Journey into Tuscon
EL PRESIDIO HISTORIC DISTRICT
This downtown neighborhood has its origins in the 18th century, and many buildings survive from the 1800s. Attractions include:
Tucson Museum of Art. Now undergoing an expansion, the museum is part of a complex of 19th-century buildings. Historical tours are offered twice weekly. $2, $1 seniors and students. 140 N. Main Ave.; (520) 624-2333.
Old Town Artisans. Pleasant one-stop spot in an adobe setting for a good selection of Southwestern crafts and jewelry. 201 N. Court Ave.; (520) 623-6024.
Between Toole and Stone avenues, this downtown street is one of the liveliest in town, and the center for a growing art and music scene. The first and third Saturday of each month, the area hosts Downtown Saturday Night, with live street music and other events. (520) 624-9977.
Hotel Congress is notable for its restored vintage Southwest decor and a busy program of cutting-edge music. 311 E. Congress; (520) 622-8849.
Eric Firestone Gallery has a great selection of mission-style and Arts and Crafts-era furnishings. 316 E. Congress; (520) 622-3350.
The stretch between Speedway Boulevard and the underpass just north of Congress has more of a Haight-Ashbury throwback feel than the urban, hipster quality of its neighboring street, with a large selection of restaurants. Caruso’s Restaurant is a vintage Italian spot. 434 N. Fourth; (520) 624-5765.
Just south of downtown, this neighborhood has undergone a dramatic transformation and has become a showcase for Tucson’s own take on Southwest style. You won’t see any howling coyotes, just some lovely flower-bedecked adobes south of Cushing Street, particularly on Meyer, Main, and Convent avenues.
El Tiradito. S. Main at Simpson Street.
Sosa-Carrillo-Fremont House, a nearby survivor of redevelopment next to the Tucson Convention Center, was once home to prominent city residents and now holds a small museum. Free. Wed-Sat. 151 S. Granada Ave.; 622-0956.