12 CITY TOUR
4-Hour Private Tour of all Twelve Bisbee-Area Suburbs
Your exploration starts with Bisbee's mining heritage, highlighted by visits to open mine pits and leaching ponds, showcasing the enormity of the industry that shaped the town. The Copper Queen Mine, a major producer in its heyday, is a highlight of this segment. The journey then takes you to Lowell, Arizona, where the preserved 1950s ambiance of Erie Street, along with Lowell School and the Evergreen Cemetery, offers a glimpse into the past. The heart of the tour lies in Old Bisbee, where you can immerse yourself in local history and culture. Stroll through OK Street, admire the Muheim House, and explore Brewery Gulch. This part of the tour features stunning historic architecture and vibrant landscapes, including High Road and Quality Hill, before leading you to the bustling Main Street. In Warren, Arizona, experience the community's spirit through landmarks like Bakerville, the century-old Warren Ballpark, and the Calumet and Arizona Hospital. Further, the tour takes you to Galena, Arizona, showcasing mining history at Campbell Mine and the Mason Addition, and TinTown, with its unique tin houses and family-named streets. You'll also visit Don Luis and San Jose, areas rich in railway history, and Naco, Arizona, where attractions like Fort Naco and the Gay 90s Bar add to the tour's diversity. The journey concludes at Bisbee Junction, connecting you to the region's industrial and transportation history with a visit to the old train station and Bisbee Airport. This comprehensive 12 City Tour by Big Jeep Tours is an exceptional way to experience Bisbee’s historical, cultural, and architectural gems, making for an unforgettable day of discovery and insight.
Ages: All ages welcome
Duration: 300 minutes (5 hours)
Start time: Check availability
Travel: Mild - Pavement only
Whats included? * Air conditioned or heated vehicle * Private tour - one group at a time
What to expect Itinerary Stop At: Lavender Pit You'll first visit the Lavender Pit Lookout. Here, a mere five feet from a 900-foot-deep mine pit, the guide details mining methods and equipment. You’ll then move to another pit section showcasing remnants of leaching ponds. The guide explains how copper is extracted from ore through leaching, adding depth to your understanding of mining science. You will also delve into the socio-cultural aspects, discussing nearby closed mining communities and their historical context along with future mining prospects. This attraction offers an intricate view of mining operations, from large-scale setups to minute chemical processes, all set against the backdrop of stunning landscapes. Duration: 45 minutes Stop At: Lowell, AZ Begin your tour in Lowell, AZ by exploring Erie Street. With 1940s classic cars and vintage storefronts, this is an ideal spot for photography. Your guide will also share insights into the historical Junction Mine operations. Next, you'll move to the Shady Dell Hotel. As you drive through its parking lot, the guide will explain the historical importance and the cultural relevance of the hotel. The lot itself is filled with classic vehicles and antique artifacts. Your tour continues to Lowell School, with its copper roof and doors. The guide will share both historical information and personal stories related to the school. Another stop is at a leaching drainage ditch and its polluted waters. The guide will share stories of how this ditch was a hub for his childhood adventures. The last attraction is a drive through the Evergreen Cemetery, a nationally registered historic site. Here, the guide will educate you on the cemetery's historical background and its significance to Bisbee. Duration: 45 minutes Drive Through: Saginaw, AZ Travel the streets lined with the moved houses from the open pits. Some structures date back to the late 1800s. The houses were loaded onto flatbed trucks and moved starting in 1950. Another attraction in Saginaw is the huge Muck Rock mural on the side of an intermodal container in a residence yard. The failed Saginaw Mine headframe also peaks over a hill overlooking Saginaw. You may even see Gambel’s Quail or a daytime Javelina straggler between the homes. Duration: 5 minutes Drive Through: Galena As you trek towards the Mexico border, you’ll pass through the suburb of Galena AZ. Galena means “lead” and is made of houses built for the WW2 soldiers but there’s one street of moved homes from the open pits. The street is named after the community that was moved. You’ll pass your tour guide’s childhood home as well and learn about his childhood shenanigans in the 1970s and 1980s. Duration: 10 minutes Drive Through: Briggs Just over the hill along State Route 92 is Briggs. Named after a prominent Calumet & Arizona mine boss, Briggs provided housing for the miners working at the Briggs Mine, the Galena Mine, the Cold Mine, and the Dallas Mine. Your tour guide’s grandfather (Pop) retired as a mine boss in the Dallas Mine. Duration: 5 minutes Drive Through: Tintown Welcome to the Bisbee suburb with structures made entirely of tin at one time. The streets are all named after the families that developed Tintown and many of their great grandchildren went to Bisbee schools with your tour guide. The Bisbee Coalition for the Homeless is here with its popular greenhouse as well. Duration: 5 minutes Drive Through: Don Luis Following highway 92 along the railway built by James Douglas, you’ll see Don Luis, the suburb built by the Mexican railway builders. Luis Williams, the smelter boss for James Douglas supervised the rail construction and the builder couldn’t pronounce his name, so they called him ‘Don Luis’. While enjoying the historic homes, you’ll pass the Wensel Field (baseball and softball) where your tour guide played Peewee League baseball for Bledsoe Mauzy, a local car dealership in the 1970s. Duration: 5 minutes Drive Through: San Jose The Cochise County administration buildings are located on the western edge of town and present themselves as the main employer for the city. A trek through the houses built for soldiers leads to the stretch of road by the Brian A. Terry Border Patrol Station which is located across the street from where the Fort Apache Drive-In Theater was located. Duration: 10 minutes Stop At: Naco AZ Naco sits on our border with Mexico, and you first pass the Green Bush Draw that revealed wooly mammoth bones in the 1950s. You will travel past the historic golf course to the Fort Naco ruins. Fort Naco once had as many as 5500 Buffalo Soldiers protecting America’s border from the Mexican Revolutionary War. On the way to the border wall, you’ll see the buildings that were victims of the first aerial bomber in American history, Patrick Murphy. A huge Muck Rock mural of Patrick Murphy adorns the street-facing wall of the Gay 90s Bar, where Ronald and Nancy Reagan would stop annually on their way to a Naco, Sonora ranch. It’s at the Gay 90s parking lot where you will disembark the Big Jeep and walk to the border wall that sits next to the Naco Border Station. You can touch the wall, take photos, or watch the foot and vehicle traffic moving back and forth between the two countries. Duration: 30 minutes Drive Through: Bisbee Junction After leaving Naco, AZ, you’ll travel along Purdy Lane which follows the border wall and passes through Bisbee Junction. You’ll stop on the rail bed built by James Douglas and view the huge water tank that was next to the train depot that delivered passengers to and from Bisbee on the railway. After leaving Bisbee Junction, Purdy Lane turns into Arizona Street and we travel past Bisbee Airport, Dump #1 (the tailings from the Sacramento Pit), and the bed of the midget car racetrack that flourished before 1975. Duration: 10 minutes Stop At: Warren AZ From Arizona Street, you will venture into the backside of Warren, AZ. Warren is the first planned community in Arizona history and home of many attractions. One popular attraction is the oldest, multifunctional, operating ballpark in America – the Warren Ballpark. Adorned with green wooden walls and concrete/adobe grandstands, the Warren Ballpark. You’ll sit on the railbed above the Warren Ballpark where 1300 striking miners were loaded into cattle cars and deported to the New Mexico desert. The Big Jeep takes you through the bungalow style home – lined streets and visits the mine bosses’ mansions who were also responsible for deporting the miners. You’ll also see Greenway School and the very playground monkey-bars where a famous Bisbee child was struck by lightning in 1972. Duration: 30 minutes Drive Through: Bakerville Bakerville was known as the Serbian neighborhood in Bisbee and even has a Serbian Church with solid copper doors. You will travel above Bakerville to the Calumet & Arizona Hospital that overlooks Warren valley. The hospital is vacant now, but you’ll see why it’s called the haunted hospital when you drive up close to its gate and imagine the lost souls peering back at you from the multi-level windows. Duration: 5 minutes Stop At: Bisbee AZ Your tour then travels to Old Bisbee and turns to OK Street, immersing you in rich history and unique architecture. As you ascend, the guide elaborates on the street's historical significance, pausing at Joseph Muheim's house to discuss his contributions. Next, you explore Brewery Gulch, known for its blend of architecture and historical events, pausing at Muheim’s Bar for an in-depth look. You'll then move to the Lyric Theater and Central School parking lot, each offering different facets of local history and design. A stop at the Old High School provides insights into the area's educational past. The tour then ascends High Road, offering panoramic views and an extensive history lesson on Bisbee. Finally, you'll descend to Quality Hill for another layer of history and architecture before concluding on Main Street with three distinct stops that bring the area's evolving story full circle. Duration: 45 minutes
Depart and return
Start: Multiple pickup locations offered. Guest Choice Pickup and Dropoff offered or default location
Default location - 10 Copper Queen Plaza, Bisbee, AZ 85603, USA
Go to the Big Jeep in the parking lot at 10 Copper Queen Plaza.
Guest Choice pickup details
I'm able to pick up guests at any location in the greater Bisbee area. This includes parking lots, restaurants, hotels, or an Airbnb. The Big Jeep will arrive a few minutes before your tour starts for guest convenience.
During online booking, you will be able to select your pickup location.
Default - 10 Copper Queen Plaza, Bisbee, AZ 85603, USA
I can drop you off at any location in the greater Bisbee area.
Accessibility Not wheelchair accessible Service animals allowed
Additional information Confirmation will be received at time of booking Not recommended for pregnant travelers Most travelers can participate This is a private tour/activity. Only your group will participate
Cancellation policy Cancel at anytime and full refunds will be started within 12 hours
Help If you have questions about this tour or need help making your booking, we’d be happy to help. Just call +1 520 660 1686
Start tour at Guest Choice location
Open pits: 45 minutes
Lowell AZ: 45 minutes
Saginaw: 5 minutes
Galena: 10 minutes
Briggs: 5 minutes
Tintown: 5 minutes
Don Luis: 5 minutes
San Jose: 10 minutes
Naco: 30 minutes
Bisbee Junction: 10 minutes
Warren: 30 minutes
Bakerville: 5 minutes
Old Bisbee: 45 minutes
End tour at Guest Choice location