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Tucson
Travel Guide

Saguaro National Park

Arizona’s second-largest city is known for its desert landscapes, mountainous regions, science scene and cosmopolitan culture. 

Tucson is a modern city and thriving science hub set amid the sparse Sonoran Desert landscape and enclosed by five mountain ranges. The warm, dry climate, national parks, hiking trails and wildlife attract over a million outdoor lovers every year. Dubbed “Optics Valley,” the city is a world leader in optics manufacturing and astronomical research.

The roots of the cultural heritage that has shaped Tucson can be seen in Native American arts and crafts, old Hispanic neighborhoods and 19th-century American architecture. Tucsonans embrace their desert surroundings and celebrate nature and the outdoor lifestyle.

Explore the scenery with a hike through Saguaro National Park. The large, fleshy cactus has come to symbolize the American West. Tucson has the country’s largest population of saguaro cacti. Learn about native flora and fauna at the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum. A visit to Tohono Chul Park and Tucson Botanical Gardens will also immerse you in the beauty of the desert’s plants.

Visit Biosphere 2 to see how Tucson was at the forefront of one of the most ambitious experiments of recent times. Eight people lived for two years under glass domes in the desert. Tour the facility to see how it contributes to our understanding of climate change. Visit Pima Air & Space Museum with aircraft and spacecraft revealing 100 years of aviation history.

Head into the city to experience Tucson’s artistic and cultural scene. Visit art galleries, bookstores and jewelry shops. Art aficionados will enjoy the Tucson Museum of Art, which covers an entire city block in the El Presidio Historic District in the downtown area. The institution is devoted to art from the last 3,000 years. Stay downtown to watch dance, theater, music or film performances at the Fox Tucson Theatre, a restored movie palace from the 1930s.

Tucson has a good public bus system called Sun Tran and the downtown area is easily explored on foot. If you want to travel outside the city limits and explore the desert scenery you will need to rent a car.

Where to stay in Tucson

Hotel McCoy - Art, Coffee, Beer, Wine
Hotel McCoy - Art, Coffee, Beer, Wine
3 out of 5
720 W. Silverlake Road, Tucson, AZ
The price is CA $111 per night from May 31 to May 31
Situated near the airport, this hotel is within 3 mi (5 km) of Tucson Convention Center, Children's Museum Tucson, and Fox Theatre. Rialto Theatre and University ...
4.7/5Exceptional! (1,252 reviews)
"I did not like $100/night. Too expensive."

Reviewed on May 12, 2021

Hotel McCoy - Art, Coffee, Beer, Wine
3 Palms Tucson North Foothills
3 Palms Tucson North Foothills
3 out of 5
7411 N Oracle Rd, Tucson, AZ
The price is CA $74 per night from May 31 to May 31
This family-friendly Tucson hotel is located in the mountains, within 3 mi (5 km) of Tohono Chul Park, Oro Valley Aquatic Center and Quail Canyon Golf Course. ...
4/5Very Good! (2,943 reviews)
"Cute place and within a commercial area although with beautiful scenery around."

Reviewed on May 3, 2021

3 Palms Tucson North Foothills
Loews Ventana Canyon Resort
Loews Ventana Canyon Resort
4.5 out of 5
7000 N Resort Dr, Tucson, AZ
The price is CA $229 per night from Jun 6 to Jun 6
This family-friendly Tucson hotel is located in the mountains, 0.6 mi (1 km) from Ventana Canyon Golf and Racquet Club, and within 9 mi (15 km) of Park Place ...
4.5/5Wonderful! (1,044 reviews)
"Loved the waterfall ponds and koi fish! Nice to have a lap pool to swim in!"

Reviewed on May 9, 2021

Loews Ventana Canyon Resort
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.
TownePlace Suites Tucson Williams Centre
TownePlace Suites Tucson Williams Centre
2.5 out of 5
384 South Williams Boulevard, Tucson, AZ
The price is CA $112 per night from Jun 1 to Jun 1
Situated in Tucson, this aparthotel is 1.2 mi (2 km) from Park Place Mall and 2.2 mi (3.5 km) from Davis-Monthan Air Force Base. Randolph Golf Complex and Gaslight ...
4.4/5Wonderful! (254 reviews)
"This was our 3rd stay in the past year at this location. It is clean and quiet and in close proximity to Davis-Monthan AFB. Every time we come visit our daughter we use this location. Never had any problems."

Reviewed on May 10, 2021

TownePlace Suites Tucson Williams Centre
TownePlace Suites by Marriott Tucson
TownePlace Suites by Marriott Tucson
2.5 out of 5
405 W Rudasill Rd, Tucson, AZ
The price is CA $163 per night from May 23 to May 23
Situated in a national park, this aparthotel is within 9 mi (15 km) of Tucson Mall, Tucson Convention Center, and Tucson Botanical Gardens. Arizona Stadium and ...
4.3/5Excellent! (66 reviews)
"Love the kitchen, desk, tv."

Reviewed on Apr. 10, 2021

TownePlace Suites by Marriott Tucson
Furnished Monthly Rental Home
Furnished Monthly Rental Home
Oro Valley, AZ
Situated in Oro Valley, this vacation home is within a 15-minute walk of Catalina State Park and Catalina State Park. Oro Valley Marketplace and Oro Valley Hospital ...
5/5Exceptional! (2 reviews)
Oro Valley home
"David's house is located in a community just of Oracle Rd near shopping, restaurants and theaters. Home is nicely laid out with master separated from other 2 bedrooms. Kitchen is adequately appointed. Nice space in backyard with grill and beautiful sunsets."

Reviewed on Feb. 29, 2020

Furnished Monthly Rental Home
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Popular places to visit in Tucson

Top things to do in Tucson

Reviews of Tucson

4.2

Top Destination

5 - Excellent
48
5 - Excellent 31.57894736842105%
4 - Good
83
4 - Good 54.60526315789474%
3 - Okay
19
3 - Okay 12.5%
2 - Disappointing
2
2 - Disappointing 1.3157894736842106%
1 - Terrible
0
1 - Terrible 0%

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

Feb 12, 2020

The Presidio in Old Town has a nice outdoor restaurant in the courtyard. Some Vegan options. Shopping for touristy stuff in the buildings surrounding the courtyard. Easy parking nearby. We usually always stop there for lunch.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

Feb 11, 2020

Love Tucson. It’s very beautiful! .. we come for the Rock & Gem show .. love the cactus too!!

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

Feb 11, 2020

Tucson is a great city to visit.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

Feb 7, 2020

Excellent, as long as you avoid the Cholla cacti.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

Feb 7, 2020

Excellent, just stay away from the Cholla cacti.

4/5 - Good

Verified traveller

Feb 7, 2020

The city was great, spoiled only by an encounter my husband had with a Teddy Bear Cholla. Stay far away from these cacti!

Cities near Tucson