Socorro Travel Guide

  • Off The Beaten Path
    by toonsarah
  • Wheel of History
    Wheel of History
    by toonsarah
  • Socorro
    by toonsarah

Socorro Things to Do

  • San Miguel Church

    The first mission was built here between 1615 and 1626, but during the Pueblo uprising of 1680, the local Piros and the Spanish settlers fled south. It wasn’t until 1816, that a small group of Spaniards resettled Socorro and rebuilt the church, completing it in 1821. Unfortunately when we visited in September 2011 the church was closed for what is...

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  • Jumbo

    About half a block south of the Plaza in a quiet street near the County Hall is this odd-looking memorial. This is a fragment from Jumbo, a rather cute name for a rather sinister object. Jumbo was the huge steel vessel designed to contain the explosion of the first ever nuclear device, which was detonated at the Trinity Site 35 miles southeast of...

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  • Around the Plaza

    If you pass by Socorro on I25, or even if you leave the Interstate and drive through on the main thoroughfare, California Street, you could be forgiven for thinking that there is nothing to the town apart from chain motels, fast food restaurants, supermarkets, shopping plazas and gas stations. Certainly you are unlikely to realise from this...

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  • Knights of Pythias

    The tall building with the advertisement painted on the side was built in the 1880's as the Knights of Pythias Hall. The building next door was built around the same time. Some of the extra touches used in constructing the building show the benefit derived from the mining boom and the railroad.

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  • Loma Cinema

    This building was once the Price/Lowenstein Mercantile but with the advent of motion pictures it became the Loma Cinema.

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  • Val Verde Hotel

    The Manzanares Historic District extends east of the highway towards where the railroad depot was. The beautiful Val Verde Hotel was built in 1919 using the Spanish Mission Revival style of architecture and was considered a very luxurious hotel. It has a very nice courtyard out front. It is no longer in business but is historically and...

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  • Torres Block

    The Torres Block was built between 1881 and 1886. It housed a number of stores in small areas separated by walls. The building has since been combined into one large store.

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  • Fortune Property

    The Fortune Property is the oldest existing building south of Kittrel Park. Mr. Fortune, an Irish immigrant, was stationed here in the army in 1850 and decided to settle here.

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  • Abeytia Block

    This two story brick building was built in 1880. It housed a drugstore that was once the oldest operating drugstore in the state, and was founded by a relative of Conrad Hilton. It also held a Masonic Lodge. Today it houses the Chamber of Commerce.

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  • Capitol Bar

    This is the only bar still in existence from the mining boom days. The bar was opened by Giovanni Biavaschi to sell wine made from grapes he grew locally.

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  • Socorro Firehouse

    The Socorro Fire Department was formed in 1897 and the firehouse was built on this spot in 1907. I love this architecture.

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  • Garcia House

    Next to the Baca Home is the home of Juan Nepomuceno Garcia, husband of the woman who started the Garcia Opera House. This home is a good example of the New Mexican Territorial style of architecture.

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  • JJ Baca House

    This home was built around 1870 for Juan Jose Baca, grandson of one of the founders of Socorro. Baca maintained a business in his home and the two story part of the home was a general merchandise store. The home has 18 inch thick walls, a small courtyard and an elaborate balcony on the second floor.

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  • Garcia Opera House

    Probably the most famous building in Socorro after the mission is the Garcia Opera House. It is located a short distance from Kittrel Park and was built by Francesca Garcia in 1884 using money left to her by her late husband. The opera house was built with curved walls 34 inches in width to improve the strength and the acoustics of the building. It...

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  • Wheel of History

    A very interesting and artistic display near Heritage Park is the Socorro Wheel of History. It was made in 1998 and depicts the history of the town from 1598 to modern day.

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Socorro Hotels

See all 11 Hotels in Socorro
  • Holiday Inn Express

    1040 North California, Socorro, New Mexico, 87801, United States

    Satisfaction: Excellent

    Good for: Couples

  • Holiday Inn Express Socorro

    We chose Socorro as an overnight stop primarily for its convenience, being a reasonable driving...

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  • Econo Lodge Socorro

    713 N California St, Socorro, NM 87801

    Satisfaction: Average

    Good for: Solo

Socorro Restaurants

  • Great Dining With Beer

    Socorro Springs is probably THE place to go in town to eat. They offer various pizza, calzone, pasta dishes and a salmon dish along with a great 12 ounce rib-eye cooked over a pecan wood fire. There are also soups, salads, burgers and sandwiches if you are less hungry. They serve a wide variety of beers, ales and lagers. Decor is nice and classy....

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  • Take the Kids!

    From the outside, this restaurant appeared a little upscale- at least, for us to be taking our kids. We stayed in the hotel next door on New Years Eve. We were pleasantly surprised that we were quite comfortable eating here with our family. The prices were very reasonable, the beer and food was delicious! The kids absolutely LOVED their Pizza! The...

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  • Pizza and beer – what more do you want?

    I had read good reviews of the Socorro Springs Brewery here on VT and elsewhere, and as the dining options in Socorro are fairly limited (unless you want fast food chains) it seemed the natural place to head for on our one evening here. And while I have to say that while we had both expected a space with the character more of a bar than of a family...

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  • Some of the Best Beer in the Southwest

    You wouldn't expect a little town like Socorro, New Mexico to have a world-class brewery rivaling the great ones of the Pacific Northwest, however, Socorro Springs certainly holds its own. It's very sparsely distributed, so you've more than likely never heard of it. However, one beer and you'll certainly remember it.Okay, so there's also food. And...

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  • GREAT GREEN CHILI

    Local New Mexican. Not too fancy but open, clean and bright with original murals on the walls depicting local history. Service was inconsistent. Faijtas were tasty. The special steak was like an old tire.Green chili so good it made up for any thing else. Would go there again and try other dishes. GREEN CHILI - FANTASTICGOOD HEAT, NOT TOURISTY

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  • Too little, too late

    Unless you are Rip VanWinkle and don't mind waiting 2 hours for a mediocre meal, this isn't the place for you. The waiter with the Daliesque mustache was friendly enough but after a forty minute wait he informed us that the the Lasagna plate cracked under the fire. Another order would would be along shortly. The pizza order was a no show. Forty...

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  • Great Roadfood!

    El Camino is a must for any road food enthusiast. The menu boasts a wide array of New Mexican dishes. The wait staff was friendly and the portions were generous. What's more, in addition to the restaurant, there's a full bar/lounge area just to the left when you enter. It's secluded enough so the restaurant maintains its family friendly ambience,...

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  • The green chile cheeseburger competition

    This little cafe rocketed into nationwide prominence in 2005 when a story in GQ Magazine dubbed the Buckhorn Burger #7 on its list of "100 burgers to eat before you die." It's humbler and funkier than the Owl Cafe across the way. Compared to the Owl Cafe's, I thought that the burger was equally good, and the onion rings were better (the standard...

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  • Pizza, Brews, and More

    This restaurant is pleasant, friendly, extremely popular with locals as well as visitors, and a good value for the price. It started out as a small brew pub/pizzeria in a historic adobe near the Plaza, but in 2005 it moved to a beautiful new building on the main drag and now offers an expanded menu. The salads are good: generous servings, they...

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Socorro Local Customs

  • ephobius's Profile Photo

    by ephobius Written Oct 4, 2002

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Do you want to see what the sign reads? Just click.


    ¿Quieres ver qué dice el letrero? Sólo haz clic.

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Socorro What to Pack

  • by CCW Updated Feb 1, 2005

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: A favorite activity for birders is to go out to the Bosque del Apache at dawn to watch the snow geese get up in the morning (it's much more exciting than it sounds!). You can drive in and sit in your car, but sooner or later you'll have to get out -- and it can be REALLY cold. I wore a fleece hat, 2 jackets, a turtleneck, heavy corduroy pants, long underwear, wool gloves, wool socks, and fleece-lined boots -- and I STILL nearly froze! But it's usually dry during the winter, although snow is possible, so I've never needed rain gear.

    Photo Equipment: Telephoto lenses advised -- most of the birds are rather blase about human beings, and there's even a bird blind in one area; but if you want to get eyeball-to-eyeball with a bald eagle, you'll need a good lens.

    Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: Bring binoculars, for the same reasons you want telephoto lenses.

    There are a couple of short hiking trails off the main tour loop, and you don't need boots for those (I've done them in sandals!).

    There's also a longer trail that runs up a mountain, which I haven't taken; but, given the distance and the elevation gain, I'd advise footwear with sturdy soles and good ankle support.

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Socorro Off The Beaten Path

  • The Very Large Array

    The Very Large Array, or VLA as it is commonly known, is an amazing sight, and one not to be missed if you are anywhere near this part of New Mexico, in my opinion! The huge radio telescopes, 27 of them, rise majestically out of the huge, otherwise almost empty, Plains of San Augustin like visitors from another world altogether. But these are not...

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  • Magdalena

    If you are going to drive to the VLA (see next tip) from Socorro (and I strongly recommend that you do), then you will pass through Magdalena. But please don’t just pass through – stop and explore for a short while at least. There’s nothing in particular to see but the handful of old buildings scattered along the highway are a photographer’s...

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  • Bosque del Apache National Wildlife...

    A little to the south of Socorro lies one of the most interesting bird-watching venue in New Mexico, considered worth a visit even if you're not a "serious" birder – which neither of us is. For a short while in late October/early November it becomes a focus for birding enthusiasts as tens of thousands of birds, including sandhill cranes, geese and...

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Socorro Favorites

  • Well by clicking on this map...

    Well by clicking on this map it gets big enough to at least read some place names. The different colors on the map represent different ownership. Green for national forest, blue for state land, Gold is federal, and white is private. Most of NM is public land either federal or state owned.

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  • Near By

    Just south of Socorro at exit 139 on I-25 is the turn off to Bosque Del Apache and San Antonio. San Antonio is famous for the Owl Café---Which is famous for greasy hamburgers. I do not recommend them, but all the nostalgia freaks seem to choke them down and claim they are good. Skip the owl and drive to Socorro for Lota Burger is my advice. Bosque...

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  • GO TO THE RADIOTELESCOPES!!...

    GO TO THE RADIOTELESCOPES!! You can't miss them! VE A LOS RADIOTELESCOPIOS!! No te los puedes perder! 'Contact' is a movie with Jodie Foster and James Woods which was filmed here. If you have seen it, you know what this things can do. 'Contacto' es una película con Jodie Foster y James Woods que fue filmada aquí. Si la has visto, sabes lo que...

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Explore Deeper into Socorro
Heritage Park
Things to Do
Jumbo
Things to Do
Isidro Baca Park
Things to Do
Kittrel Park
Things to Do
Old San Miguel Mission
Things to Do
Socorro Heritage & Visitors Center
Things to Do
Socorro County Courthouse
Things to Do
Magdalena
Off The Beaten Path
VLA - VERY Large Array
Things to Do
New Mexico Tech
Things to Do
Very Large Array (VLA)
Things to Do
The archetypal green chile cheeseburger
Restaurants
Best green chile sauce
Restaurants
The search for life.
Off The Beaten Path
San Miguel Mission
Things to Do
The Plaza.
Things to Do
Admire the VLA! Informative...
Things to Do
My successful self portrait. ...
Off The Beaten Path
The Very Large Aray is about...
Things to Do
10eke's Things to Do Tip
Things to Do
Salinas Pueblo Missions...
Off The Beaten Path
Map of Socorro

View all Socorro hotels