Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge

Quick Facts

Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge


(520) 823-4247

Map Directions

Things To Do


Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge is a place where you can enjoy a landscape like few others - where sparrows flock in winter, antelope play again, and the valley bottom is once again the sea of grass that greeted early settlers. Additions to the refuge since 1985 protect valuable wetland and riparian habitats at Arivaca Creek, Arivaca Cienega, and Brown Canyon. This combination of grasslands, wetlands, cottonwood-lined streambeds, and sycamore and live oak mountain canyons preserve some of the southwest's rarest habitats used by seven endangered species, ten species of concern, and many other native pants and wildlife.

Map of Buenos Aires NWR

Latitude, Longitude: 31.641691, -111.496124



  • Auto/Motorcycle

    Pronghorn Drive circles 10 miles through open grassland with sweeping views of the Altar Valley. Follow signs off the entry road just south of headquarters.

    Over 200 miles of back roads are available for bicycle riding. The more rugged roads are in the southeast and northeast sections of the refuge.

  • Hiking

    Arivaca Cienega Trail is a 1-1/4 mile loop over a boardwalk and path, with opportunities to see abundant bird life in a rare desert wetland. Trailhead is ¼ mile east of Arivaca.

    Arivaca Creek Trail meanders one mile along the seasonal stream beneath towering cottonwoods. Trailhead is 2 miles west of Arivaca.

    Mustang Trail is a 5-mile loop route that branches off the Arivaca Creek Trail, ¼ mile downstream from the trailhead. The rugged trail climbs El Cerro, a small mountain with steep sections at the top.

    Many of the back roads in the southeast and northeast grasslands are good for hiking and backpacking.

    Brown Canyon features guided hikes.

  • Hunting

    Hunting is permitted on approximately 90% of the Refuge. In addition to all Arizona State Hunting Regulations, there are several Refuge-specific regulations that are in effect and must be followed. Please refer to the Refuge Hunt Brochure for a hunt map and listing of current regulations specific to Buenos Aires National wildlife Refuge.

    Hunting is not permitted in high public use areas and near residences. These NO HUNT ZONES are posted on the ground and are identified in the Refuge Hunt Brochure. Brochures are available at Refuge Visitor Centers and brochure boxes posted throughout the Refuge. Motorized vehicles are restricted to roadways. Access may be limited by weather conditions. Refuge land in Brown Canyon is closed to hunting. Hunter access to state land in Brown Canyon is limited. All hunters must sign in and out and must follow designated routes of travel.

  • RVing

    Please contact the park for information and RV availability.



From Tucson: go west on Ajo Way (Highway 86) to Three Points. Travel 38 miles south of Three Points on Highway 286 to milepost 7.5. If traveling on Interstate 19, take the Amado/Arivaca exit west, turn right at the T, and then left at the Cow Palace onto Arivaca Road. Proceed west 35 miles on the Arivaca Road to Highway 286, and turn left at milepost 7.5.

Phone Numbers


(520) 823-4247