'Real’ is the word that defines Tucson and southern Arizona. Tucson’s strong sense of place is due to its cultural heritage—rooted in Spanish, Mexican and Western influences—and can be tasted in its Southwestern cuisine. Surrounded by mountain ranges, breathtaking scenery, captivating sunrises and sunsets, the city has historic hotels and luxury resorts that attract travellers from around the world.
Tucson, Arizona Highlights
Don't leave without tasting...
Tucson has the best 23 square miles of Mexican food in the USA. Open since 1922, El Charro Café is the oldest family-operated Mexican restaurant in the USA. Cafe Poca Cosa features cuisine from across Mexico, including delicious mole sauces. And Downtown Kitchen + Cocktails offers innovative farm-to-table cooking with global influences.
You might be surprised by...
- Pima Air & Space Museum is one of the largest air and space museums in the world, home to more than 300 of the most historically significant and technically advanced aircraft, as well as the world-renowned Boneyard
- The only place in the world in which visitors are granted access to tours of Titan missiles is the Titan Missile Museum in southern Arizona. This National Historic Landmark provides military history buffs with a once-in-a-lifetime experience to enter the control centre and experience a simulated launch.
- Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum: a world-renowned zoo, natural history museum and botanical garden
- International Wildlife Museum: featuring natural history collections from around the world
- Museum of Contemporary Art Tucson: avant-garde contemporary art
- Arizona State Museum: experience the enduring cultures of Arizona, the American Southwest and northern Mexico
- University of Arizona Center for Creative Photography: one of the world’s leading museums of modern American photography
- Tucson Museum of Art: original and travelling exhibitions with a focus on art of the American West, Latin American art and modern and contemporary art.
Want to stay up late?
Play a hand at Casino Del Sol, the Pascua Yaqui Tribe's jewel on the southwest side of Tucson, or Desert Diamond Casino, which has four restaurants and three bars.
Your child will always remember...
- Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum: find yourself eye-to-eye with mountain lions, prairie dogs, Gila monsters and more
- Old Tucson: a Western film studio and theme park with live shows, gunfights, stunts and saloon musicals
- The Mini-Time Machine Museum of Miniatures
- Reid Park Zoo: travel from South American rainforests to African grasslands in one day.
- La Encantada is an upmarket, two-level, outdoor shopping centre
- Downtown Tucson/4th Avenue offers an exciting mix of shopping, galleries, dining and performing arts opportunities—all within walking distance
- Main Gate Square offers pedestrian-friendly shopping and dining, with 52 unique merchants, outdoor plazas and restaurant patios near the University of Arizona, downtown and historic neighbourhoods.
History happened here
- In January 1934, the Tucson Police Department, with help from the Tucson Fire Department, captured the notorious Public Enemy No.1 John Dillinger and his gang—without firing a shot! Explore this unique bit of Tucson history at Hotel Congress. Each January, Dillinger Days re-enacts the events leading to the gang’s capture
- One of the most notorious cities in the old west, Tombstone was known as ‘The Town Too Tough to Die’. Walk where heroes and villains lived, worked and fought.
- Climb through five ecosystems to the pinnacle of Mount Lemmon
- Hike the Seven Falls in Sabino Canyon or Romero Pools in Catalina State Park
- Ride by mountain bike down the steep climbs of the Rincon Mountains
- Go rock climbing through the craggy canyons of Mount Lemmon
- Play on championship golf courses
- Search for the 500-plus species of birds that call the area home.
One awe-inspiring building
A beautiful example of Spanish colonial architecture, Mission San Xavier del Bac is considered the ‘Sistine Chapel of North America’ for the intricate paintings on the walls and ceiling. It is still a Catholic parish serving the Tohono O’odham community for whom it was established in the late 1600s.
Just want to indulge?
At Tucson’s world-renowned destination spas, guests can relax over a weekend or longer as part of a luxurious, all-inclusive spa experience custom-designed to meet specific needs. Break a bad habit, learn to deal with stress in healthy ways, sample nutritious foods, improve your physical shape or simply sit back and unwind in the surroundings of the Sonoran Desert’s idyllic beauty. Options include Miraval Arizona, Westin La Paloma’s Red Door Spa, Canyon Ranch, Hishani at JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort, Lakeside Spa at Loews Ventana Canyon Resort, Sonoran Spa at Westward Look Wyndham Grand Resort, and The Ritz-Carlton Spa, Dove Mountain.
Trip Ideas Near Tucson, Arizona
Official Tucson, Arizona Travel Site
Official Tucson Travel Site