A Valentine’s Day vacation in New Mexico offers flavorful Southwestern cuisine, gorgeous sunsets, and dark night skies perfect for stargazing with your lover. Spend your days skiing or exploring New Mexico’s rich history, and live it up at night with the state’s vibrant bar scene and live entertainment. Whether you opt for adventure or relaxation, New Mexico vacation rentals serve as a cozy place to cuddle up each evening and discuss the best moments of your day. Take a look at the top cities and towns in New Mexico for your Valentine’s Day getaway.

cacti silhouette over the milky way
Source: Flickr/Bureau of Land Management

1. Alto

Couples who love to ski are sure to enjoy a Valentine’s Day getaway in Alto. Head to Ski Apache, the southernmost ski area in New Mexico, for a day out on the slopes without the bitter cold of many skiing locations. As you finish up with an after-ski aperitif at the Main Lodge Spirit Bar, enjoy the snowy mountain view through the large windows that surround the room. For evening fun, head to The Quarters for dancing the night away in the arms of your special someone, or try your luck together with Los Vegas-style games of chance at the Inn of the Mountain Gods Resort and Casino. Be sure to stop by Sabor in nearby Ruidoso during your visit to pick up a basket of their famous chocolate-covered strawberries, and Grill Caliente is the place to go for delicious Southwestern cuisine and fabulous wines.

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2. Santa Fe

If you love the arts and find live entertainment essential to a romantic evening out, book a Valentine’s Day vacation rental in Santa Fe. A vacation home in town puts you close to fantastic art galleries, including the Center for Contemporary Arts and Photo-Eye Gallery, which frequently offer special seasonal exhibits sure to spark a romantic mood. For more romance, snuggle up to your loved one with a show at the James A. Little Theatre or historic Lensic Performing Arts Center. The Pink Adobe is where to go in Santa Fe if you enjoy live music along with fine dining, or opt for The Mineshaft Tavern for more casual fare and local brews with a side of live jazz to serenade you.

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3. Taos

From skiing to art to landmark Native sites, Taos offers plenty to fill the days of your Valentine’s getaway. Indulge your love of wine by learning more about New Mexico wineries with a full-day wine tour from Heritage Inspirations. The tour teaches you more about this oldest wine-growing area of the United States and includes many wine tastings plus a gourmet lunch. For a romantic dinner, head to the De La Tierra Restaurant in the El Monte for a scrumptious three-course feast plus a chocolate fountain for dessert, or enjoy local, organic cuisine in a repurposed 1800s church at The Love Apple. An extensive wine and beer list is available to help you find the perfect pairing for your meal.

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4. San Antonio

For a small-town Valentine’s vacation with plenty of Southwest character, book a vacation rental in San Antonio. Take a romantic stroll along the streets of this southern New Mexico village enjoying the classic southwestern architecture and the many bird visitors that winter in the area. Pop into the San Antonio General Store for a piece of their delicious homemade fudge and warm up with lunch at one of the town’s authentic western eateries, including The Owl Bar and the Buckhorn Tavern. For a little more seclusion, make the short drive to the Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge and watch the huge flocks of wintering birds take off from the lake. Morning offers the best birdwatching. Stay in your car for a leisurely drive along the 12-mile Wildlife Drive loop for birdwatching in all weather, or enjoy the fresh air while hiking the 2-mile Marsh Trail loop.

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5. Albuquerque

Plan your Albuquerque Valentine’s day getaway to include the annual Friends & Lovers Balloon Rally, and head to Balloon Fiesta Park to see the beauty of over 100 hot air balloons being launched against the desert sky. Spend a special afternoon touring the elegant mansions of Old Town, and then settle into a romantic dinner at Antiquity Restaurant, serving up fresh seafood, charcoal-grilled steaks, fowl, lamb, and veal plus a special Valentine’s dessert selection in an elegant, romantic setting. Alternatively St. Clair Winery and Bistro offers wine tasting, live music, and fine dining just right for a Valentine’s Day date. Purchase a bottle of your favorite wine to savor later at your Albuquerque vacation rental.

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6. Las Cruces

A Las Cruces Valentine’s Day getaway offers the chance to see all your favorite gemstones in a slightly different light. Reserve tickets to the annual Museum Rocks Gem and Mineral Show, and browse a huge selection of cut and uncut gemstones, perhaps choosing a special gift for that someone special in your life. For a little privacy, take a hike over rugged New Mexico terrain at Dripping Springs Natural Area. The Dripping Springs Trail is where to go in Las Cruces for easy hiking through a variety of terrains with the possibility of wildlife sightings, and plenty of scenic areas for stopping and enjoying the scenery together. Top off your day with an indulgent couple’s massage at The Spa Downtown or Massage Envy.

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7. Red River

Located up in the mountains of northern New Mexico, Red River offers close access to some of the best New Mexico skiing areas plus gorgeous scenery, fabulous shopping, and plenty of quaint romantic shops and eateries ready to make your Valentine’s Day vacation special. For a one-of-a-kind experience, make reservations for a Snow Coach Dinner Tour. Ride in a cozy, heated coach for a tour of the area culminating at an elevation over 10,000 feet for dinner with a view at the Ski Tip Restaurant. Revisit childhood pleasures by snow tubing together in the Red River Ski Area and then enjoying hot chocolate and a slice of homemade pie at the 1950s inspired Yesterday’s Diner.

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