We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Options other than the tram?

Fort Lauderdale
Level Contributor
290 posts
30 reviews
Save Topic
Options other than the tram?

"Take the tram ride to the top of Sandia Crest at 10,500 feet for a fab view of the city and desert beyond."

Question. Can you drive to the top instead of taking the tram? For those of us who are claustrophobic, a 15 minutes plus enclosed crowded tram ride can be torture. Is there another option to get to the top? And, if so, how long a drive is it?

Redmond, WA
Level Contributor
130 posts
Save Reply
1. Re: Options other than the tram?

Yes, you can drive. You'll take I-40 east through the canyon. It's been so long since I lived there I can't remember where you turn off, but I believe it is Highway 14 North. From there signs will lead you to the crest. I would allow 45 minutes to an hour to drive to the top of the Sandias. The road is curvy, so the speed limits should be followed.

Beaverton, OR
Level Contributor
373 posts
77 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Options other than the tram?

The drive takes you to a different place than the tram but the view is every bit as nice. We lived in Alb. for a couple of years and loved to go to the crest to get the best green chile cheeseburgers from the gift shop/restaurant. The tram goes to a restaurant and ski area. We would take the back way to the road to the top (past the Sandia Man Cave) because it was more convenient for us though. I think we only did I-40 twice.

Winnipeg, Canada
Level Contributor
226 posts
3 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Options other than the tram?

We really enjoyed the drive versus the tram. It took us a little longer because we stopped a lot to take pictures. Remember it's a lot cooler up there, so be prepared with a sweater or jacket.

Does anyone know if the little restaurant in the gift shop is still open? We were there a few years ago and had the best chicken/green chile quesedilla ever.

New Mexico
Level Contributor
463 posts
Save Reply
4. Re: Options other than the tram?

The little resturant is still open and so is the gift shop. It was freezing last time we were up there so go prepared with warm clothing.

Albuquerque, New...
Level Contributor
136 posts
19 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Options other than the tram?

If you feel real adventurous you might want to hike the La Luz trail. It is breath-taking. It usually is pretty quick to the top too, but you have to be in decent shape and be willing to hike down or take the tram down--which you mentioned not wanting to do.