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Back to. Biggers photos by John Clary Davies. Growing up in Albuquerque, I felt the city fit like a coat one size small. Tight across the shoulders and short in the sleeves, it seemed too restrictive to fit my dreams. As I journeyed away from my home-town, I embraced living in the mist that shrouds the Pacific Northwest, and the dazzling heat of the Arizona desert.
But New Mexico always called me home. Each time I returned, I grew to know Albuquerque better. Rather than asking it to meet my juvenile expectations, I embraced all the city affords. From the ancient rock art at Petroglyph National Monument to the murals of downtown, the city is rich in culture both ancient and modern. The remnants of five volcanic cones preside over an expansive landscape that awaits outdoor adventure.
Yet, as the half-million-strong metropolis of the state, the city fizzes with microbreweries, pulsates with Latin dance, and is punctuated by the emphatic refrains of spoken-word poets. This is New Mexico, after all. In part, it is the characters who live here that most enliven the city.
Take my neighborhood: I live in the Northeast Heights, which some may describe as a land of little boxes made of ticky-tacky, yet it still boasts intriguing denizens. Albuquerque is a city you should chat with over a soup-bowl—sized cup of coffee. If you can, book a room in this finely renovated beaux-arts—style inn. Inside, museum-style exhibitions teach about Native ways. In the outdoor amphitheater, pueblo culture springs to life most days of the week as dancers perform and talk about their rituals—right in the heart of the city.
SW; ; www. NW; ; www. The breakfast menu includes New Mexican favorites like breakfast burritos and chilaquiles. Lunch offerings include dishes like duck enchiladas and scallop tacos. NW, Off Center Community Arts Project This downtown arts hub offers networking and a small gallery space for local artists. But if you want to go beyond perusing the art, Off Center also offers hours when anyone can create art in the studio space. Tuesday—Thursday, 1—7 p. Chatter Sunday Formerly known as the Church of Beethoven, this weekly gathering celebrates superb—mostly Local hotties Albuquerque New Mexico, poetry, and companionship in Las Puertas, a quirky warehouse space.
Complimentary cappuccinos and delightful scones are served. The Bear Canyon trails offer enough spurs through the high-desert landscape that you can extend your excursion from one mile to several. Albuquerque Isotopes The ballpark is one of the best places to pass a summer night in the city. Zealous fans will root, root, root for our home minor-league-baseball team, a Colorado Rockies Triple-A outfit.
NE; ; www. Although you should taste a flight of wines including the Cabernet Franc and Chardonnay, take home a bottle of the Meritage Red, a double gold-medal award winner. But part of what makes the Duke City so wonderful is the handful of lovely towns that form its greater patchwork. Indigo Crow is set in a quaint adobe home that creates an intimate atmosphere for a romantic date or special occasion. The menu features a collection of elegant New American dishes.
During the summer, the patio is the perfect place to while away the afternoon watching the foot, horse, and tractor traffic along Corrales Road.
Golden Crown Panaderia Known for its green-chile bread and bread sculptures a turkey at Thanksgiving, perhaps? The biscochitos, in traditional and unusual flavors like espresso, are especially delightful.
It boasts an extensive photography collection and the works of New Mexico modernist Raymond Jonson. Revolving exhibitions highlight contemporary sculpture, photography, and painting. Old Town This neighborhood was founded by Governor Francisco Cuervo y Valdez and encompasses ten blocks of shops, most of which specialize in Southwestern arts, crafts, and foods. The San Felipe de Neri Church, built in and renovated several times since sits on the north side of the plaza.
Albuquerque Museum of Art and History Steps off the Old Town Plaza, this museum houses permanent collections relating four centuries of Albuquerque history and exhibiting ificant New Mexican works of art. Only in Albuquerquea newly deed history exhibit emphasizing multi-media and interactive displays, opened spring Revolving exhibitions have highlighted masterworks from the likes of Picasso, as well as contemporary collections from top local artists. Science Center A top destination for kids in the Duke City, this center encourages youngsters to learn about science, technology, and art by doing.
Yes, you can touch that! Explora opened Sketch Aquarium inin which kids imagine, sketch, and release a sea creature into a digital sea. The center also offers ongoing programs, such as live theater, summer camps, and overnights. They also offer periodic Adult Nights that make the center a kid-free zone. Luminarias in Old Town It only happens once a year, but this event is so magical, it rates mentioning. Christmas Eve night, thousands of luminarias paper bags with candles in them glow as this plaza becomes a gathering point for the entire city.
Strangers carol together in the gazebo, revelers drink hot chocolate, and friendly shop owners offer a warm place by the fire. Bus tours will also guide Local hotties Albuquerque New Mexico through the Country Club neighborhood. For a more demure climb along an equally popular trail, travel to the east side of the mountains, past Sandia Ski Area, to the Tree Spring Trail.
As it winds through the trees—offering a pleasant, shaded hike in summer—the trail affords incredible views of the valley on the east side of the mountains, and plenty of bird-watching. It le to the South Crest Trail, which you can traverse as far as you wish to take in expansive city views. Bookworks and One If you want to read like a local, these two independent bookstores, at nearly opposite ends of the city, share several qualities: large sections devoted to books on New Mexico topics, a full calendar of events featuring local authors, and excellent customer service.
Bookworks: Rio Grande Blvd. One: Montgomery Blvd. Marble Brewery Linger over your conversation and your handcrafted brew at this welcoming neighborhood pub turned city hotspot. This brewery's original locale has become a top food-truck destination, frequented by top mobile hash-slingers Artisan Valley Smokehouse and The Supper Truck.
Sincethey have become known for performing innovative and experimental dance works several times a year. Keshet also offers a full slate of dance classes, including physically integrated dance for those with movement challenges. SW performances are usually in other spaces ; ; www. To explore more of this neighborhood: www. On Saturday downtown and Sunday in the Rail Yards, these markets burst with fresh produce from local farms. Downtown, children gambol in the grass amid bluegrass tunes from the likes of the Squash Blossom Boys while parents nosh on chocolate-almond croissants. In warm weather, the rooftop cantina is the perfect place to while away the evening sipping my favorite drink.
Called The Angry Bee, the cocktail includes fierce green-chile-infused tequila, Cointreau, honey, and fresh lime juice. Along with several biking trails, the city counts more than miles of bike-friendly routes. NW, Suite ; ; www. The trail is uninterrupted by car traffic, making it the Local hotties Albuquerque New Mexico locale for the out-and-back route of the Duke City Marathon, held here each October. Ballooning Confession: When the blockbuster Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta approaches each October, I groan slightly at the thought of the added traffic caused by thevisitors that flock to the city.
But without fail, when I see those candy-colored drops take to the skies, I feel immense delight, and my traffic woes are quickly forgotten. In fact, I took my first ride in April. What will yours be?
All the beef is hormone-free and grass-fed. The veggie burger is also delightful. Be sure to save room for a milkshake for dessert. SE; Le Chantilly and Le Quiche both serve breakfast and lunch, as well as a full slate of pastries throughout the day. At Le Quiche opt for the almond-chocolate croissant for breakfast. Le Chantilly: Menaul Blvd. Both steamy espresso drinks and the Nitro Cold Brew coffee are wonderful—as is the colorful ambiance. During sunny days, grab a table on the back patio. Go Lobos! Standouts: the red-chile glazed bacon and the huevos rancheros. Sandia Peak Tramway This is a top destination for first-time visitors to the city, but for locals, rising to the 10,foot Sandia Peak in an aerial gondola remains a thrilling experience.
Great views abound.Local hotties Albuquerque New Mexico
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Bernalillo & Valencia Counties