A combination zoo, botanic garden, and natural history museum, Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum features over 3 km (2 mi) of walking paths crisscrossing nearly 9 hectares (21 acres) of desert landscapes. Home to more than 230 animal species and 1,200 varieties of plants, the museum focuses on the interpretation and presentation of the natural history and diverse plant and animal life of the Sonoran Desert. Often called "the lushest desert on earth," this region shelters a range of habitats benefiting from the desert's bi-seasonal rainfall. The museum gardens display the varied ecosystems of cacti, agaves, grasslands, and yucca, while the zoo area features wildlife ranging from coyotes, bears, and mountain lions to hummingbirds and rattlesnakes. Quickly create a custom-made itinerary for Tucson using our trip planner.
Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum reviews
The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum was an awesome experience. Located in the middle of the Saguaro National Park, it was a nice cherry on the top of an early morning sunrise hike. We got there right before they opened at 7:30 to take advantage of the cooler morning. By the time we left at 9:30 it was already pushing 90°. I would describe this place as a living natural history museum. Mostly outdoors, you walk from exhibit to exhibit. My wife and I particularly enjoyed the aviary, the hummingbirds and the cave exhibit.
This is one of my favorite places to take visitors but also just to go by myself. It’s serene and beautiful and highlights all the best parts of the Sonoran desert. Their summer night program is one of the best things Tucson has on tap in the summer - really well done evening programming that I look forward to every year. I’ve also taken one of their behind the scenes tours and really enjoyed that as well. Hands down at the top of my top five things to do in Tucson.
Plan your trip to Tucson
Get a personalized tripA complete day by day itinerary
based on your preferences
Customize itRefine your trip. We'll find the
best routes and schedules
Book itChoose from the best hotels
and activities. Up to 50% off
Manage itEverything in one place.
Everyone on the same page.
Popular things to do in Tucson
Side trips from Tucson
Hidden gems in Tucson
Trails in Tucson
Museums in Tucson
Nearby attractions in Tucson
Trips to Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum by other users
8 days in Santa Fe, Tucson and Southern Arizona & Grand Canyon National Park BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES Santa Fe Tucson Grand Canyon National Park 1 day in Tucson BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES Tucson 2 days in Tucson BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES Sabino Canyon Pedego Electric Bikes Tucson Madaras Gallery 4 days in Tucson BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES Mt. Lemmon Scenic Byway Sabino Canyon Pedego Electric Bikes Tucson 8 days in Tucson & Camden BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES Tucson Camden 8 days in Tucson BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES Mission San Xavier del Bac Pima Air and Space Museum Madaras Gallery