Explore more by exploring locally

by Lindsay

#exploremore

I slap this hashtag on 90% of my Instagram posts, most of which are pics from mountain biking, hiking, and things I see on my commute. The tag seems relevant, but what does it really mean to explore?

Internet Dictionary says that to explore is to “travel in or through (an unfamiliar country or area) in order to learn about or familiarize oneself with it.”

In this sense, I’m not exploring much, even though I get out every weekend. I typically take the same trails and visit places I already know I like. And what a shame not to explore more of what’s around me when I live in Albuquerque! This culturally diverse town has vibrant art and music scenes, delicious food, intriguing historic attractions, and seemingly endless opportunities for recreation.

Clockwise from upper left: View of the Sandias from the Rio Grande bosque; Rooftop art in Old Town; A hike in the Sandias; 'The Garden of the Muses' mural by Denise Weaver Ross

An Initiative to Truly Explore More

After two years of visiting the same handful of places in town, I aim to stop my hashtag abuse and am setting out to actually #exploremore by exploring locally.

Each month I’ll check out a new local attraction or event. These mini getaways will primarily include locations, activities, and events that are new to me but will also include experiencing some of my favorite locales in new ways. This month, for example, I adventured in one of my favorite places, the Sandias, but experienced these mountains in a new way by taking a winter hike, which was much more eventful than I anticipated.

By exploring locally, I will experience new things more frequently and without spending much (if any) money. Another benefit: when Ryan and I leave Albuquerque in a couple of years to transition to liveaboard sailing, I might finally be able to move out of a town without saying, “man, I wish I’d taken time to go visit that cute little museum/park/[insert overlooked local attraction here].”

If you have a favorite sight in or near Abq that you think I’d enjoy, comment below so I can check it out!

Click here to read about the first adventure in this series, and wherever you are, happy exploring!

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