Tucson Marathon & Half Marathon
Tucson, AZ USA
Sunday, December 8, 2013

Tucson Attractions

Armory Park Historic District
Tucson's first historic district offers an eclectic mix of architectural styles including Spanish, Victorian, Queen Anne, mission, Spanish Colonial Revival and California bungalow. The Temple of Music and Art (Tucson performance center for Arizona Theatre Company), Tucson Children's Museum and Tucson Center for the Performing Arts are all located in this 30-block area. The district extends from East 12th Street to 19th Street and from Stone Avenue to Second Avenue.

Barrio Historico (Barrio Viejo)
This neighborhood was established as Tucson spread south from the original Presidio settlement. It contains a large collection of old adobe buildings and offers excellent examples of Sonoran architecture built from local materials, including mesquite wood and saguaro cactus ribs. Originally a self-contained "city within a city," the 20-block Barrio was home to a wide range of ethnic groups over the years, and the variety of shops and buildings offers obvious evidence of that. The Barrio extends from Cushing Street to 18th Street and from the railroad tracks to Stone Avenue.

Downtown Arts District
A popular spot for arts and cultural events throughout the year, this area has galleries, shops, theaters and sidewalk cafes. La Placita Village (110 S. Church Ave.) is the attractive and colorful focal point of the district, which also houses the offices of the Metropolitan Tucson Convention and Visitors Bureau. The district extends from Interstate 10 to Fourth Avenue and from 15th Street to Toole Avenue.

El Presidio Historic District
The site of Tucson's original settlement in 1775, this 12-block area is now home to historic buildings, local artisans, restaurants and the Tucson Museum of Art. If you have just a short time to get a taste of Tucson, this is the place to do it. El Presidio extends from Alameda Street to Sixth Street and from Granada Avenue to Church Avenue.

Pie Allen Historic District
Fresh fruit was hard to come by in Tucson's frontier days, so John "Pie" Allen became famous for his dried-apple pies. He also served as Tucson's mayor. This district was named in his honor. These 24 blocks just west of the University of Arizona are representative of Tucson's building boom in the late 1800s, with several buildings designed by the city's best-known architect, Josias Joesler. The district is roughly bounded by North Euclid Avenue, East Sixth Street, North Park Avenue and East 10th Street.

South Tucson
With a Mexican-American population of 83%, this 1-mile-square city--completely surrounded by Tucson--is home to some of the best Mexican restaurants in the state. The city also is known for its public art projects, particularly murals, tile art and other installations along newly redesigned South Fourth Avenue. The city of South Tucson is located at the junction of Interstate 10 and I-19, 1.5 miles south of downtown Tucson.

ASARCO Mineral Discovery Center
W. Pima Mine Road (about 20 minutes south of Tucson), Sahuarita.
Phone 520-625-7513.
Tuesday-Saturday 9 am-5 pm. Free admission to the Mineral Discovery Center exhibits, Discovery Theater, and gift shop. The center takes you from the beginning of Arizona mining to the present-day industry with exhibits about geology, minerals, mining methods and equipment. An optional one-hour bus tour of the ASARCO open-pit mine and mill is available.

Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum
2021 N. Kinney Road (30 minutes northwest of downtown), Tucson.
Phone 520-883-2702.
The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum is open from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. October through February and from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. March through September. Visit a zoo, a natural history museum, and a botanical garden when you visit the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum. The attraction has an array of wildlife, including Gila monsters and hummingbirds. The museum sits in the Tucson Mountains and is perfectly blended with the breathtaking scenery.

Arizona State Museum
The Arizona State Museum (ASM) is an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution and is the oldest and largest anthropology museum in the region. ASM demonstrates the life of the southwest with research projects and collections. The museum is open Monday through Friday from 9:30 a.m. to noon and 1 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Biosphere 2 Center
Oracle Road (Highway 77) at mile marker 96.5 (about 20 minutes north of Tucson), Oracle.
Daily 9 am-4 pm.
Phone 520-838-6200.
Built in the late 1980s with $150 million in funding from Texas oil magnate Edward Bass, Biosphere 2 is an airtight replica of Earth's environment. This 7,200,000 cubic-foot sealed glass structure contains five biomes, including a 900,000-gallon ocean, a desert, a rain forest, agricultural areas, and a human habitat. Biosphere 2 was built in the interest of space travel and with the possibility of colonizing the Moon or Mars in mind. By building Biosphere 2 and sealing people inside, scientists hoped to learn what problems would arise from living in a closed system. To this end, a colony of eight people from different countries set about to live inside Biosphere 2 for two years in 1991. Since then, there have been no resident crews living inside Biosphere 2 and no future human habitation is planned. The guided tour leads visitors Under the Glass to experience first-hand the Center's re-created "miniworld." Visitors are advised to wear comfortable shoes as there is a lot of walking.

Romero House
102 W. Washington St.
El Presidio District, Tucson.
Phone 520-624-2333.
This is the 1868 home of carpenter Leonardo Romero, who helped construct the original St. Augustine Cathedral. It is said that this home included part of the original Presidio wall. Sunday noon-4 pm, Monday-Saturday 10 am-4 pm (closed Monday June-August). 10 am-1 pm).

Casino of the Sun
7406 S. Camino de Oeste.
Phone 520-879-5400)
Daily 24 hours.
Take Interstate 10 to I-19 South, exit at Valencia and turn right. At Camino de Oeste, turn left for Casino of the Sun.

Casino del Sol
Take Interstate 10 to I-19 South, exit at Valencia and turn right. At Camino de Oeste continue straight for Casino del Sol.
5655 W. Valencia Road.
Phone 800-344-9435).
Daily 24 hours.
Dining and gaming in the form of slots, blackjack and video poker, video craps and video roulette await visitors to these two casinos operated by the Pascua Yaqui Tribe.

Catalina State Park
Oracle Road (Highway 77, about 20 minutes from downtown), Tucson.
Phone 520-628-5798.
Daily 5 am-10 pm, Visitor Center open daily 8 am-5 pm.
History and nature come together at this park. The Romero Ruin Interpretive Trail leads to an ancient Hohokam People village, and the rest of the park offers fantastic views of the Catalina Mountains' cliffs, canyons, domes and spires. You may even see bighorn sheep

Colossal Cave Mountain Park
16711 Old Spanish Trail (about 16 miles east of Tucson)
Phone 520-647-7275.
16 March-15 September Monday-Saturday 8 am-6 pm, Sunday 8 am-7 pm; 16 September-15 March Monday-Saturday 9 am-5 pm, Sunday 9 am-6 pm.
This dormant mountain cave is filled with fantastic formations stalactites, stalagmites, helictites and flowstone, and it's also filled with history. You'll learn about the bandits and train robbers who once used the caves as a hideout and the story of how the caves were discovered and opened to the public. The guided cave tour goes down about six and a half stories, and you must walk back up, so be prepared for a slightly strenuous outing. The temperature inside the cave remains about 70 F, so it is a pleasant place to visit any time of the year.

Desert Diamond Casino (New)
The newest Desert Diamond is located just seven minutes south of Valencia Road on I I9.
Phone 520-294-7777.
Monday-Friday 9 am-4 am, Saturday and Sunday
24 hours.
Two locations operated by the Tohono O'odham Nation offer slots, blackjack, bingo and satellite Keno.

Desert Diamond Casino (Original)
The original Desert Diamond Casino, just west of the Tucson International Airport on South Nogales Highway, is open daily 24 hours.

Edward Nye Fish House
120 N. Main Ave.
El Presidio District, Tucson.
Phone 520-624-2333.
Sunday noon-4 pm, Monday-Saturday 10 am-4 pm (closed Monday June-August). (free admission on Sunday 10 am-1 pm) This excellent example of a territorial-style adobe home was built in 1867 on the site of the original Presidio's military barracks. Its thick walls and saguaro rib ceilings are typical of the architecture of that period. Today, the property houses the Goodman Pavilion of Western Art, which is part of the Tucson Museum of Art.

Flandrau Science Center and Planetarium
1601 University Blvd. (at Cherry Avenue on the University of Arizona campus), Tucson.
Phone 520-621-7827
Sunday 1-5 pm, Monday-Wednesday 9 am-5 pm, Thursday-Saturday 9 am-5 pm and 7-9 pm.
The University of Arizona's on-campus observatory, science center and planetarium. Interactive science exhibits educate and entertain, and the multimedia planetarium focuses on everything from ancient cultural practices and beliefs to the latest scientific discoveries.