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10 Adventures You Need to Experience During Balloon Fiesta

For more than 40 years, visitors from all over the world have come to New Mexico to celebrate ballooning at the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta. Mornings are filled with breakfast burritos, morning glows, and breathtaking mass ascensions. Evenings feature live entertainment, “Glowdeos,” and fireworks. But how should you fill your time in between ballooning events? Let us help you craft the perfect New Mexico True adventure.

Breakfast Burrito

Unwrap A Classic Breakfast Burrito

Fuel the start of your Balloon Fiesta adventure with the king of Southwest breakfast foods—the classic breakfast burrito. Packed with delicious fillings, wrapped in a warm tortilla, covered and smothered in red or green chile, it’s hard to beat a good breakfast burrito. Spice up your morning at one of the numerous locations on our Breakfast Burrito Byway!

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Sandia Tram Fall

Peek the Peak and Explore

Hop aboard the Sandia Peak Tramway and enjoy the incredible scenery as you are transported up scenic mountains and above deep canyons for spectacular views of the area’s dramatic, breathtaking terrain. At the observation deck 10,378 feet atop the Sandia Peak, watch a New Mexico sunset produce a spectacular array of color across the stunning Rio Grande Valley.

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Folklórico dancers perform in the Old Town gazebo.

Explore Albuquerque’s Oldest Neighborhood

Historic Old Town has been the heart of Albuquerque since the city was founded in 1706 and continues to be the city’s cultural center. With more than 100 museums, shops, galleries, restaurants, and stunning architecture, you can easily spend a whole day exploring. Begin at the picturesque plaza and walk among the charming Pueblo-Spanish style adobe structures, taking in our uniquely New Mexican culture.

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Rio Grande Arts and Crafts

Craft Shop ‘til You Drop

After the balloons go up, immerse yourself in a world of art at the Rio Grande Arts and Crafts Festival, right at the same intersection as Balloon Fiesta! Under its signature huge white tent, you will find a fantastic lineup of artists, great entertainment and live music, a culinary arts tent, artist demonstrations, and more.

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Pick your own chile

Pick Your Own Green Chile

August through October, the New Mexican air is flooded with the delicious smell of roasting chiles. You can get your fill of New Mexico’s favorite—and most famous—crop at any local grocery store, or you can pick it yourself straight from the source. Head to Big Jim Farms in Los Ranchos and pick your very own chiles and even get them roasted on site!

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Petroglyph National Monument

Visit One of the Largest Petroglyph Sites in North America

Plan a hike through the Petroglyph National Monument to enjoy, experience, and learn about the incredible pieces of history left by the ancestors of today’s Pueblo people. Hiking trails allow for excellent viewing of the more than 25,000 petroglyphs—the majority dating back between the 1300s through the late 1680s—within the monument’s boundaries.

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Valles caldera

Venture Into New Mexico’s Super Volcano

The 89,000-acre Valles Caldera National Preserve is in the heart of one of three super volcanoes in the United States and is known for its lush mountain meadows, abundance of wildlife, beautiful winding streams, historic cabins, and prehistoric sites. Miles of hiking trails allow plenty of opportunities to explore, experience, and enjoy this incredible landscape.

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Native Adventure Guide

Discover Pueblo Indian Culture

The Indian Pueblo Cultural Center is the gateway to the 19 Pueblos of New Mexico. With incredible permanent and rotating exhibits featuring thousands of rare artifacts and works of art and as the only place in North America to offer traditional Native dances every week year-round, Albuquerque’s IPCC is the premier place to discover the history, culture, and art of New Mexico’s Pueblos.

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Route 66 Neon Sign

Get Your Kicks on Route 66

465 miles of Route 66’s classic neon signs, vintage motels, and roadside oddities run through New Mexico. In Albuquerque, Route 66 runs through the heart of the city along Central Avenue through Nob Hill, Downtown, the University area, and Historic Old Town. A unique blend of old and new, go out and experience Albuquerque’s very own stretch of the Mother Road for yourself!

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Tent Rocks

Complete Your New Mexico Bucket List

All across the state there are incredible sights to see and experiences to have. From Taos Pueblo and Tent Rocks to White Sands and Carlsbad Caverns, check out some of New Mexico’s best-known sites and discover a few that might surprise you. How many of our New Mexico True 30 sites have you been to? Where will you go next?

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Chile Family Stickers

Build Your Chile Family During Balloon Fiesta!

Red, green, or Christmas-style, chiles are a way of life here in the state of New Mexico. In our celebration of all things chile, we want to give everyone the opportunity to build their family of chiles — here's where you can find all your preferred family members at the 2019 Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta and at destinations across Albuquerque.

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Balloon Fiesta Shuttle from Santa Fe

Muerto Balloon in Sky

An Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta shuttle bus will pick up at Eldorado Hotel, La Fonda on the Plaza, and The Drury Hotel each day throughout Fiesta this year. Arrive early as the shuttle will depart promptly from each location. Space is limited and tickets are on a first come first serve basis. 

Download the Schedule

See the Schedule Online