Day Trips in Tucson

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The great thing about the region of Southern Arizona is the endless amount of day trip options that you have available! Using Tucson as your homebase allows you to be close to a lot of great small towns that will be the perfect add on to your visit to Tucson. Here are a couple of day trip ideas:

Saguaro National Park

Just outside of Tucson, the Saguaro National Park offers a lush landscape of the great Southern Arizona outdoors. It is a mixture of green paloverde trees, purple cacti and teddy bear cholla with curious local fauna such as the road runner (beep beep!) and the javelina. Even though you have encountered the saguaro in either postcards or license plates of Arizona, nothing compares to the real thing. At the Saguaro National Park, you will find plenty of saguaros. This national park offers amazing hiking trails and scenic drives. Another option while visiting the Saguaro National Park is to visit the Tanque Verde Ranch at 14301 E. Speedway Boulevard for a great cowboy experience. You will be guided by wranglers in horse back rides into the sunset. Finish off the day by driving back to Tucson and heading to Jonathan's Cork for a thick, juicy and enormous cut of steak, ostrich, bison or the Tucson classic, liver and onions. Jonathan's Cork is located at 6320 E. Tanque Road. A dinner for two goes for about $80.

Drive to Amado and Tubac

Follow the I-9 highway down to Amado, just a 43 mile away from downtown Tucson, for some great bird watching. Amado is full of cotton wood forests and is also home of the world famous and largest telescopes. To find this large telescope head to the top of Mount Hopkins at 670 Mount Hopkins Road at the Fred Lawrence Whipple Observatory. If you're looking for souvenirs from this observatory, nothing beats the scaled down models available at the visitor's center. After Amado, drive about 13 miles to arrive to Tubac. This artsy town is just 20 minutes away from the Mexican border. The main attraction of Amado is the hike to the missions at the Tumacori National Historical Park, located at 1891 E. Frontage Road at Tumacacori. There's no better way to end this trip than with another great restaurant offering the best steaks of Arizona: Cow Palace. These steaks are so good, that even John Wayne ate here! Enough said. Head to 28802 South Nogales Highway in Amado. Large groups are not only welcomed but encouraged. A dinner for two goes for about $60.

September 20, 2009 new by damiandavilarojas

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