Experience a New Stay-cation in Arizona

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As we progress through the New Year, thoughts of upcoming vacations may be forming. As a part of our resolutions to live more like a Localist,  exploring Arizona is an important aspect in this. Currently, Arizonans spend over $6 billion a year vacationing to California. So this year, make it a goal to explore more of this great state and make sure our spending money stays in our communities. So if you’re tired of seeing money go to California, baggage fees, and TSA checks, here are some amazing things to explore in Southern Arizona!

1. Explore the Beautiful Hikes and Views

Cochise County is full of amazing hikes. Here are some of our favorites:

1. Chiricahua National Monument is a beautiful hike that has some of the most unique geography around. Come out to this National Monument and find gravity-defying rock formations and some Cochise County history. Looking for more information on the hikes? Visit their website for a day hiking itinerary here

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2. Located in Benson, the Katchner Caverns are a short drive from Tucson and a beautiful, natural view to behold. Due to the age and sensitivity of the caverns, individuals are admitted through group tours. Make sure you schedule a tour to see all it has to offer!

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3. Dragoon Mountains is a great place to escape and explore in Cochise County. This mountain range offers many different trails and adventures. While you're in Wilcox, stop at one of their vineyards that supply 75% of the grapes for our Arizona wines! 

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2. Drink Your Way Through the Southwest

For those looking for more drinkable enjoyments, stop by some of the best bars in Southern Arizona.

1. Room 4 Bar is the smallest bar in Arizona. Located above the Silver King Hotel, this brightly decorated bar has only 4 stools. Don't worry about too much overcrowding though, once you get your drink you can take it out to the lobby or patio where there is usually live music. 

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2. St. Elmo Bar is one of the longest serving bars in Arizona that supposedly served through the prohibition. Stop in to the bar that opened in 1902, and while you're in there check out the live music and claw machine with strange prizes.

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3. Old Bisbee Brewing Company has some of the best brews in town! While you can get some of their drafts at the other bars in Bisbee, you don't want to miss their exclusive selection and amazing patio space. Grab your favorite brew and some of their delicious chili to enjoy while you gaze out at the town and mountains.

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3. Experience the Unique Shops and Restaurants Throughout Old Bisbee

One of the amazing things about Bisbee is that we are a town with almost no chain retailers. When you come to Bisbee you'll find unique shops, delicious restaurants, and authentic experiences. Here are some of the can't miss places in town!

1. Clothing: Tumbleweed GypsyBlack Sheep, and Redbone are all located on Subway Street (right behind Main Street). These shops offer unique, local options of clothing, home decor, bar ware, accessories, and more! Head over to Main Street and stop in Pan Terra for more traditional clothing options, or Classic Rock Couture for 1970's styled clothing.

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2. Finders Keepers, Belleza Gallery, and Bisbee Soap and Sundry are all locally curated, unique products. Finders Keepers on Main Street offers many locally made goods as well as antiques, and right across the street is Soap and Sundry which carries all locally made soaps, lotions, lip balms, and others. If you're looking for locally made art pieces, stop in Belleza Gallery on Main Street. 

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3. Restaurants: Some of our favorites stops to eat in town include Ana's Seasonal Kitchen, Bisbee Coffee Company, The Quarry, and Cafe Roka. Both Ana's Seasonal Kitchen and Cafe Roka offer seasonal, locally-gathered ingredients. Stop in Ana's for breakfast or lunch everyday, and enjoy a nice dinner at Roka from Thursday-Sunday. Stop in The Quarry for fresh, locally gathered, delicious comfort food (we recommend the five-cheese macaroni and cheese with caramelized onions added in). If you're looking for a good coffee stop, come into the Bisbee Coffee Company for a cup of locally roasted joe and a triple chocolate brownie!

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4. Explore the History in Bisbee and Southern Arizona

1. The Queen Mine Tour allows you to experience life as a miner in the Copper Queen Mine. Come ride the train into the mine and receive a tour by past miners that show you the different mining techniques and experiences they had underground. 

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2. A Smithsonian Affiliate, the Mining and Historical Museum, gives you a glimpse into the life of a miner. This museum shows you how the town of Bisbee boomed from mining and major events that occurred during it's growth.

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5. Best Stays

Now that you're sure you want to come and already planning your trip down to the Southwest, here are some of our favorite stays throughout Bisbee.

1. Located in the center of Main Street, the Letson Loft Hotel is one of the longest-standing Victorian buildings in Bisbee. This property offers free public parking for its guests. Pro tip: come during the week and call the Bisbee Visitor Center for a discount.

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2. The Copper City Inn is located on the quiet end of the Bisbee, Arizona historic business district, nestled into the side of Tombstone Canyon. The inn offer three quiet rooms each decorated in a different style, and free on-site parking. 

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Southern Arizona is an unexplored area for most Arizonians, but it has so many amazing and unique qualities that you won’t want to miss it!