How to Stay Active in Tucson During Retirement
Welcome to retirement! You’ve worked hard, planned wisely, scrimped and saved and now you’ve earned your right to kick back, post up and watch all the TV you missed out on while putting in that overtime, right? Well, that might be the ideal retirement for some, but it’s widely believed that the key to a long, healthy retirement is a rich, active lifestyle.
With year-round sunshine (350 days a year!), an impressive park system with parks both above and underground, lots of nightlife, unique museums and more tacos to try than you could dream of, there’s more than enough Tucson activities to keep you off of the couch and on the move.
With the number of quality active adult communities in Tucson, you won’t have to look very far to find a friend to hike, bike, dance, or munch your way through town with. If you’re looking for some excitement that’s a little closer to your front door, Tucson retirement communities offer easy access to golf courses, tennis courts, scenic walking trails, and on-site classes if you’re looking for some more mental enrichment or just to cool off.
Looking to heat up your retirement? Let’s explore some of the many activities Tucson retirement community members can enjoy.
There’s a lot to love about Arizona, but if you had to point out the number one attraction that makes the state such a destination for retirees and vacationers, it’s the weather and the year-round access to the outdoors it provides. With so much sunshine to go around, there’s an abundance of outdoor adventure awaiting just steps from your front door.
If you grew up on those classic Western films, fantasizing about life as a sheriff (or outlaw) of the Wild West, you’ll get a kick out of horseback riding through the brush and cacti of the Sonoran Desert. Houston’s Horseback Riding, on the North-east side of Tucson, offers lessons and trail riding to wranglers of all ages and abilities. You can enjoy a casual Group Trail Ride through the Saguaro National Park if you’re looking for a laid-back social experience or book a Private Trail Ride if you’d like to dial up the speed a notch.
There’s nothing quite like a Sonoran sunset, and there’s no better vantage point than “A” Mountain’s Sentinel Peak. Located in a 272-acre park just west of downtown, the mountain is adorned with a massive letter “A” constructed by University of Arizona students over a hundred years ago and features popular hiking trails leading up to the top of the mountain overlooking the city. Summiting this peak is one of the quintessential Tucson activities.
There are adventures to be found underground, as well. At Colossal Cave Mountain Park, just 15 minutes outside of Tucson, you can choose one of three cave tours of differing levels of intensity, exploring the wonders that lie beneath our feet. The Classic Cave Tour is a guided stroll through the caverns where you’ll learn about the unique history and geology of the caves. In the Ladder Tour, you’ll get a more up-close and personal perspective of the caverns, climbing through some of the less accessible portions of the park. If you’re looking to really immerse yourself in the deep, the Wild Cave Tour, the most difficult of the three, takes you through tight passageways primarily used by the most adventurous explorers and bandits of the early 1800’s.
One of the many benefits residents of active adult communities in Tucson enjoy is the vast array of sporting facilities easily available. Whether golf, tennis, swimming or weight training is your activity of choice, there’s a Tucson retirement community for you.
Located at the heart of the Del Webb at Desert Mountain community, the Saguaro Center offers an outdoor pool and spa, billiards and gym staffed with onsite trainers to help you get the most out of the facilities. In addition to the individual attention offered, you can also take a more social approach to your personal wellness by participating in one of the center's many fitness classes. Cardio Tennis keeps you heart-healthy while you work up a sweat and work on your backhand. With Aqua Aerobics, you’ll have fun building core strength and increase your heart rate as you bounce along to music and soak up the sun in the community pool. This is just a scratch on the surface of the wide range of classes covering everything from Yoga and Zumba to hiking and Tai Chi.
Golf enthusiasts can look forward to scoping out their favorite of the 40+ golf courses in the Tucson area. When you’re not working on your own game, you can watch and learn from the pros at one of the many PGA Tour events Tucson hosts every year.
An active social life is just as important to having a vibrant retirement as physical fitness. With this in mind, active adult communities in Tucson host a variety of events to give retirees an opportunity to mix, mingle, and get to know their neighbors. Lifestyle Directors work with residents to coordinate community social events, and advise on how to keep their lifestyle active and engaging. Book Clubs, Arts and Crafts, Bridge, Genealogy –these are just a handful of the clubs that meet regularly to explore their shared interests and create a sense of community.
If you’re looking to retire but want to stay active, it might be worth considering making the move and calling one of the many active adult communities in Tucson home.
Contributed to The 55+ Society by Brittney Villalva
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