Editor's Note: Update: 4/4/18. Aravaipa Farms was purchased in the summer of 2016 and has reopened as Aravaipa Farms and Inn.
One Saturday in late August 2014, Ms. Karen & I headed for the west entrance of Aravaipa Canyon to check out a place of lodging we had heard good things about: Aravaipa Farms Country Inn.
From Tucson, it took us about an hour to get there using Route 79 through Oracle and Mammoth. We knew we would have to ford Aravaipa Creek, so we delayed our day trip for a week until the monsoons had passed.
Once we crossed the (now) shallow creek, we drove through the extensive orchards on the property, including mature peach, pear & apricot trees.
Here we met proprietor Carol Steele. She told us that her inn used to be a B&B, but now guests bring their own food & beverages. Each of the 5 casitas are unique and have a kitchenette, plus:
- Queen size bed with down Comforter
- Oversized shower
- Covered Patio
- Kitchen Bar with dishes, utensils, coffee pot, toaster, hot plate and under-counter refrigerator
- Barbecue grill stocked with charcoal briquettes & lighter fluid on every patio
- Fireplace, both inside and out (no inside fireplace in the Blue Door Casita)
A full commercial kitchen is available complete with gas stove & 3 bin sinks, microwave, and a huge walk-in refrigerator. Should you rent all 5 casitas for a family reunion, for example, Carol will prepare meals for you if you wish.
A beautiful pool area with mature citrus trees overlooks the orchards. Aravaipa Creek runs through the property and flows year ‘round.
As important as the many amenities are, Aravaipa Farms should also be known and appreciated for what it does NOT have. No …
- Cell Phone Reception
In other words, Aravaipa Farms is a comfortable, rustic paradise where guests escape the intrusions of civilization. Bring comfortable hiking footwear, a good book, a spotting scope, and a camera with a telephoto lens for capturing images of the many species of birds and other wildlife that reside in the Canyon.
Casitas rent from between $150 and $185 per night.
Aravaipa Wilderness Preserve
Aravaipa Wilderness Preserve begins three miles up the creek from the Inn. The BLM allows only 30 people a day to hike the 12 miles of canyon from one end of the preserve to the other. There are no trails. You will be walking in the Creek almost the entire way through one of the most beautiful ecosystems in Arizona. To hike in the Canyon you must have BLM permits that are issued from their Safford office (928. 348.4400). Make reservations for a permit well in advance of your stay.
Ms. Karen & I hiked the Canyon last year with friends Roland & Susan, the principle performers in Carnival of Illusion. Aravaipa Canyon is definitely on our Highly Recommended list, but do get a permit months in advance.