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Living a Mountain Lifestyle in Bisbee, Arizona

This town is at 5,500 ft., an elevation that gives it milder temperatures than most places in Arizona. Bisbee is an historic mining town almost at the Mexican border. The Bisbee area is famous for its copper, gold, and silver mines. The Copper Queen Mine, one of its largest, helped serve America's need for copper during WWI.  The mining industry has had its booms and busts, but the result overall was to create a city with great wealth, even its own suburbs. Today there is still some open pit mining.

Today, Bisbee is one of the most interesting towns in the southwest. The Copper Queen Hotel is an anchor for the downtown, along with a great Art Deco Hotel.  There are plenty of coffee shops.  The AARP named Bisbee one of the "quirkiest" towns in America. 

Where to Retire in Bisbee and Home Prices

Real estate prices tend to go in cycles in Bisbee. There are plenty of beautiful Victorians and prices go up and down. Zillow reports the home value index to be $189,289, in early 2023. We are not aware of any active communities in Bisbee, although there are many in nearby Green Valley and other towns.

What Is Special about Bisbee

Some of its attractions are its Victorian architecture, the Copper Queen Hotel, and being a quirky town in Arizona's mountains. Bisbee has been documented in The New Yorker as well as The Cornell Review by Calvin Trillin. Set in the Mule Mountains, the hills are so steep that some homes can only be reached by steps.  The Sheriff of Cochise and numerous other TV shows and movies were filmed here.

What Is Not Special about Bisbee

Bisbee is prone to booms and busts, so far. It is located in a very remote part of the country. And if you don't like quirky, you won't like Bisbee.

Climate and Physical Environment

Bisbee is at an elevation of 5,500+ ft. in the Mule Mountains, 82 miles southeast of Tucson near the Mexican border. The climate is relatively mild for being this far south, with January temperatures in the low 40's and July temps in the mid 70's.

Restaurants & Cultural Scene

The Bisbee Mining & Historical Museum is located in the former Phelps Dodge general office building. There is the Arizona Cactus Botanical Garden and Southeastern Arizona Bird Sanctuary.  Bisbee's tourist promotion emphasizes the town's historic old west flavor.  Known to be gay-friendly, there are several Gay Pride parades/events per year.


Crime in Bisbee is just above the national average, although it is all property related crime.

Medical Facilities

Copper Queen Municipal Hospital. There is another hospital in Douglas, 12 miles away.


Sierra Vista Muni-Libby and Fort Huachuca AAF is 33 miles away. Bisbee has a muni field as well.

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