Sierra Vista, which is Spanish for “Mountain Range View,” is a city that serves as the main commercial, cultural, and recreational hub of Cochise County in Arizona, United States. The city of Sierra Vista may be small if you compare it to other cities in the US, but this place has a lot of different indoor or outdoor activities to choose, from such as visiting museums, horseback riding, bicycling, hiking and wildlife watching. Even residents enjoy these kinds of activities!
With the spectacular view of Huachuca Mountains, you can also have a very relaxing vacation as well as fun things to do. There are lots of must-see attractions and go-to destinations for the visitors of this place. And to help you with that, I have listed budget-friendly things to do in Sierra Vista, Arizona and the good news? They come in cheap or FREE! #Bestthingsinlife
1. Visit Fort Huachuca Museum
Located in, of course, Fort Huachuca, is a museum that showcases the story of the place and the US Army in the American southwest, giving emphasis on the Buffalo Soldiers during the Apache War. The museum also displays dioramas with automatic voice narration and illustrates the life during frontier days, and historical statues outside where you can just sit and enjoy the view of the location. Fort Huachuca Museum also features a gift shop where you can find memorabilia, books and souvenirs to take home. All visitors are free of charge. Civilians without DOD ID card must pass a criminal background check before being allowed to enter the gate.
Fort Huachuca Museum
Address: Grierson Ave, Fort Huachuca, AZ 85613, USA
Website: Fort Huachuca Museum
2. Hike through the Ramsey Canyon Preserve
Though this place would require you a lot of hiking, your eyes will definitely be satisfied by the plenty wildlife of the place. The 280 acre (113 hectare) preserve is the home of 170 varieties of birds with 14 species of hummingbirds. Dubbed as the “Hummingbird Capitol of the United States”, this place is where bird watchers flock together from all over the world to see and take photos of the different bird species. Admission is free every first Saturday of each month!
Ramsey Canyon Preserve
Address: 27 E Ramsey Canyon Rd, Hereford, AZ 85615, USA
Website: Ramsey Canyon Preserve
3. Reflect at Our Lady of the Sierras Shrine
I know it’s obvious that visiting a shrine is free, but this is not just an ordinary shrine. It holds a lot of history about Sierra Vista. The shrine itself went through a lot, even being engulfed by fire in June of 2011 but due to perseverance, Our Lady of the Sierras Shrine was restored to its original beauty. Inside the chapel you will see the magnificent mural of the risen Jesus standing with outstretched arms greeting the visitors.
Outside the chapel you will find statues such as the Celtic cross, a statue of The Blessed Virgin Mary and the Angel of Revelation. There are over seventy priests and three bishops who have celebrated the mass in the shrine. With its spectacular view of Huachuca Mountain, this is one of the best places to relax and reflect.
Our Lady of the Sierras Shrine
Address: 10310 S Twin Oaks Rd, Hereford, AZ 85615, USA
Website: Our Lady of the Sierras Shrine
4. Try the trail of Brown’s Canyon Ranch
Photo is only for illustrative purposes
This ranch is situated on the foothills of Huachuca Mountain, just a short distance from Sierra Vista. Also known as “Barchas Ranch”, visiting this place would definitely give you the feel of the 20th-century. Due to its many land owners, from around 1,800, different names were given to the ranch the one that stood out is “Brown’s Canyon Ranch” with its short and descriptive name. The ranch offers its visitors easy and difficult parts of trail that leads its hikers into a small canyon offering a picturesque view of the city. The ranch is free of charge to hikers and picnickers for day use only.
Brown’s Canyon Ranch
Address: Sierra Vista, AZ 85650, USA
Website: Brown’s Canyon Ranch
5. See the San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area
The area of San Pedro Riparian National Conservation is where the local ecosystem is being preserved and protected. This is also a good location for bird watchers where it is said that more than half of the well-known bird species in the US have been spotted. You can hike solo but guided river walks are available, led by the staffs from the San Pedro House. Visitors of the place can enjoy a lot of outdoor activities such as bird watching, camping and hiking. Of course, admission is free!
San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area
Address: BLM Business Office, 1763 Paseo San Luis Sierra Vista, AZ 85635, USA
6. Take a quick dip at The Cove
Photo is only for illustrative purposes
One of the most popular and go-to places of residents and visitors, this aquatic center features a wave pool with diving boards, two enclosed tube slides, a snack bar and eight lap lanes for competitions or just exercise. This venue is great for visitors, most specially those traveling with kids. One visit will just cost you 2.50 USD for youth ages 6-17, 4 USD for adult ages 18-54 and 3.25 USD for senior citizen ages 55 and above, but if you plan on visiting them more often, I would suggest to check the website to see the full prices and schedule for the year to save more!
Address: 2900 Martin Luther King Jr, Sierra Vista, AZ 85635, USA
Website: The Cove
7. Rent a bike
I know you will not think of bringing a bike when having a vacation, that’s why this city has them for you! Sierra Vista is the home of bicycle and bicyclists! They love it so much that most of the places you can visit, whether a trail or the foot of the mountain, are accessible by bike. It is also the favorite activity of the residents when they go to public parks. This is surely an exciting activity which gives you a changing landscape and a panoramic view of the mountains. There are actually two bike shops where you can rent bicycles, one is M&M Cycling and the other is Sun ‘N’ Spokes. BUT! You might want to check Sierra Vista Public Library; they offer different types of bikes for adults and even a few bikes for kids to loan at no charge! Just visit or call the library to check on the availability.
Address: 1301 E. Fry Boulevard, Sierra Vista, AZ 85635, USA
Website: M&M Cycling
Sun ‘N’ Spokes
Address: 156 E. Fry Boulevard, Sierra Vista, AZ 85635, USA
Website: Sun ‘N’ Spokes
8. Visit Coronado National Memorial
This is located south of Sierra Vista, Arizona. It serves as the tie that binds Mexico to the United States. This is the beginning of the popular Arizona trail where you can have a magnificent view of wildlife as well as the superb experience of hiking. While at the Coronado National Memorial you can also visit Coronado Cave, one of the few and undeveloped caves in the southern part of Arizona. Just follow the rules and guidelines and you can experience the beauty this place has in store for you. Remember, this national memorial is a fee free park!
Coronado National Memorial
Address: Hereford, AZ 85615, USA
Website: Coronado National Memorial
9. Buy local products at Sierra Vista Farmers Market
Photo is only for illustrative purposes
Are you wondering where the good food and the freshest ingredients are coming from in the city? Go visit Sierra Vista Farmers Market. Packed with nutritious and locally raised foods such as fruits and vegetables, the market is open every Thursdays of the year from 10 am to 2 pm. This may not be free, but maybe you can score low-priced, garden-fresh local products from the hard-working farmers themselves!
Sierra Vista Farmers Market
Address: 3105 E Fry Blvd, Sierra Vista, AZ 85635, USA
Website: Sierra Vista Farmers Market
Sierra Vista, Arizona surely has a lot of outdoor activities to choose from. Prepare yourself as you face your fear in some of the thrilling experiences this place has to offer. Just don’t forget to pack a lot of energy as you will need for exploring the whole city!
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