Vacation travel rebounds despite ongoing pandemic
According to the American Automobile Association, more than 53 million Americans are expected to travel during the Thanksgiving holiday despite near-record gas prices, crowded airports and an increase in COVID-19 cases in many parts of the United States. (November 24)
Want to explore the land of enchantment from the comfort of your own home? Looking to plan your next vacation?
Whether you’re an outdoor explorer or a stay-at-home tourist, the New Mexico Department of Tourism has what you need to see New Mexico’s iconic destinations, historic and cultural sites, and outdoor spaces with a new twist. series of virtual tours.
Tours explore New Mexico’s five geographic regions, from the red sandstone cliffs of Gallup to the pine-covered mountain ranges of Ruidoso.
“Virtual tours and other forms of immersive media have become incredibly useful tools for exploring and inspiring destinations,” said Cabinet Secretary Jen Paul Schroer. “We are pleased to be working with communities across the state to bring these virtual tours to life.”
See the full tour at newmexico.org/virtualtours.
Here’s your guide to the latest New Mexico virtual tours:
Northwestern New Mexico
The simulated journey begins in northwestern New Mexico and explores the towns of Gallup, Farmington, Aztec, Grants and Cibola County, and Acoma Sky City.
Step back in time to the Aztec Ruins National Monument that once housed the Puebloan people over 900 years ago or the Salmon Ruins at Farmington – a living complex excavated by Chacoan Anasazi that dates back to the 11th century.
Explore the outdoors in Cibola County at Bluewater Lake State Park where visitors can camp, hike, boat, fish and ride horses or visit the Sandstone Bluffs Overlook for views of the Malpais lava flows and Mount Taylor.
Following: Outdoor recreation suffered during COVID-19, showing signs of recovery in New Mexico
North Central New Mexico
Head to north-central New Mexico to sample art, culture, cuisine, and tradition as you explore Santa Fe, Taos, Los Alamos, Questa, Red River, and Chama.
Check out the entertainment, food, shopping and events of the Santa Fe Railyard Art District, as well as the city’s various historic chapels.
Immerse yourself in history and art at the many museums in Taos, including the Harwood Museum of Art, Kit Carson House and Museum, and the Millicent Rogers Museum.
Want to get away from the hustle and bustle or get some fresh air? Visit Questa’s natural wonders such as Rio Grande Del Norte National Monument or Eagle Rock Lake Park.
Northeastern New Mexico
Slow things down in northeastern New Mexico, which includes Pecos and Las Vegas.
Take a peek at scenic Pecos fishing spots such as Cowles Ponds or step back in time to the ancient Puebloan life spots in Pecos National Historic Park.
Experience small-town Las Vegas charm with a visit to Historic Plaza or rest at the Castañeda Hotel, originally built in 1898.
Where to stay: This Little Carlsbad Home Was Named # 1 New Mexico Property By Airbnb
Central New Mexico
Move through the heart of New Mexico for a diverse cultural experience in locations ranging from urban plazas to rural ranching communities including Albuquerque, Corrales, Bernalillo, and Sandoval County.
Visit the bustling town of historic Old Town Albuquerque, the downtown area founded in 1706.
Head north to Corrales and take a look at rural village offerings such as the Acequia vineyards and wineries and the Ex Novo brewery. Visit Corrales Road for restaurants, shops and art galleries.
Southwestern New Mexico
Head to southwest New Mexico and experience the historic Old West and unique culture of the US-Mexico border at Silver City, Mesilla, Las Cruces, and Deming.
Visit the growing town of Las Cruces which enjoys 320 days of sunshine a year and the nearby village of Mesilla for a taste of history dating back to the 1800s.
Head to Silver City for a sense of small town living. Visit the Silver City Museum at the 1881 Mansard / Italianate HB Ailman House to learn about the rich cultural history of southwest New Mexico.
Southeastern New Mexico
End your tour through the Land of Enchantment as you uncover the wonders and mysteries of southeastern New Mexico from its many parks to its unique connections to science and space exploration.
Take a peek at the largest cave in North America in Carlsbad Caverns National Park or explore New Mexico’s ecosystems at Living Desert Zoo and Gardens State Park.
Head to downtown Roswell, home to the International UFO Museum and Research Center and a variety of restaurants and shops.
Take a virtual tour of the New Mexico Space History Museum, the largest pistachio in the world, and White Sands National Park in Alamogordo.
Claudia Silva is a reporter for the UNM Local Reporting Fellowship. She can be reached at [email protected], by phone at 575-628-5506 or on Twitter @thewatchpup.