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Tucson & Saguaro National Park Bike Tour

  • Thistle in Saguaro National Park
  • Saguaro National Park scene
  • Hike in Catalina State Park
  • Catalina Mountains near Tucson
  • Tucson mural with bikers
  • Saguaro cacti along the trail
  • Scott on the Loop trail in Tucson
  • View from slopes of Mt. Lemmon
  • Tacos for dinner
  • Colossal Cave
DURATION
6 Day(s)
DAILY BIKING
26 to 62 miles
TRIP DIFFICULTY
3-Intermediate
REVIEWS
STARTING FROM
$3295
SINGLES ADD FROM
$1,100

Trip Overview

Tucson has a lot to offer cyclists. It’s a gold-level bike-friendly city with some of the most scenic cycling in Arizona. This is a popular biking destination for good reason … mild spring and fall temperatures, blue skies, and the views are out-of-this-world-spectacular.

You also visit Saguaro National Park in the heart of the Sonoran Desert — famous for the nation’s largest cacti. Enjoy the world-renowned Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum: a zoo, natural history museum and botanical garden. You ride Tucson’s famed Chuck Huckleberry Loop, stopping to look at the dozens of art pieces along the way. Visit the Pima Air & Space Museum to view historic aircraft if you like. Ride or hike the dramatic Mount Lemmon. Visit a spectacular cave and enjoy a guided ride to view Tucson's famous murals.

Unpack once, and at the end of each day, relax at a historic resort and enjoy the pool and spa. Stretch your summer with a March or November ride that won’t disappoint in lovely Arizona!

Want more cycling on our Nov. 12-17, 2023 tour? Extend your stay for the following weekend and participate — with our support — in the “El Tour de Tucson” charity cycling event. Get a discount on your El Tour de Tucson registration and more when you join us for this optional extension. Contact our office for details.

Learn more about our November 3-day weekend add-on to join the El Tour de Tucson event

Itinerary

From start to finish, check out the route.

DAY 1 - Catalina State Park & Canyon del Oro
Distance: 26 or 47 miles | Climbing: 604 or 870 ft | Terrain: Easier or Intermediate | Hacienda del Sol
The trip begins with a shuttle pickup at either the Hampton Inn Tucson Airport or at the Hacienda del Sol, before continuing on to Catalina State Park in the Oro Valley. The park offers an excellent introduction to the desert landscape and, while warming up on your bicycle on the park’s quiet roads, you are encouraged to take the optional 1.4-mile trail hike. The trail offers great views and skirts alongside ancient ruins and stands of tall saguaro cactus. After a picnic lunch, the day’s cycling is almost all on paved paths. As you cycle south through the valley, your route continues onto the Canada del Oro River Trail, following its namesake waterway. Spin onto the famed Chuck Huckleberry Loop and ride alongside the Rillito River bed — ending in the Catalina Foothills at your beautiful accommodations for the evening. Dinner is together at the Hacienda del Sol.
DAY 2 - Cactus Forest Drive and Pima Air & Space Museum
Distance: 26, 44 or 66 miles | Climbing: 832, 1,549 or 2,075 ft | Terrain: Intermediate | Hacienda del Sol
After a hearty breakfast, cycle or shuttle to the beginning of today’s ride at the Saguaro National Park East entrance. Cycle the acclaimed picturesque Cactus Forest Drive, which runs through the heart of an extensive saguaro forest, noting the unique Sonoran Desert life. After leaving the park, the route goes to the Pima Air & Space Museum, which features about 400 historic aircraft. Visit the museum on your own if you like. Enjoy a picnic lunch before cycling or shuttling back to the inn to relax at one of the Hacienda’s three swimming pools or outdoor hot tubs. You are on your own for dinner, with great options nearby.
DAY 3 - Colossal Cave
Distance: 30, 47 or 66 miles | Climbing: 550; 1,738 or 2,260 ft | Terrain: Intermediate or Advanced | Hacienda del Sol
After breakfast, cycle from the Hacienda to start the day’s ride by enjoying a section of The Loop through expanses of the lowland desert. Your destination is Colossal Cave Mountain Park. Discovery covers your visit to the cave itself, which features a local guide who fills you in on the geology of the area spiced with colorful, local legends. Enjoy another picnic lunch at the Mountain Park overlooking fabulous views of the surrounding valleys and mountains. You return from Colossal Cave via a great downhill that incorporates parts of the Old Spanish Trail Road. Dinner is with the group at a fabulous, authentic Mexican restaurant.
DAY 4 - Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum & West Loop Cycling
Distance: Distance: 19, 29 & 36 | Climbing: 636, 736 or 961 ft | Terrain: Intermediate | Hacienda del Sol
Hop in the van for a shuttle downtown for a delicious breakfast. Then take a 30-minute shuttle to the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, a world-renowned botanical garden, zoo, and natural history museum. Enjoy wandering the expertly curated paths of this natural wonder, stopping by butterfly and cactus gardens, visit the hummingbird house, catch sight of the curious ocelot or observe the pack of javelinas going about their day’s forage for mesquite beans and prickly pear. Departing the museum, enjoy lunch downtown before heading out to enjoy some choice sections of Tucson’s The Loop cycle circuit, skirting through north Tucson, and finishing at the Hacienda. You are on your own for dinner this evening, with great options nearby.
DAY 5 - Mount Lemmon
Distance: 30 or 60 miles, or 3.8-mile hike | Climbing: 6,985 ft | Terrain: Intermediate to Advanced | Hacienda del Sol
This day offers the unique opportunity to experience Mount Lemmon the way you want to! For lovers of hill climb cycling: Do part or all of the 6,985-foot elevation gain of this amazing mountain road, stopping for jaw dropping views of the surrounding valley. Those opting to instead hike will enjoy the same mountain road riding in the shuttle … plus wander the 3.8-mile trail along an eastern ridge, stopping for many views overlooking the Reddington Valley and the Galiuro Mountains to the east. Lunch for both cyclists and hikers is on your own in the hidden mountain town of Summerhaven, with options including the Sawmill Restaurant, Mt. Lemmon Cookie Cabin (famous for its huge, delicious cookies — with pizza available too), or grab & go options at the Mt. Lemmon General Store. The shuttle to and from the Mt. Lemmon access road from the inn is only 25 minutes. You return to the Hacienda for a celebratory group dinner in their elegant Grill restaurant.
DAY 6 - Departure Day & Tucson’s Murals
Distance: 5.2 or 13.1 miles | Climbing: 210 or 547 feet | Terrain: Easier
Have breakfast downtown, and then enjoy a cycle route by some of the city’s best murals. Known for its numerous sculptures as well as more than 1,000 murals, Tucson’s public art scene is a vibrant reflection of the unbeatable community spirit … along with a whimsical outlook on life. You cycle by a number of the more lauded murals, noted by the local art museum as not to be missed. Plus, get a glimpse into some of the city’s more colorful neighborhoods. The 5.2-mile mural ride ends at a little café in the university area where you can choose to shuttle back to the inn or cycle the remaining 8 miles to the Hacienda, enjoying one of the city’s “bike boulevards” along the way. Lunch can be had at the Hacienda, and the Discovery shuttle departs at 1:30 p.m. to return to the airport area hotels or the airport itself.

Map

Dates & Pricing

Prices are per person based on double occupancy (2 people in one room). Single supplement for private room is listed at the top of this page. A deposit of $500 holds your reservation for most tours. For weekend tours, the deposit is $300.

Start End Cost Availability
Mar 12, 2023 Mar 17, 2023 $3295.00 1 to 4 spaces left! Reserve Reserve
Nov 05, 2023 Nov 10, 2023 $3295.00 Available! Reserve Reserve
Nov 12, 2023 Nov 17, 2023 $3295.00 Available! Reserve Reserve

What’s Included

5 nights’ lodging, 5 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 3 dinners (you are on your own for 2 dinners), Colossal Cave Tour, Sonoran Desert Museum, National & State Park admission. We also include detailed maps and itineraries, experienced guides, full van support — plus use of a bike and helmet. Airfare is not included.

Dates & Pricing

Prices are per person based on double occupancy (2 people in one room). Single supplement for private room is listed at the top of this page. A deposit of $500 holds your reservation for most tours. For weekend tours, the deposit is $300.

Start: Mar 12, 2023
End: Mar 17, 2023
Cost: $3295.00
Availability: 1 to 4 spaces left!
Reserve
Start: Nov 05, 2023
End: Nov 10, 2023
Cost: $3295.00
Availability: Available!
Reserve
Start: Nov 12, 2023
End: Nov 17, 2023
Cost: $3295.00
Availability: Available!
Reserve

What’s Included

5 nights’ lodging, 5 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 3 dinners (you are on your own for 2 dinners), Colossal Cave Tour, Sonoran Desert Museum, National & State Park admission. We also include detailed maps and itineraries, experienced guides, full van support — plus use of a bike and helmet. Airfare is not included.

Inns

Where you stay along the way.

Hacienda del Sol
Escape to this luxurious resort in the heart of the Sonoran Desert and let their alluring amenities elevate your Tucson getaway to the realm of the extraordinary. Relax and feel the stress disappear as expert therapists treat you to rejuvenating spa treatments. Dive into the pool for a refreshing swim or unwind in the Jacuzzi as you take in stunning views of the Santa Catalina Mountains.

Guests say …

Quotes from guests about this tour:

Gallery

Images from this tour. Click each to see it larger.

Thistle in Saguaro National Park Saguaro National Park scene Hike in Catalina State Park Catalina Mountains near Tucson Tucson mural with bikers Saguaro cacti along the trail Scott on the Loop trail in Tucson View from slopes of Mt. Lemmon Tacos for dinner Colossal Cave