Tucson Retirement Information

Retirement Living in Tucson


Tucson, founded in 1775 to protect settlers from Apache raids, (elevation 2,389 feet) is surrounded by five mountain ranges. The highest, the Santa Catalina Mountains, rises as high as 9,100 feet. Desert growth contains many trees and colorful cacti, which bloom between March and June. Warm, sunny and dry most of the year, this is one area of the United States untroubled by hurricanes, earthquakes or tornadoes. Sun City Vistoso elevation is approximately 3,000 feet. The temperature is usually a few degrees cooler than Tucson which is at 2,000 to 2,300 feet.


As of 2015, Tucson had an estimated population of 653,000, and the estimated Pima County's population is close to 1,205,000.


A state sales tax of 5.6% and a City of Tucson tax of 2% on retail sales exempts non-restaurant foods and prescription drugs. In 2005, Arizona income tax ranged from 2.9 to 5.04% based on income after exemptions. See "Local Links" on the main page of this website, then use the link to Arizona Dept of Revenue for forms and Tax information.

Community Facilities

Tucson has 18 museums and art galleries,17 libraries, 11 recreation centers, four lakes, 23 municipal swimming pools, 96 parks, 28 golf courses, 306 tennis facilities and 11 bowling alleys. Sports include the University of Arizona's PAC-10 and NCAA; professional baseball-Tucson Padres AAA farm team and Arizona Diamondbacks, Colorado Rockies, and Chicago White Sox Spring Training Camp, Pima County Polo Club, tennis clubs, rodeo, Tournament Players Association and Ladies Professional Golf Association tournaments.

Cultural Attractions

Included in the many cultural attractions in Tucson area are the Tucson Symphony, the Arizona Opera Company, Tucson Ballet Company, the famed Tucson Boy's Chorus, Tucson Museum of Art, Arizona Historical Society Museum, the Arizona Theater Company, and a number of smaller theater companies. Tucson Convention Center, Pima College and the University of Arizona have concerts and events featuring world and nationally known performers. The Arizona Sonoran Desert Museum and the Tucson Zoo are also major attractions. The University of Arizona has several specialized museums and a planetarium.

Health Care

Serving Tucson and Pima County, there are several HMO's, 2,000 physicians and dentists and 12 hospitals with 2,296 beds including the University of Arizona Medical Center in Tucson. Researchers at the University Cancer Research Center and the University Health Sciences Center have produced many breakthroughs in treatment and prevention of cancer, heart disease, muscular dystrophy, and osteoporosis to name a few.

Sun City Vistoso residents are served 24 hours a day by the paramedic staff of the Golder Ranch Fire Department, which maintains a fire station in the community. The nearest hospital is now the Oro Valley Hospital located on Tangerine Road near Oracle Road in Rancho Vistoso -- about a five minute drive from Sun City Vistoso. This is a144-bed hospital complex, which opened in January, 2005. This 220,000 sq. ft. hospital provides emergency and inpatient medical surgical care, a pharmacy, nuclear medicine, radiology, CAT scan and MRI services, laboratory services and a full range of outpatient services. Adjoining the hospital is an 80,000 sq. ft. medical office building providing office space for more than 40 physician practices. Key specialties are to include primary care, cardiology, neurology and orthopedics. Tucson Heart Hospital's has a Cardiac Care Center North Oracle Road and Pusch View Lane in Oro Valley.

Also, just five minutes away from Sun City Vistoso, Northwest Medical Center has a 50,650 sq. ft. urgent care facility just north of the shopping center mentioned above at Oracle Road and Rancho Vistoso Boulevard. This facility has physicians' offices, diagnostic services (such as radiology, mammography, ultrasound, cardiac diagnostics, and CT), an urgent care area, lab and future ambulatory surgery center.


The Tucson bus system, SunTran, has a Dial-a-Ride service on its Sun Shuttle lines which picks up and returns residents at their doorstep. This is available to residents covered by disability and Medicare insurance.

Airport transportation is provided by Stagecoach, and private shuttle companies to and from Sun City.

This material may not be reproduced without the express written permission of Lisa Korpi.