The Best of New Mexico Camping

Festivals and Attractions

Let some of the exciting festivals and attractions around the state guide your New Mexico camping plans. Birders should attend the annual Festival of the Cranes; cowboys should check out the Lincoln County Cowboy Symposium; and UFO enthusiasts must attend the Roswell UFO Festival.

Other notable festivals include the Great American Duck Race in Deming, and the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta—as part of this week-long celebration, nearly 700 hot air balloons launch at the same time in a mass ascension.

Finally, the Albuquerque Biological Park is a New Mexico attraction that's perfect for kids. With a zoo, aquarium and botanic garden rolled into one, this is a must-see destination for families.

Camp: Reserve a Campsite at Cedro Peak

Urban Destinations

With New Mexico camping, you can set up just outside of any town and still enjoy shopping, museums and restaurants in the city center. Near Santa Fe, you can camp at the Black Canyon campground by night and explore Santa Fe and its surrounding wilderness by day. Don't miss the Santa Fe plaza, the numerous art galleries around town or the Miraculous Staircase in the Loretto Chapel.

Although more of a mountain retreat than an urban destination, Taos has plenty of in-town attractions for the urban crowd and endless outdoor adventures for nature lovers.  

Tracks and Trails

Even in an urban setting, you're never far from nature in New Mexico, with some of the state's best wilderness areas within striking distance of Santa Fe and Albuquerque.

Hikers, bikers and rock climbers alike are drawn to New Mexico's urban centers since they have such easy access to the mountains and trails. The Sangre de Cristo foothills (north of Santa Fe), includes the Dale Ball and Connecting Trails and the La Tierra Trails, which create over 50 miles of hiking and biking trails. These also link up with the Pecos Wilderness, which is the second largest wilderness area in the state.

The Sandia Wilderness area near Albuquerque has over 140 miles of hiking and biking trails.

If you want to get off the beaten path on your New Mexico camping trip, head to the southwest corner of the state where you'll find the Aldo Leopold Wilderness area and more than 223,000 acres to explore.

More: 8 National Scenic Trails to Trek Across the U.S.

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