Albuquerque, New Mexico – also known as “The Duke City” — even though this is the state’s largest city, you can easily get around and see all tourist spots in about 2 days if you plan everything out. The airport is easy to navigate and not too far from downtown. To get around you should consider renting a car or using Uber/Lyft.
- Like anywhere, check the weather before you go. It was raining while I was visiting and the locals said they had some snow a few days prior. On the day I flew out, it was bright and sunny.
- I flew from Los Angeles, CA and saved some money by choosing a flight that had an hour layover in Phoenix. If you’re not in a rush, this may be a good idea to save a few dollars.
- This city has a rich history of Native American culture so be sure to check out areas such as Old Town and the architecture around the city.
- Try to time your trip right so you can go for a hot air balloon ride or see the big balloon festival. I wasn’t aware this existed until I had already booked my trip but this is something I recommend looking into.
Places to Visit as a Tourist
- Old Town
- University of Albuquerque
- Downtown Albuquerque
- Biological Park
- Museum of Art and History
- Museum of Natural History and Science
- Petroglyph National Monument
- International Balloon Fiesta (Balloon Park)
- Balloon Museum
- Indian Pueblo Cultural Center
- Sandia Peak Tramway
- San Felipe de Neri Church
- Tip for “Mat Surfing” is to always call or contact the school ahead of time to see if you are even allowed to take a drop-in class or come by for an open mat session.
On this trip I was able to train with Gabby Romero of Clube Albuquerque Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (http://www.clubeabqbjj.com/adults-brazilian-jiu-jitsu.html). Gabby is a student of Mark Bradford at Clube Hollywood Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.
To give you a little history, I started off training in BJJ at Gracie Barra Hollywood which was owned by Alberto Crane at the time. Mark Bradford took over the academy whom I received my blue belt from. So it was cool getting to meet another Mark Bradford student.
Upon my arrival, I found out that Gabby was finishing up a training camp and getting ready for an MMA fight in Minnesota (Which she ended up winning via Rear-Naked Choke in Round 1). Even though she had a fight to prep for, she put aside sometime to offer me a private lesson.
Her academy recently moved and is now part of Luttrell’s MMA & Fitness facility. I got there early and met Coach Chris Luttrell whom I had a great conversation with and he even showed me a couple new drills while I was waiting for Gabby.
When Gabby arrived we worked in the cage and drilled some nogi leg-lock escapes. Something that I’ve been needing to work on. It was a nice session. If I’m ever in town again, I’ll definitely swing by again to take one of Gabby’s classes.
Thanks Gabby for the private lesson and good luck with your future fights! If you would like to support her, she has T-shirts for sale here:
The state is known for their take on Mexican food that they now call “New Mexican” food. The thing that stands out the most about these dishes is the chile. Green chile to be exact. This stuff can be found on almost anything from burgers to burritos.
- Frontier Restaurant
- Fork and Fig
- Central Grill and Coffee House
- Tacos Mex Y Mariscos
- Golden Crown Panaderia
Albuquerque is a rather small city. It’s rich in culture and history. There are many hiking trails you can take to explore on a sunny day and Santa Fe is not too far away. Unlike other cities I’ve visited, you’ll probably only need 2-3 days to see all the major tourist locations. Be sure to try their famous green chile and biscochitos while you’re in town.
Albuquerque, New Mexico – January 2017
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