Can't Miss Local Spots When You Visit Tucson


tucson travel guide


New to Tucson? Visiting for a few days?

Want a taste for what life's like here in The Old Pueblo?


We share our favorite local eateries, shops, and night life spots as well as some can't miss Tucson specialties. We'll break things down by areas of town, and by category to make things a little easier, and then throw in some extra Tucson treats that either started here, or are local legends.


 

First thing's first!

Tucson was built on the territories of the Tohono O'odham Nation and the Pascua Yaqui Tribe. We love our city and want to acknowledge that we weren't the first folks to call it home. While you're here feel free to learn a little about the history of this land.

Tohono O’odham Nation Website - Pascua Yaqui Tribe Website


 

MAP

 

DOWNTOWN / WEST SIDE

DINING

tania's 33 interior

Tania's 33

614 N Grande Ave, Tucson, AZ 85745


LaCo & TallBoys

201 N Court Ave, Tucson, AZ 85701


Boca Tacos

533 N 4th Ave, Tucson, AZ 85705


El Charro

311 N Court Ave, Tucson, AZ 85701


Rollies

4573 S 12th Ave, Tucson, AZ 85714


American Eat Co.

1439 S 4th Ave, Tucson, AZ 85713


Photo by: Jackie Tran


SHOPPING

historic fourth avenue tucson

Historic 4th Avenue

N 4th Ave, Tucson, AZ


Mercado San Agustin

100 South Avenida del Convento, Tucson, AZ 85745


MSA Annex

267 South Avenida del Convento, Tucson, AZ 85745



NIGHTLIFE

Hotel Congress

Hotel Congress is a historic haunted hotel featuring Cup Cafe, bars, nightclub, music venues, and events venue in the heart of downtown Tucson, Arizona.


Hotel Congress - Club Congress - The Century Room

311 E Congress St, Tucson, AZ 85701


Owls Club

236 S Scott Ave, Tucson, AZ 85701


R Bar

350 E Congress St #110, Tucson, AZ 85701




 

CENTRAL / NORTH

DINING


La Encantada

St Philips Plaza

4280 N Campbell Ave, Tucson, AZ 85718

Notable: Union Public House, Reforma Modern Mexican, Proof Artisanal Pizza and Pasta, St. Philips Plaza Market


La Encantada

2905 E Skyline Dr, Tucson, AZ 85718

Notable: Blanco Tacos + Tequila, Firebirds Wood Fired Grill, North Italia, RA Sushi


Locale Neighborhood Italian Restaurant

60 N Alvernon Way, Tucson, AZ 85711


SHOPPING

La Encantada

2905 E Skyline Dr, Tucson, AZ 85718

Notable: Attic Salt, Creative Kind, Tucson Rescue Now


NIGHTLIFE

Transplant Detroit Style Pizza

4605 E Speedway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85712


Culinary Dropout

2543 E Grant Rd, Tucson, AZ 85716


The Shelter

4155 E Grant Rd, Tucson, AZ 85712


Tucson's only 60's retro lounge, featuring classic and modern martinis and cocktails. Check out the swank scenery, cool music, classic movies, and friendly mixologists.



 

EASTSIDE

DINING

The Barnyard Crafthouse & Eatery

11011 E Tanque Verde Rd, Tucson, AZ 85749


Guadalajara Grill

4901 E Broadway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85711


La Parrilla Suiza

5602 E Speedway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85711


Pinnacle Peak at Trail Dust Town

6541 E Tanque Verde Rd, Tucson, AZ 85715



SHOPPING

Instrumental Music Center

7063 E Speedway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85715


Instrumental Music Center has been serving the needs of musicians and teachers for over 20 years in Tucson, Arizona. Our stores are fully-stocked with student to professional lines of band, orchestra, drums, guitars, basses, keyboards, accessories, and more. We've built our reputation on our honesty, friendly service, and knowledge of our products.



NIGHTLIFE

The Maverick

6622 E Tanque Verde Rd, Tucson, AZ 85715

 

FAVORITE HIKES & SCENIC SPOTS

Sabino Canyon

5700 N Sabino Canyon Rd, Tucson, AZ 85750


Tumamoc Hill

Tumamoc Hill Rd, Tucson, AZ 85745


Gates Pass

6400 W. Gates Pass Road, Tucson, AZ 85745


 

TUCSON STAPLES


Eegee's

2510 E Speedway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85716

(but you'll see them all over town)


In 1971 Edmund Irving and Robert Greenberg pooled their resources and bought a used vending truck. In the beginning, Ed or Bob served their lemon Eegee's frozen drink in front of high schools, at sporting events, and at concerts. Over the years, the vending trucks were retired as they turned their business into a growing restaurant chain in Southern Arizona.


Eegee's is a must while you're in Tucson. It takes like the childhood of Tucson natives, and provides some much needed cooling off in the Tucson heat.

We recommend: A half lemon, half strawberry Eegee or the Flavor of the Month. Don't forget to grab some ranch fries while you're there!



Bookmans

Bookmans is the largest used book retailer based in Arizona. It was founded in 1976 by Bob Oldfather. Besides books, the store also sells magazines, CDs, DVDs, electronics, video games, and musical instruments.


Bookmans is where you take your used books, games, movies, tchotchkes, and more to get credit or cash to spend in-store. As a kid in Tucson it's a magical place to get lost in the stacks. As an adult it's a great place to save and find unique items.


Buffalo Exchange

2001 E Speedway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85719


In 1974 Kerstin and Spencer Block opened the first Buffalo Exchange in Tucson, Arizona. Kerstin, hailing from Sweden, thought the word “Buffalo” sounded very American, and since they were introducing the idea of a fashionable clothing “Exchange,” the name was born.


Much like Bookmans, Buffalo Exchange is a great place for locals to take their used and vintage clothes with the opportunity to find something new for their collection. You might have a Buffalo Exchange in your city, but it's a Tucson born shop we're proud of.


 

BONUS


SONORAN HOT DOGS

There are a TON of conflicting stories about where the Sonoran Hot Dog originated, but the one thing meat eating Tucsonan's can all agree on: They. Are. Awesome.


Sonoran Hot Dogs are typically a hot dog wrapped in bacon that's grilled and served on a bolillo-style hot dog bun (similar to a little boat instead of a typical folding bun). They're topped with pinto beans, onions, tomatoes, and a other condiments usually including mayonnaise, mustard, and jalapeño salsa.


Make sure to grab one while you're in town! We particularly love visiting these two restaurants to grab one:


El Guero Canelo

2480 N Oracle Rd, Tucson, AZ 85705


BK Tacos

2680 N 1st Ave, Tucson, AZ 85719