Tag Archives: Old Town Albuquerque

Living in the Land of Enchantment: 10 Things to do in Albuquerque

There are so many places to see and things to do around here, it’s really hard to pick just one to write about! This week, I decided to write about 10 (make that 11)  things to do in the area. Technically, it’s more than ten, as I fit more than one into each number. Next time someone tells you there is nothing to do in Albuquerque, direct them to this post! 🙂

  1. Ride the Rail Runner from Albuquerque to Santa Fe.

    The ride alone is worth the trip as it takes you through the lovely New Mexico landscape. The tickets will only cost you $16 round trip! There are many stops along the route to start and if you take the train to the end of the line, you end up in the Santa Fe Railyard which is only a few short blocks away from the Plaza. The Railyard also has galleries and the famous Tomasita’s restaurant.

  2. Ride the Sandia Peak Tramway.

    This May will be the Tram’s 50th anniversary, and though I have lived in NM most of my life, I STILL have not ridden the Tram up the mountain. It’s just one of those tourist things locals rarely do. One day very soon, I plan on it! I have heard from MANY sources that it’s something one MUST do. I guess I prefer hiking up the mountain to riding up! UPDATE, Oct. 2016: I finally rode the Tram! It was awesome!

  3. Hiking the Sandia Mountains.

    Speaking of hiking, the Sandia mountains just East of Albuquerque have many, many miles of hiking trails! It can take a full day to hike to the peak, where the tram takes only 15 minutes. I have hiked to the South Crest several times and LOVE it! Please, make sure you go prepared. Water, jacket, hat. Many people have had to be rescued from these mountains because they don’t realize how quickly weather can change in NM. The weather can be warm and sunny in town and cold and rainy at the top of the peak.

  4. Petroglyphs National Monument.

    This is one of the largest petroglyph sites in Northern America. Volcanic rocks were carved by Native Americans and Spanish settlers up to 700 years ago, leaving behind interesting designs and symbols for us to ponder over. Another cool place to visit, related to the petroglyphs, are the volcanoes on the west mesa overlooking Albuquerque.

  5. Bio Park, Botanical Gardens/Aquarium/Zoo.

    Albuquerque has an awesome botanical garden with an indoor aquarium. The gardens are attached to the city zoo by a cool little open air train line that you ride between the two with out having to get in your car and drive. Also, while riding the train between the zoo and gardens, you will pass by Tingley Beach which is a series of three ponds, man made for fishing and remote control boats. In the summer months they have paddle boats you can rent for $10 an hour to paddle around the big pond in. The kids will also enjoy feeding the ducks and geese that call the ponds and river area home. The gardens are my favorite part, they have several different gardens, including a rose garden, Japanese garden and a farm with barn animals and New Mexico homestead. Great place to take the kiddos!

  6. Bike Ride on the Bosque Trail.

    While you are down near the Bio Park, right next door in fact, is the Central Ave. entrance to the Bosque bike and walking trail. The Bosque is the area of trees and open space that surrounds the Rio Grande River.

  7. See a Play.

    Albuquerque has MANY theatres, over 35 to be more specific! We can boast that we have the most live performance theatres per capita than any other city in the country. Just about ANY weekend in Albuquerque, you can find a show you might be interested in. The Albuquerque Theatre Guild website is a great place to start your search for that perfect play!

  8. Museums.

    Albuquerque has a great variety of museums for everyone in the family! There is the Albuquerque Museum of Art & History, the Anderson-Abruzzo International Balloon Museum, the New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science, the National Museum of Nuclear Science & History, Explora, National Hispanic Cultural Center, Indian Pueblo Cultural Center, the Maxwell Museum of Anthopology, the Unser Racing Museum and several more can be found HERE. I’ve linked to all their websites so you can learn more about each one you may have an interest in.

  9. Antique/Thrift Store shopping.

    Albuquerque has large variety of Antique shops and Thrift stores. Most are concentrated on Central Ave between Carlisle and San Mateo or on Menaul Ave. between Carlisle and San Mateo, but there are others all over town. You can find some really great deals on a variety of stuff. I could write a post about all the awesome thrift stores in this city. I have spent many hours sifting through the many shops.

  10. Ghost Tours of Old Town.

    This is another attraction I’ve never experienced, but I personally know one of the tour guides and KNOW it’s worth it! Yet another thing I plan to do someday. The Old Town of Albuquerque is VERY old! Over 300 years! There are rumored to be many ghosts living in the back alleys and old adobe buildings.

  11. Visit MY Studio!

    I hope you will get in touch and come visit me in my studio when you are in the area. I don’t hold retail hours, but I am always happy to open up the studio for out of town guests! You don’t have to buy anything, but I’m always pleased to send an Albuquerque memento home with a fan. 🙂

Advertisements

On a Roll!

Me with Carolyn Carroll, owner of Bright Rain Gallery in Old Town Albuquerque. That's my art on the wall in the background!

Me with Carolyn Carroll, owner of Bright Rain Gallery in Old Town Albuquerque. That’s my art on the wall in the background!

This has been a fantastic week for me! I am just super grateful for all the manifestations in my life this week! I have been working towards a goal I set at the beginning of the year, to have 5 galleries showing my art by June 2013. As of Monday, I have two! Friday I met with the owner of Bright Rain Gallery in Old Town Albuquerque to show her a few paintings and prints. I was pleased to leave Old Town with my paintings and prints now represented by Bright Rain Gallery! Of course, I came straight home and posted my good news on my facebook page and within a day I had received an email from another gallery where I recently submitted my art. High Desert Art & Frame is up near the Sandia Mountains at the intersection of Montgomery and Tramway. I met with them on Monday and will be their featured artist in July of this year!

My paintings hanging at Bright Rain Gallery

My paintings hanging at Bright Rain Gallery

Yet another argument for following up with galleries once you submit. I sent email submissions to the first gallery in February. I didn’t hear back from them but decided to drop in while gallery hopping with a friend. I mentioned something to the gallery owner about my email while talking with her and she said she remembered my email and liked my work. She asked me to bring some paintings by sometime, which I did the next week. If I hadn’t followed up with her, my art may not be in that gallery. Another awesome note, I went by the gallery today to take a picture of my art on the walls (see above & below) and found out that since I dropped off my art on Friday, I had already sold 5 prints!

Paula Manning Lewis' art at Bright Rain Gallery

My prints are on the table below in a cute basket! 🙂

The second gallery was reminded to contact me  because of my post on facebook. So, another great reason to use Facebook. 🙂 As if I needed another reason!

Acrylic painting on vinyl record, in progress

Acrylic painting on vinyl record, in progress

Needless to say, now that I have a show coming up in July, I have some painting to do. I have been slowly getting back to the studio, painting for what seems like the first time in forever (it’s actually been 7 months since I painted regularly!). Today I had a good friend call me to ask if I would mind if she came and watched me paint, so we had a great time painting alongside each other. (FYI, don’t ask to watch me paint unless you are ready to dive in and paint alongside me! 🙂 I finished my first small painting in a while and worked on my record painting a bit more, almost done with it.

oil painting

Joyful, 8 x 8″ oil painting

I ordered canvas stretcher bars this morning and plan to get going on a new series as soon as they arrive. It sure feels good to get back to my art! I have been having so much fun making music with my husband though! I just have to figure out how to make time for both. Easy peasy!