How The West Was Once Tour from Phoenix | 4-days, 3-nights

BISBEE • TOMBSTONE • TUBAC • TUCSON

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TOUR HIGHLIGHTS

Travel back to the 19th century, a time when cowboy rivals held gunfights in the streets of Tombstone and outlaws made the west wild.

Tales of conquest and survival come to life on a 4-day, 3-night guided tour from Phoenix. This western trip of a lifetime explores several historic Southern Arizona locations like Fort Bowie, San Xavier del Bac mission, the Amerind Museum, and the old mining town of Bisbee. Small group tour dates coincide with Wyatt Earp Days or Helldorado Days in Tombstone for a truly immersive experience.

Why DETOURS?

  • Small group tour with up to 12 passengers – no crowds!
  • The best historical lodging available – no lines!
  • Custom touring vehicles with comfortable, individual captain’s chairs, plenty of legroom, and large picture windows to enjoy the views
  • Expert guides who are CPR and FirstAid certified

Tour Dates & Pricing

Spring 2019: May 25 (Wyatt Earp Days in Tombstone)
Fall 2019: October 18 (Helldorado Days in Tombstone)

$1,195 per person for double occupancy
$1,620 per person for single occupancy

Fort Bowie National Historic Site
Fort Bowie National Historic Site

Packages start at $1,195*

*Double Occupancy. Includes guided tour, lodging, some meals, entrance fees, and taxes

TRAVEL INFO

DETOURS Vehicle
Ride in Luxury

Departure Location
Courtyard by Marriott Tempe Downtown, Tempe Mission Palms, and The Scott Resort

Cancellation and Payment Policy
Tours require a 10% non-refundable deposit by credit card at the time of booking. Final tour balance is due 36 days prior to tour departure date. Tours canceled less than 36 days prior to departure or no shows will be charged in full.

Pre and Post Tour Accommodations
For an additional cost, DETOURS can book pre and/or post tour accommodation packages at preferred hotels. We recommend booking pre and post tour accommodations at Courtyard by Marriott Tempe Downtown, Tempe Mission Palms, and The Scott Resort. We pick up and drop off at these hotels only. Guests staying at other hotels will be responsible for transportation to the nearest pick up location on the first day and from the nearest drop off location on the final day.

Group Size
Our vehicles are designed to carry up to 12 passengers in individual captain’s chairs. Tour group size will range from 8 guests, which is our guest minimum to operate this tour, up to 12 guests in our custom tour vans.

Because DETOURS travels with a maximum of 12 passengers, this allows us to take a flexible approach and take full advantage of touring opportunities in the American West.

Transportation
DETOURS custom touring vehicles are specifically designed for small groups with comfortable, individual captain’s chairs.

Tour Guides

Our guides have many years of experience in leading tours throughout the American West. Their knowledge and enthusiasm will ensure that everyone gets the most from each destination.

Accommodations/Lodging
The accommodations have been chosen to give guests the best access to the surrounding areas. For those traveling alone, there are single occupancy rates available.

Activity Levels
This tour offers a wide range of walking opportunities, which requires a reasonable level of fitness, mostly due to possible elevation changes. The level of activity can be tailored to almost all levels of fitness.

Third Party Activities
Any third party activities not listed in tour itinerary are not included. There will be free time on some days and if you wish to participate in any additional third party activities, there will be an additional out-of-pocket cost.

Baggage Allowance

Individual luggage must be kept to a maximum of one piece of luggage less than 50 pounds. It is recommended to travel with a small day pack for easy access to camera, sunblock, and other personal items. We advise our clients to pack as lightly as possible.

Temperature/Weather
Temperatures range from very cool in the mornings and evenings, with warm days. A layered clothing approach works best. Temperatures across the American West vary by season and unexpected weather is always a possibility. We recommend our guests bring jackets in the event of changing weather patterns.

Private Tour Option

This tour can also be operated as a private tour. Contact a tour specialist for details.

Notes
A minimum number of guests must be met for this tour. You may be booked on stand by until the tour is confirmed.

Due to the developing tourism industry in the area, changes can and do occur in this type of program. Weather conditions that are severe enough to limit where we can drive or walk can alter the program. As visitors, we will respect this and remain flexible and open to local conditions, safety concerns, and unforeseen circumstances. Our guides will do their best to keep things on track, but in the event that our schedule changes, they will try to keep disruption to a minimum, consider your wishes, and organize other options as far as it is reasonable and practical to do so.

TOUR ITINERARY

Tombstone Tours Feature
How The West Was Once Tour

Day 1:

After an early breakfast, our tour heads south into the heart of Arizona’s Sonoran Desert, surrounded by towering saguaro, volcanic peaks, and endless horizons. The first stop on this western trip is the Amerind Museum. This hidden gem was established in 1937 to foster and promote knowledge and understanding of the Native Peoples of the Americas through research, education, and conservation. Located among the wonderful rock formations of Texas Canyon, the Amerind Museum enhances our Native American experience with native plants and birds in the solitude of the high desert. As we continue the day, our next highlight will be a tour of Fort Bowie. Fort Bowie Historical Site commemorates the bitter conflict between Chiricahua Apaches and the U.S. calvary. This 19th century outpost provides insight into the “clash of cultures,” a young nation in pursuit of “manifest destiny”, and the foraging culture fighting to preserve its existence. For more than 30 years, Fort Bowie and Apache Pass were the focal point of military operations eventually culminating in the surrender of Geronimo in 1886 and the banishment of the Chiricahuas to Florida.

Our day ends in the historic mining town of Bisbee. Nestled 6,000 feet in the Mule Mountains, Bisbee is the picturesque county seat of historic Cochise County. It was founded in 1880 and quickly became a prosperous urban center, driven by a booming mining industry that thrived on the area’s rich reserves of copper and precious metals. Despite becoming the most cultured city in the Southwest, the rough edges of the mining camps could still be found in notorious Brewery Gulch, with its booming saloons and shady ladies.

Overnight at historic Copper Queen Hotel, Bisbee, AZ

Day 2:

Known as the “Town Too Tough to Die”, Tombstone was home to famous outlaws, pioneers, miners, cattlemen, and cowboys of the old West. The most famous were Wyatt Earp and his brothers, who originally came as mining investors but soon became lawmen to protect their investment. Big Nose Kate’s Saloon and the Bird Cage Theatre were the “wickedest” nightspots in the West. Our expert guide will tour you through the Tombstone Courthouse and the famous Boot Hill Cemetery.

The day ends with a return to Bisbee, but not before a visit to Fairbank, the hub for trains bringing supplies to and from Tombstone. Silver and other valuable ore from the Tombstone mines were delivered via Fairbank to the stamp mills at Contention City and Charleston. By 1886, the town had only a steam quartz mill, general store, butcher shop, restaurant, saloon, Wells Fargo office, railroad depot, stage coach station, and about 100 residents. Abandoned a hundred years, it is now a desert ghost town.

Overnight at historic Copper Queen Hotel, Bisbee, AZ

When visiting in May, our group will experience “Wyatt Earp Days”, where the streets of Tombstone come to life with gunfights, western skits, and an 1880’s fashion show to celebrate the legendary Wyatt Earp.

When visiting in October, Tombstone will be celebrating its annual Helldorado Days where our small group will be treated to Wild West shows, live music, and Old West reenactments

Day 3:

Today will showcase Southern Arizona’s emerging wine production, with some of the best wines of the West. We’ll visit two of the most beautiful vineyards in the region for a flight of wine tasting. After enjoying the delicious drinks, we continue west to Tubac, where an incredible collection of artists and craftspeople have created the world famous Tubac Artist’s Colony. From coppersmiths to hand-crafted jewelers, this small community is where art meets history – don’t worry, they ship worldwide!

After wine tasting and modern art, we will step back in time and visit the Mission of San Xavier del Bac, a National Historic Landmark which was founded as a Catholic mission by Father Eusebio Kino in 1692. Construction of the current church began in 1783 and was completed in 1797. It’s the oldest intact European structure in Arizona and its interior is filled with marvelous original statuary and mural paintings. After exploring San Xavier, we will check into our historic Tucson hotel, the Arizona Inn. A hosted farewell dinner will be shared to celebrate How The West Was Once and reflect on the events that shaped the colorful history of the Southwest.

Overnight at historic Arizona Inn, Tucson, AZ

Day 4:

Your expert guide will greet you in the morning to explore Tucson, also referred to as “The Old Pueblo”. Derived from the O’odham Cuk Son, the Spanish word Tucsón means “at the base of the black hill”. This historical meaning points to volcanic rock that covers the hill known as Sentinel Peak; locals call it “A” Mountain. We’ll have time to visit the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, an interactive outdoor museum, zoo, and garden that combines live animal exhibits and demonstrations with botanical gardens. Afterwards, you can enjoy a leisurely lunch in Old Tucson. In the afternoon, we’ll begin our return back to the Valley of the Sun.

WHAT’S INCLUDED

  • Lodging for three nights
  • Three breakfasts, one lunch, and two dinners
  • Entrance fees to Amerind Museum, Fort Bowie, Arizona-Sonora Museum and other named activities
  • Unlimited bottled water

WHAT’S NOT INCLUDED

  • Additional third party tours and activities not listed above
  • Meals not listed above
  • Incidental hotel fees
  • Travel insurance
  • Guide gratuities

TRAVEL TIPS

It is recommended to wear comfortable walking shoes with good tread and travel with a small day pack for easy access to camera, sunblock, and other personal items. We advise guests to pack as lightly as possible. Temperatures across the American West vary by season. We recommend bringing a jacket in the event of changing weather patterns.

ARE YOU READY FOR 4 DAYS AND 3 NIGHTS OF ADVENTURE?

PHOTO GALLERY

FAQ

How much luggage can we bring?

Limit luggage to one suitcase that is less than 50 pounds and a day pack.

How much walking is required?

This tour offers a wide range of walking opportunities, which requires a reasonable level of fitness, mostly due to possible elevation changes. The level of activity can be tailored to almost all levels of fitness.

What should I pack?

Weather appropriate clothing, hiking shoes, sunscreen, camera, snacks, extra cash or debit/credit card, day pack/backpack, government issued ID (driver’s license, passport, etc.)

Are third party activities included?

Any third party activities not listed in tour itinerary are not included. There will be free time on some days and if you wish to participate in any additional third party activites, there will be an additional out-of-pocket cost.

What hotels do we stay at?

The accommodations have been chosen to give guests the best access to the surrounding areas.

What hotels do you pick up at?

Courtyard by Marriott Tempe Downtown, Tempe Mission Palms, and The Scott Resort

We recommend booking pre and post tour accommodations at Courtyard by Marriott Tempe Downtown, Tempe Mission Palms, or The Scott Resort. We pick up and drop off at these hotels only. Guests staying at other hotels will be responsible for transportation to the pick up location and from the drop off location.

Are pre-tour accommodations included?

No, but we can assist with pre-tour accommodations for additional cost.

Are post-tour accommodations included?

No, but we can assist with post-tour accommodations for additional cost.

How far in advance should I book my tour?

We recommend that you book early to guarantee a space on the tour, as these tours are limited to 12 passengers. Bookings can be made up to one year in advance of departure date.

What is the weather like?

Temperatures range from very cool in the mornings and evenings, with warm days. A layered clothing approach works best. Temperatures across the American West vary by season and unexpected weather is always a possibility. We recommend our guests bring jackets in the event of changing weather patterns.

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