Best Of Tucson®

Best Recreation Area in Southern Arizona

Sabino Canyon

Revolutionary environmentalist Edward Abbey said in his 1968 memoir, Desert Solitaire, that all national parks should ban car travel and instead opt for a parking lot with buses to drive the indoors-types around. Sabino Canyon has taken some of that advice. The Sabino Canyon tram is an open-air bus with narrated and non-narrated tours, and seasonal nighttime tours. It's the perfect way to see the great outdoors without all that hiking. But, as Abbey so bluntly says in the introduction to Desert Solitaire, "(Y)ou can't see anything from a car; you've got to get out of the goddamned contraption and walk, better yet crawl, on hands and knees, over the sandstone and through the thornbrush and cactus."

Runners up:

2. Mount Lemmon


3. Madera Canyon