Buying the turkey. Prepping the guest rooms. Buying plenty of pies (and eggnog). When facing all of your to-do’s for the fast-approaching holidays, it can be easy to forget to plan exactly what to do with the family when they finally arrive. You can relax – we gathered a list of our 5 favorite spots in Tucson to take the whole family. From the largest airplane graveyard in the world to a breathtaking Festival of Lights, you will be sure to keep your family jolly all season long.
Davis-Monthan Air Force Base Aircraft Boneyard
Did you know Tucson is home to the largest aircraft boneyard in the world? The Davis-Monthan Aircraft Boneyard is a sight that you won’t want to miss! With so much history, family members of all ages will be fascinated! The Pima Air and Space Museum offers tours, but requires a reservation at least 10 days prior as of November 1st, 2017. You can find details about tours at http://www.pimaair.org/tour-boneyard.
Winterhaven Festival of Lights
If you are already counting down the days until Christmas, you will love the all-out house decorations and tangible holiday spirit at Winterhaven’s Festival of Lights. Take a drive through a neighborhood where every house is decked out with Christmas lights and lawn figurines, and keep an eye out for Santa and his Reindeer on the rooftops! Sit back and enjoy on a hayride or trolley limo, or get in on the action by renting a party bike. You can also buy cocoa, coffee, sugary treats and hot dogs. Open December 9th – 26th, Winterhaven is a Tucson classic. Make it a romantic evening for you and your spouse or a night of fun for the whole family. Visit the website at http://winterhavenfestival.org.
The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum
For a full day experience that the kids will love as much as you do, visit the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum. We guarantee this is like no zoo or museum you have ever seen. From the moment you arrive you will be able to see native plants and wildlife, and even spot a raptor in flight! With a world-class zoo, botanical garden, aquarium, history museum and an art gallery, this is an experience you simply can’t miss. There are also several dining options for you to choose from. It is primarily outdoors, so be sure to wear comfy shoes and pack sunscreen. Check it out at https://www.desertmuseum.org.
If you are interested in a scenic mountain drive and perhaps some snow, Mount Lemmon is right up your alley. Summerhaven is a small and welcoming Mt. Lemmon community approximately 31 miles north of Tucson. The mountain is around 30 degrees cooler than the valley, so you may find this is the perfect opportunity to go sledding (or skiing in December – March). You can also find delicious fudge at the Mt. Lemmon General Store & Gift Shop and several quaint dining options. Due to snow, the roads can occasionally close so be sure to check conditions at http://mtlemmon.com/weather-conditions/.
Go back in time and experience the Old West at this family-fun park and film studio. Old Tucson is a classic Tucson site, where stars such as John Wayne, Clint Eastwood, Gene Hackman and Frank Sinatra worked to create many classic films that we know and love! While here, you can see live-action gunfights and saloon musicals, peruse the shops and take in a lot of Tucson’s history. Tours are available, and there are on-site dining options. For directions and ticket information, visit the website at http://oldtucson.com/visit-ots/.
With beautiful weather and so many family friendly options, Tucson is the perfect place for the holidays. We hope you enjoy and have a safe Winter season.