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1. Holiday Events

River of Lights

Get in the spirit of the season with events designed to warm your soul, from the River of Lights at the ABQ BioPark, holiday-themed theatre performances, or Tour ABQ's Trolley of Lights Tour. Head to our ABQ365 events calendar for a complete listing of events happening during your visit!

2. Wrap up Holiday Shopping

Old Town

Get your friends and family gifts that are uniquely Albuquerque, and that can't be found everywhere. From an incredible selection of turquoise jewelry and Southwestern art to wreaths made of chiles (ristras) and hot air balloon merchandise, Albuquerque gifts won't soon be forgotten, unlike that sweater Grandma bought you last year. For ideas and shopping districts, like the popular Old Town and Uptown areas, click here.

3. Reach New Heights

Sandia Tram - Photo by Minh Quan

Photo by Minh Quan

What better way to get an overview of this beautiful city than from up above? Albuquerque is the "Hot Air Ballooning Capital of the World", and you'll see the colorful orbs dotting the sky each morning. A hot air ballooning experience is also a perfect pre-holiday gift experience to share with your loved ones. The Sandia Peak Aerial Tramway is another excellent way to experience the vast beauty of this region. The ride takes visitors up to the 10,378-foot elevation observation deck, where 11,000 square miles are visible on a clear day.

4. Warm up, Albuquerque-style

a plate of new mexican food smothered in red and green chile with rice and beans on the side

Photo from Facebook

Yes, you have lots of choices for Mexican food. But you know what will keep you warmer? NEW MEXICAN food! Red and green chiles are the characteristic identifier of our unique cuisine, and can be found in nearly every dish here, from breakfast burritos to chile-flecked fudge. Don't worry - it's not considered taboo to order your chile on the side, so that you can control the heat. Want your dish smothered in both? Tell your server you'll have "Christmas." Find a number of New Mexican restaurants here.

5. Play Outside

Biking on the Bosque Trail, Routes Bike Tours

Photo from Routes Bicycle Tours & Rentals

Take advantage of Albuquerque's sunny skies and mild December temperatures and enjoy the outdoors. Whether you're learning about local history on a hike at Petroglyph National Monument, checking out the greens at a local resort golf course or taking a tour from Routes Rentals & Tours, there is an abundance of outdoor fun to be had. Click here to see all the outdoor adventure options in Albuquerque.