Arizona – Catalina State Park

Arizona - Catalina State ParkIf you’re looking for outdoor fun and adventure in Arizona, then Catalina State Park may be one of the most rare and lesser known attractions for you to enjoy. This article gives a detailed summary of the many features and attractions of this park. By reading further, you’ll discover most of the major activities and attractions to know if this park is right for you.


25 miles northwest of the city of Tucson, Arizona is Catalina State Park. With more than 5,000 acres featuring a mix of mountains and desert, this park is a hidden gem for hiking, horse riding, camping, bird watching, and picnicking. The park features many different forms of wildlife and natural plants. It also has two camping grounds with and without electricity.


Hiking is one of the major activities at Catalina State Park. Many people comment about the quiet and solitude in the area. Catalina has a unique combination of trails which lead all throughout the area. Most notably are the trails leading to Mount Lemmon.

Unique Landmarks and Sights

Mount Lemmon is the park’s most unique landmark. The mountain has national forest trails that go all the way up to the very top of the 9,000-foot peak.

Birdwatchers can also enjoy the more than 200 different varieties of birds. Some of the birds are natural residents to the park while others migrate during different seasons.

The park’s wildflowers are one of the major attractions during springtime. During a good season, the variety of colors is stunning due to the vast expanse of land the flowers cover. The Sutherland trail, specifically, is known to be a treasure trove of wildflowers during the spring. Among the many different types of natural vegetation, the park also boasts more than 5,000 saguaro cacti.

Fees and Hours of Operation

The cost to enter Catalina state park is typically $7 dollars per person when entering with a vehicle. If entering on a bike or foot, the cost is $3 dollars. For camping, the cost is $15 dollars minimum. For camping with electricity provided, the cost is $25 dollars. The hours of operation are from 5:00 AM to 10:00 PM. It’s important to note that the park does not accept reservations. Often there is a waiting list, so people tend to arrive at 5:00 AM when it opens just to be assured of entrance. Visitors can stay in the park for a maximum of two weeks though.


To enjoy a day or a few weeks of mountainous or desert hiking, camping, and horseback riding, consider Catalina State Park for your next trip. With over 5,000 acres, there is plenty to discover and explore. You’ll enjoy the natural outdoor setting and the adventure of discovering one of Arizona’s lesser known but thriving national parks. For more information about the park and current activities, visit the official website of the park listed below.

Official Information

To contact the park or discover more information, please see the official website. Activities and groups are updated with an events calendar. There is also a newsletter. You can also see the latest packages and deals for discounts on your stay should you decide to go there.

Catalina State Park Official Website

Official Address
11570 N Oracle Rd
Tucson, AZ 85737