Top 5 things to do for a weekend in Albuquerque01 May 2013
Unexpected family circumstances took my big sister and me to New Mexico in February. Our grandmother passed away, and I didn't take it well. Of the three of us, I was closest with our grandmother.
2. Tram ride: After hiking the easy Cave Loop Trail (1.2 slightly inclined miles), we headed back to town for a sunset ride up the world's longest tram to Sandia Peak. This was on H's to do list. Mine? Not so much. It's terrifying and freakishly high. But who travels to new places and stays within their comfort zone? ...I hope you're not raising your hand. Nearly $20 later, we boarded the tram and away we went! It took nearly 15 minutes to cover 2.7 miles by way of the tram.
The kids in the tram were jumping up and down, running back and forth, and doing everything in their oblivious power to rock the car, scaring me to near death. It took every ounce of my boiling, terrified blood to refrain from grabbing them by the backs of their shirts and hushing them up with four-letter words void from their vocabulary. But fear was the only thing that kept me standing still, far from those daring children.
Breathless and blue, we arrived at the top. I'll be honest, the view was outstanding! It's far different than what either H or I see from the high peaks in the cities we live. We checked out the small station at the top and walked around a bit. Unless we wanted to dine at the restaurant, there wasn't anything else to do. Plan for it to be a quick, roundtrip visit. We rounded the station and head back to camp. In all truthfulness, the ride wasn't as bad on the way down. And hey, I lived to tell the story, right?
4. A night out in Nob Hill: Another popular neighborhood of Albuquerque, Nob Hill, sits on the city's Main Street, better known as Route 66. Among its history is the University of New Mexico, bringing a hip, youthful vibe to the notable suburb. Unfortunately, we didn't have time to experience this little corner of Albuquerque for what it's best known for: shopping, arts and entertainment. Instead, we grabbed pizza and pasta at the delicious Il Vicino. I highly recommend, and I truly wish we had one in Seattle!
5. Paseo del Bosque: The best kind of travel is free, and this beautiful path is no different. Paseo del Bosque, also referred to as the Riverside Bike Path, is a 16-mile walking and biking path that runs parallel to the Rio Grande and passes through Rio Grande State Park. Talk about a breathtaking stroll! The trail is uninterrupted by motorists, making it a tranquil escape during a busy day. It's easily accessible at different points within the city. Check out the link for a map of nearby parking.
Despite the circumstances, we kept distracted with the staggering delights New Mexico offers its residents and guests.
Ever since I was hit with the travel bug, I imagined visiting my Grandma in New Mexico during the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta. The images of all those magnificent balloons floating together above the arid, earthy landscape of New Mexico always steals my attention. Grandma always said there wasn't a day that went by you couldn't see one in the sky. I imagine I'll be back to climb into a big balloon and wade above the city, and see the many other sites H and I couldn't fit in to our weekend. But each time I return to New Mexico, I'll have Grandma on my mind and her adventurous courage in spirit.