Franklin Auto Museum

#8 in Best Things To Do in Tucson
Franklin Auto Museum picture
Jim Culp/Flickr

Key Info

1405 E Kleindale Rd.

Details

Museums Type
2 hours to Half Day Time to Spend
4.0scorecard
  • 4.0Value
  • 4.0Facilities
  • 4.0Atmosphere

Located 5 miles north of Tucson, the Franklin Auto Museum is a must-see for both car and history enthusiasts. Franklin Automobile Company produced vehicles from 1960 to 1934 and was responsible for many innovations in the automobile industry during that period. The Franklin Auto Museum has expanded over time to include representative examples of all Franklin automobiles, as well as a library of Franklin Company research materials.

The museum receives positive reviews from its visitors, particularly if you consider yourself a dedicated car lover. Recent visitors suggested planning to spend around 90 minutes at the museum and warn that its hidden gem status comes at the cost of being located on a dirt road.

The Franklin Auto Museum is only open from mid-October to Memorial Day. During that time, the museum is open Wednesday to Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. General admission costs $10 for adults, $8 for seniors, $5 for teens and students, and is free for children 11 and younger. For more information, check out the museum's website.

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Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum1 of 13
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Type
Time to Spend
#1 Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum

Although it's called a museum, this facility – about 15 miles west of downtown Tucson – is more of a zoo. In fact, 85 percent of what you'll experience is outdoors (so dress accordingly). The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum's 98 acres host 230 animal species  including prairie dogs, coyotes and a mountain lion  and 1,200 local plant species (totaling 56,000 individual plants). Walking through the museum's trails, visitors get acquainted with desert life. And if you feel hungry after your leisurely hike, you can enjoy a meal at one of the museum's four eateries, all of which have great views of the surrounding desert.

Recent visitors enjoyed their time at the museum and highly recommended future travelers set aside a few hours to explore the attraction's grounds and educational exhibits. Just make sure you come prepared: wear appropriate walking shoes, sun protection and sunscreen (though, if you forget your sunscreen, there are dispensers in the on-site bathrooms). Reviewers also advised stopping by in the morning or near closing as that's when the animals are most active. Aside from the flora and fauna, visitors also praised the knowledgeable docents.

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Jerry Rosen/Courtesy Visit Tucson
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