The pulse of the southwest can be found in Tucson, a college town at heart with a rich Spanish influence that is quaintly situated in an arid valley surrounded by rugged mountains and sprawling Saguaro forests. The city is home to the state’s most stunning national parks with sightseeing and hiking opportunities abound, and luckily for the destination-bound golfer, this topography also translates into one of the best locales for top-shelf desert golf experiences worldwide. Big sky and big golf shot values welcome golfers who enjoy firm and fast conditions on pristinely manicured courses. There never is an excuse for missing a three-foot putt with an unfavorable break on the pure playing surfaces Tucson serves up. The exception might be the views and vistas that can distract you and lead to a break in concentration. Be sure to check out one of the many public municipal courses in the city, which provide perhaps the best selection of no-frills golf anywhere in the country and affectionately loved by locals.