New Mexico is a unique state of America because it encompasses all the positive aspects of the United States and Mexico.

Although visitors here would most often think of its capital, Santa Fe, as the largest city here, in fact, it is Albuquerque. This city is located in the central part of the state, straddling the Rio Grande, and is a pure example of a real city in the southwest.

Albuquerque retains much of its Spanish cultural and historical heritage and although it is one of the oldest cities in the United States, it still shines with modernity today.

Albuquerque has a unique multicultural heritage and a history where Amerindians, Hispanics and Latinos, Anglo and other cultural influences are part of everyday life.

The horizon of the modern city unfolds against the background of the ancient mountains of Sandia and an endless and timeless blue sky. These factors contribute to making it the world hot air balloon capital and making it a truly incredible place to visit.

1. Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta

The highlight of the year occurs in October when the sky of Albuquerque comes alive with brightly colored hot air balloons. This celebration brings together hot air balloon enthusiasts from across the country to celebrate all the wonders and beauty of hot air ballooning.

If you’ve never risen in the sky in a hot air balloon, this is the perfect opportunity to try it. Climbing in the air in one of the amazing vehicles gives you a bird’s eye view of Canadian Mountain and the longest Canadian Peak aerial tram. Coming back to earth rewards you with a feeling of elation and wonder, making you want to do it again and again.

2. American International Rattlesnake Museum

The American International Rattlesnake Museum houses the world’s largest collection of different species of living rattlesnake. A day here will provide you and your family with an exciting and educational experience that will be unlike any other you have experienced before.

The museum will showcase the hundreds of ways in which rattlesnakes and other less favored animals have influenced our ecosystem. As you walk through the museum, you will discover artifacts and souvenirs that accompany the large collection of rattlesnakes.

While this may seem like something you could never appreciate, at least you should try, as it will open your mind to new things and you will probably end up having fun!

3. New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science

Immerse yourself in the history of Albuquerque a little further with a visit to the Museum of Natural History and Science of New Mexico, as this will open your eyes too much of the heritage of this city.

This institute specializes in the origins and geological history of the American Southwest, through lively exhibits of dinosaur models, replicas of ice age caves, a naturalist center and a walk through a volcano.

A visit here will take you on a journey back in time and demonstrate how far Albuquerque has come.

4. The old town of Albuquerque

This picturesque village has been the focal point of community life in Albuquerque since 1706 and it remains one of the most popular places to visit here. This city is full of historic architecture, allowing you to be transported on a journey through time that will demonstrate the past and present of Albuquerque.

Shopping here is a truly delicious experience, with more than 150 boutiques, art galleries and studios to choose from. When you’re all overwhelmed, you can take a break at one of the bright cafes and restaurants, where you can eat like the Mexicans.

5. Albuquerque Aquarium

No city is complete without some form of the aquarium and the Albuquerque Aquarium fulfills this requirement. This marine institution will take you on a journey on the Rio Grande, from Albuquerque to its mouth in the Gulf of Mexico. During your visit, be sure to discover the eel tunnel, seahorses, light jellies and a 285,000-gallon ocean tank filled with sharks.

There are many chances to interactively explore the marine life from the aquarium to the tactile pool and the ocean tank “ Divers at Work ”. It is a great attraction for children and even adults can enjoy it.

Albuquerque is a great place to visit on your next car rental vacation as there is so much to see and do. Something exciting will welcome you on every street corner and the diversity of these attractions will make your stay unforgettable.