We're open! We value the health and safety of our guests, staff, and animals. Because of this, we have made modifications to the Desert Museum experience following public guidance and health recommendations. Please be sure to review the FAQs before your visit.
(All guests, including members, must reserve tickets in advance)

Know Before You Go

Museum Entrance

We’ve Reopened! To ensure the health of all guests, staff, and animals, we are limiting the number of guests allowed in the Museum and using advanced online ticketing. All guests, including members, must reserve tickets in advance.

You can learn more about what to expect during your visit here: REOPENING FAQ

The Desert Museum is dedicated to providing a naturalistic and enriching sanctuary for our animals and plants, and a clean, friendly, entertaining and educational experience for our guests. Our goal is to inspire people to live in harmony with the natural world by fostering love, appreciation, and understanding of the Sonoran Desert. The comfort and safety of our guests and animal and plant residents is our top priority.

Prairie Dog

PRO TIP

85% of the Desert Museum is outdoors and primarily a walking experience. We encourage you to dress accordingly for your safety and to have the best Sonoran Desert adventure!

Taratula Hawk

We want to keep you (and the animals) safe during your visit.

Please read the following tips to make the most of your experience!

What to Bring

Sunscreen

Sunscreen

On average, there are 286 sunny days per year in Tucson! Make sure to wear and reapply. FYI: There is free sunscreen in the restrooms!

Waterbottle

Water

In the desert heat, drink more water than you think you need. Bring a reusable water bottle and refill it at our many water fountains around grounds.

Hat and Glasses

Hat & Sunglasses

We don’t want you squinting during your visit! Make sure to shade your eyes so you can take in the spectacular desert views.

Boot

Comfy Shoes

Since the Museum is primarily a walking experience, you’ll definitely want comfortable footwear as your traverse the trails.

Frequently Asked Questions

Reopening

For your health and safety, we are maintaining daily capacity restrictions to allow for proper social distancing. We will not be accepting payments in-person (including cash at the ticket windows) at this time. Please visit our online store or contact Guest Services to make a reservation.

Ticket reservations can also be made over the phone with our Guest Services team by calling (520) 883-1380, available 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. daily.

To maintain a safe daily capacity, tickets and member reservations are date-specific. If you are unable to visit on the date purchased, please contact Guest Services. We will be happy to adjust your reservation date, or refund your purchase if necessary.

Yes, members are also required to make a date-specific reservation for all members of their party (including guests) in advance of their visit. Member reservations must be presented with your membership card and guest tickets (if applicable) for entry. Walk-up visitation can be accommodated for members only if capacity allows. Please keep in mind, we will not be accepting payments in-person at this time.

Yes! All Desert Museum memberships have been extended to account for the time the Museum was closed. Please see details below to determine your new expiration date.

  1. Memberships renewed or purchased while the Museum was closed (March, April, May, or June 2020) expire on 9/30/2021.
  2. Memberships that expired in March, April, or May 2020 without renewal have been reinstated, now expiring on 9/30/2020.
  3. Memberships currently due to expire June 2020 through February 2021 have been extended for 3 months. (Example: June 2020 expiring is now valid through September 2020, July 2020 now valid through October 2020, etc.)

Yes! Guest passes with expiration dates printed March, April, May, June, or July 2020 will be accepted through September 2020. Don't forget! Reservations are required for all members and member guests, and guest passes must be presented for entry.

Mobility rentals are now available for advance reservation as well on a first come, first served basis. You may reserve your rental online or by contacting Guest Services. Mobility rentals are very limited — rentals will each be rented only once per day to allow for proper sanitation between guests.

If you are unable to visit on the date purchased, please contact Guest Services. We will be happy to adjust your reservation date, or refund your purchase if necessary.

Outside food and beverages are not permitted inside the Museum, however there is a picnic ramada available near the front entrance. We are also conveniently located next to picnic areas in Tucson Mountain Park. Both restaurants will be open daily with modifications. The water fountains will be shut off, so please plan accordingly. Touchless water bottle refill stations are available.

Please review our changes in closures here.

Masks are required to enter the Museum and must be worn any time social distancing cannot be maintained, and at all times in indoor areas. While the nature of our vast grounds generally makes social distancing very achievable, there may be places (crossing paths, and restrooms, for example) where this is not possible. County public health regulations require that you wear a mask on these occasions.

Yes, restrooms will be open and hand sanitizing stations will be available around grounds. You can see the locations here.

General

85% of the Desert Museum is outdoors and primarily a walking experience. We encourage you to dress accordingly for your safety and to have the best Sonoran Desert adventure!

Most guests spend 2-3 hours touring the Museum. As we continue to grow, there is more to see and do! You could easily spend a whole day here and still have more to see!

Yes, manual wheelchairs, strollers, and motorized scooters are available to rent from Guest Services.

Outside food and beverages are not permitted inside the Museum, however there is a picnic ramada available near the front entrance. We are also conveniently located next to picnic areas in Tucson Mountain Park.

Smoking and/or vaping is not permitted.

As much as we love animals, no pets are allowed on grounds. Only service animals are permitted.

Yes! Please visit Guest Services before exiting. Please note Museum grounds promptly close at 5:00 p.m.

For the safety of other guests and the animals, glass containers, weapons, skateboards, scooters, bicycles, balloons, whistles, and outside food and beverages are not allowed on grounds.

In general, guests may take nonprofessional photos for personal use. Professional photographers must adhere to our photography policy.

The Desert Museum is pleased to contribute to the success of likeminded nonprofit organizations by providing charitable contributions. You can apply here.

Yes! We are always looking for more support. Please visit our volunteer page for more info.

Please call Guest Services at 520-883-2702 or e-mail info@desertmuseum.org.

Membership

Yes, members are also required to make a date-specific reservation for all members of their party (including guests) in advance of their visit. Member reservations must be presented with your membership card and guest tickets (if applicable) for entry. Walk-up visitation can be accommodated for members only if capacity allows. Please keep in mind, we will not be accepting payments in-person at this time.

Yes! All Desert Museum memberships have been extended to account for the time the Museum was closed. Please see details below to determine your new expiration date.

  1. Memberships renewed or purchased while the Museum was closed (March, April, May, or June 2020) expire on 9/30/2021.
  2. Memberships that expired in March, April, or May 2020 without renewal have been reinstated, now expiring on 9/30/2020.
  3. Memberships currently due to expire June 2020 through February 2021 have been extended for 3 months. (Example: June 2020 expiring is now valid through September 2020, July 2020 now valid through October 2020, etc.)

Yes! Guest passes with expiration dates printed March, April, May, June, or July 2020 will be accepted through September 2020. Don't forget! Reservations are required for all members and member guests, and guest passes must be presented for entry.

Absolutely! A Gift Membership may be purchased online or with a Guest Service Assistant by phone or in-person. Gift Memberships include the same benefits as a standard Desert Museum membership and are valid for one-year from the date of purchase, extended to the end of the month.

A Desert Museum membership is valid for one-year from the date of purchase, extended to the end of the month. (Example: A membership purchased on October 1, 2020 will expire on October 31, 2021)

Desert Museum memberships in the Dual category or higher offer the option to name both adults on the membership OR list the second adult as a “Guest.” This allows the named member to bring any one person with them at each visit for the duration of their membership. Additionally, Desert Museum memberships (excluding Student) include single-use admission tickets to use for guest admission.

Admission to the Desert Museum is valid only for the named member(s) listed on the membership account. If you elected the “Guest” option at the time of purchase, any one person may visit the Museum with you, or alone if the card is present.

Depending on your level of membership, your membership gift (less the fair market value of the goods and services received) could be considered tax deductible for income tax purposes. Please consult your tax professional for guidance in making final determinations.

While we are proud to be an AZA (Association of Zoos & Aquariums) accredited organization, the Desert Museum does not currently participate in the AZA Reciprocity Program or offer reciprocal benefits to other institutions.

Children and grandchildren (age 17 and under) of the named adult member(s) are included on Desert Museum memberships in the Family category or higher. Youth must be accompanied by an adult member. See the Desert Museum Membership page for additional information regarding membership categories & benefits.

Of course! Simply present a photo ID at one of the ticket windows on our front patio and a Guest Service Assistant will be happy to validate your membership for admission and print a replacement card upon request. After a replacement card is printed, your previously issued cards will no longer be valid.

Yes! We think you would love being a member of our Pack, but we understand if you want to see for yourself before joining. You may apply the cost of your admission tickets to the purchase of a membership the day of your visit. The number of tickets that may be applied depends on the membership category.

Student / Individual: Apply up to 1 adult admission ticket.

Dual: Apply up to 2 adult admission tickets.

Family / Turquoise / Copper / Silver / Gold: Apply up to 2 adult & 2 youth admission tickets.

Present your admission tickets or receipt at a ticket window on your way out of the Museum and a Guest Service Assistant will be happy to help you Join Our Pack!

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