Roswell, New Mexico is a city that has captivated the imagination of people from all around the world. Known for its mysterious and controversial history, Roswell is the perfect destination for those seeking adventure and unique experiences. From exploring the International UFO Museum and Research Center to visiting the beautiful Bottomless Lakes State Park, there are plenty of fun things to do in Roswell.
In this blog, we will explore 23 of the top attractions and activities that you should not miss when visiting this fascinating city in southeastern New Mexico.
1. Roswell McDonald’s
Step into the Roswell McDonald’s to experience its renowned UFO-themed ambiance. Capture moments with life-sized alien and spaceship replicas, and interact with an engaging UFO display narrating the Roswell incident. Throughout the year, enjoy special events like a Halloween costume contest and a holiday light show, making it a unique and fun stopover in Roswell.
2. Head to the Eastern New Mexico State Fair
If you happen to visit Roswell in October, don’t miss the opportunity to attend the annual Eastern New Mexico State Fair. This vibrant event brings together the local community and visitors alike for a week of fun, rides, delicious food, and live entertainment.
From thrilling carnival rides to mouthwatering fair food, the Eastern New Mexico State Fair offers something for everyone. Make sure to check the event schedule for live music performances, livestock shows, and other attractions that will keep you entertained during your visit.
3. Roswell Visitors Center
Before diving into the exploration of Roswell, make sure to stop by the Roswell Visitors Center. This is the perfect place to start your visit and gather all the information you need about the city’s top attractions and events. The center offers a variety of maps, brochures, and useful tips on local attractions and activities.
You can also purchase souvenirs and gifts at the center’s gift shop, ensuring that you have a memento of your time in Roswell. The knowledgeable staff at the visitors center can provide recommendations and answer any questions you may have, making it a great resource for first-time visitors to the city.
4. Roswell UFO Spacewalk
No trip to Roswell is complete without exploring the history of the infamous Roswell incident. The International UFO Museum and Research Center is the perfect place to dive into the world of UFOs and alien encounters.
Take a stroll through the historic downtown area, where you’ll find unique shops and restaurants, all with a UFO twist.
Don’t miss the opportunity to take a guided tour of the city’s UFO history and landmarks, known as the Roswell UFO Spacewalk. This immersive experience will give you a deeper understanding of the Roswell incident and the impact it has had on the city’s culture.
5. Cielo Grande Park
If you’re looking for a serene and picturesque spot in Roswell, Cielo Grande Park is the perfect place to visit. This park offers a wide range of recreational activities, making it ideal for a family outing or a peaceful picnic.
Take a stroll along the walking trails, watch the kids play on the playgrounds, or enjoy a game of soccer or baseball on the sports fields. Cielo Grande Park is also a popular venue for concerts and festivals, so keep an eye out for any upcoming events during your visit.
6. Enchanted Lands Park
For those who love outdoor adventures, Enchanted Lands Park is a must-visit destination in Roswell. This park offers a variety of outdoor activities, including hiking trails, playgrounds, and picnic areas. Immerse yourself in nature as you explore the park’s hiking trails, which wind through scenic landscapes and offer breathtaking views of southeastern New Mexico.
Families with young children will also appreciate the park’s splash pad and miniature train ride. Enchanted Lands Park is the perfect place to spend a sunny day and enjoy the beauty of the great outdoors.
7. Pecos Flavors Winery
Wine enthusiasts should not miss the opportunity to visit the Pecos Flavors Winery in Roswell. This local winery offers a unique wine-tasting experience, where you can sample their selection of New Mexico wines. Learn about the winemaking process and the history of winemaking in the area, and try out their unique blends made with locally sourced grapes.
The winery also offers cheese and charcuterie boards to pair with their wines, allowing visitors to indulge in a delightful culinary experience. Make sure to take a guided tour of the vineyard and explore the beautiful surroundings of the winery.
8. Go Shopping at Roswell Mall
For those who enjoy shopping, the Roswell Mall is the place to be. This mall features a variety of local businesses and boutiques, offering everything from clothing and accessories to unique gifts and souvenirs.
Take your time exploring the different shops and supporting the local businesses that call Roswell home. You never know what hidden gem you might find during your shopping adventure. And if you work up an appetite, the mall also offers a range of dining options, so you can conveniently take a break and refuel before continuing your shopping spree.
9. Go Antiquing at the Roswell Antique Mall
If you have a love for history and vintage treasures, a visit to the Roswell Antique Mall is a must. Located in the city’s historic district, this antique mall is home to a wide variety of antique dealers, offering an extensive collection of unique and rare finds.
Browse through the aisles and discover vintage furniture, retro clothing, collectibles, and much more. Whether you’re a seasoned collector or just enjoy the nostalgia of the past, the Roswell Antique Mall is the perfect place to indulge in a bit of antiquing and uncover hidden treasures.
10. Hotels in Roswell
When it comes to finding accommodation in Roswell, you’ll have plenty of options to choose from. The city offers a range of hotels, ranging from budget-friendly options to luxury accommodations. Many of the hotels provide amenities such as free breakfast, fitness centers, and pools, ensuring that you have a comfortable and enjoyable stay.
If you prefer a more unique lodging experience, consider staying in one of the bed and breakfasts or historic hotels located in downtown Roswell. These accommodations offer a charming and intimate atmosphere, perfect for those seeking a more personalized and memorable stay.
11. International UFO Museum and Research Center
As mentioned earlier, the International UFO Museum and Research Center is a must-visit attraction in Roswell. Step inside and immerse yourself in the world of UFOs and extraterrestrial encounters. The museum features a wide range of exhibits and artifacts related to the infamous Roswell incident, as well as the history of UFO sightings around the world.
Attend lectures and events hosted by the museum, and don’t forget to stop by the museum gift shop for some unique and alien-themed souvenirs. A visit to the International UFO Museum and Research Center is an unforgettable experience that will leave you pondering the mysteries of the universe.
12. Roswell, New Mexico Museums
Roswell is also home to several other museums and art centers that are worth exploring. The Roswell Museum & Art Center showcases a diverse collection of art, cultural artifacts, and historical exhibitions, providing visitors with a deeper understanding of the city’s history and culture.
The Anderson Museum of Contemporary Art, on the other hand, celebrates the works of local and international contemporary artists, offering a unique and thought-provoking art experience. For those interested in local history, the Historical Society for Southeast New Mexico features exhibits and artifacts that delve into the region’s rich and fascinating past.
13. Robert H. Goddard Planetarium
For a different kind of educational experience, head over to the Robert H. Goddard Planetarium. Located within the Roswell Museum and Art Center, the planetarium offers fascinating star shows and educational programs. Immerse yourself in the wonders of the universe as you learn about the solar system, galaxies, and the vast expanse of space.
The planetarium is a great place to spark curiosity and inspire a love for astronomy in visitors of all ages. Whether you’re a seasoned space enthusiast or simply curious about the mysteries of the cosmos, the Robert H. Goddard Planetarium is sure to leave you in awe.
14. Roswell Museum & Art Center
The Roswell Museum & Art Center is a cultural hub in the heart of the city. This historical center showcases a diverse collection of art, historical artifacts, and cultural exhibits, providing visitors with a glimpse into the rich history and cultural heritage of Roswell and the surrounding region.
Explore the museum’s various galleries and discover works by local and national artists, as well as artifacts and memorabilia that tell the story of the city’s past. With its wide range of exhibits and programs, the Roswell Museum & Art Center offers something for every art and history enthusiast.
15. General Douglas L. McBride Military Museum
For history buffs and military enthusiasts, the General Douglas L. McBride Military Museum is a must-visit attraction in Roswell. This museum is dedicated to preserving the history of the New Mexico Military Institute and the contributions of military personnel from the region.
Explore the various exhibits and displays, which showcase military artifacts, uniforms, and memorabilia spanning from the Civil War to the present day. The museum offers a fascinating insight into the military history of the area and is a great place to learn about the bravery and sacrifice of those who served.
16. Bottomless Lakes State Park
If you’re craving some outdoor adventure, look no further than Bottomless Lakes State Park. Located just outside of Roswell in Chaves County, this state park offers a stunning natural landscape and plenty of recreational activities. The park is known for its unique sinkholes, which are up to 90 feet deep and create an otherworldly and picturesque setting.
Explore the park’s hiking trails and take in the breathtaking views of the lakes and surrounding limestone cliffs. During the summer months, visitors can also cool off by swimming in the lake or renting paddle boats to explore the crystal-clear waters. Bottomless Lakes State Park is a true hidden gem in southeastern New Mexico.
17. Bitter Lake National Wildlife Refuge
Nature lovers and wildlife enthusiasts will be delighted by a visit to the Bitter Lake National Wildlife Refuge. Located in Chaves County, this 13,000-acre refuge provides habitat for a diverse range of bird species, including sandhill cranes and snow geese, which can be observed at various times throughout the year. The refuge is also home to other wildlife, such as mule deer and bobcats.
Explore the refuge’s hiking trails and boardwalks, and keep your eyes peeled for the many unique and beautiful creatures that call this wildlife refuge home. Bitter Lake National Wildlife Refuge is a peaceful and serene place to reconnect with nature.
18. Disc Golf Courses in Roswell, NM
If you’re looking for an outdoor activity that combines fun and exercise, why not try your hand at disc golf? Roswell offers two disc golf courses within the city limits, providing enthusiasts and beginners alike with the perfect venue to enjoy this unique sport.
The Spring River Park and Zoo course is a great option for beginners, with its beginner-friendly 9-hole layout. For those seeking a more challenging experience, the Coyote Creek course offers 18 holes with water hazards and a variety of terrain. Disc golf is a great way to enjoy the outdoors and spend quality time with friends and family.
19. Check Out the Street Art and Murals
As you explore the historic district of Roswell, take the time to appreciate the vibrant street art and murals that adorn the city’s buildings and walls. Roswell is home to a growing street art scene, with local and international artists leaving their mark throughout the downtown area.
From colorful and whimsical murals to thought-provoking pieces, the street art in Roswell adds a unique and creative touch to the city’s historic district. Take a self-guided walking or driving tour, and don’t forget to capture some Instagram-worthy photos of the stunning street art you encounter along the way.
20. Tour the Anderson Museum of Contemporary Art
For art lovers, a visit to the Anderson Museum of Contemporary Art is a must. This museum showcases works by local and national contemporary artists, offering visitors a glimpse into the ever-evolving world of contemporary art.
Explore the museum’s various art exhibits, which feature a wide range of mediums and styles, from paintings and sculptures to multimedia installations.
The Anderson Museum of Contemporary Art plays an important role in the local art scene, providing a platform for emerging and established artists alike. A visit to this museum is sure to inspire and spark creativity.
21. Experience the Dragonfly Festival
For a unique and family-friendly experience, make sure to attend the annual Dragonfly Festival, held at the Bitter Lake National Wildlife Refuge. This festival celebrates the diverse species of dragonflies found in the refuge, offering visitors the chance to learn about these fascinating creatures through educational workshops and nature walks.
Get up close and personal with dragonflies, and gain a deeper understanding of their importance in the ecosystem. The Dragonfly Festival is a great opportunity to experience the natural beauty of the Bitter Lake National Wildlife Refuge and engage with the local community.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are some must-see attractions in Roswell, NM?
Some of the must-see attractions in Roswell, NM include the International UFO Museum and Research Center, where you can learn about the infamous Roswell incident and the history of UFO sightings.
Bottomless Lakes State Park is another must-visit destination, offering stunning hiking trails and the opportunity to swim in the crystal-clear lakes. And don’t forget to explore the historic district of downtown Roswell, where you’ll find unique shops, restaurants, and vibrant street art.
Are there any outdoor activities to do in Roswell?
Yes, there are several outdoor activities to enjoy in Roswell. Some popular options include:
hiking the scenic trails of Bottomless Lakes State Park
exploring the diverse wildlife at Bitter Lake National Wildlife Refuge
playing a round of disc golf at one of the city’s courses
enjoying a picnic and outdoor games at one of the city’s parks
cycling or jogging along the Spring River Trail system
Where can I find the best food and drinks in Roswell?
Roswell offers a variety of dining options, ranging from local flavors to international cuisine. Some top places to find delicious food and drinks in Roswell include:
Pecos Flavors Winery, which offers wine tastings and local artisanal products
Main Street, where you’ll find a variety of restaurants and cafes serving both local and international cuisine
Zeppelin’s Pizzeria & Bar, known for its handcrafted pizzas and craft beers
Big D’s Downtown Dive, a popular spot for burgers and comfort food with a local twist
Stellar Coffee Co., is a cozy cafe that serves a variety of coffee drinks and pastries
Are there any unique events or festivals that take place in Roswell?
Roswell hosts several unique events and festivals throughout the year, showcasing the city’s vibrant culture. The annual UFO Festival in July pays homage to the infamous Roswell incident of 1947, while the Chile Cheese Festival in September celebrates local cuisine. Other events include the Jazz Festival, Artisan & Farmer’s Market, and various holiday-themed festivities.
When visiting Roswell, NM, you’ll never run out of fun things to do. From exploring the UFO history at the International UFO Museum and Research Center to enjoying the beautiful nature at Bottomless Lakes State Park, there’s something for everyone.
Don’t forget to check out the local art scene with the Anderson Museum of Contemporary Art and the vibrant street art and murals around the city. And if you’re a food and wine lover, be sure to visit the Roswell Mall for shopping and the Pecos Flavors Winery for a tasting experience.
With so many attractions and events like the Dragonfly Festival, Roswell is a destination that offers endless entertainment and adventure. Plan your trip today and discover the wonders of Roswell, NM.
Ferona Jose is a passionate travel writer and blogger at Travelistia. She has traveled throughout Europe, Asia and the Americas. Her writing focuses on cheap travel destinations, travel experiences, cultural insights, and travel hacks.