"Our Land of Enchantment" New Mexico by toonsarah

New Mexico Travel Guide: 4,211 reviews and 10,335 photos

Chimayó Trading Post, Espanola

New Mexico dubs itself the “Land of Enchantment” and indeed we were enchanted!


What delighted us most was the variety. In two and a half weeks we saw natural wonders and man-made.
We followed trails worn down over the centuries by the moccasin-clad feet of early inhabitants, and sat in the cramped confines of a Mercury capsule (used in the first US spaceflight missions).
We marvelled at the legends of those early Native Americans, and at the tales of aliens crashing near Roswell.
We stayed in an historic hotel where outlaws had shot and sometimes even killed each other; in a cosy adobe casita; and in a former brothel.
We saw ancient petroglyphs, Route 66 Americana, and exciting modern art in the contemporary galleries of Santa Fe.

We drove for miles, often seeing more cattle than cars, with skies, and landscapes, that seemed to go for ever. Some of our favourite drives were on several of the state’s Scenic Byways, described here in my “Things to Do” tips.

And as we travelled I came to think that there was more than one New Mexico. Consequently I have arranged my “Favourites” tips here not by place but by theme. Visit with me “Native New Mexico”, “Hispanic New Mexico”, “Wild West New Mexico”, “Space Age New Mexico” and “Natural New Mexico”.

Of course I have plenty to tell you about the individual places we visited too. In order, these were:

~ appealing Silver City
~ fascinating Gila Cliffs National Monument
~ sleepy Hillsboro
~ surprisingly historic Socorro
~ quirky Pie Town (the first Pie Town page on VT!)
~ dramatic El Malpais
~ captivating Acoma Pueblo
~ lively Albuquerque
~ arty Madrid
~ the ghost town of Los Cerrillos
~ even more arty, and artful, Santa Fe
~ an enjoyable encounter in Española
~ remote Tsankawi
~ spiritual Chimayó, isolated Truchas & stunning church at Las Trampas on the High Road to Taos
~ atmospheric Taos Pueblo and the very likeable town of Taos itself
~ the ghost town of Elizabethtown and the moving Vietnam Veterans' Memorial on the Enchanted Circle drive
~ Wild West Cimarron and volcanic Capulin in the north east of the state
~ very likeable Las Vegas
~ a Route 66 Museum in Santa Rosa
~ Billy-the-Kid-obsessed Fort Sumner, and
~ alien-obsessed Roswell
~ "war-torn" Lincoln
~ stunning White Sands National Monument and nearby Alamogordo
~ and our last stop, picturesque Mesilla

Please visit these pages in order if you want to follow our route - or dip in and out if you prefer ;-)

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  • In a nutshell:This place could blow your mind!
  • Last visit to New Mexico: Oct 2011
  • Intro Updated Jan 30, 2013
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Reviews (14)

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Comments (13)

  • Yaqui's Profile Photo
    Mar 3, 2012 at 8:28 AM

    Glad you got to enjoy such a wonderful state. It has many years since I passed through it. Looks like you found some fabulous places to explore. Thanks for sharing them with us. Nice page!

  • Bwana_Brown's Profile Photo
    Feb 20, 2012 at 6:00 AM

    Sarah, what a great page on New Mexico! You really made the most of your trip and thank you for the excellent tips on your experiences. Reading brought back fond memories of my two trips Albuquerqe on business - in which I too managed to sneak in some rental car driving to the north (Taos) and south (Carlsbad) areas!

  • globetrott's Profile Photo
    Jan 3, 2012 at 3:14 PM

    Its great to see such Hispanic architecture and funny to read about the ID-story: I am sure I would have refused to show my ID and order ice-water instead !;-)

  • deecat's Profile Photo
    Dec 5, 2011 at 3:04 PM

    Sarah,
    It's always a pleasure to read your pages because they are personable, interesting, and so informative. I loved your organization That makes it so enjoyable. Fantastic photographs!

  • ettiewyn's Profile Photo
    Nov 11, 2011 at 3:32 AM

    Hi Sarah, finally got around to read something about your latest trip :-) A wonderful page - very interesting and I just LOVE the pictures of the nature and architecture. The forms and colours of the buildings are amazing.
    I especially like how you arranged the general tips, a great idea.

  • zuriga's Profile Photo
    Nov 1, 2011 at 1:24 PM

    Your photos remind me so much of how I loved Arizona. For some reason, I've never gotten to NM, but maybe one of these days. Great page!

  • Nemorino's Profile Photo
    Oct 31, 2011 at 3:37 PM

    Hi Sarah, I enjoyed reading your fine new tips on the many facets of New Mexico. I’m curious now about your future Cimarron page, since that was where I worked for two summers when I was a student. (Actually Cimarron was just the nearest town and our postal address.)

  • magor65's Profile Photo
    Oct 30, 2011 at 8:07 AM

    I'm not surprised that you were enchanted by New Mexico. I am enchanted just by looking at your photos. Your tips are also very interesting to read. And the ID story is really amusing.

  • nhcram's Profile Photo
    Oct 28, 2011 at 11:16 AM

    Looks like it was a fantastic holiday Sarah. Will come back later and check out the pages.

  • painterdave's Profile Photo
    Oct 26, 2011 at 7:53 AM

    REALLY good articles, you worked hard and put the right info down. I can see you were efficient in trying to see all you could. Now everyone benefits from your hard work.

toonsarah

“I slept on the strange pillows of my wanderlust”

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