Albuquerque area families looking for attractions and events to fill their winter holidays with activity and fun close to home have many options; these three offer affordable options and fun for all ages.
River of Lights – This holiday light show takes place at the ABQ BioPark Botanic Garden. Event hours are 6 pm – 9 pm from November 27 – December 16 and from 6 pm – 10 pm from December 17 – December 30. The costs for tickets is $8 for adults and $4 for children ages 3 – 12. Children under 3 are admitted for free. There are millions of holiday lights and over 140 light displays and animated sculptures. This walk-through holiday production is the largest in New Mexico. The River of Lights began in 1997 and every year new sculptures are designed and created. You will also see a glass snowman collection, model trains and live entertainment from November 27 – December 23. There is also holiday nature crafts in the education building the first three Wednesdays in December.
Rail Runner Express – The New Mexico Rail Runner Express is a train system that runs daily between Santa Fe and Albuquerque and on South to Belen. From the Downtown Albuquerque Station to the Santa Fe Depot, cost would be $8 per person for a day pass/$7 if you purchase them online. The train trip alone is enough excitement for the kids; but once in Santa Fe, there are restaurants, retail stores, galleries, museums and the Santa Fe Farmers’ Market. There is also a park, Santa Fe Plaza and a promenade. Check out the Rail Runner website to see a list of businesses that offer discounts if you show them a Rail Runner ticket with a valid date.
Sandia Peak Ski & Tramway – The Tram is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Central New Mexico. It takes passengers to the top of Sandia Peak and back down again. The fifteen minute ride takes you to heights that allow you a scenic view of the surrounding area. From the Tram you can see Mount Taylor more than 100 miles to the West, Cabezon volcanic formation to the North, Redondo Peak to the North and West and the Valle Grande, a volcanic crater that is reportedly the largest in the world. The view is breathtaking and you can possible see wildlife on the mountain on the ride up. It is not unusual to see eagles, mule deer and black bears. Once at the top, you can enjoy a meal at the High Finance Restaurant & Tavern. Reservations are recommended for dinner, but not accepted for lunch. There is no public access road to the restaurant, so the Tram is the only practical way to get there.
New Mexico BioPark Complex
New Mexico Rail Runner Express
Sandia Peak Ski & Tramway
Sandia Peak Restaurants