1. Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum: Spanning nearly 100 acres, this acclaimed park offers a beautiful Sonoran desert setting just east of Tucson featuring a great selection of wildlife and plants native to the southwest region.
2. Kartchner Caverns State Park: Located southeast of Tucson, this state park is a perfect summer visit to cool off in a guided tour of this wet, limestone cavern showcasing a dazzling display of stalacites including a huge column aptly names Kubla Khan.
3. Old Tucson Studios: Looking for some family fun? Then Old Tucson Studios is the ticket where you find yourself immersed in an old west experience. These studios have been home for hundreds of movies and television shows with park featuring staged gunfights, stunts, stagecoach rides and tours of the studios.
4. Kitt Peak National Observatory: Kitt Peak was established as the first U.S. national observatory in the 1950s and is home to the world’s largest collection of optical telescopes. A variety of tours are available with nighttime the best option for stargazing.
5. San Xavier Del Bac: This beautifully preserved church dates back to the late 1600s which was founded by a Jesuit father, Eusebio Francisco Kino. This mission is still in use today by the Tohono O’odham Native American community.
6. Dude Ranch: Ready for an authentic cowboy experience? Well Tucson has a number of dude ranches where you can enjoy horseback riding, cattle round-ups, cook-outs and more.
7. Sabino Canyon: Numerous hikes and recreation spots can be found in Tucson’s Santa Catalina Mountain range including Sabino Canyon. You can either hike in all the way to this area featuring a creek and waterfall during the spring season or take a tram tour for part of the way in.
8. Titan Missile Museum: Tucson is home to the only remaining Titan II missile in the United States, deactivated but still intact in its launch pad. Tours are available by docents, who bring to life the Cold War era and taking you through areas of the actual launch systems.
9. Tombstone: For a fun dose of the Wild West, head on down to Tombstone where you’ll find reenactments of the OK Corral shootout, the Boothill Graveyard and the Tombstone Courthouse State Historic Park.
10. Bisbee: A short drive from Tombstone is Bisbee, a small town established in the late 1800s featuring well-preserved Victorian style buildings and tours of historic mining camps.