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Travel from Taos to Flagstaff

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Princeton, New...
posts: 37
reviews: 1
Travel from Taos to Flagstaff

I am planning on traveling by car from Taos to Flagstaff end of May. Has anyone done this drive? IIf so, what route is recommended? Is there anywhere in between of interest to stop and break up the drive. I would like to leave Taos late morning and get to Flagstaff by early evening.

West Yellowstone...
Destination Expert
for Flagstaff, West Yellowstone
posts: 2,071
reviews: 57
1. Re: Travel from Taos to Flagstaff

This would be your best route: http://goo.gl/maps/hGwCP

I have lived in both Albuquerque and Flagstaff, so I'm familiar with this route.

There are lots of interesting spots along the way, but if you don't plan to leave before late morning, and hoping to arrive by early evening, you really don't have a lot of time to add in stops other than bathroom breaks and a meal. The drive, in total, is going to take you close to 7 hours at a minimum.

You will probably be ready for lunch by the time you hit Albuquerque. There are a lot of authentic New Mexican food options in town, some of which may be accessible from the highway. That is, unless you've already had your fill of New Mexican cuisine by that point. Once you narrow down what you think you might like to eat for lunch and how much time you want to spend at it, you might want to post on the Albuquerque forum asking what's close to the highway that is recommended. It's been a number of years since I lived there and I haven't kept up with the changing restaurant scene.

As far as interesting spots, I like the section of Route 66 in Albuquerque, although it involves remaining in your car and would take you out of the way. Gallup is an interesting town, as well. After the NM/AZ border, you could do a side-trip through Petrified Forest National Park (entry fee applies) and get off the highway at one end, re-entering near Holbrook. There is a nicely-restored Harvey House on the property with a bit of Route 66 history to take in. Alternatively, you could stop for the La Posada Hotel in Winslow, AZ for a lovingly-restored Harvey House Hotel that is currently in operation and also serves at the Winslow Amtrak Station. There is a corner dedicated to "standin' on the corner in Winslow, Arizona..." as well, if that strikes your fancy.

I'd probably suggest picking 1 or 2 stops and to otherwise keep moving, or arrange an earlier departure if you want to see more (including a spin through Santa Fe if you won't hit while visiting Taos).

Santa Fe, New Mexico
Destination Expert
for Santa Fe, Mesa Verde National Park, Boulder, New Mexico
posts: 18,680
reviews: 38
2. Re: Travel from Taos to Flagstaff

In Albuquerque for lunch stop in Old Town, just off I40 westbound. Little Anitas, Seasons, Church St Cafe and more. Also get a feel for a different plaza area. I like Abq's plaza better than both Taos and Santa Fe (and I live here in Santa Fe, lol)

If you want to keep on driving, then a stop for lunch in Gallup is about 4 hours or so from Taos. Earls, Jerry's, urbanspoon.com/n/…Gallup-restaurants

tucson az
Destination Expert
for Tucson, Arizona, Northern Mexico
posts: 12,887
reviews: 61
3. Re: Travel from Taos to Flagstaff

Are you going to the Grand Canyon? If so, you want to get lodging in the park not in Flagstaff. Depending on location, lodging in Flagstaff is 60-90 minutes from GCNP and shouldn't be driven at night.

grandcanyonlodges.com

Princeton, New...
posts: 37
reviews: 1
4. Re: Travel from Taos to Flagstaff

Thanks. I will be flying in to ABQ and staying in ABQ one night, Sante Fe two nights, Taos one night and then heading to Flagstaff. Are there any specific pueblos worth spending the time to see? Also, I heard the drive from Flagstaff to Sedona is awesome. Is it an easy drive or a steep, slow drive?

tucson az
Destination Expert
for Tucson, Arizona, Northern Mexico
posts: 12,887
reviews: 61
5. Re: Travel from Taos to Flagstaff

Acoma Pueblo will be off the I-40 nears Grants NM. Northeast of Flagstaff is the prehistoric Wupatki Pueblo at Wupatki NM.

Yes, the drive from Flagstaff to Sedona on Hwy 89A is beautiful. There is a section at the top with curves and switchbacks descending into the canyon but nothing to worry about. The rest has gentle curves.

West Yellowstone...
Destination Expert
for Flagstaff, West Yellowstone
posts: 2,071
reviews: 57
6. Re: Travel from Taos to Flagstaff

Is your schedule set? If not, you might consider breaking it up with driving straight to Taos from Albuquerque, then stopping at Santa Fe for your two nights following Taos. It would not make much difference on your ABQ-Taos day to drive a little further, but more time for stops along the way (I second the recommendation for Acoma Pueblo, purported to be the oldest continuously inhabited pueblo) on the way to Flagstaff and shaving off the driving time by starting from SF instead of Taos would make this much more doable. http://sccc.acomaskycity.org/overview

p.s. Don't miss Taos Pueblo since you'll be right there! Just be sure to review the etiquette of visiting any pueblo before you embark on your tour and remember that these are the sites of peoples' homes, not just a tourist attraction.

Edited: 4:56 pm, March 25, 2013
tucson az
Destination Expert
for Tucson, Arizona, Northern Mexico
posts: 12,887
reviews: 61
7. Re: Travel from Taos to Flagstaff

One of the reasons that I like to recommend to people to Visit the Acoma people is that they actually live in their pueblo. Many of the people at Taos do not.

Princeton, New...
posts: 37
reviews: 1
8. Re: Travel from Taos to Flagstaff

Thanks for the good recommendation. I think I will do just that -- go straight to Taos from ABQ then head down to Santa Fe.

West Yellowstone...
Destination Expert
for Flagstaff, West Yellowstone
posts: 2,071
reviews: 57
9. Re: Travel from Taos to Flagstaff

I'm glad this will work out for you.

You don't have an abundance of time in any one of these locations, but if you like art (of which you will find plenty in abundance around NM), you may want to also check out the Shidoni Foundry: http://www.shidoni.com/html/home.asp

We never watched a pour, but enjoyed strolling through the sculpture gardens on occasion.

The drive between Santa Fe and Taos is just beautiful. Enjoy!

10. Re: Travel from Taos to Flagstaff

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