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Albuquerque recommendations?

NJSueNJSue Registered User Posts: 2,839 Senior Member
We'll be in Albuquerque in early Nov. for a conference. DH is a trailing spouse and is looking for things to do while I am busy. We don't want to have to rent a car to see things and we don't have time to drive out to Santa Fe etc. Any recs re museums, homes, shops, galleries etc.? We have reservations for Sandiago Grill (after Sandia tram), Farm and Table, and Ranchers Club of New Mexico. Antiquity is highest rated restaurant in town, but seems sort of generic high end food, and I can get that at home. I'm looking for local atmosphere. Any recommendations for the particular and local? ( I never watched Breaking Bad so all refs will go over my head).

Replies to: Albuquerque recommendations?

  • thumper1thumper1 Registered User Posts: 72,316 Senior Member
    edited September 20
    You don’t have to drive to Santa Fe...there is a light rail train that goes there...and it’s a really nice ride.
  • NJSueNJSue Registered User Posts: 2,839 Senior Member
    Good to know! I assumed we would have to rent a car.
  • yucca10yucca10 Registered User Posts: 729 Member
    Albuquerque's Old Town is nice but doesn't hold a candle to Santa Fe.
  • Bromfield2Bromfield2 Registered User Posts: 3,380 Senior Member
    Second the recommendation for Shidoni Galleries--it's and outdoor sculpture gallery and you can also see the artists at work. I thought it was worth the effort to rent a car and see it. We also did a day trip from Santa Fe to the town of Chimayo, which we enjoyed--great old church, weavers, etc. While there we had a great meal at Rancho de Chimayo.
  • Miles PerraraMiles Perrara Registered User Posts: 162 Junior Member
    If you decide to rent a car to drive to Santa Fe, take the "back way", Highway 14, or the turquoise trail instead of I-25. Much more scenic, and you'll pass through the "ghost town" of Madrid along the way. It used to be an abandoned mining town, but is now an artist/craftsman enclave.
  • JustaMomJustaMom Registered User Posts: 2,602 Senior Member
    @thumper1 - thanks for the Roadrunner tip! I'm heading to ABQ with my 2 best friends for the Fiesta and while we will have a rental car, we're planning a day trip to Santa Fe on our last day (we don't fly out until 8:30 pm) - the idea of taking the train (so inexpensive) appeals to all of us, and adds another layer of fun and experience. It might change how we experience Santa Fe (2 of us are major walkers one is still recovering from knee replacement, it's been a year but she won't do her exercises damn her!).
  • thumper1thumper1 Registered User Posts: 72,316 Senior Member
    @WayOutWestMom are ther taxis or uber from the Santa Fe train station to the Plaza area?
  • NJSueNJSue Registered User Posts: 2,839 Senior Member
    edited September 21
    Thanks for all the suggestions! @WayOutWestMom, we are staying at the Hyatt Regency (it's the convention site).

    Do I really need to rent a car if we stay in ABQ and use Uber? I would really, really rather not rent a car.

    Re the breweries: I got a recommendation for Tractor from someone I know who has a small craft brewery in Monmouth County NJ.
  • WayOutWestMomWayOutWestMom Registered User Posts: 9,710 Senior Member
    edited September 23
    You can always use Uber, both in ABQ and Santa Fe.

    Kiddos used to Uber downtown because the parking downtown is terrible.

    Taxis are hard to find unless you're at the airport. You'll need to call and request one.

    But except for a some hotels and restaurants and city, state and federal government offices, there is not much Downtown. Busy during the day, but pretty deserted at night.

    Tractor is pretty good.. The brewery is in an gritty industrial area (Wells Park) that's squeezed in between Downtown & I-40. Tractor has 3 taprooms--one in Nob Hill (bit hard to find--it's in an alley behind a couple of businesses off Central Ave), Four Hills (Tramway & Central, near the east I-40 entrance to the city) and the Westside.

    IMO, Marble has better beer. (http://www.marblebrewery.com) My Ds like their Double White and IPA, but I'm partial to the Wildflower Wheat. Marble has 3 locations--the main brewery is on Marble Avenue near downtown. Plus they have 2 taprooms--one in the NE Heights and one on the Westside. Marble at the brewery location has a limited menu (snacks & sandwiches) but there are food trucks in the parking lot most evenings.

    La Cumbres is the biggest and best known outside of NM. Multiple award-winning beers.

    There are probably 25+ breweries in ABQ. About half that number in Santa Fe.

    Avoid Kelley's....

    Two Fools Tavern in Nob Hill serves over 50 different beers with about 20 on tap. Two Fools is a faux Irish pub with real Irish food.
  • 1214mom1214mom Registered User Posts: 4,213 Senior Member
    @JustaMom, we went to the Balloon fiesta last year and it was AWESOME. Make sure you get up early and see the early morning stuff at least once. We loved it so much we got up at 330 am to drive from Santa Fe twice.
  • prezbuckyprezbucky Registered User Posts: 4,297 Senior Member
    Day trips to Roswell and Taos. (or one...)
  • JustaMomJustaMom Registered User Posts: 2,602 Senior Member
    edited September 23
    @1214mom I went last year for my first time (bucket list item for me), and my 2 best friends (and my travel buddies) were so blown away by me going up as part of the mass ascension (special shapes no less!) they insisted we go together this year! We'll also go up as part of the mass ascension. It was the most fun and thrilling thing to witness! Oh yes, 4:00 am wake ups, naps from noon-thirty to three-thirty, and back out again for the evening events. I told them sleep is for when you get home! 😊
  • wis75wis75 Registered User Posts: 13,373 Senior Member
    edited September 24
    We missed the balloons several years ago on our NM trip due to poor morning weather. Stayed in Santa Fe and did the Los Alamos trip- great for STEM people. Plus the petroglyphs and others. Deserts not my style however and retired to a wetter climate (FL).

    When we travel we do regular restaurants, not the high end ones. I recall many local options that were casual- plenty of chilis...
  • HannaHanna Registered User Posts: 14,707 Senior Member
    We loved getting chile at the Duran Central Pharmacy lunchroom. If you like old-school, unfancy places, this is it.
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