywhere in the world.
Also at Dobbins Lookout is a watchtower platform with a plaque underfoot that points out landmarks. From here you can clearly see downtown Phoenix and surrounding cities, McDowell Mountains, Piestewa Peak, Camelback Mountain, and the Superstitions.
There is limited shade at the lookout and no water available. There are toilets, benches, and trash cans. Parking is limited so carpool to get here if possible. Dogs are allowed on leashes.