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Area Attractions

Planning an Albuquerque vacation? Think of the high desert region that encompasses Corrales, Albuquerque, and Santa Fe, New Mexico. Nestled beneath the Sandia Mountains in the Rio Grande Valley, the Corrales/Albuquerque/Rio Rancho area is loaded with exciting Albuquerque area attractions and opportunities for enthusiasts of all interests, whether it's culture, history, the arts, or nature and outdoor activities. All of it is embraced in wonderful weather, incredible scenery, and warm southwest hospitality.

The Chocolate Turtle Bed and Breakfast is conveniently located in the heart of central New Mexico. Over and over we hear our guests say "we had no idea there is so much to see and do here," "we wish we had planned to stay longer," or "we ran out of time." Never has a guest said, "we stayed too long."

Since we cannot begin to describe in this space all there is to see and do close to the Chocolate Turtle, we have provided a sampling of what a Corrales/Albuquerque, NM vacation has to offer. Links to websites have been provided where available.

Tacos and Salsa


From casual fare to fine dining, our Albuquerque area restaurants offer guests a wide variety of menus and atmospheres from which to choose.

That is certainly true in the Village of Corrales, where the zesty flavors of the Southwest blend with American and continental cuisines to provide a dining experience for your taste buds that is second to none. With well over 300 days of sunshine a year and the dry, mild, high desert climate, outdoor dining is a way of life with many of the Corrales restaurants on their wonderful outdoor patios.

New Mexico chile, as much a staple here as bread is in many other parts of the world, adds wonderful flavor to any dish, along with widely varying degrees of spiciness. There are both green and red chiles, which actually are the same pepper harvested at different times. Each has its own distinctive taste. It is said that New Mexico is the only state with an official state question⁠—"Red or Green?" Say "Christmas" and you will get both.

In Corrales, there are several very fine restaurants with interesting and varied menus. For lunch, you may want to consider Hannah & Nate's for traditional lunch fare (salads and sandwiches) interspersed with New Mexican seasonings, or for an authentic New Mexican lunch in a historic setting, Perea's is a must.

Restaurants that are open for lunch and dinner include:

  • The Indigo Crow Café⁠—excellent contemporary American cuisine in a casual, cozy, yet elegant setting (one of our all-time favorites anywhere).
  • The Corrales Bistro Brewery⁠—offering a great selection of microbrewery beers to go along with a selection of interesting salads, soups, and sandwiches (try the El Pancho de Greenblatt), in a neighborhood bistro environment.
  • Village Pizza—serving old favorites (some with a NM touch) to gourmet pizzas for over 20 years.
  • The Flying Star⁠—from Huevos Rancheros to Chicken Pot Pie and everything in between (including desserts to die for) enjoy a varied menu and contemporary eclectic decor.

Whether it's Old Town, downtown, Nob Hill, or outlying areas, the greater Albuquerque area has an abundance of outstanding restaurants that offer a range of cuisines that reflect the city's diversity. Too numerous to mention them all by name, restaurant guides such as the Albuquerque Convention and Visitors Bureau Web site are a good resource.

turquoise jewelry display


Art, jewelry, and pottery, southwestern or contemporary in design, made by local and regional artisans and craftsmen, are available in shops, galleries, and working studios in the Village of Corrales. Antique shops, boutiques, and upscale consignment shops are also part of the Corrales shopping scene.

Whether you want to buy something for yourself or as a gift, chances are you can find it here. As with the restaurants, space does not permit a complete listing of all of the shops, galleries, and studios. Several shopping experiences that are truly unique to Corrales are the Growers Market, the Frontier Mart, Hanselmann Pottery, and Quilts Ole. The Growers Market is held on Wednesdays and Sundays from late April to October.

In addition to locally grown foods, including many organic items, an assortment of soaps, cheeses, and decorative items may also be purchased. The Frontier Mart is not your typical convenience store. Although they carry the usual staples, the Frontier Mart also has an outstanding wine selection and a wonderful assortment of New Mexico gourmet gifts.

Hanselmann Pottery makes and sells beautiful handcrafted stoneware. You can shop their display room 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. Quilts Ole has been recognized as one of the best quilt shops in the country. If you want to expand your horizon, there are plenty of opportunities for Albuquerque shopping, especially in Old Town's specialty shops and galleries and the fashionable boutiques in Nob Hill.

Golfer Swinging


Gentle breezes, warm sunshine, beautiful cloudless blue skies, and incredible vistas⁠—that's just the beginning of your New Mexico golf vacation experience! Now imagine world-class golf courses, reasonable fees, and virtually year-round golfing weather, and you've got the ultimate golf destination! Whether you are a beginner or an experienced scratch golfer, there is a course to fit your level of play. The best part⁠—Chocolate Turtle is centrally located to the golfing action.

Golfers from around the country are discovering New Mexico golf courses, and the Albuquerque area golf courses continue to receive acclaim from the golfing world.

A small sampling of the accolades follows. Be sure to check the various course websites for a complete listing of their recognitions.

  • Paa-Ko Ridge Golf Club, a product of architect Ken Dye, is one of only 17 courses in the country (the only one in the Southwest) to earn a "5-star rating" from the Golf Digest, putting it in the exclusive company with the likes of Pinehurst and Pebble Beach.
  • Twin Warriors Golf Club, a Gary Pank designed course, with its spectacular Sandia Mountain views, is a "4 ½ star" Golf Digest rating.
  • Sandia Golf Club, designed by Scott Miller and situated at the base of the Sandia Mountain, was named one of the "Top Ten New Courses You Can Play" by Golf Magazine when it opened in 2005.
  • The University of New Mexico South Championship Course, long recognized as one of the outstanding courses in the Southwest and home to numerous NCAA tournaments and championships, is one of the best golf values anywhere.

Acclaimed courses, wonderful weather, fantastic views, reasonable fees, and the Chocolate Turtle add up to a great golf vacation, whether it's your regular foursome or you're a golfing couple looking for a new experience.

Hot Air Ballooning

Hot Air Ballooning

If you've ever dreamed of soaring into the sky like an eagle, then hot air ballooning is the sport for you, Albuquerque, NM is the place for you, the Albuquerque Balloon Festival is the event for you, and the Chocolate Turtle is the B&B for you. The 2019 festival runs from October 5th through the 13th.

Whether floating serenely above the landscape viewing the desert wildflowers and catching glimpses of jackrabbits and coyotes, or doing a "splash and dash" in the Rio Grande River, the experience of hot air ballooning is truly unique. Albuquerque has been named the "Ballooning Capital of the World" and for good reason. The generally temperate climate along with the atmospheric conditions (different wind directions at various altitudes⁠—known as the "Albuquerque Box"⁠—makes it the perfect environment to fly year-round. Rare is the day when you do not see at least one and often many brightly colored balloons dotting the early morning sky.

There are monthly sponsored ballooning events, and many pilots fly on their own at any opportunity. In addition, there are professional balloon ride companies with whom you can contract for a ride.

Our Up, Up, and Away Package includes a balloon ride.

The crown jewel of ballooning is the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta beginning the first full weekend in October every year. For nine days each October, over 500 balloonists from around the world gather at Balloon Fiesta Park to participate in mass ascensions, flying events, evening balloon glows, and general good fun and camaraderie. The best part is, as a spectator, you are right on the launch field, not sitting in some grandstand at a distance from the action. In fact, you are more of a participant than a spectator as you stroll among the festively colored balloons as they inflate and take off.

The Chocolate Turtle is one of the closest bed and breakfasts to Fiesta Park. We have a real insight into the festivities, including getting to the Park, parking, the best times to be there to maximize your experience, and even which vendor has the best breakfast burritos. We would be delighted to have you stay at The Turtle and be your Balloon Fiesta "experts." You need to reserve your guestroom early because we usually sell out quickly.

To learn about the beginnings and history of ballooning, a visit to the Anderson-Abruzzo International Balloon Museum at Balloon Fiesta Park is a must.