Tucson, Arizona, offering so much contrast, is located in a desert valley, surrounded by mountain ranges. At an elevation of 2,584 feet, Tucson is cradled by the Santa Catalina Mountains rising 9,100 feet on the north, the Rincon Mountains to the east, the Tucson Mountains to the west, and the Santa Rita and Sierrita Mountains to the south.

The desert contains much natural growth, unlike a Sahara-like desert. Green trees such as Palo Verde, Mesquite and Cottonwood grow in abundance. There are also many varieties of cacti in colorful bloom from April until late May. In Tucson's residential areas native desert landscaping and many other types of shrubs and flowers grow easily.

Tucson is renowned for its superb weather. Warm and sunny throughout most of the year, the air is remarkably dry, with a low relative humidity. Though daytime summer temperatures are high, the temperature drops at sunset, providing cool, comfortable evenings.