Top 5 'Cool' Things to Do Outside of Tanque Verde Ranch in the Summer

Activities and adventures are unlike any other at the Tanque Verde Ranch. However, when summer comes, sometimes the afternoon sun can get warm limiting some of our afternoon activities because of the heat. But don’t sweat it! Here are the Top 5 ‘cool’ things to do this summer in Tucson, Arizona.

Arizona Sonora Desert Museum 8a

5. The Desert life is Cool!

Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum is a must-see by its zoo, botanical garden, art gallery, natural history museum, and aquarium. It is located in Tucson and is only  30 miles from the Tanque Verde Ranch. The museum offers a wide variety of things to see and do to indoors and out. With 230 animal species, over 1,200 types of plants, along with a large mineral collection site, and special exhibits—there is plenty to entertain. Be awed by the fauna and flora with the beauty of the wildlife that inhabits the surrounding lands at the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, where their mission is to showcase and conserve the Sonoran Desert region.

Reid Park Zoo Get your animal fix at the Reid Park Zoo in Tucson. Great for families to venture through and see animals like elephants, giraffes, lions, and more. The zoo offers plenty of activities such as Giraffe encounters, a Zoo Train, the Cox Wildlife Carousel, and a daily activities schedule. The Reid Park Zoo also hosts Summer Safari on Fridays until the beginning of August. Enjoy live music, wildlife activities, food and drink specials, themed nights, animal biofacts, and more. Duck away from the hot sun, 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm on Friday nights at the zoo this summer.

4. Watch the cool Old West

Gaslight Theatre Although the Gaslight Theatre doesn’t have a western theme it’s a great entertainment venue that will be sure to keep you laughing and ‘cool’ in your seat. See shows with dancing, acting, great stage production, and more. Enjoy refreshing beer, food, and free popcorn. Enjoy a comedic and musical theatre show with a live band or concerts on Monday nights.

Trail Dust Town Only a couple miles from the Tanque Verde Ranch, Trail Dust Town offers fun for everyone! See Wild West stunt shows, ride on a real mini train, or walk through and enjoy the sites of the Old West. Visit the multiple shops that offer gifts, novelties, and more. The stunt shows, performed by Pinnacle Peak Pistoleros, are appropriate for all ages to see. Come by this old, rebuilt piece of time and learn some history along the way.

3. Keep Cool with Karts

Autobahn Indoor Speedway & Events Stay cool with racing speeds as you zip in front other drivers on Autobahn’s INDOOR track. Accelerate up to 50 mph! This indoor track is located in Tucson close to the University. Grab your need for speed with two indoor track options. It is an excellent option for friends and families of all sorts.

Musselman Honda Circuit With several different rental options of racing simulators, blokarts, Miata sports cars, and more, the adrenaline will keep you hot, but the speed and breeze will cool you down. Take training courses on our several availabilities, or participate in a race with some friends on our fast karts. We give you the Green Flag! Come on out and race with Musselman Honda Circuit today!

2. See Earth the Cool Way

Biosphere 2 A must-see not only in Tucson but in the world. The Biosphere 2 facility serves as a laboratory for controlled scientific studies and education on Earth, and its living systems. Stay cool and amused inside this giant greenhouse that hosts model systems of rainforests, oceans, savannas, mangroves, deserts, and a model city. Check out the variety of tours, and special events the Biosphere 2 offers and see the world’s largest earth science laboratory. After all, science is cool!

Arizona Zipline Adventures Feeling hot and adventurous? Leap off of one of Arizona Zipline Adventure’s platforms and zip through the desert-scapes. Fly through the sky and take in views of Mt. Lemmon and the Sonoran Desert. The site-seeing tour alone will take your breath away. Nothing beats the heat better than zipping high speeds through the air. It’s the best choice to beat the desert summer heat.


1. Refresh Yourself Underground with Cave Spelunking

Kartchner Caverns State Park Voted best Arizona attraction by USA Reader’s Choice Awards, Kartchner Caverns always stays cooler than above ground. The Katchner Cave features some of the world’s best cave formations. In the cave tours, you can expect to learn an abundance of history and information with a knowledgeable guide.

Colossal Cave What started as a hideout for Old West bandits in the late 1800s is now a well-known, historical cave site for visitors and explorers alike. Learn the intriguing Colossal Cave stories with your guide while winding through the cool crevices.

Now you have all the more reason to come out to Tanque Verde Ranch this summer! Explore all that the Tucson area has to offer. Beat the heat, drink lots of water, and have fun!