New Mexico

11 Awesomely Unique Places to Stay in New Mexico

by Kristen Arendt
Updated August 10, 2022

Photo: Hotel El Rancho

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Home to a diverse landscape and a rich cultural heritage, New Mexico offers plenty to see, do, and explore if you’re looking for a vacation steeped in history, art, nature, and, of course, green chile.

From outstanding opportunities for year-round outdoor recreation to amazing historic sites and quirky cultural tidbits, the Land of Enchantment offers something for everyone, no matter how you like to vacation.

Book a stay at one of these 11 unique spots in New Mexico for a one-of-a-kind overnight stop that is sure to make your vacation even more memorable.

Related Read: 8 Secluded New Mexico Cabins for a Relaxing Getaway

1. Historic Canyon Road Adobe

unique places to stay nm - historic adobe
Photo: VRBO

Why you should stay: Location, location, location — and a fabulous private hot tub.

  • Location: Santa Fe
  • Sleeps: 6
  • Minimum stay: 3 nights
  • Rates from: $411/night

Hit up this historic adobe home for a cool spot in the heart of New Mexico’s capital city. Enjoy the best of both worlds — whether you stay in or go out, you’ll love the amenities of this beautiful casita. In addition to the interior, which has plenty of southwestern charm, the outdoor courtyard is the real showstopper with its sunny spaces and cedar hot tub.

When you aren’t enjoying your favorite beverage in the backyard, hit up the amazing art galleries and restaurants of Canyon Road right across the street. And if you want to get further into downtown, take a spin on the complimentary beach cruisers to pedal around and see the sites.

“Beautiful spacious property and the outdoor space is amazing. Perfect location…walking distance from the town square and the fantastic restaurants on Canyon Road.”

Krystyn D.
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Related Read: 11 Magnificent Hikes Near Santa Fe, New Mexico

2. Hotel Luna Mystica

unique places to stay nm - vintage trailer hotel
Photo: Hotel Luna Mystica

Why you should stay: Escape the modern grind at a vintage trailer hotel with prime Milky Way viewing.

  • Location: Taos
  • Sleeps: 2-8
  • Minimum stay: 1 night
  • Rates from: $110/night

Have a hankering for the good ol’ days and a slower pace of living? Head to the vintage trailer park of Hotel Luna Mystica for a one-of-a-kind getaway. Each trailer is fully remodeled and equipped with its own deck, bathroom, and kitchen facilities. From Airstreams to Scouts to Spartan Manors, each trailer has been beautifully finished out — and given its own cute name.

The location is pretty stellar too. From your vantage point on the vast Taos Mesa, you can enjoy outstanding mountain views during the day and remarkable stargazing at night. And you’re only eight miles outside of the town of Taos. In-town attractions include shopping, art galleries, restaurants, and cultural sites, giving you plenty to explore.

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Related Read: 11 Best & Most Unique Airbnb Rentals in New Mexico

3. Khaya Jabula Ranch Yurt

unique places to stay nm - yurt
Photo: Hipcamp

Why you should stay: Get back to nature and enjoy some remarkable stargazing.

  • Location: Edgewood
  • Sleeps: 2
  • Minimum stay: 1 night
  • Rates from: $140/night

Come ready to unwind and unplug at this peaceful yurt. Perfect for couples or solo travelers, the cozy space is equipped with all the basics. And the location is stellar, too. The views are especially outstanding at sunrise or sunset. And the sky becomes a tapestry of stars at night.

From the yurt, you can access several short walking trails on the ranch’s 32 acres. Or if you want to head to town, drive west over the mountains for an afternoon out in Alburquerque, a 40-minute drive away. If you want to go hiking or take a scenic drive, the nearby Sandia and Manzano Mountains make a great playground to explore.

“This site is an AMAZING experience. Quiet, private, intimate, surrounded by nature, and beautiful.”

Chelsea T., Brooklyn, NY
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Related Read: 12 Enchantingly Romantic Getaways in New Mexico

4. The Modern Taos House

unique places to stay nm - modern taos house
Photo: Airbnb

Why you should stay: Soak in the sun at a gorgeous off-the-grid home with views for days.

  • Location: El Prado
  • Sleeps: 6
  • Minimum stay: 2 nights
  • Rates from: $247/night

Located near the Rio Grande Gorge, the Modern Taos Home is a contemporary and luxurious stay that dishes up delightful accommodations along with vast vistas. When you’re not enjoying the panoramic views of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains across the sagebrush dotted plain, you can soak in the tranquility of this off-the-grid home.

You are a short drive from Taos. Enjoy an afternoon of art and fine dining or visit the Taos Pueblo for the day. Taos Ski Valley and the Rio Grande Gorge offer up a variety of outdoor adventures including hiking, biking, rafting, and skiing.

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Related Read: 10 Relaxing Cabin Rentals Near Taos, New Mexico

5. Sage Carpenter ’71

unique places to stay nm - school bus
Photo: Hipcamp

Why you should stay: Minimalist glamping in a majestic setting.

  • Location: Taos
  • Sleeps: 2
  • Minimum stay: 2 nights
  • Rates from: $80/night

Located on the Taos Mesa Animal Sanctuary, this renovated 1971 school bus is parked on 10 tranquil acres near the Rio Grande River Gorge. With dark night skies and panoramic views of the mountains, this is glamping at its finest. From the outside, the Sage Carpenter might look like a school bus abandoned in a field, but step inside and you’ll quickly be charmed by its intentional simplicity.

You can head out hiking right from the back door. Or take a short drive to the river, hot springs, or mountains to fill your vacation with as many adventures as you’d like. Or you can just sit at the back of the bus and appreciate that view.

“The 360-degree sunsets and sunrises and the stars at night are amazing. The amenities are comfortable, and it’s nice to experience what off-grid living is like.”

Nicole L.
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Related Read: 12 Best Spots to See the Fall Colors in New Mexico

6. Spectacular Earthship

unique places to stay nm - earthship
Photo: VRBO

Why you should stay: Sustainable luxury living with a 5-star feel and out-of-this-world views.

  • Location: Taos
  • Sleeps: 2
  • Minimum stay: 2 nights
  • Rates from: $253/night

For those unfamiliar with Earthships, these sustainable, passive solar homes are made of natural and recycled materials. This ingenious off-the-grid home has solar power, water harvesting, an integrated greenhouse and expansive glass windows offering outstanding views of the area. Located in the world-famous Earthship Biotecture, this “global model” Earthship showcases the best features of sustainable design.

Inside, you’ll find modern amenities—though you’ll need to be conscientious about your water and energy use. You won’t mind too much as this unique home lets you tune back into the natural rhythms of your surroundings. The sunrises, sunsets, and starry skies as seen from the expansive mesa make a picture-perfect backdrop for your Earthship escape.

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Related Read: 11 Earthship Rentals for a Unique & Sustainable Getaway

7. Kokopelli’s Cave

unique places to stay nm - kokopellis cave
Photo: Kokopelli’s Cave

Why you should stay: Stay deep underground in a cave that rocks.

  • Location: Farmington
  • Sleeps: 8
  • Minimum stay: 1 night
  • Rates from: $290/night

You’ll be hard-pressed to find a more unique New Mexico accommodation than Kokopelli’s Cave. This man-made cavern has been transformed into a bed and breakfast that you have to see to believe. Carved into the cliffs of Tertiary Ojo Alamo sandstone, the home overlooks the beautiful La Plata River valley, 300 feet below. The cave and clifftops offer some incredible views of the area.

Inside, the 1,700-square-foot cave is spacious, well-lit, and decked out with modern amenities and appliances. From the replica Native American kiva and the waterfall shower and jacuzzi tub, you’ll find special details in every room.

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8. Hotel El Rancho

unique places to stay nm - hotel el rancho
Photo: Hotel El Rancho

Why you should stay: Live it up like a Western movie star.

  • Location: Gallup
  • Sleeps: 2-4
  • Minimum stay: 1 night
  • Rates from: $116/night

Located in the heart of the American West, the historic Hotel El Rancho provides a truly unique overnight stop. The iconic southwestern landscape of the Gallup area was used for many Western films in the 1930s and 1940s, and many of the actors and actresses frequented the hotel. So you’ll be sleeping in a room where a star of the silver screen once slept.

And while these icons from the past might pique your interest, the present-day attractions in Gallup are not to be overlooked either. From your well-appointed room at the El Rancho, you are within driving distance of national parks, historic churches, Native American sites, and Route 66. For a more intimate or exhilarating tour of the area, book a trip up in a hot air balloon or shred some trails on your mountain bike.

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Related Read: 7 Awesome Scenic Drives in New Mexico

9. Zia Geo Dome at El Mistico Ranch

unique places to stay nm - geodome
Photo: AIrbnb

Why you should stay: Glorious glamping with a patio view you can’t ever get enough of.

  • Location: Nogal
  • Sleeps: 2
  • Minimum stay: 1 night
  • Rates from: $225/night

The perfect romantic getaway for two or the ideal place to unplug if you’re traveling solo, the Zia Geo Dome features a simple yet elegant design to allow you to get back to nature. From the elevated patio overlooking the El Mistico Ranch, you can catch a spectacular sunset view of the mountains in the distance.

The dome has sleeping space and a small kitchenette that are the just-right size for your evenings in. Not that you’ll be spending too much time inside. With the Lincoln National Forest right next door and acres of high desert land to explore, you’ll quickly find you want to ditch your screens and spent more time venturing off the beaten path.

“This stay is absolutely stunning. The stars, sunset, views, and more, are all incredible! No pictures can do it justice, if you can, please stay here and experience this kind of unique experience.”

Alondra
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10. Taos Ski Valley Ultra-Modern Home

unique places to stay nm - ultramodern
Photo: VRBO

Why you should stay: A memorable, modern design with mountains on every side.

  • Location: Taos Ski Valley
  • Sleeps: 5
  • Minimum stay: 2 nights
  • Rates from: $216/night

Minimal, bright, and with more than a few rooms with a view, this ultra-modern home makes a statement no matter what angle you look at it. And you’ll want to take a good look both inside and out, as the architecture is definitely one of the more unique aspects.

From the elevated, boxcar-style design to the glass-wall sunroom suspended out over the woods, this home has some elegant and uncommon touches. And the location is hard to beat, too. In the winter take a five-minute walk to the Kachina Lift to catch the first chair. In the summer, the nearby Williams Lake Trail is a great hike to see the area on foot.

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Related Read: 10 Rad Weekend Road Trips from Albuquerque, New Mexico

11. Painted Lady Bed & Brew

unique places to stay nm - painted lady
Photo: Painted Lady Bed & Brew

Why you should stay: A colorful, quirky — and possibly haunted — twist on a traditional B&B.

  • Location: Albuquerque
  • Sleeps: 2-4
  • Minimum stay: 1 night
  • Rates from: $188/night

It’s not every day you get to stay at a building that was once a brothel and saloon. Luckily, if you like colorful tales, some tall, some true, the Painted Lady Bed & Brew dishes up both kinds — alongside a local craft beer served daily.

Perfect for history buffs and beer aficionados, this B&B offers luxurious, cozy suites to enjoy the historic (and sometimes spooky) ambiance. Supposedly once a haven for paranormal activity, keep an open mind when you hear something go bump in the night. Don’t get too spooked. A pint of whatever excellent craft beer is on tap will help soothe your nerves.

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