Everyone likes a souvenir—especially one-of-a-kind gifts and treasures found far from home. Here in the Southwest, travelers have options unlike anywhere else for keepsakes and unique gifts. Whether it’s the well-known glass-enclosed scorpion paperweight, rock candy and miniature potted cactus take-homes, or authentic American Indian artistry, regional spices and handcrafted turquoise jewelry, Tucson has a wide variety of only-found-in-the-desert treasures. These nine shops and stops offer plenty to remember us by, entertain your creative spirit and decorate or furnish your Southwestern-inspired home with.
Southwestern sauces, spices and cookbooks are found inside Native Seeds/SEARCH, run by a nonprofit conservation organization and located along Campbell Avenue south of Fort Lowell Road. Among the library of gardening and regional plant books are aprons, hats and t-shirts with the shop’s logo. Take a piece of Southwest gardening home with you by purchasing indigenous heirloom vegetable and wildflower seeds.
OOO! Outside of Ordinary
Inside the Main Gate Square shopping district on University Boulevard, find accessories you never knew you couldn’t live without at OOO! Outside of Ordinary. Wine bottle stoppers, creative picture frames, eye-catching wall décor and many other one-of-a-kind trinkets are worthy of gifting (or keeping for yourself).
The Seasoned Woman
Messages of inspiration and encouragement, friendship and humor decorate the items at The Seasoned Woman, off of Broadway Boulevard and Craycroft Road. Find unique candles, glass art, jewelry and aromatherapy among other items at this woman-to-woman gift store.
The Shops at Tohono Chul Park
After wandering the gardens of Tohono Chul Park, visit three diverse shops on the property: La Fuente features contemporary pottery art, children’s books, Southwest cookbooks and regional foods inside a Spanish Colonial-style home; La Galeria sells American Indian jewelry, Oaxacan folk art, Mata Ortiz pottery, hiking guides and educational materials inside a Santa Fe-style home; and La Entrada is a retail greenhouse, selling a variety of plants and cacti, books and garden accessories.
The Arizona Experience Store
Find nothing but Arizona inside The Arizona Experience Store, located along Congress Street in downtown Tucson. Maps, books, guides, regional minerals, handcrafted jewelry—you name it. The retail and resource destination is run by The Arizona Geological Survey.
The National Parks Store
Operated by the Western National Parks Association, purchases at the Oro Valley shop support the National Park Service. Find National Park Monopoly, Kokopelli trinkets, books about turquoise, turquoise jewelry, American Indian art and more.
The Artist’s Daughter
If in Tubac, make a stop at The Artist’s Daughter. An Old West general store turned gift shop, the space is covered inch-to-inch with Route 66, auto, railroad and tin signs, cowgirl gifts, cowboy-boot birdhouses and more, owned by the daughter of artist and cartoonist Hal Empie.
For extended Tucson shopping experiences, check out these two stops housing more than a handful of unique galleries and shops at each:
The Lost Barrio
South of Broadway Boulevard on Park Avenue, The Lost Barrio is housed inside a restored warehouse district. Shops and galleries sell antiques, world imports, handmade furniture, art and more. The colorful paint and tile décor of the warehouse itself entices shoppers inside, who later leave heavy-handed with newfound treasure.
Old Town Artisans
One of the most prominent Tucson destinations, Old Town Artisans houses half a dozen shops and galleries on the site of El Presidio San Agustin del Tucson, at the corner of Court Avenue and Washington Street. Built in 1775 by the Spanish, the original saguaro-cactus-rib ceilings remain intact in addition to other décor remnants. Find shops selling world imports, local arts and vintage treasure within the historic space.