Few deserts are as iconic as the Sonoran, with its tall saguaro cacti and impressive biological diversity courtesy of the bimodal rainfall pattern. Here, amid the bright swathes of poppies and lupine, rests the city of Tucson, Arizona, enjoying slightly cooler weather due to its somewhat higher elevation. A dense history dating back thousands of years has seen the area governed by Native American peoples, Spain, Mexico, and finally the United States. This historical wealth has persisted in the form of cultural riches still evident in the city's modern identity. As for natural wealth, there's no need to explain: Simply move through the varied landscape of Saguaro National Park or try to glimpse a mountain lion in the scenic wilds of Sabino Canyon. Check into one of the downtown Tucson hotels to stay close to the many museums, restaurants, and theaters in the area, or treat yourself to a stay in one of the resorts outside of town, such as the JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort and Spa.
It takes just over an hour to reach the Mexican border from most of the Tucson downtown hotels, and so perhaps it isn't surprising that the Mexican food in Tucson is some of the best you'll find anywhere in the United States. Stop by one of the locally popular Mexican breakfast buffets and load up your plate with rice, beans, eggs, and green Hatch chiles. A couple of tamales with green chile sauce hit the spot after a few hours walking around in the hot sun! And of course, if Mexican isn't really your thing, Tucson has excellent versions of all cuisine families, from sushi to sandwiches. If you're having trouble choosing a restaurant, why not sign up for one of the local food tours and sample the offerings at a variety of different restaurants while learning more about the city's history, culture, and architecture?
With its entrancing desert environs and world-class museums, Tucson is a wonderful place for children to experience new landscapes and ideas. Leave the air-conditioned loveliness of our downtown Tucson rentals and let your tires toss up a veil of desert dust on your way out to the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum. This fascinating, primarily outdoor complex will easily engage the children's attention through exhaustive exhibits on the regional flora and fauna. Stand in the hummingbird aviary and watch the jewel-colored birds flit through the surrounding foliage, gently stroke starfish in the aquarium's interactive touch tank, or take your opportunity to safely encounter poisonous reptiles such as rattlesnakes and Gila monsters. North of Tucson, kids will love exploring Biosphere 2, the famous research facility where a team of scientists spent more than two years sealed into a self-contained, artificial ecological system. And finally, don't forget to take them to the Pima Air and Space Museum to examine a variety of amazing aircraft.
The sun's cloaking embrace and the silhouettes of imperial saguaro cacti are calling you to the great American Southwest. Answer the call by booking a stay in the Embassy Suites Tucson—Paloma Village or another excellent local hotel through Travelocity and enter into the gorgeous mystique of the Sonoran Desert.