Massai Point, Chiricuhau National Monument, AZ

Massai Point, Chiricuhau National Monument, AZ

Monday, 28 November 2022

Catalina State Park and Tucson Botanical Gardens Christmas Light Display, November 25 - 27

Friday morning I called Pacific Blue Cross and got our claim number so we were ready to go to the ER.

Oro Valley Hospital (from Google)

Ray spent 3 hours there including an x-ray. As I suspected he is AOK. After taking off his bandages and looking at him, they sent him back home, not even bandaging him back up! He was given a prescription for oral antibiotics as well. His instructions were to get some over the OTC antiobiotic ointment, keep it bandaged until healed and elevate his leg. Well Nurse Debbie had been doing all that and telling him to keep off his feet. lol Fortunately he quit bleeding through his bandages overnight. Oh well, no more hiking or bike riding before we fly home on December 5th for a few weeks.

Ray's leg felt ok for walking so we decided to go to the Tucson Botanical Gardens Christmas Light Display. Tonight is the debut and I'd already purchased our tickets before Ray's accident. We drove closer to the Gardens and ate at a sushi restaurant while waiting. We noticed some fairly busy traffic on Wednesday afternoon in that area. So being a Black Friday night, we drove into town early from the campsite. Good thing we arrived at the Botanical Garden parking lot early as the lot is small. Lots of spaces when we arrived at 5 pm but by 5:30 when it opened, the place was hopping. 

The first bunch of pictures it's just "dusk" and then it got darker out.

The first Christmas tree to welcome you.































Ray taking a picture of me taking a picture. lol










The Smore Station



A Christmas Tree made of succulents.

We spent a wonderful hour or so, walking through and even did it twice. :) Back home by 7 pm.

Saturday morning after a leisurely start and showers, we headed out to see the Tonoho Chul Gardens. We thought it would be small, but it ended up to be 40 acres and much bigger than the Tucson Botanical Gardens. There light up night will be December 3rd but we will have moved on.

We wandered around the gardens for almost 2 hours. Wow. They have various sections of the garden from dry areas to moist areas replicating what you can find in the Arizona Desert. They have quite a few art installations and lots you can buy from various artisans. Pretty cool.

They have plenty of places with shade set up throughout the garden to have a quiet moment, from benches to larger structures.

We started off down the  SouthernLoop Trail which is showcasing a traditional desert landscape, even a crested Saguaro.


This is full of small cacti that you don't want to sit on. lol





Looks like "Gumby"

There's also a succulent garden area.





They have signs posted that the rattlesnakes are active ... fortunately we did not see any. Next we walked through the Desert Living Courtyard.

Huge Aloe Tree

Barrel Cactus flowers.







They have different "rooms" in this area. Here is the Morrocan Courtyard.


Here is the Performance Garden.




Spanish Colonial Garden


Geology Wall showcasing the types of rock in the Tucson Area.



We carried on to the Streamside Garden.


Although these are plants they really look like birds.

Regal Horned Toad Sculpture









Children's Garden




Walking through Butterfly Garden and some other pathways I got a couple pictures of the different butterflies and some hummingbirds.







Below is the picture Ray hoped to take but there were too many people in the way. lol


Some other sculptures in Sundial Plaza.
 







There's a garden area there with eatables. Here is a huge Chia bush ,...








Next up the La Fuente Museum Shop.







They also have a gift shop and Bisto.

One of the pieces  for purchase in the gift shop.

The entrance to the Bistro

After this we thought we would checkout the First Cowboy Christmas Market ... what a bust, basically a bar with a few vendors selling stuff in the Bar's extra space and patio. No thanks. We were hungry after traipsing around much longer than we expected so off to BJ's Brewhouse for lunch. They even have flights of Margaritas, never seen that before.


Back home and relaxed for the rest of the afternoon. Sunday we spent some time getting ready to leave tomorrow. Hard to believe a week went by so quickly.