Catalina Foothills, Arizona is home to more than 50,000 people and is known as one of the most upscale areas in Arizona. The history of the modern Catalina Foothills dates back to the early twentieth century. From there, the community grew and now contains some of the greatest attractions in Arizona. Despite its upscale reputation, the Catalina Foothills offer some affordable eateries that are frequented by locals.
In the early 1920s, John Murphey set out to create a residential area with maximum privacy that wouldn’t disrupt the vegetation, terrain, or scenic view. He kicked off his vision by purchasing 7,000 acres of land in a federal auction. Swiss architect Josias Joesler began designing homes in the Catalina Foothills shortly after. In 1931, the community took hold and organized the Catalina Foothills School District. The original building was designed by Joesler and built on land provided by Murphey. Today, the building houses the administration that works in the school district.
The Catalina Foothills are located just a short drive north of Tucson, which makes it the perfect place for a weekend visit. There’s plenty to do in Tucson and makes it well worth the trip.
The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, despite its name, is actually a zoo and aquarium. The facility is home to more than 230 native animals, like prairie dogs and mountain lions, and more than 1,200 plant species. Most of the attraction is outdoors so dress and plan accordingly!
Saguaro National Park stretches more than 91,000 acres and is home to saguaro cacti. Hiking trails are abundant and visitors can gather more information at the visitor center in both districts of the park.
Catalina State Park is located close to home and covers more than 5,500 acres. Hiking and biking trails are common, as are canyons and streams. The park travels through Coronado National Forest and is home to more than 150 species of birds. Riding on horseback is an option that many visitors choose to take.