20 Best Things to Do in Farmington, NM

Farmington, NM
Colin D. Young / shutterstock.com

Farmington is a city in New Mexico that lies at the junction of the San Juan and the Animas River.

Just like its location, it’s also the intersection of many things.

You’ll find man and nature, the past and the present, and adventure and tranquility crossing paths for a unique experience.

Whether to try out the craft beers or explore their wilderness, you’ll find no shortage of things to do.

More importantly, this is where you can go off the well-worn path and head toward the unknown.

It can seem scary at first, but trying new things is a big part of any trip to a new place, and this city is no different.

Here are the best things to do in Farmington, NM:

Go Birdwatching at the Riverside Nature Center

Trail at Riverside Nature Center
vagabond54 / Shutterstock.com

You can find the Riverside Nature Center in Animas Park.

It's a beautiful destination for people interested in nature and its conservation.

The place is open from Thursday to Saturday.

You can do many activities that’ll make you appreciate outdoor living and the beautiful things you can find in nature.

Mallard ducks at Riverside Nature Center
Jennifer White-Miller / Shutterstock.com

You can go bird-watching from the facility’s large windows that overlook the wetlands.

See how different animals live and interact with each other in the wild.

The wetlands are a home and refuge for wild animals, giving them a safe place away from dangers, human or otherwise.

The center also hosts guided tours, so schedule your trip accordingly if you want to join and learn more about the environment.

The waters of Riverside Nature Center
Jennifer White-Miller / Shutterstock.com

Try Your Luck at the SunRay Park & Casino

A few games of chance never hurt anyone, and the opportunity to win big is impossible to ignore.

At SunRay Park and Casino, try your luck and see how far you can go.

There are numerous slot machines there you can try out.

Once you’re done, stop by their in-house restaurant and try the delectable dishes they serve there.

However, the horse races are the star of the show, setting this place apart from other casinos.

They host live racing events that feature thoroughbreds and quarters.

Look up their statistics and pick your favorite to get the win you’re looking for.

If you want to live life on the edge, trust your instincts to lead you to victory.

Spend the Day at Brookside Park

Brookside Park will give you endless hours of family fun and adventure.

There are two playgrounds, making it the perfect place to go if you have children.

They can run around and burn some energy off, play games on their own, and have the time of their lives.

Likewise, they can create fun activities for themselves; maybe they’ll even make a few new friends along the way.

There’s also a skate park for older teenagers or people who are just passionate about skating.

Show off your sick moves or learn from the pros while you’re there.

The park also offers plenty of things to do for adults.

There are basketball and tennis court for sports enthusiasts.

In the summer, catch one of the Farmington Freedom Days at the park, where you can watch concerts and car shows hosted by the local community.

Try the Beer at the Three Rivers Brewery

In downtown Farmington, you’ll find the Three Rivers Brewery: the gem and heart of the area.

Built in 1912, the brewery building was once the home of a drugstore and a newspaper publisher.

In 1997, they opened the Three Rivers Brewery and made their own mark on the area.

The place offers several award-winning beers on tap, so you can be sure that you’re getting quality drinks.

Various specialty beers are available at different times of the year, giving customers a pleasant surprise when they visit.

You can also schedule a tour of their distillery if you want to learn how they make beer.

After that, end your trip with a beer tasting.

Wander the Lions Wilderness Park

Farmington boasts a vast and expansive natural environment.

There’s no reason not to take advantage while you’re there.

Explore as many areas as you can and go through every crevice you can go through.

The Lions Wilderness Park can satisfy any traveler’s desire for adventure and fun outdoor activities.

It has tables, benches, and grills for people who only want to savor the peace of the great outdoors.

If you want a little more adventure in your life, you can also go boulder hopping or follow a mountainous bike trail.

They’ll surely give you the adrenaline rush you’re looking for.

Place Your Bets at the Northern Edge Casino

In 2012, the Northern Edge Casino first opened its doors.

Since then, it has taken Farmington gaming to a whole new level.

Even before you enter, you’ll see a gorgeous building filled with unique architectural details that you’d want to admire.

You’ll see traditional Navajo murals and decor throughout, giving you a fun and luxurious experience.

Once inside, you’ll play fantastic games that you’ll undoubtedly enjoy.

Experience top-tier entertainment to keep you happy and engaged.

See the Sights of the B-Square Ranch

The B-Square Ranch sits on 12,000 acres of land and serves as a private wildlife refuge, working farm, ranch, and the home of two different museums: the Museum of Fish and Wildlife and the Electromechanical Museum.

The former houses one of the largest collections, with more than 2000 different specimens.

The Fish and Wildlife collection has items from five continents and is an excellent start if you want to learn more about natural history.

On the other hand, the Electromechanical Museum was first opened to the public in 1990 and is made up of a collection that took 40 years to gather.

It contains a wide variety of antique electronics, including radios, agricultural equipment, and pieces used for communication.

The last part of the area is their ranch and experimental farm, where they demonstrate the benefits of different ways of using the land.

While there, you’ll see various things in action, such as land reclamation, river rechanneling, and producing wildlife habitats.

Visit the Farmington Museum

Exterior of the Farmington Museum
Henryk Sadura / Shutterstock.com

Local museums are always great destinations, especially for people who want to learn more about the place they’re visiting.

The Farmington Museum is one such place, hosting a wide variety of exhibits throughout the year that any visitor will learn a lot from.

Some of their exhibits include displays about the area’s culture and art shows.

If you're lucky, you can also catch some lectures, performances, workshops, special demonstrations, and traveling exhibits.

No matter what you see, it’ll be a great learning experience that you’ll remember for years.

Bring Your Child to the E3 Children's Museum & Science Center

There’s a lot to learn and so many new things to see on every vacation.

Who better to take advantage of these opportunities than wide-eyed young children eager to interact with everything around them?

Bring your child to the E3 Children’s Museum and Science Center.

Nurture their love and fascination with the world around them that’ll take them far in the future.

Let them see light shows, learn about magnetism, and view various art pieces.

Their exhibits are most appropriate for children five or younger, so bring them there if you think they’ll enjoy the magic of science.

Stop by the Defensive Sites of Dinétah

The landscape of any area changes over the years as the natural environment shifts and the people move on elsewhere.

Today, what's left are remnants of how they lived and how they interacted with the land.

The Pueblitos of the Dinetah were constructed in the 17th and 18th centuries and are listed for shelter, cooking, and defensive purposes.

You’ll usually find these structures on large outcrops or boulders to give their former residents the best vantage point.

According to archeological evidence, these sites were almost certainly built by the Navajo (Dine).

Nowadays, the site is filled with abandoned ruins.

That doesn’t mean you can't learn anything from visiting and that you can’t imagine the lives of people back then.

Grab a Meal at Si Señor Restaurant

Si Senor offers an authentic Mexican experience when it comes to cuisine.

Their food is genuinely delicious and impossible to ignore, so give the place a try if you’re ever in the area.

Try their Mexican-style steaks, and you’ll learn what heaven on earth tastes like.

Savor the new and exciting flavors from dishes you’ve never had before.

One of their best dishes is the Si Senor Steak, a boneless ribeye served with guacamole, and two rolled cheese enchiladas.

Go Golfing at the Piñon Hills Golf Course

Golf is a gentleman’s sport and a great game to try if you want to experience true class and elegance.

You can find the Piñon Hills Golf Course at Sunrise Parkway, and it’s a great place to start if you want to experience the true magic of the sport.

It’s not that hard to get started.

Book a tee time and head over there on your scheduled date.

There are a lot of techniques and strategies to do well in this sport.

Don’t worry too much if you’re a beginner; after all, your biggest critic is yourself.

Follow the Trails of Berg Park

The Berg Park and its trails are a great starting point if you want to explore Farmington's wilderness and natural environments.

You’ll find picnic tables and a wide variety of facilities to keep visitors comfortable and happy.

However, you can also go through the trails and continue exploring the area.

Likewise, you’ll find trailside interpretations of plants and animals that many visitors find interesting.

As they say, you can learn a lot about any place from the land it stands on.

Use  your visit to Berg Park to get to know the new place you’ve visited.

Bask in the Sun at Lake Farmington

A visit to Farmington wouldn’t be complete without a visit to Lake Farmington.

Set aside some time for a day filled with beach day fun and fishing activities.

Go there and sit with your traveling companions on the shore.

Admire the beauty of the lake and share a meal with the people you care about the most.

You can also enjoy the water on a non-motorized watercraft and maybe even do some fishing.

Go Off-Road Driving in the Glade Run Recreation Area

Here’s a top destinations for the true adrenaline junkies and people looking for adventure and excitement.

The Glade Run Recreational Area is filled with sandy arroyos, slick rocks, and rolling terrains, making it the perfect spot for some off-road driving.

There are more than 15,000 acres you can work with, so there’ll be a lot of adventures to find.

One thing you can do is rock crawling, an extreme form of off-road driving.

You'll drive your vehicle through the most challenging terrain you can find and see if you can make it.

It's an actual test of skill and patience.

You’ll drive past boulders, slickrock, foothills, and so many more.

Prepare for everything and then some,

Likewise, you should be able to think on your feet.

The activity is about patience and strategies, so take it easy and ensure you’re ready for whatever.

Go for an Off-Road Adventure at The Dunes Vehicle Recreation Area

Within the southern edge of Farmington, The Dunes Vehicle Recreation Area is the ideal spot for some off-road adventure.

This 800-acre property offers a variety of topographical features.

From rolling slopes to challenging sand arroyo bottoms, this place makes for a good practice and race area for riders.

Follow the several marked trails formed by countless rides and vehicles over the years.

This recreational space is open year-round, so you've got time to explore and visit when you come by Farmington.

You can get to The Dunes Vehicle Recreation Area via La Plata Highway.

View the Mounted Animals at the Bolack Museum of Fish and Wildlife

Interested in taxidermy?

You might like dropping by the Bolack Museum of Fish and Wildlife.

A part of the B-Square Ranch, this museum came to life because of the Bolack family.

It aims to pay tribute to Tom Bolack and contains the largest private collection of mounted specimens in the entire country.

The total number of animals amounts to more than 2,500.

Impressive, right?

What's more, tours around the place are free to the public.

You can reach the Bolack Museum of Fish and Wildlife along Bloomfield Highway.

Practice Your Mountain Biking Skills at Hood Mesa Trail

Get ready for a scenic ride across Farmington's mountain bike routes.

Hood Mesa Trail is only one of several double-track dirt roads within the area.

Spanning 64 kilometers, this route is a considerably steady climb and not too crowded.

The route has an elevation of 285 feet.

So, get your mountain bike gear ready and start your trek along the dirt tracks of this common route.

Hood Mesa Trail starts on Pinion Boulevard and ends on Road Apple Trails.

Play a Few Rounds of Golf at San Juan Country Club

Founded in 1952, San Juan Country Club goes a long way for your Farmington golfing experience.

This 18-hole golf course offers practice greens and a moderate driving range.

The golf facility is the venue for the San Juan Open, a major annual competition held every September.

Its points of pride include well-maintained fairways and exemplary practice ranges.

So, whether you're a beginner, novice, or expert golfer, you have a place on this golf course.

Its accompanying clubhouse is the ideal facility for parties.

The facility also has an aquatics center with two kinds of pools and a fitness facility with a sports bar.

If you're not into golf, the place has a racquetball court for your and your entire family's entertainment.

Get going to Country Club Drive to reach San Juan Country Club.

View the Display of Juried Art at the Annual Totah Festival & Indian Market

The Totah Festival & Indian Market is a Farmington tradition every Labor Day.

Started in 1988, this festival aims to bring Native American art to the forefront of the community.

Included in this event are a juried art show and exhibition and an auction show for indigenous rugs.

Anticipate a fashion show, too!

Make sure you add the Totah Festival & Indian Market to your list of must-experience events.

This event takes place within downtown Farmington.

Final Thoughts

The magic of every trip is the memories you make while you’re there.

With the vast and open tranquil lands of Farmington and the unique culture you’ll experience, it’s hard to forget anything from your visit.

So book your trip today, and give this place the chance it deserves.

Spotted a mistake, have some feedback, or just want to chat with our editorial team? Click here to get in touch.
Find out more about Travel Lens and read our editorial guidelines here.