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“Great birding adventure”

Patagonia Lake State Park
Ranked #1 of 8 things to do in Patagonia
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: This southern Arizona park is centered around Patagonia Lake, a beautiful desert lake known for its outdoor recreation.
St Paul, MN
Level Contributor
10 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Great birding adventure”
Reviewed March 11, 2014

My wife and I hiked and birded here five days in a row March 2014. We rented a nearby apartment at Room with a View. Every day was different, with new birds and new adventures. Staff and volunteers were helpful and friendly. Most of the other people on the trails were birders, also friendly. It's a beautiful place with a great variety of birds ( we saw almost 80 species), great flowers and scenery. I'd recommend the evening boat tour. If you'd like to explore the nearby Sonoita Creek Natural Area, stop in the state park natural area visitor center in the morning for a permit but check ahead for visitor center hours.

Visited March 2014
Thank jzakelj
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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192 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Spanish first
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English first
Sahuarita, Arizona
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Beautiful Park with the Nicest Staff!”
Reviewed March 3, 2014

We took our motorhome out for the first time to Patagonia. We reserved online, which was super easy. We stayed in spot 89. It was pouring down rain and it was really windy until late that night. When we plugged in we instantly had issues with our electricity. After trying several different things we went to the Park Rangers office and asked if they were having any issues with the power because of the rain. They weren't. They instantly sent two Park Rangers over to test the electricity at our site. They checked the outlets and thought there might be a problem. The Park Rangers went and got a volunteer electrician who was staying in the park. He checked their power and then came in and checked ours. Remember it's pouring down rain the entire time and they are all getting soaked to help us out! We moved over one spot and figured out it wasn't the park but it was our, brand new to us, used motorhome. We had partial power but our heater didn't work. While discussing whether we had enough blankets to stay warm though the night one of the Park Rangers drove up with her personal heater and an extension cord that we could put through the window. How nice is that?? We were considering driving home when she drove up. The next morning was a typical sunny beautiful day. We went fishing and took our dog for a walk around the park. The park is very clean. The bathroom and showers were also very clean. The staff is amazing!!! We are going back this weekend to try again, now that the RV is fixed. I highly recommend this park!!

Visited March 2014
3 Thank 962christineg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
13 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Tent camping on the lake”
Reviewed February 26, 2014

Best tent campsite is #38 in Patagonia Lake State Park. It's a walk in (just down some steps) in its own tiny valley with a private cove on Patagonia Lake!

Visited February 2014
4 Thank Art C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tucson, Arizona
Level Contributor
104 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 121 helpful votes
“Gets Better Every Year”
Reviewed February 22, 2014

I've been visiting the Patagonia Lake for years; as far back as when it was privately owned and I bought ten bucks worth of stock in it. It become a State Park decades ago, so I'm probably pretty old ("old as dirt, and dirt is 40"). Regardless, I've seen it improve year after year, so I won't dwell on things I may have already reviewed previously in another post about the lake.

Improvements include additional hook-up sites to include water at tent sites (105 sites in all), an improved Lakeside Market with everything from flip flops, wood, dairy, basic pet supplies, fishing licenses, libations, and an awesome collection of post cards. There's new, nice, sandy horse shoe pits, and a visitor center with classes and/or demonstrations.

The "Marina Store" was boarded up when we went, what a shame to see a childhood memory so forlorn--but not totally demolished--could there be remodeling in its future? I hope so: taking a paddle boat out past the bridge and to the island will always be worth the cardio.

Patagonia Lake may not be at all huge, and with it's restrictions on water craft on weekends may not draw a flock of speedboats and wave-runners, but for relaxing it's just the right size. Each camp site boasts a sturdy fire ring and pinic bench, as well as no fewer than three shade-producing mesquites per site. There are two bathroom complexes with ample clean, stocked stalls and two showers each (a handicap accessible shower in each as well), fish cleaning stations, a RV dump station, ramadas for day use, a sandy swimming area, aforementioned island and plenty of off-shore sites accessible only by boat.

For some reason, people who venture the scenic roads to rest at Patagonia are all in sync with having a good time but not in an obnoxious way, making this lake one of the more mellow lakes I've visited in Arizona. However, it can fill up quickly and become pretty crowded on holidays and weekends all year round--something we look to avoid when we go--just something to consider.

Visit the website to make online reservations and pack your own wood if you can.

Visited January 2014
1 Thank azgypsy g
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Austin MN
Level Contributor
13 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Elegant Trogan viewed”
Reviewed February 10, 2014

A little pricey to get in ($15), but worth it because we actually saw the Elegant Trogan after hearing about it for years. There are also nice hiking trails right outside the entrance, but need to get a permit for them.

Visited February 2014
2 Thank Tulipnana
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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