New Mexico is full of hidden gems. Around every turn you’re likely to find a new place to explore and new sites to see. Many of these scenic spots prove to be some of the best in New Mexico for capturing the perfect Instagram shot or photo memory. See below for 15 of the best gram-worthy locations close to Mariposa in Rio Rancho and Albuquerque.
Mariposa’s Steel Wings: Mariposa residents don’t have to go far to snap a dramatic picture in front of one of the most majestic large-scale sculptures in the area. Sculpture Ali Baudoin is the artist behind the set of massive steel wings that welcome residents and visitors to the Mariposa neighborhood. The creation lends itself to the perfect post for locals who are proud to call Mariposa home. Raised in Albuquerque, Ali Baudoin creates abstract stainless steel sculptures that reflect his interest in mythology, eastern aesthetics, and Greek art.
Location: Mariposa Entrance
The Mariposa Preserve: With views of the Sandia and Jemez mountains there is no shortage of Instagram worthy spots right in the heart of Mariposa. The preserve provides 2,200 acres of dedicated open space with 360° views to fill your lens. Whether you are looking to capture the perfect landscape or selfie backdrop the New Mexico scenery is simply enchanting.
Location: Within Mariposa
Sky Room Amphitheater at Campus Park : From every angle The Sky Room Amphitheater at Campus Park provides a perfect picture. The Sky Room was conceived as a performance space with unique acoustics and is the focal point for Campus Park. The visual beauty was achieved using a subtractive geometrical design. The dynamically supported arch suggests threshold and entrance, welcoming visitors, music lovers and shutterbugs alike.
Location: Rio Ranch Campus Park, 7 miles from Mariposa
Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta :For nearly 50 years, Albuquerque has held one of the largest hot air balloon festivals in the world. As many as 80,000 people come every year to experience this colorful display in the sky. The next chance to see it for yourself is October 1-9, 2022, when the skies above Albuquerque will be full of hundreds of hot air balloons, creating a sight not commonly seen. This event truly makes for some of the most breathtaking photos. Bring family or friends along to capture the moment.
Location: Albuquerque, 30 miles from Mariposa
Blackbird Coffee House : Grab a cup of your favorite coffee, a freshly brewed latte, or hand blended tea and take all the Instagram pictures your caffeinated heart desires. Inside Blackbird Coffee House you’ll find an elaborate seating area perfect for a selfie with your cup of joe. Take your joe to go and you’ll find plenty of spots to let your branded cup work its magic. You won’t want to miss the wings hanging underneath the Blackbird Coffee House sign. Talk about Instagram magic.
Location: 206 San Felipe St. NW, Albuquerque (30 miles from Mariposa)
Boese Brothers Brewing : Kick off your weekend at Boese Brothers Brewing and be sure you have your phone ready to capture the fun. Two colorful murals on the outside of the building providing great contrast for the perfect selfie. But don’t stop there, the pops of color continue on the back patio. Snap a shot as you sip on your favorite brew with the green foliage and string lights sparkling behind you. Your Instagram feed will thank you.
Location: 7849 Tramway Blvd. NE, Albuquerque (30 miles from Mariposa)
Casa Rondeña Winery: European vacation vibes abound at this local gem! Casa Rondeña Winery is the perfect place to relax and capture the serenity of Europe without leaving town. Listen to beautiful music, sip their award-winning wine and take in the stunning architecture. From the vineyard to the tasting room, there is plenty of room to roam and an endless number of spots to grab the perfect European aesthetic your Instagram is itching for.
Location: 733 Chavez Rd. NW, Albuquerque (30 miles from Mariposa)
El Pinto Restaurant : El Pinto provides a feast for the eyes and the mouth with its perfect combination of mouthwatering food and a stunning, picturesque patio. This restaurant is a must for out-of-towners and New Mexico residents the same and has truly become a destination for both. El Pinto is known as much for its food as it is for its scenery which is often used for weddings and movie filming. Join the El Pinto fan club and snap some remarkable photos for your feed.
Location: 10500 N. 4th St. NW, Albuquerque (30 miles from Mariposa)
“Greetings from Burque” Wall : Just around the corner from Little Bear Coffee is a must-see Albuquerque mural. Whether you’re a visitor or Albuquerque resident, your camera will love this colorful art piece. The mural reads “Greetings from Burque,” as in Albuquerque, modeling after a vintage postcard. Inside each letter of “Burque” are different paintings of New Mexican culture. Stop by to see it yourself, and let your Instagram followers know you were there, too.
Location: 3123 Central Ave. NE, Albuquerque (30 miles from Mariposa)
Humble Coffee – Coffee shops are Instagram gold and Humble Coffee is no exception. You’ll find several fun picture spots outside including a blue and red wall. Your photo will pop against the bold background. The simple seating on the inside makes you and your coffee the stars of the show. Add a teaser to your story, showing your drink of choice and leave it to your official post to wow your followers.
Location: 505 Central Ave. NW, Albuquerque (30 miles from Mariposa)
Old Town Emporium : Great shopping and a plethora of picture spots all in one place. The turquoise doors and brick steps bring a bold taste of New Mexican culture. The Old Town Emporium is an authentic New Mexico spot to snap a shot for your feed. Inside you’ll find unique items original to the state and sure to spark some conversations with your followers.
Location: 204 San Felipe St. NW, Albuquerque (30 miles from Mariposa)
Old Town Poco A Poco Plaza : While in Old Town, you’ll want to swing by the Poco A Poco Plaza. This colorful plaza is perfect for capturing that New Mexican vibe, with a beautiful array of colors by day and an additional bit of beauty with twinkling lights at night. Whichever you choose, you’ll be adding some cultural beauty to your Instagram.
Location: 328 San Felipe St. NW, Albuquerque (30 miles from Mariposa)
Sandia Peak Tramway : Hop on the Sandia Peak Tramway to grab the quintessential New Mexico scenic shot. These trams allow for incredible views, and the chance to snap the perfect picture, looking over the Sandia-Manzano Mountains. Regardless of the time of year, you are certain to capture the true beauty of New Mexico’s landscape.
Location: 30 Tramway Rd. NE, Albuquerque (30 miles from Mariposa)
The Salt Yard – West : While both locations of The Salt Yard have a great atmosphere, The Salt Yard – West location shines just a bit brighter. This is a great place to snag that foodie picture of one of their many amazing dishes, pose for a selfie in a private cabana, or create a candid shot with your friends while playing a game. This location is full of fun and great opportunities for your social feeds.
Location: 3700 Ellison Dr. NW, Albuquerque (16 miles from Mariposa)
66 Diner : Hop in your time machine and travel back to the ‘50s. The 66 Diner is a sweet spot for classic diner food and that old-time diner feel. Snap a pic at the counter or pose outside in front of the collage of street signs and vintage decor. These backdrops are certain to add some noteworthy flare to your feed.
Location: 1405 Central Ave. NE, Albuquerque (30 miles from Mariposa)
Looking for a new home or custom homesite near Albuquerque? Nestled among the foothills of Rio Rancho, Mariposa is a master-planned community 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, abundant open space, and endless views at the Mariposa Preserve and surrounding mountains. Learn more at https://liveinmariposa.com/
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