Best Things To Do in Tucumcari, New Mexico

By Vero

Tucumcari, a city in New Mexico's Quay County, is a must-visit for those exploring Route 66 and its surroundings. As the largest city in eastern New Mexico with a population of around 6,000, it is an essential stop for travelers.

What is Tucumcari, NM, Known For?

– Tucumcari is called the "Heart of the Mother Road," linked to the famous Route 66, inaugurated in 1926 and discontinued in 1985.

– The neon signs, motels, and architecture capture Route 66's essence. It also boasts a rich cinematic history.

Best Places to Stay in Tucumcari

For postcard seekers, top lodgings are Blue Swallow Motel, or if full, Safari Motel or Roadrunner Lodge Motel. 

Expect $100/night for two.

Things to Do in Tucumcari

Mesalands Dinosaur Museum: See dinosaur skeletons and prehistoric replicas, fossils from local excavations, and a collection of minerals.

Nightlife in The Bars: Explore diverse bars, from Pow Wow to Stone Ranch, and experience the lively nightlife along the Boulevard and 1st Street.

New Mexico Route 66 Museum: displays over 160 photographs and vintage cars, open Tue-Sat. – The Tucumcari Murals: has around 100 public murals reflecting its history and mythology.

Stay At The Blue Swallow Motel: a well-preserved Route 66 classic, with a typical garage structure and vintage-themed rooms.

More Things to Do in Tucumcari

Tee Pee Curios: Former gas station turned souvenir store. Classic design, neon signs, vintage cars, and Indian handicrafts for sale.

Pow Wow Restaurant: serves American and Mexican food with vegetarian and gluten-free options. Open daily.

Route 66 Lights: Neon signs from the 50s and 60s adorn Tucumcari Boulevard, including at motels, gas stations, and stores.

Tucumcari Railroad Museum: open Wed-Sat from 10am-4pm, showcasing the region's railway history and community development.

Tucumcari Historical Museum: offers a diverse collection of artifacts and history for a 5 $ admission fee.

Is Tucumcari, NM, Worth a Visit?

– Tucumcari is a must-visit for those interested in Route 66 and the history of the West and New Mexico.

– Tucumcari's attractions make it a memorable destination and a highlight of your trip.

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