TravelQuest in New Mexico
For more than 25 years, TravelQuest has planned and operated unusual travel adventures for discerning journeyers from all corners of the globe. Our specialties are eclipse tours and astronomy-themed excursions. New Mexico’s spectacular desert landscapes and lively arts communities provide the backdrop to the state’s official nickname: “Land of Enchantment.” This is why we’ve chosen this spectacular corner of the Southwest for our 10-day trip that features the almost five-minute annular solar eclipse on October 14, 2023.
One of our most intriguing stops during our 2023 solar eclipse trip to New Mexico is Spaceport America. This is the world’s first purpose-built commercial spaceport and is home to Virgin Galactic. Their iconic Gateway to Space building is a signature feature of Spaceport America. We hope to have a guided tour of the facility, but that depends on the status of their ongoing operations. Nearby is White Sands National Monument, one of the world’s amazing natural wonders. And in the same area is Trinity Site, where the first atomic bomb was tested on July 16, 1945.
With TravelQuest’s focus on astronomy, a visit to the Very Large Array (VLA), one of the world’s premier radio observatories, is a priority. The observatory comprises 27 radio dishes, either clustered together in the center of what was once an ancient sea, or spread out across the Plains of San Agustin along their connecting railroad tracks to a span of 22.6 miles (36.4 kilometers). We’ll also drop in on Apache Point Observatory, home of several large telescopes, including the Astrophysical Research Consortium’s 3.5-meter scope. Nearby is the National Solar Observatory at Sacramento Peak. We’ll visit during the day, stay in the nearby village of Cloudcroft, and later have a nighttime, “after-hours” deep-sky observing session. And for an out-of-this-world experience, we’ll stop at the UFO Museum in Roswell. Whether or not you believe, it’s fun learning about the infamous “Roswell Incident.” Besides, where else but in the museum’s otherworldly gift shop can you find an alien bobblehead for your desk?
Perhaps you’re keen for even more Southwestern scenery and star-filled skies. If so, TravelQuest offers an eight-day add-on trip to Arizona (for additional cost). This optional post-eclipse tour includes visits to the Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff, Arizona, the extraordinary Barring Meteor Crater, Kitt Peak National Observatory, and, of course, the Grand Canyon.
If this astronomy-themed excursion, capped off by an almost five-minute annular solar eclipse, sounds intriguing, why not contact TravelQuest to learn more about our October 2023 journey to the Land of Enchantment.