Tucson, located in the heart of the Sonoran Desert in southern Arizona, is a bustling desert metropolis with beautiful resorts, historic sites and a large university. The city's sunny charm and relaxed desert attitude will appeal to teens spending the day in the Old Pueblo. For a visit to Tucson that is both entertaining and enlightening, here is a fun-filled itinerary for teens spending the day in Tucson.
Spend the morning exploring the unique desert attractions located on Tucson's west side. Teens will love Old Tucson Studios, an Old West theme park and working film studio where movies like "Tombstone" and "The Three Amigos" were filmed.
Teens will have fun getting caught up in the spirit of the Wild West at Old Tucson Studios — Photo courtesy of Old Tucson Studios
Stunt shows, old-fashioned shoot-outs and musical revues featuring high-kicking saloon girls make visitors feel like they're making a guest appearance in a Western movie. The park also offers a shooting gallery, train rides, horseback riding and panning for gold.
Next, head over to the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, an award-winning zoo, botanical garden and living history museum where visitors can catch a glimpse of the desert's most intriguing fauna, including mountain lions, javelina and coyotes.
The museum is spread across 20 acres of desert gardens, making this the perfect place to encounter the natural beauty of the desert. A large cafeteria and gift shop are also on site.
The Fourth Avenue Shopping District, conveniently sandwiched between downtown Tucson and the University of Arizona, is a popular destination with local teens and college students. This tree-lined avenue, famous for its hippie vibe and eclectic storefronts, is home to over 35 locally owned retail shops and over 20 cafés and restaurants.
Teens will love window shopping, people watching and stopping at one of the local eateries for a treat. A good pick? Brooklyn Pizza, where the slices are generously portioned and cooked using the restaurant's solar oven.
Nothings beats a slice at Brooklyn Pizza in Tucson — Photo courtesy of Brooklyn Pizza Company
The University of Arizona in Tucson has one of the country's top astronomy programs. Head to the university's Flandrau Science Center for one of their popular planetarium or laser light shows.
Sit back and take a tour of the universe with the Center's star projector, which can project more than 8,000 stars. Shows are scheduled throughout the week, so make sure to check or call ahead.
For dinner, sample one of Tucson's most treasured culinary traditions: the Sonoran hot dog, a traditional hot dog wrapped in mesquite-smoked bacon and then topped with beans, grilled onions, mayonnaise, tomatoes and jalapeño peppers. You'll find one of the best-loved Sonoran dogs in town at El Guero Canelo.