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I was warned about Gallup...

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I was warned about Gallup...

That there are a lot of drunks around town, and that we should be very careful driving. Are there parts of town in particular we should avoid? We were thinking of staying at the El Rancho.

Don't mean to be negative, but I'd like to know what to look out for.


1. Re: I was warned about Gallup...

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Sun City West
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for Rosarito
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2. Re: I was warned about Gallup...

Gallup is not dangerous. It does have a probem with drunks, but certainly not enough to provide a driving hazard. Well over 90% of all the Native American art that is sold in the U.S. passes through Gallup----it is beyond any doubt THE place to shop. In all stores, all prices are 1/2 what is shown on the piece, and that's the starting place for negotiations. You could make some extraordinary purchases. It is definitely better than ANY other place you will be for buying any Native American produce.

I wouldn't stay at El Rancho; it is true it is old and historic,....but in my opinion, you'll be happier at some of the regular chains: Holiday Inn, Comfort Inn, etc. Gallup is a tiny town. It doesn't matter where you stay in terms of convenience.

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3. Re: I was warned about Gallup...

Thanks for the advise... we'll be driving into Gallup in the evening, but not very late. I've read that Earls is a good place for breakfast. As far as a motel, I've read mixed reviews on the place... I'm all for a fun quirky place, but if it's not very clean, or if drunks are hassling people in the parking lot as I've read in one review, then well... maybe not. :-/

Uden, The...
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4. Re: I was warned about Gallup...

We are from Europe and we stayed two nights in Gallup. Also we were warned from drunken drivers. Even the Lonely Planet mentioned this "problem".

Well, we did not see a drunk at all

while we were downtown on a friday and a saterdaynight in september. Maybe we were just lucky!

You can stay at the El Rancho Hotel for sure

but to dine there is a must. We had a Doris Day special!!

However we stayed at the BW Red Rock Inn in

a large balconyroom at the backside of the hotel. No car or train noises at all at

$ 90,-- (tax included).

Good Luck!

Rio Rancho
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5. Re: I was warned about Gallup...

We have driven through there, but never stayed the night. Even after a long day of driving, we go the extra miles to Grants, NM at least. There are drunks all over the place, and they will harass you too.

We stopped at a Cracker Barrel to eat once, and a couple drunks staggered up to my open door (UHaul) while I was feeding my baby. My husband was on the other side, and made them leave right away.

I have also seen drunks passed out in fast food restaurants there! Of all places.

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6. Re: I was warned about Gallup...

As someone who has never been within cooee of new mexico am I right in assuming the situation would be similar to country towns in australia where there is a significant indigenous population.

Gallup, NM
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7. Re: I was warned about Gallup...

As a twenty-two year resident of Gallup it really is a great town. Yes, there used to be many drunks seen around town, but they've been cleaned up a lot. There's still some. While they may "solicit" from individuals, they are not a violent type for the most part, and will usually, leave with a "God bless you."

I don't know much about the El Rancho as a motel, but it is a "must visit" place and the eating there is great.

Don't pass up Gallup, it's a great place to visit and to live.

New Mexico
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8. Re: I was warned about Gallup...

I'm so saddened to read the tone of many of these posts. I've been warned about New York City; San Francisco; and, yes, even our Nation's Capital, Washington DC. Travel is travel. Be smart and know where you are.

Gallup is one of the most delightful towns I've ever visited in my 46 years! People are friendly and the enchanting magic of New Mexico is contageous. I imagine that there was a time where the strong, proud, giving Native American chatted with friends about the dangers of the white man and the white man's evil spirits.

There do happen to be some folks who drink too much. Not as many as in Pioneer Square, Seattle Washington. Not as many as in the French Quarter of New Orleans. Certainly not as many as the obnoxious party kids in Key West.

Visit Gallup. Visit during the InterTribal Indian Ceremonial (end of July/early Aug). Open yourself to the richness and beauty of this nation's first peoples!

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9. Re: I was warned about Gallup...

This reponse is for swtraveler and Jacko primarily.

I've been dismayed by the underlying racial component of many of these posts and have had some wonderful trips to Gallup with zero problems.

Jacko, I would think the situation is very similar to your average locality in England, Ireland, Scotland and any other Anglo-Saxon dominant area where the local, perhaps downtrodden people drink too much to escape from their problems of chronic unemployment, disenfranchisement and lack of socio-political sensitivity.

I'm not sure the biggest problems in your country are 100% the fault of the indigenous population.

People are people anywhere you go, travel can be risky even in your own neck of the woods if you don't use your street smarts. Tahitians are known as peaceful, proud, relaxed people but would you leave your wallet full of money on the curb and expect it to still be there in an hour?

Zuni, New Mexico
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10. Re: I was warned about Gallup...

As a Native American who lives close to Gallup, my community is constantly being visited by tourists from all around the world, most of whom are thankfully aware that they are seeing us living our real lives which means that you will occasionally see something not so beautiful as what your tour guides laid out on paper. The same situations might well be seen in your own hometowns. For some reason the kidnapping, murders, robberies in exotic vacation spots like Aruba are apparently not as horrible as a panhandler or drunk person. Please realize that we do not have prior notice to "hide the drunks" or put on our best clothes in anticipation of visitors, and although I sound pretty frustrated in this post, I want to welcome all of you who would like to learn more about Gallup and the surrounding reservations to come see us, but please be conscious of the fact that you are seeing us living real life, and to be courteous and respectful of customs and visitor etiquette.