Southwestern New Mexico

We’ve compiled the best of the best in Southwestern New Mexico - browse our top choices for the top things to see or do during your stay.

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  • 1. Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge

    Nature Preserve/Wildlife Refuge

    Hundreds of different types of birds, including snow geese, cranes, falcons, and eagles, can be spotted from viewing platforms and directly...Read More

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  • 2. Branigan Cultural Center


    The Branigan Cultural Center, in a striking 1935 Pueblo Revival building embellished inside with murals by Tom Lea, offers compelling documentary...Read More

  • 3. Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument

    Indigenous Sight

    At Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument the mystery of the Mogollon ( muh -gee-yohn) people's short-lived occupation of the deeply recessed...Read More

  • 4. Lightning Field

    Public Art

    The sculptor Walter De Maria created Lightning Field, a work of land art composed of 400 stainless-steel poles of varying heights (the average...Read More

  • 5. Very Large Array


    With its 27 glistening-white 80-foot radio-telescope antennae arranged in patterns (their configuration is altered every four months or so)...Read More

  • 6. Basilica of San Albino

    Religious Building/Site/Shrine

    On the north side of the plaza is the Basilica of San Albino, an impressive 1908 Romanesque brick-and-stained-glass building that is supported...Read More

  • 7. Caballo Lake State Park

    Park (National/State/Provincial)

    Caballo Lake State Park provides winter nesting grounds for golden and bald eagles, often sighted gliding aloft as they search for prey. Fishing...Read More

  • 8. Catwalk National Recreation Trail


    A primary destination here is the splendid Catwalk National Recreation Trail, a 250-foot-long metal walkway drilled into the sides of the massive...Read More

  • 9. Chile Pepper Institute

    Educational Institution

    Capsicum matters greatly to New Mexicans, and much of the research into this invaluable agricultural product takes place at NMSU's Chile Pepper...Read More

  • 10. Chloride


    NM 52 leads about 40 mi west from I–25, near Truth or Consequences, to Winston and Chloride, two fascinating mining towns just east of the...Read More

  • 11. City of Rocks State Park

    Park (National/State/Provincial)

    One look at the spires here and you'll figure out how the area came by its name. The unusual rock formations were spewed from an ancient volcano...Read More

  • 12. Cultural Center de Mesilla (CCM)


    Cultural Center de Mesilla (CCM) lies a full block to the west of the Old Mesilla Plaza. The well-kept historic (1840s) adobe building houses...Read More

  • 13. El Camino Real International Heritage Center


    Heading south on I–25 beyond Socorro and San Antonio, there are a couple of noteworthy stops. The first one, one of the region's most compelling...Read More

  • 14. El Chino Mine


    The wrenching 1954 movie Salt of the Earth chronicled the Empire Zinc Mine strike that took place less than 1 mi away, in Hanover, and while...Read More

  • 15. Elephant Butte Lake State Park

    Park (National/State/Provincial)

    More than a million people each year visit Elephant Butte Lake State Park, whose 36,500-acre lake is New Mexico's largest. A world-class competition...Read More

  • 16. Fort Bayard

    Military Sight

    Established in 1866, Fort Bayard was built by the U.S. Army when it became clear that conflict between homeland Apaches and early Anglo and...Read More

  • 17. Fort Craig National Historic Site

    Historic District/Site

    Not far from the Camino Real Center, Fort Craig National Historic Site was established after the New Mexico Territory became part of the United...Read More

  • 18. Fort Selden State Monument


    Fort Selden was established in 1865 to protect Mesilla Valley settlers and travelers. The flat-roofed adobe buildings at Fort Selden State Monument...Read More

  • 19. Geronimo Springs Museum


    At the distinctively homespun Geronimo Springs Museum, you can visit a room dedicated to Ralph Edwards' career and his very personal connection...Read More

  • 20. Geronimo Trail Scenic Byway

    Scenic Drive

    One of the most visually dramatic ways to reach Silver City is via NM 152, which forms the southern prong of the backward-C-shaped Geronimo...Read More

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