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Northern New Mexico is an amazing destination for a motorhome camping trip filled with fascinating history, stunning landscapes, and endless cultural activities. As the largest city in the state, Albuquerque is a common jumping-off point for such an adventure. Interstate 40 and 25 also meet there and make for easy access to the rest of the state; many of the best attractions are only an hour's drive away.
If you’re looking for a quiet place to camp that is still close to all the amenities of Albuquerque, Coronado Campground is a hard one to beat. Coronado Campground lies about half an hour's drive north of Albuquerque in the suburb of Bernalillo. Sites have water and electrical hookups, and there’s a central dump station where you can empty the tanks on your RV rental, and there are shower facilities too. For recreation, there’s a volleyball court, a few short hiking trails, and access to the adjacent river. If you’re hoping to hit the links when you camp in an RV near Bernalillo, there’s a golf course just outside the RV campground.
However, the reason most visitors choose a campsite at Coronado Campground is to be close to the Coronado State Monument. The site contains the ruins of the Kuaua Pueblo that dates back to the 1300s. There’s a small museum that displays artifacts found during the village's excavation, along with guided tours of the ruins.
Santa Ana Pueblo is also not far from the campground; here you'll find a 27-hole golf course, a Vegas-style casino, a restaurant, and traditional corn milling facilities. If you’re looking for fun resort activities, it’s well worth visiting this entertainment hub when you get an RV rental near Coronado Campground.
The Albuquerque region has some of the most diverse landscapes in the whole state with chilly peaks and searing deserts just an hour's drive apart from each other. If you enjoy spending time outside, you’re going to love camping at Coronado Campground.
Hiking through Petroglyph National Monument is a must if you’re at all interested in Native American history. Close to 25,000 etchings grace the rocks within the monument, depicting everything from ancient hunts to astronomical signs and yet to be deciphered symbolism. The monument is over a dozen miles long and has multiple entry points, but they’re all within a very short drive of downtown Albuquerque.
For watersports, locals head to Sandia Lakes Recreation Area outside Bernalillo. The small group of lakes west of Highway 313 is a fantastic escape from the summer heat with excellent swimming facilities. If you’re an angler, the lake has a great stock of catfish that would make a scrumptious dinner prepared over your campfire.
Want to see the Albuquerque area from above but don’t have the leg muscles to climb the 3,000 feet to reach the summit of the city’s surrounding peaks? Take a ride on the Sandia Peak Tramway instead; the gondola takes just 15 minutes to reach those heights, and once you’re at the summit, there are some amazing hiking trails to explore. Just be careful with the elevation; there’s less oxygen up there, and many hikers get lightheaded from walks that would be considered effortless down in the valley.
As the largest city and home to thousands of University of New Mexico students, there’s no shortage of good food in the Albuquerque area. The most important decision you’ll have to make when choosing a dish is red or green (chiles). The battle between the green chiles of southern New Mexico and the reds up north is a fierce one that can divide families. Fortunately, many restaurants sell their southwestern delicacies with both red and green sauces, so you’ll have plenty of opportunities to decide on your favorite.
Bit of a science nerd? Then you’ll definitely want to visit the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science. Explore exhibits detailing the billions of years of regional history, spend time in The Naturalist Center learning about native species, and see some lifelike dino displays during your tour.
Love unique experiences? Then you’ll have to visit the Meow Wolf art installation in nearby Santa Fe. The experience cannot be described in words, but in essence, it’s an interactive art gallery with few rules for exploring. Open a washing machine to crawl into another dimension, run your hands through a set of lasers to play a harp, or bang on the ribs of an ancient beast to hear a ghostly melody. To the uninitiated, it makes little sense, but for those that have gone through it, it’s an experience you’ll never forget.