TX-NM-CO Road Trip
July 6, 2010 6:55 PM   Subscribe

Houston-Telluride road trip-- best places to stop along the way?

Road trip from Houston to Telluride via San Antonio and Santa Fe with kids 16 and younger. What are some cool, can't miss, family friendly, non tourist-trappy stops along the way? Do you have any restaurant/funky hotel recommendations (or horror stories) to share?

posted by jschu to Travel & Transportation (5 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
The Very Large Array about an hour to the west of Socorro NM is pretty cool(this is the radio telescope in the movie contact)
The Tramway in Albuquerque is cool, but expensive and touristy
Sandia Crest is also pretty cool in Albuequerque, you drive around the back of Sandia (it means Watermelon and is named for the color it turns at sunset) and then up the mountain, about an hour one way to the top from the Big I (where i-40 and i-25 meet)
I don't much care for Santa Fe as the whole town is kinda touristy
You can turn off the interstate north of albuquerque and go through Jemez and Cuba and on up to see backwoods new mexico
or go through Los Alamos (where they built the first atomic bomb) and then taos (which is also pretty touristy) on your way to telluride.
Carlsbad Caverns in southeastern new mexico is pretty cool.
There is a lot to see on your way
posted by bartonlong at 7:06 PM on July 6, 2010

We took a similar trip and I remember enjoying the Route 66 Auto Museum in Santa Rosa, NM and the McDonald Observatory in the Davis Mountains in TX. Also, the adults liked (but the kid didn't) the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum in Santa Fe.
posted by zinfandel at 7:24 PM on July 6, 2010

Not sure of the route you're taking, but I would do I-25 to I-70 and take I-70 through the mountains. The possibilities are endless.

Before you enter the mountains:
Pearl St. Mall in Boulder, Colorado: Boulder Bookstore. See what's going on at the Boulder Theater (possibly an E-Town taping)
Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Golden, CO. A concert can be pretty grand there on a summer night, but they also do movies there. I saw Casablanca there one warm summer evening -- amazing
Celestial Seasoning's tea factory (NEAT factory tour)
Oh, man, I was going to recommend the Jolly Rancher factory in Lakewood/Arvada, but it is no more [sniff]

Once you're in the mountains:
I'll leave that to another MeFite :)
posted by Lukenlogs at 8:10 PM on July 6, 2010

Don't miss The Shed for food in Santa Fe- if you can get by the garlic bread it's delicious new mexican food. Show up early like 4ish for dinner if you can't get a reservation. Also, I enjoyed seeing the oldest church in America.

I don't love Santa Fe but the food is fantastic.
posted by jz at 9:31 PM on July 6, 2010

Mesa Verde in SW Colorado is right on your way - and is a fascinating and beautiful day trip (or two). The nearby town of Cortez is worth an overnight stay, and has a great brewpub (Main St. Brewery - their flagship product: Mesa Cerveza) and a diner (Pippo's Coffee Bar) with the best huevos rancheros outside NM.
If you can, enter Telluride via Lizard Head pass - spectacular views await!
Oh, and Lukenlogs links are all to the front range - way out of your way from Houston to Telluride! (great links, but still)
posted by dbmcd at 11:37 AM on July 7, 2010

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