Albuquerque, New Mexico

Guide to Albuquerque: how to get there and where to stay, what to see and where to go in the evening. Highlights of Albuquerque: fresh reviews and photos, places to see, branded entertainment and shopping.

According to toppharmacyschools, Albuquerque is a city, though not a metropolitan, but large: the largest in the state of New Mexico. It is known throughout the country (and almost the whole world) as the city of balloons. However, there are also many museums and romantic cobbled lanes of the Old Town. And on top of that – a dry climate useful for the lungs and 310 sunny days a year.

Every year the city hosts an international aeronautics festival. The Balloon Fiesta is considered the largest and most significant in the world, and also one of the most photographed events in the world.

How to get to Albuquerque

Albuquerque International Airport receives domestic flights from many states of the country. And you can get here by Amtrak train from Los Angeles or even Chicago.

A bit of history

The Spaniards founded the city at the very beginning of the 18th century, and in those days, ordinary residents farmed in it, and the garrison served, guarding the important Camino Real route. During the Civil War, the city was captured by the Confederates, but it did not play any important role in the military or other history of the United States. By the 20th century, it was a small town, famous for sheep breeding and a good climate in the sense of lack of humidity, which attracted consumptive patients. The famous Route 66 passed through Albuquerque, so motels and eateries appeared in the city; but even this would not have pushed the town to further development, if not for the Sandia and Kirtland Air Force bases, built here at the very beginning of World War II. At the beginning of the 21st century, the city was already ranked sixth in the ranking of the fastest growing in the United States.

The Camino Real route, the “Royal Road”, stretched for more than two thousand kilometers from the territory of present-day Mexico to the city of Santa Fe. That part of it, which runs through the North American territory, was included in 2000 by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. Of course, it includes not only the road itself, but also everything that was built on it over the centuries, starting with the laying of the path at the end of the 16th century. In particular, these are old villages, stone bridges and churches.

Attractions and attractions in Albuquerque

The old city of Albuquerque is the quarters where the Spanish buildings of the 18th century have been preserved; they lie east of Rio Grande Boulevard and west of downtown. The heart of the Old Town is the main square with administration buildings and churches. Narrow cobbled streets, small restaurants, small squares please the eye here. One of the most important sights of the Old Town is the Church of San Felipe de Neri, the oldest building in Albuquerque.

On Christmas Eve, thousands of paper lanterns light up the streets of the Old City, and it’s very beautiful.

One of the main attractions of the city and the state is the Sandia Peak cable car, which is located east of the center. The length of the cable car is about 4 km, and with its help you can climb the mountain peak of the same name, more than 3 km up. The duration of the journey is only a quarter of an hour, and from the top of the park offers stunning views. In addition, there is a restaurant upstairs.

3 things to do in Albuquerque:

  1. Visit the Anderson-Abruzzo International Balloon Museum.
  2. Go to the village of Corrales, which is about 30 km north of Albuquerque – look at the house of St. Isidore, a wonderful example of the colonial style, get acquainted with the life of a traditional Latin American village and walk through a beautiful tidal forest.
  3. Once in the city at the end of April, buy an amulet at a gathering of Indian shamans. This is a kind of festival, the program of which includes not only shamanism and witchcraft, but also concerts of traditional music and fairs of handmade gizmos.

Quite loud popularity of Albuquerque brought the series Breaking Bad (“Breaking Bad”). In fact, they wanted to shoot the film in Los Angeles, but the state of New Mexico offered such lucrative tax breaks that the film crew could not resist. Now, in the city and its environs, a kind of tourist route has even been created, almost one and a half hundred kilometers long: there are 26 key points where episodes of the series were filmed on it. The Breaking Bad Tour takes travelers all day long. And today they, repeating their favorite shots, throw pizzas in the garage of the Walters-and-Skyler house, eat steaks at the Savoy restaurant from the second season and wash their cars at the Octopus car wash.

For obvious reasons, there are more Hispanics in Albuquerque than whites. And the level of crime until recent years has grown here so rapidly that it caused serious concern. True, after the 90s. In the last century, the situation has improved significantly.

The Rio Grande Valley Park runs through Albuquerque, forming pleasant shady boardwalks along the river banks. Here, beavers, rabbits, geese and so on live in the intertidal forests, and many hiking and cycling routes permeate the park. The most famous road is the Paseo del Bosque, which runs right through the park. Here you can also have a picnic in a special area.

Museums in Albuquerque

There are several museums in Albuquerque and they are very diverse. The largest of them is a biopark, which combines a zoo, a botanical garden and an aquarium. Another good museum is the natural science museum, where you can see surprisingly impressive and rare exhibits, including the huge Albertosaurus that guards the main entrance and the Tyrannosaurus Rex in the atrium. The same building houses a planetarium and a widescreen theatre. It will be interesting to look into the Museum of Art and History, from where organized tours of the Old Town start. Artifacts related to New Mexico’s colonial past, including conquistador armor and a vintage car, are exhibited here, and a pretty sculptural garden is set up around the area. In addition, the historical building Cassa San Isidro in Corrales belongs to the museum.

Also noteworthy is the Museum of Atomic Science and History, where you can see, for example, replicas of World War II atomic bombs – Little Boy and Fatman. Around the museum there is a whole collection of aircraft, missiles, other aircraft and even a cannon. The American International Rattlesnake Museum, just south of Old Town Square, is also of some curiosity: its administration has set itself the conceited goal of collecting the largest collection of different types of “rattlesnakes” in the world. The city also has an Indian Pueblo Cultural Center with a small collection of objects and an art gallery, as well as the National Spanish Cultural Center, also with an art museum.

The loose and subsiding soil of the river valley did not allow skyscrapers to be built up in Albuquerque, so this entire half-million city is low-rise and looks rather “low”.

And several more museums are open on the campus. This is the Maxwell Museum of Anthropology, east of University Boulevard. There are two permanent exhibitions here that showcase the development of mankind from primates and the culture of the prehistoric tribes of the American Southwest. Also at the university there is a museum of meteorites and geology, which is on Northrop Hill – two small buildings side by side, where you can see the exposition of minerals, meteorites and fossils found in the vicinity. Finally, the university art museum is also worth a look. Admission to all three museums is free.

Neighborhood Albuquerque

About 15 km west of Albuquerque, in the national park, is the National Petroglyph Monument. It can also be reached by regular bus. This is thirty square kilometers of rocky territory, and on almost every local stone you can see old engravings – Indian or Spanish. In total, about 25 thousand drawings with animals, people, symbolic signs and brands belong to the national monument.

Albuquerque events

Every year the city hosts an international aeronautics festival. The Balloon Fiesta is considered the largest and most significant in the world, and also one of the most photographed events in the world. It lasts 9 days at the beginning of October, and at this time about 750 balloons take off into the air. In the evenings, after sunset, the balloons do not rise into the air, but are illuminated all at once by their propane burners, and this is called the “balloon glow”. And during the two days of the festival, a rodeo of special forms takes place, when the most bizarre balloons compete with each other. These days (Thursday and Friday) the festival attracts the most children who can look at balloons in the form of cartoon characters, animals, clowns and whatever.

Albuquerque, New Mexico