One of my favorite places that I got to see in Albuquerque, New Mexico is ABQ BioPark. It consists of a zoo, aquarium, Tingley Beach and a botanic garden, and it sees 1.2 million visitors every year.
The botanic garden, hands down, was my favorite of the park’s four sections.
Two summers ago, Travel Channel ranked Albuquerque’s botanic garden fifth out of the 12 best in the United States, and it’s easy to see why. The grounds are well-kept and clean, and from Mediterranean to desert conservatories, there’s a wide variety of exhibits to see.
Some of my favorite exhibits were the Dragonfly Sanctuary Pond (which was filled with a ton of ducks when I walked by) and most especially the Railroad Garden, mainly because I hadn’t seen anything like that before.
The Old World Walled Gardens were one of the first exhibits I visited, and were also some of my favorites. In it is the ceremonial garden, which is a popular location for weddings.
Another highlight of the garden is the Butterfly Pavilion, which is seasonal. So unfortunately, I didn’t get to see any butterflies. But that’s something to keep an eye out for if you happen to be in the area when it’s open. And a couple of other interesting exhibits that I didn’t get to swing by included the BUGarium (as the name suggests, it’s a section where you can observe bugs) and the Sasebo Japanese Garden.
Admission to the garden is $12.50 for adults, but there’s also a combo admission option that can get you into both the garden and the zoo for $20. This option – which I sadly didn’t take advantage of – however, only works if you go to both places the same day, and it has to be redeemed before noon. (If you’re wondering why, it’s because the zoo and garden both close at around 5 p.m. and they say five hours isn’t enough time to see both places.) Another bonus with the combo admission is that you get unlimited train rides between the zoo and garden. (The train only runs from Tuesday through Sunday, though, because it gets serviced on Mondays.)
The garden is also located right next to the aquarium, which you can easily walk to if that’s something you’re interested in doing.
Albuquerque’s botanical garden is a beautiful place to spend a few hours in and I highly recommend it if you’re in the area, whether or not you’ve already been 🙂