With nonstop flights from more than 10 major US hubs and an easy drive from LA, Las Vegas, and Phoenix, Tucson is a hidden gem in the desert Southwest. From holiday lights and decor to a life-sized gingerbread display, the “Old Pueblo” is a perfect escape from the snow and cold winter weather this holiday season.
Zoo Lights at Reid Park Zoo
December 5 – 23 & December 26 – 30
A Tucson favorite holiday tradition, Zoo Lights at Reid Park Zoo, presented by Tucson Electric Power!, features over one million twinkling lights that illuminate the Zoo grounds with sounds of the season flowing throughout. Throughout the evening, guests can enjoy falling snow in the winter wonderland, pictures with Santa, live entertainment, festive foods such as s’mores and hot chocolate, and themed shopping.
Holiday Nights at Tohono Chul
December 10, 11, 17 & 18, 5:30pm – 8:30pm
Holiday Nights at Tohono Chul is a timeless tradition in Tucson. For two weekends in December, the paths will be garlanded with over a million twinkling lights, and live musicians and artists will perform throughout the gardens. The Tohono Chul Museum Shops, Retail Greenhouse, and Exhibits House also offer unique items for holiday gifting.
Winterhaven Festival of Lights
December 11 – 26, from 6pm –10pm every day
Winterhaven Festival of Lights is an annual festival where residents decorate their homes with bright lights and elaborate holiday displays. Visitors and locals alike can tour the lights on foot, on a hayride wagon, a bus trolley or a pedal-powered group bike as cars are prohibited on these streets during the evening hours. The festival is free to attend and it is asked that everyone bring a donation of food or money for the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona.
“Holidays Around the World and Through Time” at the Mini Time Machine Museum of Miniatures
Until January 9, 2022
To celebrate the holiday season, the Mini Time Machine Museum of Miniatures will feature the “Holidays Around the World and Through Time” exhibit, which depicts holiday celebrations ranging from a Daneway house decorated for an 18th century English Christmas to a Kupjack Georgian Dining Room Decorated for Hanukkah.
Life-Sized Gingerbread House Display at El Conquistador Hotel
El Conquistador Tucson is celebrating the holidays with a life-sized gingerbread house display in the lobby. Each year, the culinary team uses hundreds of pounds of flour, sugar, candy and other sweet ingredients to handcraft the gingerbread display, with past year’s themes including a Gingerbread “casita” complete with a red carpet and “Gnome for the Holidays” house featuring 70 gnome cookies.