KGUN 9NewsLocal News


Tucson's Tohono Chul named 'One of the World's Ten Best Botanical Gardens'

According to Travel + Leisure Magazine
Posted at 8:12 AM, May 24, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-24 12:10:01-04

TUCSON, Ariz. (KGUN) — Travel + Leisure Magazine has named Tohono Chul as 'One of the World's Ten Best Botanical Gardens."

Marketing and Communications Director Michelle Armstrong says locals are also calling it the best location for reconnecting with nature, getting away from the heat and focusing on wellness.

Armstrong called attention to the new summer series Tohono Chul is launching from Wednesday, June 1 to Sunday, Sept. 4.

During the mornings, Tohono Chul will offer the following:

  • Free limited admission
    • Available daily from 7 to 8 a.m. for guests to get their wellness on in the cooler morning hours.
  • Walking Path
    • A newly created 1-mile walking circuit is perfect for getting 2,000 steps while enjoying the morning majesty of nature.
  • Weekly Yoga
    • Available Tuesdays at 7:15 a.m.
    • There is an additional $10 fee to participatebut there is no better place to practice than the scenic gardens of Tohono Chul.
  • Sip N’ Stroll
    • Launching 7 to 10 a.m. daily, savor a coffee, lemonade or scone from the Garden Bistro in the Spanish Colonial Garden.
  • Desert Discovery
    • Fun, education and wellness-related activities for kids Monday through Friday.

"Tohono Chul's gardens are at least ten degrees cooler than our urban areas, so we wanted to share our shady oasis with all Tucsonans for classic summertime experiences-- relaxing with friends, listening to some music, watching the sunset, and sipping a drink," shared Executive Director Jamie Maslyn Larson. "We are just 20 minutes from downtown, but it truly feels like a world away."

These weekend activities are also planned:

  • Chillin at the Chul
    • Fridays and Saturdays from 5 to 8 p.m.
    • Features local musicians and DJs, refreshing spirits, and Sonoran dogs, tacos and light bites.
    • Visitors can literally chill down in the gardens as they relax in the shade of mature trees contributing to a cooling 10° difference in temperature.
  • Nature Niños
    • Tohono Chul is partnering with the Children’s Museum of Oro Valley for Saturday morning and evening nature play to keep kids entertained while parents unwind.

Tohono Chul is a nonprofit organization. Its mission is to enrich people's lives and connect them with the wonders of nature, art and culture in Southern Arizona.
Scheduled special events also include:

  • Bloom Night
    • Tohono Chul is home to the world’s largest private collection of the Peniocereus greggii.
    • As the summer heat begins to build, the buds of the night-blooming cereus begin to appear.
    • After a period of start-and-stop growth, the buds blossom in a mass blooming for one night only.
    • Interested parties can sign up for their email newsletter to receive updates on the progress of the blossoms and the announcement of Bloom Night.
  • Monsoon Madness Plant Sale & Afterparty
    • Tohono Chul continues with their annual plant sale focused on weird and wonderful plants, but with a new afterparty.
    • Sale on Friday, July 29 from 3 to 7 p.m.
    • Afterparty filled with music and food trucks from 5 to 8 p.m.
    • Plant sale continues to Saturday, July 30 from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

For more information about the schedule of events, summer hours and signing up to receive updates, please visit

RELATED: Tucson Botanical Gardens makes best gardens in America list

Caleb Fernández is a digital content producer for KGUN 9. After earning his bachelor's degree from Penn State in Advertising/Public Relations, Caleb went to New York where he learned production assistance, photography and art direction. Share your story ideas and important issues with Caleb by emailing or by connecting on LinkedIn, Instagram, and Twitter.