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What to see/do in Albuquerque & Santa Fe?

What to see/do in Albuquerque & Santa Fe?

Old Jun 23, 14, 10:21 am
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What to see/do in Albuquerque & Santa Fe?

DW and I have planned a trip to Albuquerque over the July 4 weekend because... well, we haven't been there before. Now the question is what to do!

We are generally active people who enjoy the outdoors (especially hiking) and a bit of culture & history. For example, one thing we believe we want to do is spend a day out at Malpais National Monument near Grant, NM. But that's just 1 day out of 4. Where and how can we spend the rest of our time?

1. We figure on spending a couple days in Santa Fe. We know there's a lot of hiking in the mountains nearby, though there's nothing specific we've pinpointed yet. Any suggestions?

2. Is it worth spending a day in Albuquerque, or should we spend an additional day in Santa Fe or somewhere else, maybe Taos?

3. Driving doesn't faze us, so are there other places within a few hours' drive we should consider?

Thanks in advance for your suggestions!
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Old Jun 24, 14, 6:30 pm
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Out of ABQ I'd head first to Sandia Peak just for the scenery or for a little hiking. From there I'd continue up the Turquoise Trail to Santa Fe. It's a nice scenic by -way with some quirky little stores in Madrid. There are a few nice day trips out of Santa Fe. The High Road to Taos is worthwhile (Rts76, 75 and 518). For a little longer day trip I'd suggest the Enchanted Circle scenic byway (U.S. 64 and NM 38 and 522). It encircles Wheeler Peak. If you're into marathon driving you can do both those trips in one day although you can't really appreciate it fully.

One of my favorite places is Ghost Ranch in Abiquiu. The scenery is beautiful but you won't have enough time to do everything.

So those would be my first suggestions. Have a great trip in one of my favorite places.

Bobette
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Old Jun 24, 14, 9:46 pm
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Thanks for the suggestions, Bobette! Can you recommend any specific hiking trails in the area or local websites where people post about trails? (Web searching has led me to a few sites with sparse or dated information.)
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Old Jun 25, 14, 7:39 am
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Check this out. We only hiked an easy trail at Sandia so I really don't have good information as to which trail is best. There is just so much to explore with the veritable wealth of trails available especially in the NM national Forest.

Bobette
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Old Jun 25, 14, 8:28 am
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Would give yourself a whole day just to walk Santa Fe and see all the art galleries.

Look into the high road and low road between Santa Fe and Taos. Forget which has the art galleries along the way but both had lots of great scenery.

We had a late flight home, so spent part of our last day in ABQ. Thought the National Museum of Nuclear Science & History was cool.
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Old Jun 25, 14, 8:48 am
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Sorry the link did not work. Just try sandiahiking.com.Hope it works.

Bobette
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Old Jun 25, 14, 11:03 am
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Hiking suggestions near Santa Fe.

dbuckho makes a good point with the suggestion on spending a whole day in Santa Fe. It's a cool little town. For a good (big) old-fashioned southwestern breakfast, hit the Tesuque Village Market on Tesuque Village Road. You might have to eat on picnic tables but it's terrific. Lunch and dinner is served too.

Bobette
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Old Jun 25, 14, 6:04 pm
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Even if you are not regular opera fans, you might consider going to the Santa Fe Opera on one of your evenings.

The theater is a (mostly) covered open-air facility, whose wall-less sides allow the nighttime sky to become part of the ambiance:



They're doing "Carmen" during your dates, a very accessible work, and as usual for Santa Fe, the singing and production values are at a high international level.


http://www.santafeopera.org/tickets/...nceNumber=6294
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Old Jun 25, 14, 7:03 pm
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If you are there for 3 days or so I would just focus on the Santa Fe area where you are on town for a day, day trip to Taos, and half day exploring Bandaleir NM.
For an additional day spend a day in ABQ. Any more time then look at some of the things on the I-40 section west of ABQ (Acoma Pueblo, Zuni Peublo, and a few national monumments)
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Old Aug 10, 14, 2:36 pm
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For anyone else wondering about a similar itinerary. Another suggestion is the Jemez Mtns. A good hotel on the north of Albuquerque is the Hyatt Tamayo and that is convenient to the Jemez Mtns. Drive west to Hwy 4...very scenic and home to the Valle Caldera National Preserve, Jemez Springs (All-America City Award winner twice) and Jemez Springs Bath House (low key city owned spa with hot springs baths and massage therapy), plenty of hiking trails. Los Alamos and Bandelier are on the north side of the Mtns. Pueblos are all around the area and may be worth a looksee.
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Old Aug 16, 14, 7:21 am
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Any visit to Albuquerque needs to include lunch or dinner at The Frontier Restaurant, a true cultural experience
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Old Aug 16, 14, 5:02 pm
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Originally Posted by cblaisd View Post
Any visit to Albuquerque needs to include lunch or dinner at The Frontier Restaurant, a true cultural experience
Yup. We found it on Yelp and had dinner there our one night in town. It was a good choice.
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Old Aug 17, 14, 9:25 pm
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Originally Posted by dbuckho View Post
Would give yourself a whole day just to walk Santa Fe and see all the art galleries.

Look into the high road and low road between Santa Fe and Taos. Forget which has the art galleries along the way but both had lots of great scenery.

We had a late flight home, so spent part of our last day in ABQ. Thought the National Museum of Nuclear Science & History was cool.
If this is the one on the military base, you should plan ahead. IIRC you must make a reservation or something to get permission to enter the base. Also, plan on having your car inspected for disallowed stuff as well as driver's license and insurance card checked at the gate. Allow some extra time for this.

I've very much enjoyed the drive to Los Alamos, about an hour beyond Santa Fe, as well as the museum and historic house there.
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Old Aug 20, 14, 10:40 pm
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Originally Posted by MSPeconomist View Post
If this is the one on the military base, you should plan ahead. IIRC you must make a reservation or something to get permission to enter the base. Also, plan on having your car inspected for disallowed stuff as well as driver's license and insurance card checked at the gate. Allow some extra time for this.
They moved into a new building just off base so you don't have to go through security.
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Old Sep 14, 14, 2:03 pm
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I'm sort of surprised that no one mentioned Old Town Albuquerque or the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center.

If you ever have a day to spare in New Mexico when one of the pueblos is celebrating a feast, it's a fascinating experience. And since the pueblos don't permit photography (or even sketching) of any kind at their celebrations, it's own of the few things in today's world that one has to actually attend to experience.

Pueblo Feast Day Calendar

Laguna is coming up this Friday.
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