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Vinny Yackanin
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Things to Do in Tucson

One of the things that makes Tucson so special is there is something for everyone regardless of their interests or tastes. Whether one is interested in the great outdoors, shopping and fine dining, art and theater, history and music, Tucson offers it all.

For those interested in sports or looking to get out and about, Tucson offers 350 days of sunshine on average each year. It is one of the most bicycle-friendly places in the nation with miles upon miles of bicycle lanes and spectacular events such as the annual Tour de Tucson. Hiking trails are abundant among the Santa Catalina and Tucson Mountains, Sabino Canyon, Mount Lemmon, in the foothills and beyond. There are many groups in the area to help new hikers prepare for a journey in the desert. Tucson is also known for its world-class golf, offering a plethora of courses around town, both public and private. There are also many club sports ranging from swim and soccer to football and rugby for youth and adults alike.

Tucson and the surrounding area is also home to a multitude of attractions including the renowned Biosphere II, the Kitt Peak National Observatory where one can stargaze to their hearts desire, and the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum where the wildlife and history of the desert come alive. Film and history buffs will enjoy a visit to Old Tucson or to nearby Tombstone. Those interested in some of the culture, flora and fauna of the desert will love Tohono Chul Park and the Tucson Botanical Gardens. For residents and visitors with children or grandchildren, the Tucson Zoo, the Tucson Children’s Museum or a trip to Breaker’s Water Park are superb options for a day out. There is also the International Wildlife Museum for animal lovers who wish to see the world without leaving Tucson. For those interested in spelunking and exploring, Colossal Cave and Kartchner Caverns offer a beautiful and breathtaking opportunity.

There is also a thriving arts community in Tucson. The Wall Street Journal has even called Tucson a “mini mecca for the arts.” The city offers performing arts at the historic Rialto and Fox Theatres in downtown where a variety of local and national music artists are always on stage in addition to films ranging from the classic The Rocky Horror Picture Show to new independent films. The Tucson Jazz Society offers educational and musical events to keep America’s musical heritage alive in the city. The Ava Amphitheater offers more than 5,000 seats and lures in top entertainers from around the world. For a taste of Broadway, the ballet, the symphony, or the opera, a visit to Centennial Hall or the Tucson Convention Center is just the ticket. There is also the nationally acclaimed Arizona State Museum, the Tucson Museum of Art and the University of Arizona Museum of Art to peruse in addition to 35 art galleries in the downtown area alone.

Tucson’s active nightlife ranges from a fine micro-brew downtown to dancing on 4th Avenue. The downtown even hosts second Saturday where entertainers, food vendors and culture collide offering fun for all ages. The Desert Diamond Casino and the Casino del Sol allow residents and visitors a place where they can get their game on. Fine-dining opportunities abound in Tucson from Thai to authentic Mexican cuisine and everything in between, not to mention a multitude of shopping opportunities.