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Trip Report Tucson- lots to do!

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My husband and I are ending 4 days in Tucson and have had a very good time. The weather was in the mid 50's in the a.m. and high 80°'s in the afternoon. Bring water, sunscreen, and a hat!

We stayed at the Hacienda del Sol, which is just north of the city in Catalina Foothills. Formerly a girls' ranch school, but it's been a hotel since the 1950's. It's a lovely place with helpful staff. The rooms are good and the suite is great! (We stayed in both.) My three minor complaints about the hotel are they left 2 bags of trash outside our door when we returned home at 5:30, the breakfast doesn't have enough wait staff so the wait was long to get our order and bring the food, and 3) the bartending was uneven. The Hacienda del Sol Grill was excellent; be sure to make an advance reservation. The "outside" porch is all enclosed, so you can sit there at any time of the year. The pool rarely had anyone there. I would definitely stay here again and recommend it.

Day 1- We went west toward Saguaro National Park and did some hiking- no rattlesnakes, but we didn't go early, early morning. The Arizona-Sonoran Desert Museum was as wonderful as everyone had mentioned. We were there for the Flying Raptors show at 2, and it was pretty spectacular including having Harris Hawks, not all from the Museum circling overhead. The barn owls and hawks we saw followed the trainers commands and flew just a few feet overhead- exciting! Later, we went to Old Tucson, and got in at 4, so it was a very reduced price. It was hokey, but kind of cool to see how many movies were and still are filmed there to get that wild west period effect.

Day 2- Off to Sabino Canyon: I loved it, but my husband wanted to turn back when we were within 30 minutes of the Bear Canyon Falls. We took the tram and hiked for about an hour. I thought it was beautiful and we crossed a stream at 6 spots, stepping on rocks. Someone had told us to bring a second pair of shoes and socks in case we got our feet wet (the stream's not deep), but we didn't have any problem. I wanted to take the tram up and back to Sabino Canyon, but my husband was ready to leave and is not a desert lover. The landscape was very different from the western Saguaro National Park that we had seen the day before. Then, we went to downtown Tucson for lunch at Poca Cosa Cafe. It features different types of Mexican cuisine with the menu changing every lunch and dinner. We had the surprise plater, which included 3 different dishes- all delicious and very plentiful. We walked over to Old Town Artisans, which features little shops in old buildings and an outdoor garden with casual restaurants in the middle. We were told that it's a hot spot on Friday night or weekends, but was quiet when we were there. For dinner, we went to Charro's- very good Mexican food, but not special.

Day 3- We started off for Bisbee and the Queen Gold Mine Tour. We never got there, so I can't report anything, other than that was more than 1 1/2 hours to get there from our hotel and we turned around after Benson. Then, we went to the Pima Air and Space Museum. We were there about 3 hours and for air aficianados, you could stay longer. We went on the tram tour with a Vietnam War U.S. Air Force vet and that added a lot.

No more time, but there's a gallery scene, a Titan Missile Museum (think silos), a historical museum on the U of A campus, the Tucson Museum, the Old Barrio for shopping and restaurant, plus many upscale shops, golf and horseback riding, etc. It's a long way from the East Coast, but if you have 5 days at least, it's a goog place to visit.

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