Why the UA Libraries - Tucson

Why the UA Libraries - Tucson

Tucson is a welcoming, diverse, and family friendly community. Surrounded by five majestic mountain ranges, you will enjoy the beautiful weather, rich cultural heritage, and southwest lifestyle.

While over half a million people now reside in Tucson, bringing businesses, attractions, and tourism, it also still has a familiar sense of local community. The University of Arizona is the second largest employer in Tucson, and is located in the heart of the city.

Arts and Culture

People travel from near and far to visit Tucson for such annual events as the All Souls Procession, the Gem and Mineral Show, and the Tucson Festival of Books.

Tucson is known for its support of local arts, with independent movie theaters such as The Loft and the Fox Theatre, and such world-renowned research centers and museums such as the Center for Creative Photography and the outdoor Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum

Restaurants and Entertainment

You will find a great selection of restaurant and entertainment choices throughout Tucson, especially in downtown Tucson, which has been revitalized over the last few years. A modern streetcar is set to be opening in 2014, connecting the university to downtown.

Music acts from around the globe perform regularly at the historic Hotel Congress and Rialto Theatre. You can also see live music, from jazz to Latin to rock, at such local haunts as La Cocina and Sky Bar.

Tucson boasts the largest performing arts organization in the state, the Arizona Theatre Company. You can experience Broadway in Tucson at the Tucson Music Hall, and a variety of musical, theatrical, and comedic performances at Centennial Hall through UA Presents.

You can dine at a myriad of local restaurants, from creative burgers at Lindy's on 4th to vegetarian fare at Sparkroot to Sonoran Mexican at El Charro, the oldest Mexican restaurant in the country. 

Learn more about Downtown Tucson.


Tucson is set in the heart of the Sonoran Desert. With mild winters and 300 days of sunshine a year, you will enjoy spending time outdoors. See average weather and plants and animals local to the region.

There are plenty of opportunities to connect with the natural world at places like Tohono Chul Park and the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum. Or explore our many hiking trails in the mountain ranges that surround our city.

Southern Arizona is also the "astronomy capital of the world." Find out about how to experience star gazing in some of the clearest skies in the country.

Environmental Consciousness 

Tucson is known for being bike and pedestrian friendly. We are ranked 5th in the country for spending per capita for cyclists and pedestrians, and have more on-street bike lanes than any other city. We were one of only four cities to earn "Gold" bicycle and pedestrian-friendly status. See the story about this study.

Our public bus system, SunTran, won "America's Best Transit System" for 2005, and in 2012 received the state's Outstanding Transit Organization and Outstanding Training Program awards. More Sun Tran awards

Tucson is consistently ranked as one of the least polluted cities in the country, ranked 4th cleanest city in 2012 for year-round particle pollution. See cleanest cities

For information on environmental and sustainability programs in Tucson, see Sustainable Tucson, community solar energy programs, and City of Tucson water rebate and incentive programs

Further Resources

Learn more about Tucson.

Last modified: September 8, 2014