Welcome to New Mexico & Beyond!

Hi! I’m Mark, the New Mexico Travel Guy, and this is my blog New Mexico & Beyond. This blog documents my travels within the great State of New Mexico, and a few places beyond. My current focus is on visiting EVERY town in my home state of New Mexico.  But rather than check off a list of places as quickly as possible, I intend to savor it by writing one blog...

End of the road at Sandia Crest

Birding Sandia Crest in Albuquerque’s East Mountains: Searching for rosy-finches, three-toed woodpeckers, and other alpine birds

Driving up a winding mountain road to an elevation of 10,678 feet, in winter, is not something you’d think many people would be interested in doing, unless it involved skiing, snowboarding, or snowshoeing. But never underestimate the fanaticism of birders. Many birders will drive countless hours and brave all kinds of hostile weather conditions and discomfort...

Welcome to White Oaks, New Mexico

White Oaks, New Mexico: The annual Miner’s Day Festival and a visit to the “No Scum Allowed Saloon”

After reading there was going to be a Miner’s Day festival in a ghost town in New Mexico that I’d never heard of, I knew I had to put that on my calendar. So, on a warm August afternoon, I found myself arriving in White Oaks, New Mexico to explore the historic town, spend a Friday night at the No Scum Allowed Saloon, and enjoy the 3rd Annual White Oaks...

Sunset photo from City of Rocks

Faywood, New Mexico: Outstanding camping at the City of Rocks and letting it all hang out at Faywood Hot Springs

Faywood is one of the many towns in New Mexico that most people have never heard of. After all, this town of 20 – 40 people isn’t exactly a booming metropolis. But if you mention “City of Rocks State Park”, you may get a few affirmative head nods, particularly from people who like camping. Many people consider City of Rocks to be one of the...

An amazing setting where we were surrounded by a nighttime wildlife chorus

Searching for Snakes in the Peruvian Amazon Jungle: A Trip to the Otorongo Amazon River Lodge

After a full-day of adventures in Iquitos (Peru), my son and I woke up the next morning with the realization that the most adventurous part of our trip was just beginning. We were about to face four days and three nights in the Peruvian Amazon jungle, with the goal of seeing lots of birds (my goal) and snakes (my son’s goal … unfortunately). We’d...

Medicinal bark, roots, and concoctions

Iquitos, Peru: Tuk-Tuks, The Jungle Market of Belén, and Amazing Animal Encounters

Iquitos, Peru was definitely a major change of scene compared to the relatively clean, laid-back streets of Puerto Ayora, Santa Cruz in the Galapagos. What follows are some of the memorable experiences that my son and I had in Iquitos, in case you’re planning to visit this gateway to the Amazon. Table of ContentsThe long journey from Galapagos to Iquitos...