TucsonUnited States of America

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Visit Tucson

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

Downtown Tucson
Downtown Tucson

Downtown Tucson

Known for Theatre, River, Live Music

3.5/5(11 reviews)

Historic architecture and traditions are integrated seamlessly into the city’s hip, cosmopolitan urban center, which is connected to other Tucson areas by a streetcar route.

Top Hotels in Tucson

Estimated price for 1 night / 2 adults
3 Palms Tucson North Foothills
3 Palms Tucson North Foothills
3 out of 5
7411 N Oracle Rd, Tucson, AZ
CA $61
per night
Dec 15 - Dec 16

This family-friendly Tucson resort is located in the shopping district, within 3 mi (5 km) of Tohono Chul Park, Oro Valley Aquatic Center and Quail Canyon Golf ...

4.1/5Very Good! (3,328 reviews)

"It was convenient fir my stay. Only problem was the outside sign was not lit and entrance was a bit difficult to find in dark with motorcycle"…"

Reviewed on Dec. 7, 2019

3 Palms Tucson North Foothills
Loews Ventana Canyon Resort
Loews Ventana Canyon Resort
4.5 out of 5
7000 N Resort Dr, Tucson, AZ
CA $235
per night
Jan 1 - Jan 2

This family-friendly Tucson hotel is located in the mountains, within 1 mi (2 km) of Ventana Canyon Golf and Racquet Club and Ventana Canyon - Mountain Course. ...

4.5/5Wonderful! (2,021 reviews)

"Beautiful resort. Great amenities and staff. Would definitely stay there again"…"

Reviewed on Dec. 7, 2019

Loews Ventana Canyon Resort
Casino Del Sol Resort
Casino Del Sol Resort
4 out of 5
5655 W Valencia Rd, Tucson, AZ
CA $112
per night
Dec 23 - Dec 24

Situated near the airport, this spa resort is 0.4 mi (0.7 km) from Sewailo Golf Club and within 9 miles (15 km) of Old Tucson Studios and Tucson Mountain Park. ...

4.6/5Wonderful! (1,412 reviews)

"Awesome 4star resort. Moby's cafe good food, excellent prices. 2 hot tubs. Rooms have all amenities."…"

Reviewed on Dec. 7, 2019

Casino Del Sol Resort

Popular things to do in Tucson

Old Tucson Studios
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Old Tucson Studios

4.5/5(23 reviews)

This Western movie studio and theme park with rides, gunfights and stunt shows has been the setting for hundreds of Hollywood productions.

Saguaro National Park
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Saguaro National Park

4.5/5(54 reviews)

Hike, bike or drive through fields and forests containing one of the most recognized cactus plants in the world.

Sabino Canyon
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Sabino Canyon

4.5/5(23 reviews)

Experience the natural beauty and wildlife of a large desert canyon on foot, by car or on a narrated tram tour.

Pima Air and Space Museum
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Pima Air and Space Museum

4.5/5(27 reviews)

One of the largest aviation museums in the world houses aircraft and spacecraft from the 1920s to the present.

Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum
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Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum

5/5(34 reviews)

Encounter wolves, rattlesnakes, coyotes, bighorn sheep and rare plant species at this living museum in the desert.

Tucson Botanical Gardens
Image for Tucson Botanical Gardens

Tucson Botanical Gardens

4.5/5(10 reviews)

Wander through cactus, herb and wildflower gardens and learn about desert plants in this flower-filled sanctuary in the city.

Top activities in Tucson

Guided Turquoise Trail Walking Tour with Museum Admission
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Guided Turquoise Trail Walking Tour with Museum Admission

CA $27

Discover the intriguing history of downtown Tucson during a guided walking tour of the Turquoise Trail. A knowledgeable docent leads you on a leisurely 2.5-mile (4-km) journey through the city known as Old Pueblo, revealing landmark sites along the way.

Old Tucson Theme Park Admission
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Old Tucson Theme Park Admission

CA $31

Celebrating 80 years in 2019, Old Tucson is where the Spirit of the Old West Comes Alive! This theme park lets you walk the streets featured in your favorite western movies. Experience an array of live shows including gunfights, stunts and high-kicking saloon music and dance shows.

Escape Room Tucson
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Escape Room Tucson

CA $32

Channel your inner gumshoe and put your sleuthing, problem-solving, and perception skills to the test during an hour-long race against the clock. In a themed escape room, work with your team to find clues, solve puzzles, and piece together the mystery to get out of the room before time runs out.

Admission to the Presidio San Agustín del Tucson Museum
Image for Admission to the Presidio San Agustín del Tucson Museum

Admission to the Presidio San Agustín del Tucson Museum

CA $7

Get a taste for the Tucson of yore with full-day admission to the Presidio San Agustín del Tucson Museum. Take an entertaining tour of a reconstruction of Tucson's founding fortress, and interact with intrepid 18th-century trailblazers at this educational site in the heart of Old Pueblo.

Urban Adventure Quest - Tucson
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Urban Adventure Quest - Tucson

CA $10

Embark on an interactive tour of Tucson, exploring the city while following clues and completing unique challenges. See landmarks and historical sites including the Cathedral of Saint Augustine, Fox Theatre, and Hotel Congress while you solve puzzles that lead you on a memorable tour.

Funny Foot Farm and Tucson Petting Zoo - General Admission
Image for Funny Foot Farm and Tucson Petting Zoo - General Admission

Funny Foot Farm and Tucson Petting Zoo - General Admission

CA $12

Visit: Funny Foot Farm and Tucson Petting Zoo, 2405 W Wetmore Rd, Tucson, AZ 85705-2018 General Admission includes petting opportunities with goats, chickens, pigs, cow, donkey and emus.

Reviews of Tucson

4.1

Top Destination

5 - Excellent
39
5 - Excellent 30.232558139534884%
4 - Good
71
4 - Good 55.03875968992248%
3 - Okay
17
3 - Okay 13.178294573643411%
2 - Disappointing
2
2 - Disappointing 1.550387596899225%
1 - Terrible
0
1 - Terrible 0%

4/5 - Good

Verified traveller

Dec 9, 2019

Tucson is a quiet and relaxed place. Super close to Mt. Lemon which is fantastic to drive up

3/5 - Okay

Robert

Nov 25, 2019

Not my kind of town

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

Nov 8, 2019

Brush Fire smokehouse was outstanding!! There brisket and beef ribs excellent with prices that made you want to go back.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

Nov 4, 2019

We loved Tucson and the surrounding area. We will be back. Also based on a recommendation from staff ate the best Mexican food ever.

4/5 - Good

Verified traveller

Sep 28, 2019

Awesome experience

4/5 - Good

Pete

Sep 11, 2019

I love the hiking and biking around Tucson

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Image for Kicking off a year of wellness in 2016

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