Las Vegas National Wildlife Refuge

Las Vegas National Wildlife Refuge
credit: National Park Service

When you plan your trip to New Mexico, you can count on plenty of adventures for the entire family. You can choose to paddle along a picturesque lake or to negotiate the white waters of a rushing river. Take a ride through the Old West on a historic train. Go camping and get away from it all.

There are also family friendly ways to enjoy the state without spending money.

Carlsbad Caverns National Park has several fee-free days throughout the year, including

Martin Luther King, Jr. day, National Park Week and Veterans Day weekend. Take a self-guided tour of these glorious caves. Note: kids 15 and under are always free.

Capulín Volcano National Monument, in Des Moines, has the same fee wavier days. The extinct volcanic cone (inactive now for 10,000 years) has steep, challenging hiking trails; don’t bring a stroller.

Las Vegas National Wildlife Refuge – no, not that Las Vegas The New Mexico Las Vegas is home to a wildlife refuge with nature trails and scenic overlooks. Bring binoculars to see migrating birds of prey up close. The refuge is always free.

The New Mexico History Museum has free days for New Mexico residents, and is free for everyone on Fridays, from 5-8pm. The museum, in Santa Fe, has exhibits on the heritage of the Southwest.