Hot Dry Climate. Desert country.
My daughter lives and works here.
ARIZONA IS A Great place to visit.The temperature is hot in April but dry so you feel it less. If you are on the mountain side it is cool at night. I spent a month on two seperate occasions and saw something new every day. ex. Air show.The Arizona Sonora Desert Museum, COLOSSAL CAVE,The Lilies of the Field historical church,We went by car to the top of Mount Lemon near Tucson and there was still some snow on the ground. ( thrilling ride, scary). A SIDE TRIP BY BUS TO The Grand Canyon, visiting on the way Jerome (billion dollar copper camp) now abondened by the mining Co. but the residents now are mainly artists, selling their wares to the tourists.A thrilling ride up and down the mountain on narrow roads. Montezuma Castle,Superstition Mountain, Red Rock crossing at Oak Creek Canyon, Sedona,Flagstaff, Prescott' Took an other side trip by air to Los Vegas for 3 days and stayed at Caesar's Palace..A trip to visit Old Tucson( where they use to make cowboy movies) and to Tombstone (O.K. Corral).We also went by car to Nogales Mexico, which is only a couple hours from Tucson. We spent the day there shopping.----------------------------------------------------------------- I went first by air in 1989 to Tucson and returned by auto (2500 miles from Montreal) via Toronto. London,Windsor, Chicago. A stop for 3 days at Branson Missouri and continued west though north Texas down through New Mexico and into Arizona.Great trip.I stayed for a month. Rented a condo first time (Chateau Sonata Apts. )Second time in a freinds home at Finisterra Estates. More on this later with pictures.Eat at the Hidden Valley Inn 4825 North Sabino Canyon. This restaurant is a museum, as well ,of the 'Old West'. Great place for kids to see. The beautiful clear blue sky. The warm dry weather and the sun,the flowers and the cactus trees. Almost wish I lived there all the time. Health insurance keeps me in Canada.( The picture is the latest one of my daughter and family my sister Claudette Simonne and myself. It was taken at Sudbury Ontario in July 2001 at a family reunion.
Casual Friday every day
Shorts, t-shirts, and Tevas are appropriate for most venues and restaurants, especially in the summertime--hey, it's freakin' hot. Dress appropriately. Oddly, the exception to this seems to be churches (or at least Catholic ones), so if you're a midwesterner used to jeans and sneakers at 9:00 mass, uh, you might want to throw on a pair of khakis.
Tattoos and multiple piercings won't get you a second glance, unless someone stops you to ask where you got that totally amazing tat done, or how much you paid for your eyebrow ring.
And at least in Midtown and the university area, nobody really gives a rat's ass if a couple walking hand-in-hand is of mixed races or matching genders. It's very much a live and let live kind of place, as long as you treat people decently. And yes, this is a good thing.
Biodome-like Biosphere, 40 miles from Tucscon
We drove about 40 miles north of downtown Tucson on State Highway 77 near Oracle to get to Biosphere 2. This is a 3.15-acre (12,700 m2) structure originally built to be a man-made, materially-closed ecological system in Oracle, Arizona by Space Biosphere Ventures - a project costing somewhere over 200 million dollars...the entrance fee though is about $20 but sometimes, you can find clippings that give you a significant discount. I think we found one through the Tucson magazine which gave us $5 off.
The facility was used to explore the complex web of interactions within life systems in a structure that included five areas based on natural biomes and an agricultural area and human living/working space to study the interactions between humans, farming and technologies with the rest of nature. So, inside you do see the Amazon Raining Forest, the mangroves of Florida and then even the desert (which was already outside the complex anyways).
But before this place used to be airtight and there people shutr in for months in the eraly 1990's (1994 being the latest) - but now the complex is exposed to air.Biospehere scientists explored the possible use of closed biospheres in space colonization, and allowed the study and manipulation of a biosphere without harming Earth's.
Open 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. (last tour at 3PM) daily except Thanksgiving and Christmas
Tour cost: $20 for adults, $10 for seniors, military and AAA members, $13 for children ages 6 to 12, free for those 5 and younger.
32540 S Biosphere Rd, Oracle - (520) 838-6100
Directions: 10 exit 240. East on Tangerine Rd for 13.5 miles, then north on Hwy 77 for 14.5 miles, then right onto Biosphere Rd for 2.5 miles. The gate across the road closes at 4 PM.
a run-down of the congress nightlife scene
West of Sixth Avenue:
No theater is performed, but it is a fairly cool bar. Tables, chairs and pool tables are all crowded in front of medium-sized stage against a short bar. Live music most nights, usually with a cover under $5. This is where the pretentious indie crowd heads on every night but Monday.
The Red Room:
The Red Room is the bar of The Grill, although alcohol is available at all (legal) times throughout the restaurant. Where else can you get great pancakes and a $15 shot of aged whiskey? The Red Room, like The Grill, is a little grungy and often attracts a strange clientele, but the bartenders are always nice and they strangely have a fantastic beer selection, including many Belgian beers on bottle not seen anywhere else in town, several "reserve" bottles available for higher prices ($10-20) and a good selection of quality draft beer. They also take pride in their whiskey selection. Menus are on chalkboards next to the bar as they change often.
Zen Rock is an upscale dance club with a dress code and cover. It is one of the nicest clubs in Tucson, if not the nicest. There are three levels and a total of 5 rooms. Music is typical dance club music.
Sapphire is owned by the Zen Rock people and serves a slightly older crowd. Sapphire features three levels, each with its own bar and DJ. The top level is its rooftop bar, the only one of its kind in Downtown Tucson.
Centro, during the day, is Chile Verde, a somewhat gringo-esque taco shop serving the Downtown lunch crowd. Nights brings out a chic dance club. The interior is full of post-modern/Warhol type kitsch, while the exterior is literally in an alley between two large buildings. Both areas feature bars and DJs. Dress codes at Zen Rock, Sapphire and Centro.
At Centro, if you get there early, it's not as dressy and you can get in with typical Tucson garb (i.e. - flip-flops, khaki shorts, etc.).
Mexico City Cuisine
A lot of favorites with some twists that give these dishes just a little something to make them interesting and not the same tired old Mexican fare. Touting the cuisine of Mexico City, La Parilla Suiza serves up dishes that differ from standard Mexican food in that they grill all of their meats as well as handmake their corn and flour tortillas.
They've been in business for over 35 years and with 2 locations in Tucson and 2 in Phoenix, they must be doing something right. It's all good...seriously!