The Charming New Mexico Trading Post That Has Been Around For Decades
Nowadays, quirky pit stops seem to be fewer and farther between, and that’s a shame because these roadside attractions are an integral part of the road trip experience. So, if you’re hankering for a wonderfully kitschy – and historical – break on your travels through New Mexico, head to the Akela Flats Travel Center.
Located off I-10, between Las Cruces and Deming, this wayside store was originally called the Akela Flats Trading Post.
Members of the Bowlin family already had experience owning and running trading posts and, in 1946, they constructed a trio of them along a stretch of road that later became the interstate. These were the Continental Divide Trading Post…
…the Wagon Wheel…
…And Akela Flats.
As you can see, the facade of Akela Flats has changed over the years. However, the charm of this gas station and its attached store has endured and perhaps even been enhanced with time.
The mock up of an Old West town is particularly appealing. An entire retro town is represented here, including a courthouse…
…And a pharmacy.
It’s the ultimate nostalgic photo op that the whole family can enjoy.
Inside, you’ll find snacks like green chile beef jerky, fudge, or freshly baked cookies to give you energy for the road.
Browse through the selection of souvenirs, which includes items like turquoise embellished photo frames…
…T-shirts, and jewelry.
Amid the broad selection of merchandise, you’ll find plenty of Native American crafts.
That’s hardly surprising since the Bowlins family has focused on the work of Navajo and Zuni artisans since 1912, when Claude M. Bowlin first established trading relationships with Native Americans in the Southwest.
This trading post provides a nostalgic blast from the past. Even after many decades in business, you’ll still want to hit the brakes for the Akela Flats Travel Center.
This spot is located off exit 102 of I-10. The exact address is 21535 Frontage Road SE, Deming.
Have you visited this fun store? What’s your favorite roadside attraction in New Mexico?
Here are some other
cool and kooky pit stops you may enjoy in the Land of Enchantment.
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