Agua Caliente Park

mapRoy P. Drachman Agua Caliente Regional Park
12325 East Roger Road
Tucson, AZ 85749
AguaCalientePark@pima.gov
Parks and Amenities Interactive Map
Get driving directions

Open from 7:00 a.m. to Sunset every day of the year.
Park closure beginning August 19 for pond project; see tab below.

Ranch House Visitor Center and Art Gallery

May 1 – October 31, Tuesday – Saturday, 9:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m.
November 1 – April 30, Wednesday – Sunday, 10:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.
Closed all County holidays.

Ranch House Art Gallery Exhibit Schedule

There are no gallery exhibitions scheduled while the Pond 1 Restoration Project is in progress.

Bench by Pond 2

Tucson Audubon Society Nature Shop

For hours and information visit website
The Tucson Audubon Society Nature Shop at Agua Caliente Park is currently closed during the Pond 1 Restoration Project.

Features/Amenities

  • Drinking water
  • Picnic tables and grills
  • Restrooms
  • Paved and hard packed walking paths   

Environmental Education and Interpretive Programs

Friends of Agua Caliente Park

   

What is happening to Pond 1 at Agua Caliente Park?

Pima County Natural Resources, Parks and Recreation has completed the first construction phase of the Agua Caliente Pond 1 Restoration Project which included the removal of select palm trees and cattails. Closure of the entire park is currently anticipated to occur on August 19 for the second phase of construction which will include excavation and installation of a polymer-amended soil lining to the bottom and sides of the pond to reduce water loss, installation of a wildlife island and replacement of the bridge to the current island. Closure for the entire park during this phase is anticipated to last several months. 

What about the spring?

The Agua Caliente spring continues to flow at the present time probably due to the large amount of winter precipitation this year, but appears to be decreasing. The spring flow is being diverted to Pond 2 or to native plant areas in the park. 

Informational posters

Trouble in Paradise Poster
Water Conservation
Concept Plan
Construction Staging Plan
What About the Wildlife

Agua Caliente ParkAbout Agua Caliente

Agua Caliente, literally meaning hot water, is a unique 101-acre park that features a perennial warm spring and pond that is home to an exceptionally rich mix of plants and animals. Agua Caliente Park has a long and interesting history with evidence of human habitation dating back about 5,500 years. In 1873, a ranch and health resort was developed to promote the curative properties of the warm springs. In 1984 local businessman Roy P. Drachman donated over $200,000 toward the purchase of Agua Caliente Ranch and Pima County named the park in honor of this contribution. Roy P. Drachman Agua Caliente Park opened to the public on January 19, 1985.

Improvements have added the modern conveniences without eliminating the historical aspects of the park. On July 9, 2009 Agua Caliente Ranch Rural Historic Landscape was placed in the National Register of Historic Places.

The flow rate from the spring has varied over time reportedly as high as 500 gallons per minute to an unmeasurable seep in recent years. The sources and pathways for the water that now infrequently comes out of the natural spring head are not fully understood. Rainfall and snow on the Santa Catalina Mountains, shallow and deep rock stresses and fractures as well as significant heat generated hundreds of feet below the surface, all contribute to the complex and changing system. In recent years the pond has been maintained with water pumped from a well located on the property.

Visit the renovated 1870s Ranch House Visitor Center and Art Gallery, tour the park on one of the many naturalist led walks, or picnic in the shade of mature palm trees and native mesquite trees. Browse through the many bird-related items for sale in Tucson Audubon Society’s Nature Shop. Stroll the network of accessible paved and gravel trails with interpretive signs that explain the geology and history of the warm spring and the natural and human history of the site.

Agua Caliente ParkKnow the Rules

  • No alcohol
  • Barbecues may only be fueled with charcoal or propane
  • No fishing, no wading or swimming, do not climb trees
  • No bicycles, scooters, or skateboards
  • Dogs on leash and clean up after your pet. No horses
  • No motorized vehicles, motorized toys, or drones
  • No pop-up shade canopies, jumping castles, piñatas, kites, confetti, and balloons or activities requiring staked nets or posts
  • No loud music or PA systems
  • No metal detecting and geocaching
  • Do not release or abandon pets or wildlife
  • No collecting firewood, plants, fish, wildlife, and any other natural or cultural resources
  • Do not feed ducks or other wildlife
Follow UsShare this page

Natural Resources, Parks and Recreation

3500 W. River Road
Tucson, AZ 85741

(520) 724-5000


Department Home Page
Department News
Department Directory
Department Feedback Form
Department Calendar
Reservations
Search Maps
Boards, Commissions and Committees