Veronica Samuels

The drive from Tombstone to Bisbee is rugged. Imagine stepping into a world where the echoes of gunfights still ricochet off ancient canyon walls, where ghostly miners wander the streets of towns carved from the very essence of the Wild West.

This isn’t the script of a Hollywood blockbuster; it’s the journey from Tombstone to Bisbee, a road trip that transcends mere travel to become a voyage through time itself.

As you set out from the infamous streets of Tombstone, where legends like Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday became household names, the road ahead promises more than just miles; it offers stories.

Stories that are whispered by the wind in Boothill Graveyard, tales of bravery, tragedy, and the indomitable spirit of the American frontier.

And as the road winds its way towards Bisbee, you’re not just traversing geography; you’re exploring layers of history, from the depths of the Lavender Pit to the haunted halls of the Copper Queen Hotel.

So, buckle up and prepare for an adventure that’s part history lesson, part ghost tour, and entirely unforgettable.

Welcome to the trail from Tombstone to Bisbee, where every mile tells a story, and every story paints a picture of the Wild West as you’ve never seen it before!

This journey is a testament to Arizona’s rugged beauty, its tumultuous history, and its enduring legends.


The distance from Tombstone to Bisbee is about 23 miles, give or take a tumbleweed or two. 

The distance from Tombstone to Bisbee is close enough that you could almost hear the gunfights of the Old West echoing through the canyons. 

But don’t worry, the only showdowns today involve who has the best Instagram shot.


I recommend renting a car as this is the best way to get from Tombstone to Bisbee, which means you can also squeeze in a quick and short road trip.

Having your vehicle allows you to see everything this area offers also giving you the flexibility to stay as long as you like at each destination.

Scottsdale to Tombstone
Scottsdale to Tombstone

I like Discover Cars and believe me, as a frequent traveler regularly renting cars from them, I recommend them for easy and quick online booking.

Thanks to their long list of car rental companies, you can easily compare the car types and prices before picking. They also sometimes offer pick up as well.

Check prices and book your car here at Discover Cars.

If you don’t have a car, I highly recommend this tour from Tombstone to Bisbee, perfect for conveniently exploring Tombstone with expert guides.


ROUTE 1 – The Scenic Shuffle (Fastest)

  • Starting Point: Tombstone, AZ
  • Ending Point: Bisbee, AZ
  • Distance: Approximately 23 miles (37 kilometers)
  • Estimated Driving Time: Around 30 minutes

The most direct and fastest route typically involves taking AZ-80 E from Tombstone directly to Bisbee. 

This straightforward path is not only quick but also scenic, offering views of the desert landscape and rolling hills characteristic of southeastern Arizona.

Tombstone to Bisbee

For those who like their travels with a side of breathtaking landscapes, Route 1 is your go-to. 

This path takes you through the heart of the desert, offering views that’ll make you want to pull over and have a photoshoot with every cactus you see. 

ROUTE 2 – The History Hustle

If you’re the type who prefers a side of history with your road trips, Route 2 is where it’s at. 

This route is like traveling through a live-action history book, with stops that tell the tales of the Wild West.

However, the primary path remains AZ-80 E, as it connects these two historic towns directly. 

You’ll half expect to see Wyatt Earp or Doc Holliday tipping their hats to you as you pass by.



Your trip to Tombstone must include the iconic attraction indeed.

The OK Corral, one of the top things to do in Tombstone AZ is infamous for the tragic shoot-out in 1881 between the leading Earp and Clanton gangs, a legendary event in the Old West. 

Despite its brevity, the gunfight left a lasting legacy, symbolizing the lawlessness of the Wild West era.

No trip from Tombstone to Bisbee would be complete without stopping at the OK Corral.

It’s the epicentre of Tombstone’s gunfight lore, offering a chance to stand where legends clashed.

Head to the O.K. Corral is located next to the small Tombstone City Park.

Watch a reenactment of this famous gunfight performed by actors in period costumes and with period weapons, recreating the events of that day as accurately as possible, where you can hear the sounds of pistols firing and gun smoke in the air.

Tombstone to Bisbee drive

Apart from watching the reenactment, there are many activities here.

Check out the life-size replicas of the nine gunfighters in the same way as the setting was in 1881 at the exact location of the original O.K. Corral gunfight.

With the tickets to OK Corral(book here), you can also check out the Historama theatre, collect a free newspaper souvenir at the Tombstone Epitaph, and tour the stables and C.S. Fly’s Photo Gallery.

Check out the museum home to artefacts from the lives of Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday, antique cowboy saddles, and gear from the Old West including gear related to gun smithing, leather working, and blacksmithing.

Tombstone to Bisbee distance

Visit the Cowboy Bunkhouse, see the original Corral office to learn about daily life in the Corral, pan for gemstones, and sit in a buggy.

Timings – The gunfight re-enactments are held daily at 11 AM, 12 PM, 1 PM, 2 PM, and 3:30 pm. Since the timings are seasonal, check on the website for the updated hours before you go. 

Prices – Each show lasts about 30 minutes and tickets cost $10 per person that you can buy at the gift shop on the day of the performance.


No, it’s not a new indie band; it’s an open-pit copper mine that’s as much a part of Bisbee’s landscape as the historic buildings downtown.

The Lavender Pit was part of the massive Copper Queen Mine, run by the Phelps Dodge Corporation from 1879 to 1975. 

This massive open-pit copper mine just outside of Bisbee was constructed to compensate for revenues as the ore was reduced in the Copper Queen Mine.

The Lavender Pit was exploited in 50-foot-long shelves or benches blasted to a 60-foot depth.

The pit covers an area of 300 acres and is 900 feet deep, large enough to consume most of the adjacent town of Lowell. 

Unfortunately, the pit closed in 1975 as copper prices dropped, and there was no demand.

Today, it is one of the popular things to do in Bisbee Az.

The pit is a testament to human engineering and environmental impact, offering a visual contrast to the natural beauty of the surrounding landscape.

A large pull-off and parking area leads to the Lavender Pit Mining Overlook.

You can observe the giant 300-acre hole in the ground from a series of platforms built along the pit’s rim.

They have fences up, for your safety. Head to the cutout areas of the fence and take some photos or videos.


One of the quirky things to do in Tombstone AZ is visiting the local cemetery in the town, Boothill Graveyard.

Just a stone’s throw from the OK Corral, Boothill Graveyard offers a meet-and-greet with Tombstone’s eternal residents.

It is the final resting place for the victims of the violence and the residents that occupied the mining town and beyond.

Home to nearly 300 graves, Boothill was founded in 1878 and was then known as the City Cemetery.

The graveyard gets its name “Boothill” as it was a common name given to graveyards home to gunfighters and outlaws dying violent deaths or “died with their boots on.”

Unlike the usual graveyards, here you can see the cause of the death marked on the tombs, ranging from drowned to shot down.

Among the many outlaws and cowboys, you will find Billy Clanton and the McLaury brothers, who died at the O.K. Corral gunfight. Entrance is $3 per adult.

Among the graves, you’ll find humorous and grim epitaphs that tell a story of complex lives and sudden deaths. 

It’s a stark reminder of the perilous existence in the Wild West, where law and order were often decided by the quickest draw.

✅ Join mysterious tours to feel spooky at Boothill Cemetery.


If you want a unique stay experience on your trip, one of the fun things to do in Bisbee AZ is staying at one of the heritage or historic hotels.

Among the famous ones is the Copper Queen Hotelan architectural gem and the longest continuously operated hotel in Arizona.

The Copper Queen Hotel is where you rest your head and test your ghost tolerance.

It’s said to be haunted, but in a charming, “let’s share a drink” way.

Opened in 1902, the Copper Queen Hotel is Bisbee’s crown jewel, offering guests a blend of historic charm and tales of the supernatural.

It’s the oldest continuously operating hotel in Arizona.

It is also one of the most haunted places in Arizona, so if you want an eerie experience, you may even get it.

Among the heritage places to stay in Bisbee AZ is Bisbee Grand Hotel known for its luxurious architecture, Old West style and antique decor in different-themed room.

Check out more details, reviews and deals to book your room at a heritage hotel here.


Once in Bisbee, the Mining & Historical Museum is your go-to for all things copper and more.

It’s a homage to the town’s mining heritage, minus the black lung.

One of the top attractions in Bisbee and the best place to know the town’s history is the Bisbee Mining and Historical Museum, a small local museum in the former headquarters of the Copper Queen Consolidated Mining Company in downtown Bisbee. 

One of the first official Smithsonian Affiliates, the Bisbee Mining and Historical Museum showcases the role in the industrialization of America. 

The museum’s permanent exhibit, “Bisbee: Urban Outpost on the Frontier,” gives you details of 40 years of Bisbee through artefacts, photographs, tools, and everyday objects.

The museum, with the help of the Smithsonian, also often organizes temporary exhibits combining art and history.

The museum is open from 10 AM to 4 PM daily. General admission is $10 per adult.


The 130-year-old town has its share of scary stories and the Historic Ghost tour is a trip to Bisbee’s famous haunted spots. 

Wrap up your trip with the Old Bisbee Ghost Tour.

It’s educational, slightly terrifying, and a perfect way to digest that hefty dinner from the Copper Queen.

One of the fun things to do in Bisbee AZ, you will learn all about the famous ghosts in town through Old Bisbee’s dark, narrow alleys, stairways, and houses. 

is Bisbee, az worth visiting

Tours start place almost every day at 7PM.

On this tour averaging around 1.5 hours, the guide will take you through the narrow lanes and dark valleys of the old Bisbee town, listening to some gory and dark, infamous incidents in the town’s history, including roaming spirits and murders.

Check out the reviews, prices and other details to book the tour here.

Bisbee After Dark


Consider visiting the San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area, located northeast of Tombstone.

While this detour adds to your journey, it offers opportunities to experience the unique ecosystems of the San Pedro River Valley.

The San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area comprises nearly 57,000 acres in Cochise County, Arizona, bordering Mexico and St. David.

It is one of the best things to do in Bisbee AZ for outdoor lovers.

Only about 30 to 45 minutes west of Bisbee, it is one of the best day trips you can plan for hiking, bird watching and exploring historic ruins.

Check out the historic and archaeological Murray Springs Clovis Site, over 40,000 years old. 

To incorporate this, you would start on AZ-80 E, then detour north on AZ-90 towards the conservation area before looping back to continue on AZ-80 E to Bisbee.


Sure, driving is practical, but why not mix it up?  

You could go old school and saddle up a horse.

Horseback riding offers an authentic Wild West experience, while biking lets you feel every hill and valley (and question your life choices). 

Biking is another option if you’re feeling athletic and want to earn that slice of pie from Bisbee’s famous diner. 

Or how about strolling the streets on this cute cart ride?

And for those looking for a more modern approach, there are always tours that can take you from Tombstone to Bisbee, complete with guides who know all the best stories and maybe even a few secrets.


Half-Day Arizona Wine Country Tasting Tour – I highly recommend this day tour for all wine lovers. Taking a wine tour from Bisbee or Sierra Vista to Arizona’s picturesque wine country of Sonoita-Elgin makes a fantastic day. Read more details here to book.

Guided E-Bike Tour of Bisbee, Arizona (Rating – 🤩5/5, 30+ reviews) – Join a small group and ride around Old Bisbee to learn about the town’s history, art, and architecture with guides for 2 hours. Book here.

1-Hour Tour Old Bisbee City Cart (Rating – 🤩5/5, 40+ reviews) – This is an interactive 1-hour ride through Old Bisbee, highlighting the infamous and not-famous stories and sights that make Bisbee the charming beauty it is. Find more details here.

3 Hour Private Bisbee Pub Crawl(Rating – 🤩5/5, 10+ reviews)Find out more here to book.


Here are the best options if you wonder where to stay in Bisbee, AZ.

Letson Loft Hotel Letson Loft Hotel🏨 is one of the best hotels in the town. Rooms also offer a kitchenette with a fridge, a microwave and a toaster.

You can also enjoy activities in and around Bisbee, like hiking and cycling. Find more details to book here.

Eldorado Suites HotelEldorado Suites Hotel🏨 offers city views, this accommodation offers a balcony. The aparthotel provides rooms with air conditioning, free private parking and free WiFi.

The aparthotel provides guests with a terrace, mountain views, a seating area, cable flat-screen TV, a fully equipped kitchen with an oven and a microwave, and a private bathroom with bath and a hair dryer. Find more details here to book.

Hotel San Ramon Hotel San Ramon🏨 is a 3-star property situated in Bisbee.

Each accommodation at the 3-star hotel has city views and free WiFi. I highly recommend this for couples as it is one of the best reviewed hotels in the town. Check more details here.

Mile High Ranch 🏨 – Among the top places to stay is Mile High Ranch, ideal for couples and families. Check more details here.

✅ If you are looking for a motel,Jonquil Motel 🏨 is a great choice.


The journey from Tombstone to Bisbee is more than just a trip; it’s an exploration of Arizona’s piece of the puzzle that makes up the Wild West. 

With each mile, you’re not just moving through landscapes but through the layers of history, culture, and legend that define this iconic region. 

So grab your camera, your sense of adventure, and maybe a friendly ghost or two, and hit the road. The Wild West awaits!

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