Last Updated on February 15, 2024

Surrounded by the beautiful Sonoran Desert, Tucson, AZ welcomes visitors with its unique blend of vibrant culture, rich history, and breathtaking natural beauty.

As the second-largest city in the Grand Canyon State, Tucson captivates with a warm Southwestern charm where adobe-style architecture and saguaro cacti silhouette against the azure sky. The city seamlessly fuses ancient traditions with modern innovation, offering a tapestry of experiences for residents and travelers alike.

Whether exploring the historic downtown, marveling at the astronomical wonders from its renowned observatories, or immersing oneself in the flavors of its eclectic culinary scene, Tucson beckons with a spirit that captures the heart.

My wife and I were fortunate to live in Tucson for three years and we can tell you that late winter, early spring and fall are the best times of year to vacation (and live) here. Spring is especially magnificent due to the vibrant desert wildflowers in bloom, sunny days, bluebird skies and comfortable temperatures.

You won’t believe the picturesque hiking opportunities that abound throughout the entire area!

If you really want to immerse yourself in Tucson’s fascinating culture, a stay in a vacation rental that oozes the “true Southwest feel” is highly recommended. Whether you stay in the downtown Barrio historic district or wake up surrounded by the beauty of the desert, you’ll love your time in Tucson.

Adobe Home in Barrio Viejo

The Isabella adobe home in Barrio Viejo Tucson.
The Isabella adobe home in Barrio Viejo Tucson. Photo courtesy of VRBO

This cozy, but stunning one-bedroom, one-bath adobe condo in Tucson’s “old neighborhood” offers Saguaro cactus rib ceilings, thick adobe walls, and brick paved floors in a complex dating back to 1888.

Visitors will love that its prime location within walking distance to downtown, the SunLink streetcar to the University of Arizona, and a myriad of local brewpubs, coffee shops and restaurants.

Southwestern Casita with Lush Yard

Here’s another downtown Tucson vacation rental we absolutely love.

The private and inviting Southwestern-style casita can sleep up to four guests with one queen bed and a double sofa bed in the living room.

The casita is fully solar and offers a brand-new bathroom, dining room, kitchen, and fully fenced yard. Guests have access to the entire house and everything that goes with it, including bikes that you’re welcome to use to explore the local area.

Santa Fe Style Home with Pool

Santa Fe style home with private pool in Tucson.
Santa Fe style home with private pool in Tucson. Photo courtesy of VRBO

Located within the historic Sam Hughes neighborhood, 9th Street Retreat is a gorgeous, tastefully decorated two-bedroom, two-bath home that can accommodate up to six guests.

The neighborhood, with its historic abodes is so much fun to explore and you’ll love the privacy of this ranch home situated on a quarter acre with a backyard Sonoran oasis. The vacation rental is located just minutes from the University of Arizona and is convenient to the bike paths and hiking trails that make Tucson so popular with both locals and visitors.

And who doesn’t love having their own pool for a dip or a swim? The eight-foot picscina also includes a kiddie pool and a spa.

Private Desert Escape with Million-Dollar Views

Not only does this stunningly beautiful 2,170-square-foot home have a luxurious infinity pool, but its views of the Catalina Mountains are absolutely stunning!

The five-acre Santa Fe-style sanctuary boasts three bedrooms and two-and-a-half baths and is perfect for a family or group of friends as everyone has their own sleeping space with lots of room to gather and enjoy one another’s company in front of the fireplace or preparing a meal in the kitchen that has it all.

This place is quintessential Tucson luxury with a laid-back ambiance you’ll truly love.

Historic Oasis with Pool, Garden and Fire Pit

The Lavender House is a 1940s historic home located in the lovely San Clemente neighborhood of Tucson. Remodeled using old-world materials and techniques, the impressively appointed home features handmade Moroccan tiles, lime wash walls, original oak floors and a vintage soaking tub.

The three-bedroom, two-bath abode is divided into two wings, offering ultimate privacy if you’re traveling with family or friends.

The garden has been landscaped with a Mediterranean flare incorporating lavender, sage, rosemary, pomegranate, citrus and old olive trees. Guests will love having their own private pool, firepit and plenty of seating for outdoor dining.

Historic Home in Armory Park Near Downtown Tucson

This place absolutely exudes Southwestern charm. The beautiful two-bedroom, two-bath historic vacation home with a stunning backyard and heated pool is perfect for a couple or a family with kids.

Guests will find plenty of patio space to relax in the sun or the shade, given the surrounding garden is filled with olive, grapefruit and lemon trees. This house is so Tucson, and so cute, it’s ideal for a Southwest Arizona stay.

Casita Naranja in NE Tucson Foothills

Casa Naranja vacation rental in Tucson Foothills.
Casa Naranja vacation rental in Tucson Foothills. Photo courtesy of VRBO

Nestled in the lush desert of the Tucson foothills, this Spanish-style casita sits on four acres surrounded by saguaros and the beautiful Sonoran Desert in Indian Hill.

Perched high on a hill offering star-lit nights and twinkling city views, the one-bedroom, one-bath casita can sleep up to four guests with a sleeper sofa. The home is lovingly appointed with Western and Mexican motifs along with decorative artwork on the walls.

An outdoor porch provides stunning mountain views and the excitement of being able to watch the local wildlife scurry by (or hang out as they often do).

Starr Pass Private Townhouse

Starr Pass, just six miles west of Tucson, is one of the most picturesque areas of the city. Its location within Tucson Mountain Park makes this a perfect place for hiking and mountain biking.

This two-bedroom, two-bath townhome near the impressive JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort & Spa offers breathtaking views of the mountains and the desert with its unique saguaro cacti and pristine golf courses. Guests will love the private patio and communal pool surrounded by more impressive vistas.

Casa Milagrosa Guesthouse Within Tanque Verde

Welcome to your own private getaway on the east side of Tucson near the Aqua Caliente Canyon overlooking the vast Tucson Valley and sloping mountainsides of the Santa Catalina Mountains.

This casita guesthouse features lovely Southwestern décor with a spacious living room with fireplace, kitchenette, and queen-sized bedroom with a separate bath.

Guests can stargaze from the privacy of their porch, enjoy access to a heated outdoor spa and fireplace across the driveway of the main house, or barbeque right at your own casita.

This area is filled with hiking opportunities, especially to the Agua Caliente Canyon leading to pools of water and the triple-layered Milagrosa Falls accessible during the rainy season.

Tucson offers nature lovers an array of opportunities to enjoy in one of my favorite cities in Arizona. No matter what vacation rental you choose, you can’t go wrong in an area surrounded by so much natural beauty.

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