You’ll find plenty of fun, free things to do in Albuquerque during your visit. From Native American culture to meteorites, from fishing to gallery tours, Albuquerque is one of the Southwest’s best affordable vacation spots. Find suggestions for free activities below.
- ARTScrawl's self-guided gallery tours are a great way to explore the city's art scene. The First Friday ARTScrawl is a citywide tour of galleries featuring works from local and nationally recognized artists.
- The National Hispanic Cultural Center hosts various free events and festivals throughout the year, celebrating Hispanic art and traditions. The center includes an art museum, library, genealogy center and performing arts complex.
- The historic Old Town neighborhood often has cultural offerings, such as flamenco dancing and salsa.
- Summerfest is a series of free community events featuring live music, children's activities, climbing walls, a craft beer garden, food trucks and vendors selling local, handcrafted goods.
- ABQSlams' poetry slams include performance events and educational programs throughout the year.
Find more events in Albuquerque.
Museums and Monuments
- The Anderson-Abruzzo Albuquerque International Balloon Museum gives visitors a chance to explore the exciting history of hot air balloons and their role in everything from sightseeing to space exploration. (Free every Sunday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and the first Friday of every month.)
- The Albuquerque Museum of Art and History is located in the heart of Old Town, just off historic Route 66. The family-friendly museum has a collection showcasing art, history and culture from across New Mexico and the American Southwest. (Free every Sunday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and the first Wednesday of every month. Also free on the first full weekend of every month for Bank of America customers; just show your credit or debit card.)
- Explora is an innovative, hands-on learning center teaching science, technology and art to students of all ages. (Children one and under are free.)
- Indian dances at the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center are a unique way for visitors to experience Native American traditions and culture, meet artists selling handcrafted works, and explore the center's unique collection of Pueblo pottery and art. (Weekends at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.)
- The National Museum of Nuclear Science & History offers a peek into the story of the Atomic Age, from the development of the atomic bomb to the widespread use of nuclear energy production. (Children five and under are free.)
- The New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science explores the state's distinctive natural history, including dinosaurs, ancient sea coasts and the chance the walk through a "live" volcano. (Free admission on five days during the year.)
- Petroglyph National Monument is an open-air museum featuring more than 20,000 ancient images of people, animals and other mysterious designs, carved into the black rock of the Rio Grande Valley. (Parking is $1 on weekdays and $2 on weekends.)
- University of New Mexico Museums
- The Maxwell Museum of Anthropology offers exhibits and programs relating to cultures around the world, with a special emphasis on the cultural heritage of the Southwest.
- The Meteorite Museum is home to more than 5,000 specimens and offers visitors the chance to learn about asteroids, comets and more through the study of objects that have fallen to Earth.
- The Museum of Southwestern Biology is a research and teaching facility for the study of ecology and the life history of plants, invertebrates and vertebrates.
- The UNM Art Museum is a teaching museum whose collection includes paintings, photography, prints and sculpture, with a particular focus on works by American artists.
Learn more about Albuquerque's museums.
- The fishing lakes at Tingley Beach are open year-round and offer free fishing areas in multiple ponds.
- ABQ BioPark is a unique environmental museum that includes an aquarium, botanic garden, zoo and Tingley Beach. (Children two and under are free.)
- Nature walks, hiking and biking are great ways to get outside and enjoy the city's fantastic trails and open space preserves.
Find out more about Albuquerque's outdoor activities.
- Historic Route 66 runs through Albuquerque. See the road that changed the idea of post-WWII American road trips, including unique signs and architecture that still remain from the heyday of Route 66.
- Farmer’s markets in Albuquerque are a great (and inexpensive) way to get a taste of local foods and goods. Flea markets offer treasure hunters a chance to score some amazing finds amid the bric-a-brac.
- Window shopping in Old Town and Nob Hill lets you sample daily life in Albuquerque and see our unique arts and crafts.
- Wine tastings at select wineries, including Anasazi Fields and the Corrales Winery, let you sip wines from Albuquerque's North Valley.
Get more information on authentic Albuquerque, one of the Southwest's best affordable vacation spots!