Albuquerque's ABQ BioPark features several attractions and events, including an Aquarium, Botanic Garden, Zoo, and Tingley Beach.
Before heading for Amarillo, I only had time for two attractions, so I chose the Garden and Aquarium.
Opened in 1996, the Botanic Garden has grown to 32 acres of exhibits and showcases plants from the American Southwest and worldwide.
The Gardens feature several themed gardens, a 1.5-mile pathway, and the glorious color of this spring day.
I wandered through the natural fairyland past exhibits, including the Mediterranean and Desert Conservatories, a Children's Fantasy Garden, a 1920s farm, and Japanese and formal gardens. The Botanic Garden's BUGarium is one of the country's most elaborate exhibits dedicated to bugs and arthropods.
The Butterflies and Bees exhibit features New Mexico's most notable native pollinators, including 40 species of native butterflies and moths and other pollinators like non-stinging bees and fig beetles.
After spending about an hour and a half exploring, I walked next door to the Aquarium.
Since its opening in 1996, the Aquarium has showcased a kaleidoscope of colorful fish native to various ecosystems throughout the United States.
I followed exhibits portraying the Rio Grande River as it meanders to the Gulf of Mexico. I passed tanks of aquatic animals from the river and gulf, from Cownose Rays and Sand Sharks to Loggerhead Sea Turtles, Porcupine Puffers, and tiny and colorful tropical fish.
A fun exhibit features playful North American River Otters.
All too soon it was time for me to leave. I know this; if the Zoo and Tingley Beach are as fantastic as the Garden and Aquarium are, you are in for a fun time there too.
For more information on visiting all of Albuquerque, click HERE.