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dallas to ALBUQUERQUE - first time visitor

Level Contributor
27 posts
dallas to ALBUQUERQUE - first time visitor

hi! We're driving into Alb, from Dallas via Amarillo. any recommended stops along this 10 hour drive?

Will have 2 full days in town over memorial day weekend plus fri evening. How to squeeze it all in? This may be the only chance to visit.

Want to see:

Old Town

Sandia Tramway

Balloon Museum

Petroglyph National Park

Acoma Pueblo

any other must sees?

any suggestions for itinerary/stops that would cut down on driving back & forth.


Santa Fe, New Mexico
Destination Expert
for Santa Fe, Mesa Verde National Park, Boulder, New Mexico
Level Contributor
22,452 posts
62 reviews
1. Re: dallas to ALBUQUERQUE - first time visitor

You can see Old Town Friday night. Visit Petroglyph National Park and Acoma Pueblo on Saturday. Do Sandia Tramway, the Balloon Museum and the Old Town area on Sunday.

Also during that weekend at Balloon Fiesta Park is the Albquerque Wine Festival www.nmwine.com .

Also the night of May 24th is the New Mexico Symphony Orchestra concert at the zoo. It is a great event, you can bring in picnic lunch, chairs etc and enjoy the concert. This year is a Stars & Stripes and 1812 Overture. www.nmso.org

Have fun. Visit www.itsatrip.org for tons of info on Abq.

Edmond, OK
Level Contributor
485 posts
50 reviews
2. Re: dallas to ALBUQUERQUE - first time visitor

Just a couple of suggestions: Try to do the Sandia Tram at dusk - great sunset views from the mountain. Acoma Pueblo will probably take you the better half of a day. We left Alb. around 10:30 am and were back around 3:30 pm. Wear good walking shoes, not sandals. Same goes for Petroglyph.

I think Albuquerque sometimes gets a bad rap, no it's not a larger version of Santa Fe; but if you have the right attitude, it is a very unique city with many interesting things to do and friendly folks.

Hope you have a great trip!

Level Contributor
27 posts
3. Re: dallas to ALBUQUERQUE - first time visitor

THANKS for suggestions!

Aubrey, Texas
Level Contributor
10,627 posts
201 reviews
4. Re: dallas to ALBUQUERQUE - first time visitor

I've made this trip numerous times on my way out West. Not a lot to see other than pretty countryside most of the way. There is the Cadillac Ranch near Amarillo, or at least it was still there a couple of years ago.


A couple of tips:

--Gas is more expensive in NM. You'll find the best gas prices in east Amarillo just after US287 joins I40. The truck stops along there have about the same prices.

--The welcome stop in NM has free coffee, internet and maps.

Dallas, Texas
Level Contributor
3 posts
98 reviews
5. Re: dallas to ALBUQUERQUE - first time visitor

I've been making that drive for 30+ years. There are lots of places to eat along the way, but until ABQ, it's just road-side fare.

You absolutely MUST eat at THE FRONTIER on Central Ave.when you are in ABQ. It's just across the street from UNM and is hands down the best and most authentic New Mexican food you'll find (as well as the cheapest). Traditional New Mexican is a mix of Mexican and American Indian, with lots of spice and lots of choices. Try both red and green chili. Remember that the tortilla or sopapilla are for scooping up your food and cooling off the spice and are not necessarily for desert unless left over. Don't expect Tex-Mex here. Order the Brisket Burrito -red. Or the Huevos Rancheros. Plan on splitting the cinnamon roll four ways. This is a great place to get To-Go food.

The Rio Grande Zoo is really a very nice zoo. The Biological Park is awesome.

Drive the old Route 66 (Central Ave) and stop at the shops that look interesting to you.

Old Town is great to walk around in and maybe do a little shopping. But it is a tourist destination. The Church Street Cafe has decent food away from the tourists.

We may see you there over Mem.weekend as We'll be there too.

Edmond, OK
Level Contributor
485 posts
50 reviews
6. Re: dallas to ALBUQUERQUE - first time visitor

Yup, the Cadillac ranch is still there. But it is easier to see on your way back east since it's on the south side of I-40, just outside of Amarillo.

BTW, forgot to mention Palo Duro Canyon is south of Amarillo and might be something to break of the monotony of the drive.

Split a Frontier cinnamon roll 4 ways?! No way - get one for each of you. The green chile cheeseburgers are great there too.

Other places to eat: The Range Cafe, Sadie's, Church Street Cafe and Little Anita's in Old Town.

Happy Trails!

Level Contributor
24 posts
7. Re: dallas to ALBUQUERQUE - first time visitor

I'm writing an article for The Boston Globe about summer travel deals and want to interview people who are going to vacation in Albuquerque. Your family sounds perfect for the story. Please contact me at 617-929-3150 or nwong@globe.com so I can do a quick phone interview with you about why you decided to go to there.


Nicole Wong

(PS Other Albuquerque vacationers can contact me, too!)

8. Re: dallas to ALBUQUERQUE - first time visitor

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