Tucson, Arizona – Great Living for Families, Retirees & Snowbirds!
Wouldn’t it be great if there was a place where it is sunny 286 days a year, boasts nationally recognized public schools, offers breathtaking mountain views, an abundance of Health Spas, Resorts and Golf Clubs plus a world-class University? There already is such a place! Tucson Arizona, along with its neighboring cities of Marana, Oro Valley, Sahuarita and Vail, have something for everyone and at a relatively low cost of living to boot!
Nestled in the valley of five mountain ranges, Tucson is a city of many cultures and great diversity. The city has experienced remarkable and steady growth since the 1950s, as many people have moved to the area from the Midwest, Northwest and nearby California because of the lower housing costs and spectacular scenery. The second largest city in Arizona and 33rd in the US, Tucson continues to grow into a vibrant city while maintaining the casual atmosphere of a University or Resort town.
Tucson’s warm weather and sunshine first made it a popular destination in the 1880’s, although it did not attract the retirees and vacationers it does today. Tuberculosis was a leading cause of death in the late 1800’s, and Tucson became a popular destination for those suffering from it. After World War I and continuing into the late 1920’s, Tucson was the prime destination for treatment of respiratory ailments, with over 30 sanitoriums.
Today there are no more TB clinics, and Tucson has evolved into a popular health destination, winter resort, and retirement community. The metropolitan area’s population swells from November through February as thousands of part-time “snowbirds” flee colder regions to enjoy Tucson’s warmth in the winter when temperatures hover around 68 degrees during the day.
Tucson & Neighboring Cities
Tucson was a sleepy little town until the 1950’s, when growth almost doubled . Tucson’s next growth spurt occurred in the 1970’s, as new cities formed. Oro Valley led the way, incorporating in 1974. Primarily a Residential Community, Oro Valley is also known as “Tucson’s 1st Suburb”
Marana followed in 1977, and is located adjacent to Oro Valley, but the similarity ends there. Marana was primarily a Farming (most notably Cotton) and Ranching Community.
Sahuarita incorporated in 1994, but Vail lost their bid in a 2013 vote. As a fast growing area with large tracts of undeveloped land, it is only a matter of time before Vail joins the other Tucson cities.
The Great Outdoors
The Sun, Desert, Mountains and Clear Skies combine to create an incredible outdoor playground that is open 365 days a year. Hiking, Biking, Bird Watching, Mountain Climbing, Camping & Star Gazing may be enjoyed year around, while for a couple months in Winter, you may also enjoy Skiing less than one hour away. What makes this possible?
Tucson is located in a Desert Valley which is bordered by three National Parks and surrounded by five Mountain Ranges. At an elevation of 2,500’ to 3,500’, summer temperatures are milder and evenings are cooler. And you can enjoy the outdoors with the sun shining about 350 days per year, making Tucson one of the Sunniest places in the US.
Spas, Resorts & Golf
Tucson’s great weather has also attracted a number of Vacation Resorts, from “Dude” Ranches like the Tanque Verde Guest Ranch to The Ritz Carlton, noted for catering to the most discriminating tastes, and many more in-between.
There are few places in the US that you can play golf year around, and Tucson is one of them. World Class courses abound, some having been sites of PGA Tournaments.
Fine Art, Museums, Symphony, Theatre and even Opera may be found in Tucson. As in most cities, several art galleries are located downtown but World famous Ettore DeGrazia’s Desert of the Sun Gallery may be found in the Foothills. Tucson’s own Diana Maderas enjoys national recognition and has two galleries. There are a number of local galleries as well, and Tubac, a town about 60 miles from Tucson, is home to a very active art community.
Tucson’s is also rich in the performing arts, with large halls hosting The Tucson Symphony, Broadway Shows and even Opera, as well as a number of smaller Theatres utilizing great local talent. And don’t forget the Museums, especially the renowned Sonoran Desert Museum.
Major Attractions and Sporting Events
Tucson has many historical ties to our Cowboy culture, but Tombstone is the destination of gunfighters and the Wild, Wild West. The Old Tucson Movie Studio is open for Tours and a large number of movies and TV shows were produced here.
Interested in Aviation or Cold War History? Check out the Pima Air & Space Museum or the Titan Missile Museum, home to the last missile solo from the Cold War. Science and the Environment? Try Biosphere II or the University of Arizona’s Flandrau Science Center.
For Sports, the U of A fields National ranked teams and nearby Phoenix hosts matches for all major professional sports, including Football, Basketball, Baseball and Hockey.
Weather & Climate
People unfamiliar with Tucson almost always ask, “How can you stand the heat”? Most of the time they are referring to the 117° temperatures that make the news but are actually about Phoenix. Although Phoenix is north of Tucson, summer temperatures are much higher due to the elevation, 1,086′ as compared to 2,634′ (Vail is almost another 1,000 feet higher).
We also talk about how the “dry heat” is much more tolerable than heat with humidity. It is true. I lived in Florida for 10 years and the Tucson climate is much more liveable. Sure, temperatures often exceed 1oo° in June, but from November through May the average daytime temperatures range from 64.5 to 72.3. And the skies are a rich blue and the sun is almost always shining.