Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Tourist info for New Mexico

I just met a gal thru email that is not only another RVer but she also sells on eBay and belongs to the same forum I do.

We were talking yesterday about New Mexico because she is planning a trip to the southwest. My husband was born and raised there and has lived all but 7 years of his life in the Land of Enchantment.

I on the other hand was born and raised in NY but NM became my adopted home in 1966. I lived there for over 35 years with a few years in Nevada and back to NY and now Colorado.

In all those years we have done a lot of touring around besides showing the visitors the sites.

There is plenty to do and see starting with the sunsets. I have said many times that is someone would put those colors on canvas no one would believe it was real. And it is especially awesome when there are clouds on the western horizon.

Next is the wide open spaces and the mountains. The central mountain range is the southern tip of the Rockies - Sangre de Cristo (Blood of Christ) by Santa Fe; Sandia (Watermelon) by Albuquerque and Manzano (Apple) south of Albuquerque by the Isleta India Reservation,, Los Lunas and Belen.

The sun shines on these mountains from the west giving them all the different hues at sunset.

NM is proud to boast it is tri cultural - Anglo; Hispanic and Indian. The state is divided almost in 1/3eds - Private land; government owned land like military bases and research labs and Native American reservations.

Indians / Native Americans - There are so many tribes / groups / pueblos I could not name them all. Isleta (south of Albuquerque) was the first group to host large scale Bingo over 25 years ago. Sandia (north of Albuquerque) followed shortly.

Now there ae many full scale casinos all over the state. Because of the revenue generated from the casinos, any graduating senior from high shcool, can contiue on, in the fall, in college - full tuition paid for all 4 years!

Taos Pueblo and Mesa Verde (at the 4 Corners area) give a great over view how the ancestors lived. Taos is north of Santa Fe and the drive along the high road is beautiful. The pueblo is sitll occupied. The city itself is an artists mecca being home to DH Lawrence, at one time.

Balloon Fiesta - in Albuquerque - is always the 1t 2 weekends of October. Over 700 balloonists from all over the world convene to put on a show that is unequalled anywhere. I believe there is RV parking at Ballon fiesta Park, but better make reservastions early.

NM State Fair (Expo New Mexico) - in Albuquerque - starts the weekend after Labor Day and goes for 2 full weeks and 3 weekends. We have been to many statee fairs and this one is by far the nicest. Lots to do, several stages with contious entertainment and best of all all alochol has to be consumed in a beer garden. Nobody is walking around at 10AM drinking a beer and pushing a bay stroller.

Santa Fe - A must to get the flavor a the real New Mexico. Visit the State Capitol built like a Kiva (A round Native American structure); the many museums and you must eat at a REAL New Mexican restaurant. Ask which chile is hotter the red or green and order accordingly. I am mild mouthed, so I ask for it on the side.

The Santa Fe Opera is known world wide and the performances are held outdoors in the summer.

Other things to see and do White Sands in the southern part of the state, City of Rocks and the Open Pit Copper Mine near Deming and Santa Rita; Carlsbad Caverns and the nightly bat flight; Elephant Butte Lake near Truth or Consequences; the Gila forest - the 1st protected wilderness area in the country; Roswell where a spaceship supposedly landed (there are celebrations annually); Los Alamos Labs where the 1st nuclear weapons were created; the longest Tramway in the world north of Albuquerque (you want to go up just before sunset and have dinner on top them come down when the lights of the city start turning on and twinkling!).

These are just highlights. There is so much to see and do including the clear blue sky and the millions of stars. When you get away from the city lights you can even see the Milky Way.

Do I sound like I miss it? Yes I do, but Colorado is beautiful too.

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