Albuquerque

Albuquerque's terrain is diverse. Along the river in the North and South valleys, the elevation hovers at about 4,800 feet. East of the river, the land rises gently to the foothills of the Sandia Mountains, which climb to over 6,000 feet; the 10,378-foot summit is a grand spot from which to view the city below. West of the Rio Grande, where Albuquerque is growing most aggressively, the terrain rises abruptly in a string of mesas topped by five volcanic cones. The changes in elevation from one part of the city to another result in corresponding changes in temperature, as much as 10°F at any time. It's not uncommon for snow or rain to fall on one part of town but for it to remain dry and sunny in another, and because temperatures can shift considerably throughout the day and evening, it's a good idea to bring along a couple of layers when exploring.

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  • 1. 516 Arts

    Downtown | Museum/Gallery

    516 Arts holds a special place in the New Mexico art scene. World-class contemporary art dominates the changing shows at this multilevel nonprofit...Read More

  • 2. Albuquerque Museum of Art and History

    Old Town | Museum/Gallery

    This light-filled modern structure, designed by noted architect Antoine Predock, serves up a brilliantly curated selection of contemporary art...Read More

  • 3. National Hispanic Cultural Center

    Barelas | Museum/Gallery

    A showpiece for the city, and a showcase for Hispanic culture in Albuquerque's historic Barelas neighborhood, this beautifully designed space...Read More

  • 4. National Museum of Nuclear Science & History

    East Side | Museum/Gallery

    Previously known simply as the National Atomic Museum, this brilliant Smithsonian affiliate traces the history of the atomic age and how nuclear...Read More

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  • 5. UNM Art Museum

    University of New Mexico | Museum/Gallery

    University Art Museum features magnificent 20th- and 21st-century prints, as well as photos and paintings that rival the finest collections...Read More

  • 6. American International Rattlesnake Museum

    Old Town | Museum/Gallery

    Included in the largest collection of different species of living rattlers in the world are such rare and unusual specimens as an albino western...Read More

  • 7. Anderson-Abruzzo International Balloon Museum

    North Valley | Museum/Gallery

    This dramatic museum celebrates the city's legacy as the hot-air ballooning capital of the world. Albuquerque's high altitude, mild climate...Read More

  • 8. Indian Pueblo Cultural Center

    Los Duranes | Museum/Gallery

    The multilevel semicircular layout of this museum was inspired by Pueblo Bonito, the prehistoric ruin in northwestern New Mexico. Start by visiting...Read More

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  • 9. Maxwell Museum of Anthropology

    University of New Mexico | Museum/Gallery

    Tapping a vast collection of sublime Southwestern artifacts and archival photos, the Maxwell's superb shows encompass three fascinating fields...Read More

  • 10. New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science

    Old Town | Museum/Gallery

    The wonders at Albuquerque's most popular museum include a simulated volcano (with a river of bubbling hot lava flowing beneath the see-through...Read More

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  • 11. San Felipe de Neri Catholic Church

    Old Town | Religious Building/Site/Shrine

    Well over two centuries after it first welcomed worshippers, this structure, erected in 1793, is still active (mass is offered daily). The building...Read More

  • 12. Tamarind Institute

    University of New Mexico | Educational Institution

    This world-famous institution played a major role in reviving the fine art of lithographic printing, which involves working with plates of...Read More

  • 13. Turquoise Museum

    Old Town | Museum/Gallery

    Just west of the hubbub of Old Town, this museum may be inside a small strip mall, but visitors will forget that once they focus on the beauty...Read More

  • 14. Unser Racing Museum

    Los Ranchos de Albuquerque | Museum/Gallery

    Albuquerque is home to the illustrious auto-racing family, the Unsers, whose four generations of drivers have dominated the sport since the...Read More

  • 15. ¡Explora!

    Old Town | Museum/Gallery

    This imaginatively executed science museum—its driving concept is "Ideas You Can Touch"—is right across from the New Mexico Museum of Natural...Read More

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