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If you travel to New Mexico, you will find its exquisite landscapes alone are worth a trip to the “Land of Enchantment.” From vast deserts to deep canyons and adobe ruins, you will feel like you are exploring a different country.
New Mexico is home to Native American galleries, incredible adobe monuments, and historical museums. Visit tourist hot spots like Santa Fe and Albuquerque and lesser-known places of tranquility like Carlsbad and Lincoln. The center of the American southwest offers travelers the chance to watch colorful desert sunsets, eat authentic Hispanic dishes, and discover the UFO mysteries of Roswell.
Whether you’re visiting New Mexico to experience southwest culture or to immerse yourself in nature, there is something to keep you busy daily. Read on to discover the best things to do in New Mexico.
- 1. White Sands National Park
- 2. Four Corners Monument
- 3. Cliff’s Amusement Park
- 4. Living Desert State Park
- 5. Santa Rosa Blue Hole Dive Center
- 6. Carlsbad Caverns National Park
- 7. Cumbres and Toltec Scenic Railroad
- 8. Tinkertown Museum
- 9. New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science
- 10. Trinity Atomic Bomb Site
- 11. House of Eternal Return
- 12. New Mexico Museum of Art
- 13. ABQ BioPark Botanic Garden
- 14. Origami in the Garden
- 15. Museum of International Folk Art
- 16. Billy the Kid Museum
- 17. Ghost Ranch
- 18. Western Playland
- 19.Chaco Culture National Historical Park
- 20. New Mexico State Capitol
- 21. Taos Pueblo
- 22. Continental Divide National Scenic Trail
- 23. Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array
- 24. Petroglyph National Monument
- 25. Wildlife West Nature Park
- 26. Tularosa Basin Museum of History
- 27. International UFO Museum and Research Center
- 28. Santa Fe Opera House
- 29. Sky City Cultural Center & Haak’u Museum
- 30. Museum of Indian Arts & Culture
- 31. Santa Fe Botanical Garden
- 32. Meow Wolf Art Complex
- 33. Bolack Museum of Fish and Wildlife
- 34. Aztec Museum
- 35. Bodhi Manda Zen Center
- 36. Georgia O’Keeffe Museum
- 37. Sandia Peak Aerial Tramway
- 38. Bottomless Lakes State Park
- 39. Earthship Biotecture Visitor Center
- 40. Las Cruces Railroad Museum
- 41. La Vina Winery
- 42. New Mexico Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum
- 43. Church Street Market Antique and Indoor Flea Market
- 44. Branigan Cultural Center
- 45. Explora Science Center
- 46. Anderson Abruzzo Albuquerque International Balloon Museum
- 47. Unser Racing Museum
- 48. National Hispanic Cultural Center
- 49. New Mexico Route 66 Auto Museum
- 50. New Mexico Museum of Space History
- 51. Pillow’s Fun Trackers
- 52. Spencer Theater for the Performing Arts
- 53. Coronado Historic Site
- 54. Jemez Historic Site
- 55. Pioneer Flyer Seated Zipline
- 56. Hidden Treasure Aerial Park
- 57. Spring River Park and Zoo
- 58. Ten Thousand Waves Japanese Health Spa
- 59. Mescalero Sands North Dune OHV Area
- 60. J. Kenneth Smith Bird Sanctuary & Nature Center
- 61. Sky Railway
- 62. Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian
- 63. Fort Sumner Historic Site
- 64. Cosmic Campground
- 65. Bradbury Science Museum
- 66. Allan Houser Sculpture Garden
- 67. Poeh Museum & Cultural Center
- 68. Artesia Arts & Cultural District
- 69. Aztec Ruins National Monument
- 70. Kit Carson Home and Museum
- 71. Balzano Family Vineyard
- 72. Smokey Bear Historical Park
- 73. Carlsbad Cruises Day Tours
- 74. Bisti Bay at Brookside Park
- 75. The Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta
1. White Sands National Park
If you’ve never been to a dune field, New Mexico is the perfect spot to experience the natural attraction for the first time. White Sands National has the largest gypsum dune field in the world. There are 275 miles of dune fields to explore by ATV.
Rent an ATV or motorcycle at White Sands Motorsports to experience the thrill of flying across the smooth, white dunes. If you want a vehicle that will fit your traveling party, rent a buggy so the whole family can enjoy the experience.
What you’ll need to know: Stop at the visitor center for information on all of the park’s activities.
2. Four Corners Monument
Located within the Four Corners Tribal Park, it’s the only landmark in the U.S. where four states meet at one point. The corners of Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, and Utah meet at a brass and granite monument.
You can stand at the monument and have both your hands and feet in four different states at once. It’s the perfect photo opportunity and experience you can only have in New Mexico.
What you’ll need to know: There are Native American artisans onsite selling handmade crafts, jewelry, and Navajo foods.
Related Read: Best Time To Visit New Mexico
3. Cliff’s Amusement Park
Cliff’s has rides for the entire family to enjoy. From thrill rides to Kiddieland and Watermania, the theme park is an enjoyable time.
Ride the New Mexico Rattler, one of the world’s Top 25 Wooden Rollercoasters. There are also fun carnival-style games to keep you busy and good food to eat after you’ve worked up an appetite.
What you’ll need to know: Avoid standing in line and buy your park passes online to save time.
4. Living Desert State Park
More than 40 species of animals can be seen at the Living Desert State Park. This outdoor living museum overlooks the Pecos River Valley.
You can take a 1.3-mile self-guided tour through the Chihuahuan Desert and enjoy the sights of the pygmy forest and dunes. Also, if you’re a fan of succulents, the park has hundreds of them from around the world.
What you’ll need to know: The park’s trails vary in length and difficulty. Make sure to read the signage before attempting a trail.
Related Read: 12 Best Camping Spots In New Mexico
5. Santa Rosa Blue Hole Dive Center
The Blue Hole is New Mexico’s geological wonder and one of the top 10 natural swimming holes in the U.S. It’s one of seven sinkhole lakes that connect to underground water channels.
Visitors can take diving lessons and attend training courses at the Santa Rosa Blue Hole facilities. The water renews itself every six hours, providing a constant stream of cold, fresh water.
Even if you don’t plan to dive, large boulders and rocks surround the swimming hole, so you can sit and enjoy the site’s beauty.
What you’ll need to know: Complete the permit and release form prior to your visit.
6. Carlsbad Caverns National Park
Carlsbad Caverns lie under New Mexico’s mountains and deserts. The caverns are a labyrinth of underground tunnels that have been in the making for millions of years.
Descending into the caverns is an adventure in itself. You can take an elevator down or take the Natural Entrance Trail. The Natural Entrance Trail is equivalent to 79 stories. And once you reach the bottom, you’ll enter the mesmerizing “Big Room,” which people call the underground Grand Canyon.
What you’ll need to know: Advanced reservations are required for ranger-led tours.
7. Cumbres and Toltec Scenic Railroad
The Cumbres and Toltec Scenic Railroad is one of the few National Historic Landmarks that moves. This steam railroad is the longest and highest in North America. The journey takes passengers through the most spectacular views of the Rocky Mountain West.
Offerings include full excursion trips, half-limited trips, and short express options. The railroad also offers monthly special trips like the Geology Train, the Wildflower Train, and the 168 Brunch Special.
What you’ll need to know: Visit the daily and special train schedule online to book your ride.
Related Read: Do You Need a Passport To Go To Mexico?
8. Tinkertown Museum
Tinkertown is one of New Mexico’s premier folk art collections. Since its opening in 1983, the museum has delighted millions of visitors with its animated mini–Western Town and the three-ring circus.
Artist Ross Ward transformed a four-room cabin into a 22-room showcase of his greatest works. He constructed the museum with over 50,000 glass bottles and other recycled materials. It’s a one-of-a-kind place for the whole family to visit.
What you’ll need to know: You must make a reservation and buy a timed entry ticket online.
9. New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science
Come face-to-face with life-sized dinosaurs that once roamed New Mexico. The New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science showcases prehistoric life through fun and interactive exhibitions.
Walk through a recreation of an active volcano and enter a realistic Ice Age cave. After, you can experience a living forest and a marine aquarium. The museum also features a planetarium and the Extreme DynaTheater.
What you’ll need to know: Check the calendar of events for special programs and adults-only nights.
Related Read: 40 BEST Things To Do In Arizona
10. Trinity Atomic Bomb Site
You can see where the first atomic bomb was tested In New Mexico at the Trinity Site. However, the site is only open twice a year to the public because it’s located in a restricted military test range.
The area is now the Department of Defense’s premier testing area for technology and weapons. A guide will bring you to ground zero of the blast and to the Schmidt/ McDonald Ranch House, where scientists assembled the bomb’s core.
What you’ll need to know: From the entrance gate, you will have to drive 17 miles to reach the Trinity Site.
11. House of Eternal Return
Map It: 1352 Rufina Cir, Santa Fe, NM 87507 | Phone: 866-636-9969 | Website | Hours: Sunday – Thursday 10 a.m. – 8 p.m., Friday – Saturday 10 a.m. – 10 p.m. | Admission Fee: Adults $42 and child 4-13 $27
At the center of Meow Wolf is the incredible art experience House of Eternal Return. This 20,000-square-foot maze contains bright displays, larger-than-life sculptures, and interactive jungle gyms.
It’s a favorite Santa-Fe attraction for locals and tourists alike. The House is not just a museum to walk through. There is a background story, and visitors are invited to solve the mystery of why the owners suddenly left this house behind.
Find clues in each exhibit room! It’s an exciting attraction guaranteed to entertain the whole family.
What you’ll need to know: Reserve your visit online for easy entry.
12. New Mexico Museum of Art
Map It: 107 W Palace Ave, Santa Fe, NM 87501 | Phone: (505) 476-5063 | Website | Hours: Saturday – Thursday 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., Friday 10 a.m. – 7 p.m. | Admission Fee: Adults $12 and children under 16 are free
The New Mexico Museum of Art is unique with its Pueblo-Revival building. The museum features a distinguished collection of 19th and 20th-century art influenced by Spanish and Indian cultures.
The most famous exhibit is “14,000 Years of Art in New Mexico,” where you can learn about the state’s ever-changing art scene. The collection features artists like Georgia O’Keefe, Maria and Julian Martinez, and Irving Couse.
What you’ll need to know: To experience gallery talks, slide lectures, and gala openings, reserve your spot online.
13. ABQ BioPark Botanic Garden
Explore 36 acres of formal gardens at the ABQ BioPark Botanic Garden. Walk through the garden’s paths to see the Mediterranean and Desert Conservatories and the Cottonwood Gallery.
Specialty sections include a 1920s Heritage Farm, the High Desert Rose Garden, and the Sasebo Japanese Garden. Kids will enjoy the Children’s Fantasy Garden, the Model Railroad Garden, and the Butterfly Pavilion.
What you’ll need to know: Single site timed-entry tickets are encouraged.
14. Origami in the Garden
Santa Fe artists Jennifer and Kevin Box have reimagined the art of origami in the form of larger-than-life sculptures. Discover soaring airplanes, birds in flight, boats, horses, and butterflies.
The sculptures are placed throughout a 3-acre garden that has a distinct southwest landscape. Enjoy the natural and artistic beauty all at once.
What you’ll need to know: Visitors can go behind the scenes to see how the sculptures are made on weekends in October.
15. Museum of International Folk Art
See the wonders of New Mexico through art at the Museum of International Folk Art. The museum has over 135,000 artifacts that fills its four wings.
Enjoy displays of ceramics, folk art, toys, Egyptian textiles, carvings, Navajo weavings, and Pennsylvania Amish quilts.
What you’ll need to know: Call for current walk-in tour times before visiting.
16. Billy the Kid Museum
Learn all about Billy the Kid’s notorious adventures at the museum in Fort Sumner. The Wild West comes to life through preserved artifacts like Billy’s rifle, spurs, and the original wanted poster.
Other attractions include antique automobiles and more than 150 weapons from various centuries.
What you’ll need to know: No tours are given after 4:30 p.m.
17. Ghost Ranch
Map It: 280 Private Drive 1708 Highway, US-84, Abiquiu, NM 87510 | Phone: (505) 685-1000 | Website | Hours: 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. seven days a week | Admission Fee: $10 day pass
Ghost Ranch covers 21,000 acres of towering boulders, open skies, and colorful sunsets. The history and use of this land are extensive. It was once home to Georgia O’Keefe, a site of dinosaur fossils and a gathering place for cattle ranchers to play poker.
You can hike on many trails, go horseback riding, or kayaking on Abiquiu Lake. You can also schedule the O’Keeffe Landscape Tour to view actual scenes of O’Keeffe’s paintings.
Finish your day at the Museum at Ghost Ranch, which features anthropology exhibits that display artifacts from the Chama Valley’s Paleo-Indian culture.
What you’ll need to know: Check the website for special workshops and activities offered at the ranch.
18. Western Playland
Western Playland is the only amusement park located in the desert. It’s full of rides and attractions for all ages and guaranteed to deliver unlimited family fun.
From thrill rides like the Hurricane to water rides and kiddie motorcycles, there are many carnival-style attractions. And don’t forget to ride the Sky Glider for incredible views of New Mexico’s landscape and horizon.
What you’ll need to know: Tickets can only be purchased on-site at the park’s entrance.
19.Chaco Culture National Historical Park
The massive Pueblo buildings at the Chaco Culture National Historical Park are the most impressive in the American Southwest. Explore the park through hiking trails, guided tours, and evening campfire programs.
Four backcountry hiking trails that will lead you to remote Chacoan sites. Observe ancient roads, structures, and petroglyphs. You’ll be impressed by the magnificence of this UNESCO World Heritage site.
What you’ll need to know: You can purchase self-guided trail guides at the Visitor Center.
20. New Mexico State Capitol
Tourists are welcome to enjoy self-guided tours at New Mexico’s State Capitol any time during operating hours. You can download a map guide from the Capitol’s website or pick one up at the Capitol’s entrance.
Visitors can explore the Capitol grounds, the Capitol art collection, and the Buchanan Gardens.
What you’ll need to know: Advance registration for guided tours is encouraged. Reservations can be made by phone.
21. Taos Pueblo
The village of Taos Pueblo is also called the “Place of Red Willows.” It’s located at the base of the striking Sangre de Cristo Mountains.
Taos Pueblo is one the oldest inhabited communities in North America, with 4,500 people living there today. The multi-storied adobe buildings have captivated artists for the last century.
The Taos people sell handmade arts, crafts, and leatherwork. Visitors are welcome to observe their daily lives and practices.
What you’ll need to know: Check the website for etiquette and rules before visiting.
22. Continental Divide National Scenic Trail
The Continental Divide Trail runs for 820 through New Mexico. Though you may not get to travel the trail’s entire length, it is still worth traveling at least a part of it.
The trail takes visitors through vistas of the Wild West, adobe ruins, and red rock cliffs. The Continental Divide Trail meanders through the state’s most historic and spectacular natural landscapes like the San Pedro Park Wilderness.
What you’ll need to know: Observe the trail’s map online to help decide which section you plan to visit.
23. Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array
This site looks like a scene from a sci-fi movie. 27 large radio antennas fill a field in the plains of San Agustin. It’s one of the world’s top astronomical radio observatories.
The telescopes cost $78,578,000 and are used to make maps, atmospheric/ weather studies, satellite tracking, and more. It’s a great spot to snap some fabulous pics!
What you’ll need to know: Learn about the telescopes and how they work prior to visiting to be in awe of their power.
24. Petroglyph National Monument
This national monument protects one of the largest petroglyph sites in North America. Observe designs and symbols carved by Native Americans more than 500 years ago.
The volcanic rocks record valuable cultural information. The designs hold special spiritual significance for modern-day Native Americans, and are often used in religious ceremonies. It’s a part of history you can only experience in New Mexico.
What you’ll need to know: There are four trailheads that reach the monument. You must view a map ahead of time because none of the trails begin at the Visitor Center.
25. Wildlife West Nature Park
The Wildlife West Nature Park is home to 25 species of animals, some of which are endangered. Over the 122 acres of natural habitat, visitors can see black bears, bobcats, foxes, caracaras, and hawks.
The park hosts special events year-round, like Saturday Night Chuckwagon dinners, junior zookeeper days for kids, and various festivals.
What you’ll need to know: Check the website for special event dates and times.
26. Tularosa Basin Museum of History
Map It: 1004 N. White Sands Blvd., Alamogordo, NM 88310 | Phone: (575) 434-4438 | Website | Hours: Tuesday – Saturday 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. | Admission Fee: Adults $5 and children under 12 are free
This regional museum is housed in a magnificent Pueblo Revival building. It is the premiere research center in the southwest and features exhibits on prehistoric times to the space race.
You can learn about the history of the Tularosa Basin, the production of New Mexico’s railroad, Early Native American life, and more.
What you’ll need to know: La Luz Pottery is on the museum grounds and opens twice a month for tours.
27. International UFO Museum and Research Center
The International UFO Museum is one of the most fascinating and mysterious places in New Mexico. The museum provides the public with information on all UFO phenomena.
Exhibits include the Roswell Incident, UFO sightings, Area 51, crop circles, and abductions. If you don’t believe in aliens, you just might after seeing the museum’s presentation of evidence.
What you’ll need to know: If you visit New Mexico during the summer months, you can attend the annual UFO festival.
28. Santa Fe Opera House
The Santa Fe Opera House is hundreds of miles from a major city, yet it draws thousands of visitors each year. The venue hosts nearly 40 performances a year, both operas and theatrical productions.
What you’ll need to know: Check the events calendar online for show announcements and ticket sales.
29. Sky City Cultural Center & Haak’u Museum
The beautiful Sky City Center offers historical insight into the Acoma people. The Haak’u Museum has the most stunning Pueblo pottery on display, along with Southwest Indian art.
Visitors can take a historical journey by watching a film in the Ts’ikinum’a Theater. Potters still craft Pueblo’s distinct pottery, which you can purchase in the gift shop. And if you get hungry, you can try native Acoman fare in the café.
What you’ll need to know: You can’t take photos unless you obtain a photo permit.
30. Museum of Indian Arts & Culture
The Museum of Indian Arts & Culture had preserved as much of New Mexico culture before Europeans moved in, as much as possible. Its expansive exhibition celebrates indigenous cultures and Native life.
Check out the “Here, Now, and Always” exhibit to see more than 1,300 artifacts from Native American artists, builders, teachers, writers, and elders. Visiting the museum is an enriching and educational experience.
What you’ll need to know: Visit the calendar of events to find out about special programs at the museum.
31. Santa Fe Botanical Garden
Map It: 715 Camino Lejo, Santa Fe, NM 87505 | Phone: (505) 471-9103 | Website | Hours: Thursday 12 – 5 p.m. and Friday – Monday 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. | Admission Fee: Adults $10 and children under 12 are free
What you’ll need to know:
32. Meow Wolf Art Complex
George R.R. Martin, the Game of Thrones author, created something amazing for New Mexico’s art scene in an empty bowling alley. He created the ultimate immersive art experience with the help of 100 other artists.
Active participation is encouraged and fun for the entire family. There are also musical performances on the weekends. There is also a café and bar where you can grab drinks and a bite to eat.
What you’ll need to know: Save time by pre-purchasing your tickets online.
33. Bolack Museum of Fish and Wildlife
Map It: B-Square Ranch, 3901 Bloomfield Hwy., Farmington, NM 87401 | Phone: (505) 325-4275 | Website | Hours:Monday – Saturday 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. | Admission Fee: Free
The Bolack Museum of Fish and Wildlife is a wonderful environment for the entire family. It presents a unique collection of over 2,500 mounted animals from all over the world.
It is one of the largest collections in the U.S. and allows visitors to view hundreds of species up close.
What you’ll need to know: Guided tours are free and are available by appointment over the phone.
34. Aztec Museum
The Aztec Museum and Pioneer Village allows tourists to experience what pioneer life was like in the American west. The Aztec’s history dates back a thousand years ago. Their settlement is now called the Aztec Ruins National Monument.
Explore a train caboose, the one-room schoolhouse, and two pioneer buildings in Pioneer Village. With so many sights to see, this attraction will keep you busy for an entire day.
What you’ll need to know: Download a free self-guided and biking tour booklet on the museum’s website.
35. Bodhi Manda Zen Center
Need a break from the rush of life, work, and technology? Find your Zen through a peaceful visit to the Bodhi Manda Zen Center.
This New Mexico Buddhist retreat center offers daily meditations, walking meditations, and work practice. Visit for a day or stay for longer at a weekend retreat. Either way, you’ll leave feeling renewed and recharged.
What you’ll need to know: Prices vary depending on which event you attend and can be found on the center’s website.
36. Georgia O’Keeffe Museum
Georgia O’Keeffe is remembered in many New Mexico places, but the museum dedicated to her showcases the majority of her works
The museum organizes exhibitions of O’Keeffe’s contemporaries and cultivates scholarly discussions on American Modernism. Even if you aren’t familiar with the world of art, you can still appreciate O’Keeffe’s beautiful creations.
What you’ll need to know: Advance tickets required.
37. Sandia Peak Aerial Tramway
Glide through New Mexico’s skies for 2.7 miles on the Sandia Peak Aerial Tramway. Enjoy sights of deep canyons and breathtaking landscapes.
Stop at the observation deck, raised 10,378 feet, on Sandia Peak to marvel the brilliant sunset. And make sure to snap pictures of the aerial views of the Cibola National Forest and the Rio Grande Valley.
What you’ll need to know: For a unique experience, dine at the TEN 3 restaurant on top of Sandia Peak.
Map It: 545A Bottomless Lakes Rd, Roswell, NM 88201 | Phone: (575) 988-3638 | Website | Hours: 6 a.m. – 9 p.m. seven days a week | Admission Fee: Free
Bottomless Lakes State Park offers endless opportunities for family-friendly fun. Visitors can enjoy boating, kayaking, and fishing.
You can even stay for a few nights if you want to camp under New Mexico’s dazzling night sky. Campers can swim or dive in the lakes, which are sinkholes that go 90 feet deep.
What you’ll need to know: Check the park website for announcements, closures, and restrictions before visiting.
39. Earthship Biotecture Visitor Center
The Earthship Biotecture Visitor Center is located at the entrance of the Greater World Community. The homes in this community are built using recycled materials from landfills.
The homes look like magical creations. The people who live here desire to get away from modern life and return to an Earth-friendly way of life.
What you’ll need to know: The neighborhood community is private, but you can tour the completed Earth Ship at the Visitor Center.
40. Las Cruces Railroad Museum
The 1910 Santa Fe Depot has been transformed into the Las Cruces Railroad Museum. There are dozens of exhibits and activities for guests of all ages.
If you have kiddos, you’ll want to check out the family programs on Saturday. Hear exciting stories of New Mexico’s railroad history, do crafts, and create art. There are also brown bag lunch lectures, special performances, and demos.
What you’ll need to know: Check the events calendar online for special event times.
41. La Vina Winery
La Vina is the oldest winery in New Mexico. It’s located in Mesilla Valley and first opened its doors in 1977. Famous for its New Mexican wines, visitors are welcome to come to observe La Vina’s productions.
Enjoy scenic views on a tour and sample estate bottled wines. Guests are welcome to bring picnic lunches and enjoy the grounds at their leisure.
What you’ll need to know: Call ahead to schedule your tour time.
42. New Mexico Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum
Set against the backdrop of the Organ Mountains, the New Mexico Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum celebrates the state’s agricultural history. The 47-acre farm features farm animals, a greenhouse, galleries, and a theater.
There are over 4,000 years of history to discover at this museum. Kids and adults alike will enjoy learning about the Indian, Spanish, and Anglo cultures that influenced New Mexico’s farming and ranching industries.
What you’ll need to know: Most exhibits are outdoors, so check the weather conditions before visiting.
43. Church Street Market Antique and Indoor Flea Market
Visit the Church Street Market Antique and Indoor Flea Market for the best shopping experience in New Mexico. The market features over 20 vendors and artisans selling hand-made and one-of-a-kind products.
If you’re a Harry Potter fan, you’ll love the Wand Shop, which offers a selection of over 60 hand-made wands to choose from. You can also find custom furniture, Brazilian cowhide rugs, old west antiques, and Native American jewelry.
What you’ll need to know: Find a souvenir for everyone on your list at Church Street.
44. Branigan Cultural Center
What used to be the first library in Las Cruces is now the Branigan Cultural Center. Visitors can learn about the Southwest’s rich heritage through artistic and cultural exhibits.
The center is a gorgeous Pueblo Revival building built in 1935. Current exhibitions include a program on New Mexico Aviation, paintings by Catherine Eaton Skinner, and a display of New Mexican petroglyphs.
What you’ll need to know: To book a tour, call the center’s coordinator at (575) 528-3330.
45. Explora Science Center
Explora Science Center is a state-of-the-art museum that encourages visitors to interact with every exhibit and display. Visitors learn through touching, interacting, and manipulating the exhibits.
Kids will love flying the model airplanes and playing with bubbles in the Bubble Room. You can even ride a cable bike 20 feet above the floor. Explora has something for everyone, from preschoolers to adults.
What you’ll need to know: Visit in the morning to avoid the afternoon crowds.
46. Anderson Abruzzo Albuquerque International Balloon Museum
See hot air balloons of every size suspended indoors at the Anderson Abruzzo Albuquerque International Balloon Museum. It’s the perfect spot for unique pictures and to learn the history of balloon flights.
Exhibits include sport ballooning videos, the FAI Hall of Fame, and a children’s section called Elevation Station. If you’ve never been in a hot air balloon, you’ll want to by the end of your visit.
What you’ll need to know: Admission is free on Sundays from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.
47. Unser Racing Museum
Map It: 1776 Montano Rd NW, Los Ranchos De Albuquerque, NM 87107 | Phone: (505) 341-1776 | Website | Hours: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. seven days a week | Admission Fee: Adults $10 and children under 16 are free
This museum celebrates the lives of the native racing family, the Unsers of New Mexico. The museum building is shaped like a steering wheel and invites visitors to explore the exciting world of racing.
From winning pace cars to restored antiques, dozens of race cars driven by Unser family members are on display. You can also explore the library, trophy room, brickyard, and gift shop.
What you’ll need to know: Guided tours are available at no extra cost.
48. National Hispanic Cultural Center
The NHCC showcases the architecture and culture of the Spanish-speaking world. You’ll feel like you’ve stepped into another world and time exploring the hacienda-style buildings and Mayan pyramids.
The center features over 20 exhibitions and regularly holds visual, media, literary arts, and performing programs. Visitors can directly experience the mix of Spanish, Mesoamerican, and early New Mexican culture.
What you’ll need to know: Check the events calendar for upcoming special programs.
49. New Mexico Route 66 Auto Museum
One of the United States’ original highways, the historic Route 66, is known as the “mother road.” It runs through eight states, from Chicago, Illinois to Los Angeles, California.
The museum focuses on the integral part that Route 66 played in New Mexico’s history. View dozens of classic cars, vintage memorabilia from diners and gas stops, jukeboxes, and a guitar signed by Loretta Lynn.
What you’ll need to know: While admission is free, the museum accepts donations to help upkeep the exhibits.
50. New Mexico Museum of Space History
Map It: 3198 State Route 2001, Alamogordo, NM 88310 | Phone: (575) 437-2840 | Website | Hours: | Admission Fee: Adults $16 to access all attractions and children 4-12 $11
The New Mexico Museum of Space History is an out-of-this-world experience for the entire family. Before even going inside, guests can see the Sonic Wind I rocket and the Little Joe II rocket.
Once inside, you can explore a space shuttle rocket broken down into pieces so you can learn precisely how it transports astronauts to space. Watch a film on space exploration in the Tombaugh IMAX Theater and go star-gazing at the Planetarium.
What you’ll need to know: The museum often hosts lectures and special programs that are free with admission.
51. Pillow’s Fun Trackers
Pillow’s Fun Trackers is the best place to get all of your energy out. The whole family will enjoy the go-karts, mini go-karts for younger children, mini-golf, bumper cars, and bumper boats.
You can also experience the newest concept of virtual reality gaming in Pillow’s Arkadia VR room. Up to six players can engage in VR play at once. Challenge your family to a gaming competition!
What you’ll need to know: You must be seven years or older to play the virtual reality game.
52. Spencer Theater for the Performing Arts
The Spencer Theater is a world-class performance venue. Tourists are often captivated by the hall’s unique architecture and intimate atmosphere.
Catch a Broadway musical, a European symphony orchestra performance, or a stand-up comedian act while you’re traveling. No matter what event you attend, you won’t regret visiting this prestigious theater.
What you’ll need to know: Explore the grounds before your show to enjoy views of the Capitan and Sacramento Mountains.
53. Coronado Historic Site
The Coronado Historic Site is named after explorer Vasquez de Coronado who was searching for the fabled Seven Cities of Gold in the 1540s. Instead, he found a dozen villages in New Mexico with indigenous people he called Pueblo Indians.
Explore pueblo-style dwellings, preserved artifacts, ceremonial chambers, and mural paintings. Pack a picnic lunch to enjoy views of the Rio Grande and Sandia Mountains after visiting the museum.
What you’ll need to know: Purchase a two-day pass to have access to the Coronado and Jemez Historic Sites.
54. Jemez Historic Site
Discover magnificent stone ruins of a 500-year-old Indian village at the Jemez Historic Site. A series of trails will guide you through the remains of Pueblo of Giusewa.
Learn how the Jemez people were forced from their communities to valley settlements. The visitor center presents anthropological artifacts and has rangers on duty to answer questions.
What you’ll need to know: You can find lodging and food nearby in Jemez Springs.
55. Pioneer Flyer Seated Zipline
Hop in the two-seater zipline for a thrilling ride! You’ll be pulled backwards to 600 feet above the Pioneer Corridor.
Enjoy scenic views of forests, cliffs, and ponds as you’re hoisted up into the air. Then hold on tight as you’re released back down at 35 miles per hour.
What you’ll need to know: You must be at least 42 inches tall to ride.
If you’re looking for an outdoor adventure, head to Hidden Treasure Aerial Park. This towering zipline course has sections for both kids and adults.
The course has three levels that increase in difficulty. At the end of the third course, which is the most difficult, you can take the ultimate descent from the tower to the ground.
What you’ll need to know: Check out the height and weight restrictions for each course prior to visiting.
57. Spring River Park and Zoo
Aliens aren’t the only thing in Rowell to see. The Spring River Zoo is a fun and educational park to spend the day. There are 34 acres of habitat and five main areas to discover many animals.
See animals like elk, bison, foxes, and deer up close on the Capitan Trail. Walk through the “Around the World” exhibit to see animals from several countries. Besides enjoying the wildlife, visitors can also take a ride on the carousel and the train.
What you’ll need to know: View a park guide online to map out your visit beforehand.
58. Ten Thousand Waves Japanese Health Spa
Map It: 21 Ten Thousand Waves Way, Santa Fe, NM 87501 | Phone: (505) 992-5007 | Website | Hours: 9 a.m. – 9 p.m. seven days a week | Admission Fee: Free
Enjoy the ultimate relaxation experience at the Ten Thousand Waves Japanese Health Spa. Soak in a private outdoor hot tub surrounded by New Mexico’s beautiful landscapes.
Each self-contained hot tub area also comes with a private sauna, changing room, and shower. Other services include massage, skincare, spa treatment, and more.
Extend your visit by booking a room, and enjoy authentic Japanese food in the on-site restaurant.
What you’ll need to know: Hot tubs must be reserved online.
59. Mescalero Sands North Dune OHV Area
Mescalero Sands Area has around 100 dunes spread over 600 acres. All-terrain cycles like dune buggies, motorcycles, and ATVs are welcome.
Check out the Bowl Area, which features an enormous depression amongst the dunes. On the opposite side of the area is the Cottonwood Site, which is equipped with picnic tables and grills.
What you’ll need to know: Visit the website for information on ATV rentals.
60. J. Kenneth Smith Bird Sanctuary & Nature Center
The J. Kenneth Sanctuary is a 4-mile-long trail along the Spring River. It runs from the Enchanted Lands Park to the Spring River Zoo.
Spot hundreds of birds, including the Canada goose, the scaled quail, the black-chinned hummingbird, and more. The visitor center educates guests on birds, their habitats, and the fragile ecosystem they live in.
What you’ll need to know: Bicycles are welcome on the Sanctuary’s trails.
61. Sky Railway
Climb aboard the Sky Railway for an adventure of a lifetime. The train takes riders from historic Santa Fe to Lamy, New Mexico. The train comes complete with entertainment, music, food, and drinks.
Choose from various themed rides like the Sunset Serenade, the Stargazer, the Wild West Express, and special holiday tours.
What you’ll need to know: Check out the different ride packages online to reserve your spot.
62. Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian
The Wheelwright Museum focuses on lesser-known genres of art by living Native American artists. Attend a solo show and meet the featured artist in person.
Check out the museum’s Case Trading Post for contemporary crafts and fine arts pieces. There is a large selection of vintage jewelry, ceramics, and textiles.
What you’ll need to know: Masks are currently required inside the museum.
63. Fort Sumner Historic Site
Fort Sumner Historic Site tells the story of Manifest Destiny and the destruction of Indian nations. The site includes the Bosque Redondo Memorial, which honors the Apache and Navajo peoples that were removed from their homes.
Learn more historic details in the Fort Sumner Museum and on an interpretive trail.
What you’ll need to know: Visit the site’s website to learn about special programs.
64. Cosmic Campground
Located in the Gila National Forest, the Cosmic Campground features one of the darkest night skies on the earth. You will have an unobstructed view of the night sky, and the surrounding hills block out artificial light.
There are four telescope pads for visitor use, but they aren’t necessary to enjoy the majestic views. The campground is the first International Dark Sky Sanctuary in North America.
What you’ll need to know: Looking at even the screen on your phone will affect your ability to see the night sky clearly for up to 30 minutes.
65. Bradbury Science Museum
There are more than 40 interactive exhibits at the Los Alamos National Laboratory’s Bradbury Science Museum. Discover over 70 years of historical innovation and technologies in the museum’s five wings.
Exhibits include a Defense Gallery, a Tech Lab, a History Gallery, and a theater. You can visit nearby Bandelier National Park in the morning, and head up to the museum after to avoid the afternoon heat.
What you’ll need to know: The museum’s busiest season is from May through August.
66. Allan Houser Sculpture Garden
The Allan Houser Sculpture Garden is located on New Mexico’s historic Turquoise Trail. Situated on 12 acres, you can take in both the monumental sculptures and panoramic mountain vistas.
Tour guides will explain the significance of Houser’s most famous pieces. You can also learn how he became one of the top Native American artists of the 20th-century.
What you’ll need to know: Visit in the morning to avoid the afternoon crowds.
67. Poeh Museum & Cultural Center
The Poeh Museum aims to restore the traditions of the Pueblo of Pojoaque since they were stripped of their heritage by Europeans in the 16th-century.
The center teaches the Pueblo’s native language, traditional song and dance, and daily ways of life.
What you’ll need to know: The museum offers four different tour options. You must reserve your spot online if you wish to take aa guided tour.
68. Artesia Arts & Cultural District
Artesia has been the cultural center of southern New Mexico since the early 1900s. The area is full of shops, restaurants, theaters, and museums.
Murals cover the majority of buildings, and sculptures decorate the landscape. It’s a beautiful area to walk through and discover new places.
What you’ll need to know: Visit the website for a list of businesses and vendors in the district.
69. Aztec Ruins National Monument
Follow the ancient passageways that the Pueblo people took on their migration journey. You can walk the half-mile trail through Aztec Ruins.
Walk through a 900-yeaar-old Pueblo Great House that has over 400 masonry rooms.
What you’ll need to know: The monument is located near the Navajo Nation and some routes to travel to the ruins may bring you through it.
70. Kit Carson Home and Museum
The Kit Carson House and Museum is a National Historic Landmark in central Taos. The museum is dedicated to educating visitors on Carson’s life.
Explore the adobe style home where Carson last lived. The rooms still contain Spanish Colonial furnishings.
What you’ll need to know: Visit the museum’s website for extensive information on Carson’s life.
71. Balzano Family Vineyard
Enjoy premium wine and beer on the beautiful grounds of the Balzano Family Vineyard. Take a tour or sit on the expansive patio and indulge in the delicious food offered.
Ladies Night Out is every Thursday, and Friday is Steak Night Date Night. Every Sunday the vineyard holds a brunch with live music. Make sure to stop in at the Country Store for gifts and souvenirs.
What you’ll need to know: Check the online calendar for special event times.
72. Smokey Bear Historical Park
Smokey Bear Historical Park is where Smokey the Bear is buried and the only park to be run by the New Mexico Forestry Division.
Exhibits include fire prevention history, forest ecology and health, and black bears. There is a fun playground for kids that includes a fire engine and fire tower.
What you’ll need to know: Tours are available at no extra cost.
73. Carlsbad Cruises Day Tours
Board a cruise boat that will take you down the beautiful Pecos River. Enjoy the sights of Carlsbad from the water.
You will get to enjoy the guided tour for two hours. The boat also stops at a beach area with an oasis to swim at.
What you’ll need to know: You can also rent kayaks and paddle boats.
74. Bisti Bay at Brookside Park
Map It: 1701 N Dustin Ave., Farmington, NM. 87401 | Phone: (505) 599-1197 | Website | Hours: Saturday – Sunday 12 – 6 p.m. | Admission Fee: $6 per person
If you visit New Mexico during the warm weather months, Bisti Bay is the perfect place to cool off. Kids will love the in-pool playground area.
The playground leads into a larger pool and a lazy river. Older kids will love the two large water slides, and the aquatic volleyball section.
What you’ll need to know: Open seasonally during warm weather months.
75. The Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta
The Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta is a world-renowned attraction that runs the first week of October each year. It is a beautiful experience to watch hundreds of hot air balloons sailing across New Mexico’s skies.
The entire city celebrates this event and offers special discounts and programs throughout the week.
What you’ll need to know: Purchase tickets online in advance.