We invite you to the Land of Enchantment, New Mexico, USA. The fifth largest state in the nation, New Mexico sits the heart of the American southwest between Texas and Arizona and shares a border with Mexico. Formerly a Spanish colony after conquistadors arrived in the 16th century, then a Mexican colony, and then American territory, New Mexico became a state in 1912.
Its population of about 2 million people makes it one of the least densely populated states in the country. New Mexico has a large native Spanish-speaking population as well as many Native American communities, offering a unique culture that clearly stands apart from that of other states. It boasts a rich history and culture and offers visitors majestic vistas, authentic cultural experiences, exciting outdoor adventures and a distinctive regional cuisine. New Mexico’s capital city, Santa Fe is the oldest capital city in the United States and home to hundreds of galleries and artist studios.
New Mexico is the home to three UNESCO world heritage sites, more than any other US state, which all offer breathtaking experiences; Carlsbad Caverns National Park, Taos Pueblo and Chaco Culture National Historical Park. There is a fourth New Mexico site is under consideration for inclusion – White Sands National Monument, a dramatic landscape of rare white gypsum sand dunes. Enjoy looking at the stars? New Mexico also hosts the only International Dark Sky Sanctuary in the US. We also have some of the world’s best skiing and acclaimed museums affiliated with the Smithsonian and the National Institute of Flamenco. There is much to see and do for you and your family, so be sure to extend your visit to explore our awesome state.
For tourist information: www.newmexico.org/plan/
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Named after the Spanish Duke of Albuquerque, New Mexico’s largest city sits in the high desert nestled between the Rio Grande River and the Sandia Mountains. With a city population of 559,277, it ranks as the 32nd largest city in the United States; the metropolitan population is closer to one million people. Albuquerque’s modern downtown core, where neon lights still glow on historic Route 66, contrasts with Old Town Albuquerque, dating to the city’s 1706 founding as a Spanish colony. Albuquerque is home to some of the United States’ leading high-tech research facilities including Sandia National Laboratory, Intel and the University of New Mexico and is home to Kirtland Airforce Base. The city is celebrating a vibrant evolution in economic development and is cultivating a thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem.
With more than 310 days of sunshine a year, year-round recreational opportunities abound on more than 28,000 acres of open space and miles of bike and walking trails. In Albuquerque, you can ski in the morning and golf in the afternoon, ride to the top of a mountain in the world’s longest aerial tramway, or soar the skies in a hot air balloon.
You can traverse from one side of the city to the other in less than 30 minutes, allowing plenty of time visit the art galleries of Old Town, historic Native American sites, the Albuquerque BioPark’s zoo, gardens and aquarium, the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center, National Museum of Nuclear Science and History and a variety of museums. Albuquerque has a robust culinary scene that features local red and green chile peppers and includes nationally recognized wineries and breweries.
For tourist information: www.visitalbuquerque.org
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Want to make the most out of your trip to the Southwest? You might be surprised how close some major attractions are to Albuquerque:
Grand Canyon (Arizona): This wonder of the world is a six-hour drive from Albuquerque.
Monument Valley (Arizona): The dramatic towering sandstone buttes of Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park can be seen in the background of many a great Western movie. Five-hour drive.
Mesa Verde (Colorado): Spanish for green table, Mesa Verde offers a spectacular look into the lives of the Ancestral Pueblo people who made it their home for over 700 years, from AD 600 to 1300. Today the park protects nearly 5,000 known archeological sites, including 600 cliff dwellings. Four-hour drive.
Las Vegas (Nevada): Don’t let the road signs to Las Vegas fool you; they are to Las Vegas, New Mexico, an interesting town but a far cry from the gambling mecca. However, you can jump on a flight and be in the real sin city in one hour and 35 minutes.
Los Angeles (California): Hollywood, Mickey Mouse, and the Pacific Ocean are just under two hours away on a nonstop flight.