Approximately fifteen miles north of Albuquerque is the town of Bernalillo, New Mexico, set on the Sandia Mountains’ northwest slope. The town is perhaps best known for the Pueblo of Santa Ana and the Santa Ana Casino. Bernalillo is also home to the Coronado Historic Site. With its historic Native American sites, casino, and restaurants, quintessential New Mexican town of Bernalillo has become a popular destination in the greater Albuquerque Metropolitan Area, offering a good escape from the busy city nearby. Certain attractions may be temporarily closed or require advance reservations. Some restaurants are currently offering pickup only. Hours/availability may have changed.

1.Coronado Historic Site, Bernalillo, New Mexico

Coronado Historic Site, Bernalillo, New Mexico
© Kit Leong/

The Tiwa people over seven hundred years ago settled Kuaua Pueblo on the fertile banks of the Rio Grande. Francisco Vásquez de Coronado, the Spanish explorer, camped near what is now known as the Coronado Historic Site in 1540. The pueblo was abandoned during the latter part of the sixteenth century and in 1935, a square kiva was excavated. Visitors today can explore the Coronado Historic Site to learn about the Kuaua Pueblo people and see the reconstructed adobe walls. An interpretive trail meanders through the historic site, guiding visitors to ruins and the reconstructed excavated kiva.

485 Kuaua Rd, Bernalillo, NM 87004, Phone: 505-867-5351

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2.Pueblo of Santa Ana, Bernalillo, New Mexico

Pueblo of Santa Ana, Bernalillo, New Mexico
© Pueblo of Santa Ana Department of Transportation

Located between the cities of Santa Fe and Albuquerque, the Pueblo of Santa Ana lies on more than 70,000 acres, including the Rio Grande Valley of New Mexico. The Pueblo provides opportunities for live entertainment, gaming, outdoor recreation activities, and rich cultural experiences. The people of the Santa Ana Pueblo have occupied their current central New Mexico site since at least the latter part of the 1500s, with the Old Santa Ana Pueblo established during the late 1600s, after being occupied for a time by Spanish rule. This Old Pueblo is usually only open to visit during Feast Days.

Phone: 505-867-3301

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3.El Zocalo, Bernalillo, New Mexico

El Zocalo, Bernalillo, New Mexico
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The historic El Zocalo Plaza Center serves as both an event venue and visitor center, guiding visitors from all over to the many fun and interesting attractions of Sandoval County. Situated along the pre-1937 Route 66 and Interstate 25, El Zocalo, or “the meeting place,” helps travelers find ancestral communities, breathtaking vistas, restaurants serving delicious cuisine, and fascinating archaeological sites. Steeped in history and featuring modern day amenities, the building that houses the center is historic itself, built back in 1874 as a convent and gathering place where people could come to exchange ideas, learn, and meet with others.

264 S Camino Del Pueblo, Bernalillo, NM 87004, Phone: 505-867-8687

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4.Santa Ana Casino, Bernalillo, New Mexico

Santa Ana Casino, Bernalillo, New Mexico
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The Santa Ana Casino in Bernalillo, New Mexico is a Native American casino, located at the Pueblo of Santa Ana. Situated just to the north from Albuquerque, the casino aims to provide an unmatched entertainment experience for guests, offering an array of venues for fun and food, top-notch service, and world-class gaming. Established by the Tamaya, this casino and hotel first opened to the public in 1993 and consists of two championship-style golf courses, the Choices Food Court, and the Juniper Steakhouse. As for gaming options, the casino offers over 1,600 slot machines and more than twenty table games.

54 Jemez Canyon Dam Rd, Bernalillo, NM 87004, Phone: 505-867-0000

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5.Things to Do in Bernalillo, New Mexico: Bad Ass Coffee Company

Things to Do in Bernalillo, New Mexico: Bad Ass Coffee Company
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The Bad Ass Coffee Company started on the Island of Hawaii in 1989 with a mission of sharing premium, American-grown Hawaiian coffee from Ka’u, Kona, Moloka‘i, Maui, Oahu, and Kauai with the coffee lovers of the world. It didn’t take too long for Bad Ass Coffee to reach the mainland United States as visitors to Hawaii started bringing back the coffee, t-shirts, and hats home with them and helped spread the word about their new favorite coffee. Bad Ass Coffee of Hawaii today still serves premium Hawaiian coffees, as well as other international coffees “with a kick.”

965 W, US-550, Bernalillo, NM 87004, Phone: 505-867-1778

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5 Best Things to Do in Bernalillo, New Mexico

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