2CoolLizards home
Arizona travel
Back Road     Towns     History     Nature      Tips/Freebies
Old West History   > Tubac

town of Tubac

Tubac Presidio State Historic Park

& Town of Tubac

Also see:    Tumacacori Mission

CLICK HERE for map

Tubac Presidio State Park is located just north of Tubac on highway 19 (between Green Valley and Nogales). As part of Spain's expansion north from present day Mexico, Jesuit Eusebio Kino and his party founded a mission at Tumacacori in 1691. Several other missions were built as well. Years of difficulty followed, including disease and Pima revolt in 1751. To help protect this new development, the presidio (military base) was established at Tubac1.

The state park contains the remains of the presidio. An on-site museum contains information and exhibits on the fascinating history of the area, including the political reasons for the missions and northward expansion of the Spanish, day to day life at the missions, mining operations in Arizona, and the role Arizona played in the American Civil War. A tour through the museum gives a clear view of how many times this land has "changed hands". I remembered this later when I toured the Titan Missile Museum and heard in the introductory movie, "Peace is never really won; it is just held from moment to moment."

To learn about the missions of Tumacacacori, go to Tumacacori Mission.

Tubac school house underground display

Above left: The Tubac Schoolhouse is on the National Historic Register and was built in 1885.
Above right: This underground display features the old footings of the commander's residence. Learn about building materials used at the presidio.
Below left: furniture from presidio
Below right: outlines of commander's residence

Tubac presidio commander's residence

Tubac jail leg irons Left: Originally used to chain a person to a mast on a ship, these leg irons were later used at the Tubac jail to chain a person to a post.

Right and below: Shops in the town of Tubac

Old Tubac offers galleries, gift shops, restaurants and lodging, plus numerous activities throughout the year.

town of Tubac
town of Tubac

Information Sources

1.  Information on state park grounds: Tubac Presidio State Historic Park

Special Tips

Traveling with children, pets or special needs

accessibility information  Accessibility
Take the paved, wheelchair accessible trail throughout the grounds. The only part of the tour that is not accessible is the underground exibit of the commander's house.

A large, private, accessible restroom is available behind the visitor's center (on the presidio grounds).

travel with children  Traveling with children
Trails are paved, which helps decrease the chance of bites from ants and other stinging insects. A shaded picnic area is located on the grounds. The museum provides a wonderful education opportunity for children. Temperatures can be very hot in summer and cold in winter, so dress accordingly.

travel with pets  Traveling with pets
Pets are not allowed in museums or buildings in state parks.

Call 520-398-2252 for specific information.

Directions & Resources

From Tucson, drive south on highway 19. As you near Tubac, follow signs to Tubac State Historic Park, located on the east side of highway 19. Tubac Road leads to the parking lot of the park.


azparks.gov: Arizona state parks Website

tubacaz: Tubac Chamber of Commerce

All articles and photographs are copyright protected.
Please read our Terms & Conditions before using our information.