Restored Silver King Hotel: Florence, AZ
Here are our recommendations for Things To Do In Florence, Arizona including: dining, lodging, plus some interesting history.
Florence is a historic Western town about 70 miles NE of Tucson via Route 79, the old highway between Tucson and Phoenix that saw heavy use before the Interstate was built. Now Rt. 79 is just a pleasant back road.
In 2009, True West Magazine named Florence #4 on its Top 10 True West Towns. A year later, Florence jumped to #2.
Restored Brunenkant's City Bakery now houses the Florence Chamber of Commerce.
This high ranking is because Florence has preserved so many of its original buildings, such as the Old Courthouse and the partially restored Silver King Hotel.
Visitor Center, McFarland State Park & The Old Courthouse
A good place to start your visit to Florence is the Visitor Center located at McFarland State Park in the Historic District. Florence has over 140 historic buildings exhibiting architectural styles from the early Territorial Period to the 1950's.
At the Visitor Center you can get the device you need for a self-guided audio tour that will take you around a 1.4 mile loop that highlights the most significant buildings in the Historic District. If you don't require the audio version, you can download the walking tour map HERE. Read More
Southern Arizona Guide Presents The Santa Cruz River Valley Tour Join us Wednesday, November 12, 2014 for a pleasant day trip through the Santa Cruz River Valley and discover its rich history, cultural heritage, unique landscape, and distinctive foods. Your guide for the day will be Jim Gressinger, travel writer, photographer, … Continue reading
As a “city”, Tucson really came into its own in the first decade of the 20th century, even though the city was legally incorporated in 1877. It never amounted to anything of importance until the Southern Pacific Railroad arrived in 1880. The railroad connected Tucson to the outside world. It brought hardware, lumber, and fresh produce at affordable prices. Even today, you can see how the architecture of the city changed after the arrival of the railroad.
Locals are generally familiar with our major Tucson and Southern Arizona attractions, such as our fantastic Desert Museum & the beautiful gardens of Tohono Chul Park. You can find the ones we recommend under “Attractions” in the Main Menu. However, very few locals know about or have been to the … Continue reading
On a clear Sunday morning in early February, Neighbor Roy, Ms. Karen, & I arrived at the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum for our 2nd Behind The Scenes tour, this time of the new Warden Aquarium. Lacey was our guide for our group of 8, including two little boys who looked to be about 4 and 6 […]
This slideshow will introduce you to some of the sights and scenes from Southern Arizona and stories about those places. Clicking on a slide that interests you will transport you to a story about a destination or adventure.
For some time, Ms. Karen and I had been wanting to see Roland Sarlot’s and Susan Eyed’s Carnival of Illusion. I had read so many rave reviews about their performance that, if the show lived up to the hype, I wanted to add it to our Things To Do In Tucson Section of our website
Tohono Chul is a peaceful garden oasis in the midst of city and suburb. You can stroll along winding paths through several different types of gardens with hundreds of native plant species, as well as many birds, including hummers.
Here is the history of manned flight. Pima Air and Space Museum has over 300 historic aircraft on exhibit, including the Blackbird, a 1950’s design that still holds the speed record for coast to coast flight: imagine going from New York to Los Angeles in one hour.
Mt. Lemmon is a recreational paradise in the Santa Catalina Mountains and the Coronado National Forest. It is 9,157 feet (2,791 m) above sea-level, and receives approximately 180 inches of snow annually. A perfect place for skiing in the winter or camping in the summer, it also has observatories that you can view through a telescope, winter or summer. Other activities are hiking, biking and hanging out to cool off in the summer.
Mission San Xavier del Bac is about 15 minutes south of downtown Tucson. It is the finest example of Spanish mission architecture anywhere. It was built in the late 18th century and is today both an important piece of Baja Arizona history and an active Roman Catholic church serving the Tohono O’odham people.
Sweetwater Preserve is mountain bike, horse, hiker and dog friendly. On the weekends all of the above come out to play. It is one of Pima County’s newest aquisitions, a 700+ acre preserve located on the East side of the Tucson Mountains. Be prepared to share. It is a popular for mountain … Continue reading
Ms. Karen here. There is no doubt in my mind, Arizona is one of the more spectacularly beautiful states in the Union. And I have been to all of them but Alaska. Most states have their unique beauty, but most are not spectacular places where you just say “WOW!”. Because … Continue reading
As the weather warms you will appreciate the Boat Tours at Patagonia Lake State Park. Avian Boat Tours of Patagonia Lake are every Saturday and Sunday at 9:00 and 10:15 AM Lake Discovery Tours of Patagonia Lake are every Saturday and Sunday at 11:30 AM Twilight Tours every Saturday evenings. … Continue reading
Arizona State Parks has good information on exploring Arizona with their OHV (Off Highway Vehicle) program. If you are interested in where you can ride, visit Arizona State Park OHV page. … Continue reading
Whether you’re a snowbird in need of long-term lodging, or a business person in need of rooms for a small conference, or a local with a lot of guests in need of a convenient, inexpensive place to stay, here’s a Southern Arizona Guide recommendation. The Red Lion Inn & Suites … Continue reading
Do This: Take flight over the iconic landmarks of the Southwest and meet artist Arturo Chavez at the opening reception, February 20, 2015, 5-8pm. 02/19/2015 – These are the large-scale paintings of master American landscape artist Arturo Chavez on exhibit from February 20 – March 29, 2015 at Tucson Desert … Continue reading
by Gary Gomez “Quintessential Tucson since 1993″ is how I would describe El Guero Canelo, a former Sonoran Hot Dog cart. There is some debate as to whether this is the best Sonoran Hot Dog. It may be just splitting hairs. I especially love this closed-in patio type restaurant. I … Continue reading
Please Join Me on Sunday, March 1, 2015 for Southern Arizona Guide’s Tucson History & Libation Tour: A walkabout the Old Pueblo as saloon owner George Hand lived it in the 1870’s. I’m Jim Gressinger, travel writer, photographer, and publisher of Southern Arizona Guide. I will be your guide for … Continue reading
On a pleasant mid-day in January (2015) I had the pleasure of dining at Tohono Chul’s Garden Bistro with good friend Ms. Marcia. For the shear joy of dining on a patio surrounded by beautiful gardens, serenading songbirds, and acrobatic hummingbirds, you cannot beat the Garden Bistro. Two years ago, … Continue reading