Monday, November 18, 2013

Albuquerque Holidays 2013: Spanish Market, River of Lights and Luminarias

What a surprise. The beloved Winter Spanish Market has moved from Santa Fe to Albuquerque.  And that is just one event that will make you glad you spent some holiday time in Albuquerque.

In the Southwest the holiday traditions are not to be missed. New Mexico’s largest city observes the holiday season with notable style and festivities. Take part in the holiday celebration with century-old traditions and numerous events that offer that special holiday experience for everyone. From the glowing luminarias on rooftops to the smell of posolè and tamales cooking to uplifting local music and theater productions, there is much to enjoy this season. 

With many great deals, travel packages and city events, it’s a great time to visit and celebrate the season in Albuquerque. Enjoy a weekend excursion and take advantage of holiday hotel packages and deals.  

Check out for information on holiday shopping, seasonal culinary specialties and festive events around Albuquerque.

Holiday Highlights & Events
November 29-30: 25th Annual Winter Spanish Market
The Spanish Colonial Arts Society features the artists of the oldest and largest Spanish market in the U.S., now in Albuquerque! The market will showcase the work of 100 New Mexico Hispanic artists both adult and youth.
November 29-December 29: Cliff's Magical Christmas
Come experience the magic of the holiday season at Cliff’s Amusement Park. We’ve transformed into a dazzling display of lights, music, holiday food, exciting rides and, of course, Santa Claus.
Nov 30-January 5: River of Lights
Enjoy the dazzling displays of animals, fantastical creatures and more while strolling through New Mexico’s largest walk-through light show at the ABQ BioPark Botanic Gardens.
Dec 7: Nob Hill Shop & Stroll with Twinkle Light Parade
From noon to midnight, enjoy shopping, food specials, family entertainment, photos with Santa during the Shop & Stroll plus the Twinkle Light Parade through the Nob Hill neighborhood.
Dec 6: Old Town Holiday Stroll
Shopping, live entertainment, dancers, luminarias, family activities, Santa Claus on hand and the lighting of the giant Christmas tree at Plaza Don Luis. 
Dec 24: Luminaria Tour
Visitors enjoy the walk-through luminaria display throughout Historic Old Town, but you can also choose to let ABQ Ride take you through this and other festively-adorned hot spots decked out for the holidays.

Special Shows & Performances

November 30: Albuquerque Civic Chorus Holiday Concert
The South Broadway Cultural Center is proud to bring you a marvelous holiday performance featuring the Albuquerque Civic Chorus. Over 70 of Albuquerque's top vocal performers will delight you with their performance of Saint-Saens' "Christmas Oratorio" and Britten's "Ceremony of Carols.”
December 7: Christmas in New Mexico
Baila! Baila! Dance Academy presents Christmas in New Mexico. Dancers perform in an annual Christmas production. 
Dec 13: Mariachi Christmas                                               
Listen to thrilling horns and take in whirling dancers as they share the colorful celebrations of a Mariachi Christmas at Popejoy Hall. 
December 20-22: The Nutcracker Ballet in the Land of Enchantment
The Nutcracker Ballet, a beloved holiday tradition comes to life in the late 1800s in territorial New Mexico. Resplendent with New Mexico heritage and traditions while maintaining the classical grace of its origins

Holiday Travel Packages and Recipes
Albuquerque hotels, restaurants and shops warmly welcome holiday visitors and offer enticing specials. For an updated list of coupons, deals, packages and a complete list of events, visit

One of the best parts of the holiday celebrations is the festive cuisine, which traditionally includes dishes like posole, tamales, biscochitos and more. Try a taste of New Mexico this holiday season at home with these favorite local holiday recipes.