Nature September 06, 2017
The New Mexico Park That Will Make You Feel Like You Walked Into A Fairy Tale
If you have ever wanted to step into a life-sized fairy world, put the Albuquerque BioPark Botanic Garden on your list. Here, formal gardens meet whimsy. While the Children’s Fantasy Garden section of the park makes for fantasy and fun, don’t dismiss the rest of the grounds. Around each curve, a new adventure awaits.
During these uncertain times, please keep safety in mind and consider adding destinations to your bucket list to visit at a later date.
Enter a magical kingdom presided over by a dragon.
A 14-foot high topiary dragon guards the castle at the Children's Fantasy Garden. Opened in 2001, the playful wonderland gives kids (and adults) a larger-than-life view of gardening and plants.
Salute the dragonflies serving as sentinels.
Dragonflies, real and sculpted, are prevalent at the park, as are other multi-legged species. Giant art bugs greet children in their fantasy garden. Meanwhile, a BUGarium building features insects, arachnids, and other crawly creatures.
Marvel at amazing plants.
Plants, of course, are the star of the show. The Albuquerque garden showcases plants from the southwest and other hot, dry climates. Themed mini-gardens are staggered through the grounds and inside the glass conservatory.
Walk in a giant's garden.
Venture down a rabbit hole and get an earthworm's view of a garden. Emerge again to walk through vegetables taller than you!
Water his crops if you can.
Cool off in the spray from the watering can fountain, a consistent favorite in the fantasy garden, especially during the hot, dry days of summer.
Cross waterfalls and lilly ponds.
Ponds and water features are artfully integrated around the garden providing habitat for frogs, turtles, tadpoles and small fish. The Dragonfly Sanctuary Pond features a plethora of water lilies; prime for spotting dragonflies and damselflies as they perch on the floating plants.
Travel to foreign lands.
Surround yourself with plants from the warm climes of the Mediterranean while touring the park's greenhouse conservatory. If the Orient is more your style, visit the Sasebo Japanese Garden. From its viewing decks, take in elements of Japanese architecture and design including a waterfall, koi pond, and the high-arched moon bridge.
Cheer the minstrels on summer nights.
Summer nights (June, July, and August), the garden comes even more alive with music, magic, and hoopla. Bring a picnic and enjoy live music from local and regional musicians. Most garden exhibits are open late too.
Follow a tiny train to a secret village.
A model train travels the village, tunnels and, trestles over the course of its two-loop track in the shaded Train Garden. If that leaves you wanting a ride, catch one of the human-sized (narrow gauge) trains that loop the park or runs between the botanical garden and the neighboring Bio Park.
Watch glowing animals float across the sky.
Watch the garden sparkle during the winter holidays at the River Of Lights. Hundreds of sculptures and millions of lights come together to make Albuquerque's walk-through light show one of the best in the nation.
The ABQ BioPark Botanic Garden is located at 2601 Central Avenue, NW. For hours, admission, and more information to help you plan your visit see Albuquerque’s
official garden website.