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7 Things to Do Your First Year in New Mexico

Just moved to the Land of Enchantment? Here are seven adventures that can't be missed.

By Kevin Litwin on December 20, 2022

The setting sun lights up the cactuses and the Caballo Mountains surrounding Truth or Consequences, New Mexico.
Jeff Adkins

New Mexico offers plenty to do in every corner of the state, with easy-to-get-to attractions, cultural events and tourism sites. Here are seven interesting things to do in this Land of Enchantment. 

1. Ski the Mountains

When people think of snow skiing, states that often come to mind are Colorado, Utah, Vermont and California. Better add New Mexico to that list, with resorts in communities like Albuquerque, Alto, Angel Fire, Los Alamos, Red River, Ruidoso, Santa Fe, Taos and Vadito. Some of the most visited destinations include Enchanted Forest, Pajarito Mountain, Sandia Peak, Sipapu, Ski Apache and Ski Santa Fe.

Visitors enjoy the Common Hot Springs Pools with views of the Rio Grande River and the Caballo Mountains at Riverbend Hot Springs in downtown Truth or Consequences, New Mexico. Riverbend Hot Springs is part of the Hot Springs Bathhouse Historic District Healing Waters Trail.
Jeff Adkins

2. Soak & Spa in ‘T or C’

Once known as Hot Springs, Truth or Consequences is a long-time destination for what city officials call “wellness tourism.” Visitors travel to “T or C” to enjoy healing mineral waters at numerous bathhouses in town, and there are also many spas throughout the city — several of which are located within hotels.

3. Go Dune Sledding

In the south-central portion of New Mexico near Alamogordo is White Sands National Park, where one of the most fun recreational activities is sledding down pristine white sand dunes. You can bring your own toboggan-like sled or buy one at the park’s gift shop that sells waxed plastic snow saucers that are perfect for the dunes.

Cafecito Trailhead, New Mexico Museum of Art
Gabriella Marks

4. See the Sites

If you’re in north-central New Mexico, do yourself a favor and spend a couple of hours viewing exhibits at two standout museums. New Mexico Museum of Art in Santa Fe features more than 20,000 works, including from notable artists such as Ansel Adams. Meanwhile, the Harwood Museum of Art in nearby Taos is celebrating its 100th anniversary throughout 2023.

Luminaria at Inn and Spa at Loretto New Mexico Wild Boar Ribeye Plantain & Sweet Potato Hash | Braised Leeks | Fennel-Apple Slaw Radishes | Chimichurri
Gabriella Marks

5. Immerse Yourself in Food

A 2.5-hour guided walking tour in downtown Santa Fe is what the city’s Original Food Tour is all about, with patrons eating and drinking at four to five top restaurants. Tours are also offered in Albuquerque.

Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta - For nine days in October, the Albuquerque skies are colorfully painted as more than 500 balloons lift off from Balloon Fiesta Park
Marble Street Studio/City of Albuquerque

6. Marvel at Big, Colorful Balloons

The largest hot-air ballooning event in the world is the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta, which celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2022. The festival now features about 500 entrants compared to 13 at the inaugural 1972 event. Albuquerque is ideal because the city has safe and predictable wind patterns in October.

7. Explore Carlsbad Caverns National Park

If you like the outdoors and nature, then you’ll appreciate Carlsbad Caverns in the Chihuahuan Desert, which features more than 100 caves and an abundance of hiking trails.

Want to know more?

To learn more about New Mexico, check out the latest edition of New Mexico Economic Development

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