A monthlong celebration of Hispanic Heritage begins on September 15. What’s the best way to Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month in New Mexico, the Land of Enchantment? Hispanic culture is alive and thriving in the Albuquerque and Rio Rancho areas, ready to be experienced. Enjoy authentic local foods, exploring unique neighborhoods or attending events honoring the heritage and traditions of the Hispanic community.
The area boasts some of the most diverse cultures in the country and is well known as a melting pot of Native American, Spanish and Mexican heritage. We recommend a few of the explorations listed below. Remember to please check business hours as the state begins to reopen this month. Latest updates may be found on local websites and social media.
Old Town, established in 1706 when a group of Spanish families settled there, now has numerous museums and more than 100 shops, galleries and restaurants. It’s a center for culture, architecture, shopping, art and cuisine. Explore the many side streets for shopping and dining opportunities amidst traditional Pueblo-Spanish architecture, and Hispanic history.
Map of Old Town
Hispanic artisans and craftsmen create art reflecting a fusion of indigenous Spanish, Mexican, African, North American and religious influences. Many locations boast their work, but start with these suggestions:
The Albuquerque Museum is dedicated to preserving the art of the American Southwest and the history of Albuquerque and the Middle Rio Grande Valley of New Mexico. It’s home to 10,000 works of art, 35,000 historical objects, and more than 130,000 items in photo archives.
The National Hispanic Cultural Center is a cultural home for the diverse identities that shape the community. Visit the Genealogy Center to learn about Hispanic family history and then spend the morning at the exhibits or one (or two) of NHCC’s 700 events.
South Broadway Cultural Center
South Broadway Cultural Center is an excellent place to discover live entertainment, original art, cultural events, workshops and classes, and group gatherings.
Los Muros de Burque, Self-Guided Tour of Murals
Muros translates from Spanish to “walls.” Take time to tour the murals throughout the streets of Albuquerque and discover the people and history of the area. Information and maps here.
New Mexico and Albuquerque are known best for their unique cuisine, featuring a fusion of Spanish, Native American and Mexican ingredients and techniques. Many options available, but start with these:
Delicious nachos and patio dining available.
10500 4th St. NW, Albuquerque
Homemade tamales are the name of the game at this restaurant, with call-in orders and outside dining.
1715 Second St. SW, Albuquerque
Family-owned business that’s known far and wide for its spicy dishes, exceptional staff and incredible salsa.
The National Institute of Flamenco offers an intimate performance space designed exclusively to feature the artistry of Flamenco at Hotel Albuquerque at Old Town. The Tablao at Hotel Albuquerque features artists of the highest caliber and serves authentic Sevilla tapas and regionally inspired fine wines and spirits.
800 Rio Grande Blvd. NW
After exploring Old Town, stop at Villa Myriam Coffee or The Brew, both Colombian-owned and founded.
Feed your soul with a tour of New Mexico’s great architectural works of art. Visit San Francisco De Asis Mission Church, Old San Miguel Mission, San Juan Church and others. Some of these buildings are so old that histories are strictly oral. Information at link above.
Hotel Andaluz (short for Andalucian) earned a place on the National Register of Historic Places with an atmosphere inspired by Spain’s architecture and passionate culture.
125 Second Street NW, Albuquerque
Several of New Mexico’s historic sites located around New Mexico (at link above) offer visitors an in-depth look into its heritage with Spanish missionaries, conquistadors and enthusiasts. Visit Jemez, Coronado or Fort Selden to further explore the history of New Mexico.
Remember to check for the latest updates as you plan your weekend around one of Albuquerque’s many cultural events:
The New Mexico State Fair, where you’re sure to see live Folklorico dances, Hispanic art, performances and much more | September
Annual Christmas Eve Luminaria Tour | December
Mariachi Spectacular De Albuquerque | July
Be sure to do a little shopping and take home a piece of your trip and all you’ve learned about Albuquerque’s Hispanic heritage. Make a stop at Duran’s Central Pharmacy, Skip Maisel’s Downtown, or some of the locally owned shops in Old Town for some unique and fun shopping options. The gift shops at the National Hispanic Cultural Center, Albuquerque Museum, and the South Broadway Cultural Center are also great places to buy Hispanic art. The store Masks y Mas in Nob Hill is another great place to purchase art from featured Hispanic artists.
A wealth of information may be found at the New Mexico Tourism Department website and Visit New Mexico Facebook page.
Additional information is available at Visit Albuquerque.
Don’t wait. Explore, learn and enjoy the Albuquerque/Rio Rancho area today!
Looking for a new home or custom home site near Albuquerque? Nestled among the foothills of Rio Rancho, Mariposa is a master-planned community situated just 30 minutes north of Albuquerque. Mariposa is designed for living naturally and offers a fully equipped fitness center, resort-style indoor and outdoor pools, parks, sports courts, miles of trails and abundant open space, and endless views at the Mariposa Preserve and surrounding mountains. Learn more at https://liveinmariposa.com/
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