Albuquerque, located about an hour from Santa Fe, is often overlooked. Like Santa Fe, Albuquerque is dotted by adobe historic buildings (though it's not exclusively an adobe city, and doesn't offer the same level of historic charm), and has boiling summers. Known as the "hot air balloon capital" of the U.S., Albuquerque has numerous museums, centered in Old Town, as well as parks, and is the home of the University of New Mexico -- which means great football games and a lively going-out scene.
Though Albuquerque is spread out over many miles, certain areas -- such as Old Town, Downtown, and Nob Hill -- are walkable. The city is very outdoorsy, and biking and walking are popular pastimes, particularly along trails such as Paseo del Bosque on the Rio Grande. Still, most visitors prefer to have a car, as some of the side trips around Albuquerque can be the highlight of a person's trip.
Most of the hotels in Albuquerque are either chains or small historic inns. Some higher-end hotels are in the area, but the majority are relatively inexpensive.
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