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Southwest, New Mexico

New Mexico's Southwest Region, home to the first designated wilderness in the country, offers boundless opportunities to enjoy the state's natural landscape and exhilarating history. The Gila Wilderness, established in 1924, influenced notable individuals such as Also Leopold - the conservationist whose efforts helped secure the Gila Forest wilderness area as a protected space - and courageous Apache chief Geronimo. Visitors journey in a land of cacti, junipers, pine, aspens, black bears, mountain lions, elk, and wild turkeys while hiking, camping, birding or rafting in the Gila Mountains.

New Mexico's second largest city lies in the Southwest Region. Las Cruces (Spanish for "the crosses"), so named because it was the site of several cross-topped graves of an 1830s caravan of travelers ambushed by Apache Indians, still harbors the ghosts of many historic figures and events. Las Cruces Sheriff Pat Garrett captured infamous outlaw Billy the Kid and held him in Mesilla's jailhouse. You can still see the site of this jail when you visit Las Cruses and the Mesilla Plaza for some of the region's finest shopping and dining.

Explore Southwest

New Mexico Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum

47-acre farm, antique-equipment displays, livestock raised as New Mexicans did centuries ago, 300

Las Cruces, NM Museums

Box Car Museum

Local history, artifats of Wild West, mining, cattle drives, circa 1885-1930

Magdalena, NM Museums


Quebradas Backcountry Byway

24 miles, showcases wildlife, rock formations, colored cliffs, arroyos. Two access areas: 1) Go 2 miles north of Socoro on I-25

Socorro, NM Scenic Drives



Our Lady at the Foot of the Cross Shrine

Reproduction of Michelangelo's Pieta, dedicated in 1875

Las Cruces, NM Monuments

Florida Mountains

Gym Peak at 7,106 feet, Florida Peak at 7,295 feet. Seasonal quail / ibex hunts, by permit, applications due early April. 15

Deming, NM Natural Attractions

Geronimo Springs Museum

Pottery collection in Da-Whe Room (including Mimbres), Sierra County history in Wilson, Ralph Edwards, Heritage, Apache rooms. Local history, minerals from prehistoric times to present, miner'

Truth or Consequences, NM Museums

Faywood Hot Springs

Public/private mineral pools, massage, cabins, tent/

Silver City, NM Natural Attractions

Nutcracker Suite Pecan Farms

Antique car collection, Sat. BBQ, covered-wagon rides, gift /

Anthony, NM Agriculture


Explore Southwest