Just 70 miles south of Tucson at the foot of the Huachuca Mountains, Sierra Vista packs a mighty punch. If you are a fan of the Wild West, you will love it here. One of the last boomtown’s in the American Frontier, step back in time to the late 19th Century – site of one of the most famous gun battles in U.S History. Head to the O.K Corral and watch a reenactment that will have you jumping out of your seat or just stroll around and absorb all the old relics from the Wild West. You literally have cowboy’s roaming the streets. If you have the time, add a stopover at Boothill Graveyard where you can see the tombstones of cowboys and bandits who died during shootouts.
The Coronado National Memorial commemorates the first expedition By Spanish Conquistadores in the Southwest. Not only can you learn about the crossroads of Mexico and the United States here but the views and the hiking are amazing as well. This is the one place where history truly meets adventure. Take a free van ride up the mountain with a park ranger; he will explain the whole area to you. You may be surprised to learn that the National Memorial isn’t a statue of the Spanish Conquistador but the actual park that you are looking at. You can even see Mexico which is located just a mile away.
If you want some adventure and hiking, head to Montezuma’s Pass. This is a moderate 3-mile trek that straddles two countries. Is a task you have to try with its incredible landscapes. After you make it back to the Visitor’s Center, we recommend driving to the nearby Our Lady of the Sierra’s Pass where the 30 foot tall Madonna and Chapel is worth admiring.
For a city of under 50,000, Sierra Vista has food options that would rival place 2 or 3 times its size. Taco’s Y Raspado’s Mi Yaqui is located right near the Mexican Border. Their street tacos are probably half the price and twice the size of what you are used to back home. This town doesn’t just have good Mexican cuisines, it also has sushi, German schnitzel, or even Vietnamese food. If you are a foodie, don’t sleep on Sierra Vista.
A great way to see Sierra Vista is just to hop on a bike and go explore. There’s no better way to enjoy the beautiful scenery of Southeastern Arizona than on two wheels. There’s a reason they call it Sierra Vista or Mountain View in English because you can enjoy that amazing background while you pedal around a city that was built for the outdoors. It’s also a great way to burn off the pound of tacos you just ate.
Brown Canyon Ranch is another great place you should visit in Sierra Vista. This historic site was first settled in 1880 and before you even see the inside, you need to walk one of the multiple hiking trails which will take you right up to the mountain. Exploring the inside of the ranch house feels like you are stepping into a bygone era. The level of preservation is incredible and the total cost to visit this property is free. Take your time and soak it all in.
Sonoita has the oldest vineyard in the state of Arizona. You can spend an entire afternoon hopping around wine tasting. This region produces some of the best wine in the Grand Canyon State and this is a fun activity to do with a group of friends. The city guide will even drive you around on a tour, so you can just worry about sampling all the fine wine. From the chips and cheetos that paired well with the drinks to the exotic peacock running around the garden, every winery has a different personality.