In fewer than 50 acres, Tohono Chul—the name means “desert corner” in the language of the Tohono O’odham, or Desert People—provides an excellent introduction to the plant and animal life of the desert. You’ll see a forest of cholla cacti as well as a garden of small pincushion cacti. From mid-February to April, the wildflower displays here are gorgeous (if enough rain has fallen in the previous months). The park also includes an ethnobotanical garden; a garden for children that encourages them to touch, listen, and smell; a demonstration garden; natural areas; an exhibit house for art displays; a bistro (open 8am–5pm); and two very good gift shops. Park docents lead guided tours throughout the day. Special events take place throughout the cooler months of the year. If you’re in town at Christmastime, the holiday display of lights is a must-see.