Located on the Turquoise Trail, between Albuquerque and Santa Fe, Madrid is an impossibly hip little artists commune born in the resurrected ruins of a former gold and coal mining town.
A highly recommended day trip. Only 30 minutes away from Albuquerque on the Turquoise Trail scenic drive. Quirky, funky and creative… This is where New Mexico’s hippies grow old but never really grow up. The enduring hippie lifestyle and aesthetic brings a funky vibe to the former ghost town Madrid, making it a truly one-of-a-kind day trip quite unlike anything you will find in either Santa Fe or Albuquerque. It is quirky, funky and endlessly creative.
Madrid does not have the wealth of Santa Fe, nor the suburban lifestyle of Albuquerque. It is what it is, unpretentious and authentic. As such, Madrid (pronounced MAD-drid) is one of the most approachable tourist attractions you will ever find. It is also a great place for inexpensive trinkets and art, a quick lunch, and a fascinating stroll through a collection of visual oddities and absurdities that can only be seen here.
Click on the thumbnails below for a few samples of Madrid artwork & gift shop offerings.
The scenic and historic Turquoise Trail (click for website) (NM 14) literally takes you right through the heart of Madrid’s main street. It is about 35 minutes outside of Albuquerque en route to Santa Fe. Simply pull off the road, park and start strolling.
Madrid is a visual feast for the eyes with its curious mix of seemingly ramshackle (but not really) buildings, art galleries, and unusual public art. It is also an architectural departure from both Santa Fe and New Mexico. The buildings look like something out of an Appalachian mountain town, with very little of the traditional Adobe architecture so common elsewhere in New Mexico. Do yourself a favor. Visit Madrid. Just go! – Photos by Don Peterson