Tucson Travel Guide
Downtown Tucsan © Metropolitan Tucson Convention and Visitors Bureau
With a dramatic setting in the Sonora Desert, surrounded by a ring of mountain ranges with the Santa Catalina Mountains as a backdrop, Tucson is the fastest-growing resort city in the country and one of the most attractive holiday destinations in Arizona. Combining the amenities of a modern metropolis and a small-town atmosphere, its constant sunshine and dry desert air, makes Tucson a city that takes advantage of its beautiful desert setting as a popular health resort. Its proximity to the Mexican border is evident in its architecture and cuisine, and a long history that has left the city with a dynamic legacy of Spanish, Mexican, American and traditional Native American influences.
With naturally eroded cliff forms, cacti, bird life and old cowboy towns in the area, Tucson is also a good base from which to explore the many natural sights beyond the city limits. Horseback riding and hiking along the wilderness trails are good ways to explore the region. Nearby attractions include the Sagauro National Park with the highest concentration in the world of the desert-symbol Saguaro cactus, the Spanish-style Mission San Xavier del Bac, and the first-class Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum that features almost every kind of local desert fauna and flora in an outdoor setting. The old mining town of Tombstone attracts crowds of tourists as the site of the shootout at the OK Corral.
There's no reason to ignore Tucson's city centre, though. With a number of museums, parks, shops, restaurants and nightspots, Tucson has a lively atmosphere that will entertain any visitor. The vineyards scattered southwest of the city provide its restaurants with all flavours of local wine, and its Mexican influence ensures just the right amount of spice!
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