After canceling a visit to Austin because of heavy rains and flooding in Texas, we ended up spending over a week in Albuquerque. We found plenty to do.

First, the Botanical Garden had blooms, blooms, and more blooms! Again, very few labels (grrr!) but it would have taken a gadzillion plant stakes to label everything blooming in this park, which is one of the top gardens in the US. I took hundreds of photos but they couldn’t do it justice. Huge sweeps of delphiniums, columbines, native geraniums, and roses–just gorgeous color. And so many unusual plants, many of which I couldn’t identify. The park felt far larger than Bellingrath.

The Natural History Museum is especially fine, with a fantastic geological history of the universe and planet and huge dinosaur displays, some casts, some actual bones from New Mexico. We also visited the Indian Pueblo Culture Museum and saw native dancers and art, the National Museum of Nuclear Science with replicas of the first nuclear bombs, and displays on nuclear energy and medicine. On a side trip to Santa Fe, we visited the Palace of the Governors and and New Mexico History Museum and the Art Museum. We drove down the art district at Canyon Road but didn’t buy anything. We thought Santa Fe was very tourist-oriented and all the buildings have the same facade with New Mexico’s flat roof and terra cotta color exterior.

We hiked through basalt to view petroglyphs at Petroglyph National Monument. It was the virgin outing for my hiking stick, which performed well. I don’t think I could have made it to the top of the cliff without it. I was all proud of myself–until the next morning when it took a prescription dose of Naproxen to make my hip function again.

We sampled authentic green chili enchiladas and biscochitos and empandas from a local bakery. Yum!