An Insider's Guide To All Things El Paso

10 Things not to Miss in El Paso

Zin Valle Vineyards
Zin Valle Vineyards
7315 Highway 28

Situated in the valley of the Rio Grande, the back road of Highway 28 leads visitors to locally owned and operated Zin Valle Vineyards, El Paso’s only vineyard and winery. They offer several different varietals from their estate vineyards as well as wines from California and Europe. Spend the day at Zin Valle and experience their complementary wine tasting, venture into the barrel room or simply enjoy a glass or bottle of wine on the patio or picnic while looking over the Zinfandel vineyard and the Franklin Mountains. For a unique experience visit the Vineyard on Sunday afternoons and enjoy the sounds of live music provided by local musicians. Bring a picnic, family and friends and enjoy the day in what was once one of the country’s premier wine regions.

Magoffin Home State Historic Site
Magoffin Home State Historic Site
1120 Magoffin Ave.

A striking adobe structure, Magoffin Home State Historic Site explores the stories of a multicultural family who actively participated in U.S. expansion and settlement, military service, trade on the Santa Fe–Chihuahua Trail, Civil War turmoil, and U.S.–Mexico relations. Built in 1875 for pioneer, politician, and civic leader Joseph Magoffin, the nineteen-room adobe home containing original family furnishings is El Paso’s only historic house museum and a prime example of Territorial style architecture.

Butterfield Trail Golf Club
Butterfield Trail Golf Club
1858 Cottonwoods

Designed by world renowned architect Tom Fazio, this beautiful course is sure to meet all your golfing needs. The spacious 8, 800 square foot club house located north of the 18th hole features indoor and outdoor patio seating which can accommodate large groups. Guests can enjoy the Salida del Sol Restaurant which features a full service restaurant and bar in a comfortable and friendly seating. The History of Butterfield Trail dates back to 1858 when the Butterfield Overland Mail Company operated for three years carrying mail and passengers across the country from Missouri to San Francisco. Part of the original trail used still runs through the Butterfield Trail golf course property today, thus providing the perfect name for this emerald gem.

Historic Plaza Theatre
Historic Plaza Theatre
1 Pioneer Plaza

Dating back to the late 1920’s the Plaza Theatre re-opened its doors in 2002. It’s size, elaborate decor, and technical innovations certainly separate this atmospheric theatres from others. No expense was spared in creating this elaborate building, designed in Spanish Colonial Revival style of architecture. While the exterior facade was designed to be reminiscent of a Spanish mission-style parapet, patrons will be in awe by the interior, with its intricately painted ceilings, mosaic-tiled floors, decorative metal railings and sconces and, to heighten the effect, antique furnishings. With such grandiose rococo design, it is no wonder the Plaza was once known as The Showplace of the Southwest. Perhaps most impressive of all is the $60,000 Mighty Wurlitzer Organ, elevating from the orchestra pit to accompany vaudeville shows, sing-a-longs, and to entertain patrons before and after films. Home to El Paso’s Broadway Series and a variety of concerts and show, the Plaza Theatre is certainly worth a visit. In addition, the theatre holds weekly tours, open to the public on Tuesday’s at 12:00 PM. For additional information regarding shows and tours contact 915-534-0600.

El Paso's Mission Trail & Visitor Center
El Paso's Mission Trail & Visitor Center
9065 Alameda Avenue

Located in El Paso’s Lower Valley this Trail is rich in history dating back 400 years. Sure to take your breath away these three adobe churches remain as living testaments to the faith of our Spanish and Indian ancestors. Established in 1862 the Ysleta Mission is the cornerstone of the Ysleta del Sur Indian Pueblo. Two miles east lay the Socorro Mission. The architecture of this mission reflects the culture, politics and insurmountable spirit of the early settlers of this vibrant town. Established in 1789 the San Elizario Chapel is an amazing paragon of late adobe church architecture in West Texas and New Mexico. It is an exquisite reflection of European architectural styles on the earlier, simpler box-like missions of the region.

Concordia Cemetery
Concordia Cemetery
3700 E. Yandell Dr.

This Texas State Historic site is known as El Paso’s Boot Hill where over 60,000 have been buried. Amongst them are famous gunfighter John Wesley Hardin. This well-known outlaw was said to have more than thirty notches on his gun, evidence that no more dangerous gunman ever operated in Texas. So, don’t be afraid to go down to explore and snap a few pictures of the historic tombstones as well as sites like the Buffalo Soldier Memorial.

Chamizal National Memorial
Chamizal National Memorial
800 S. San Marcial St.

A unit of the National Park Service, the Chamizal National Memorial commemorates the 1963 Chamizal treaty that ended a century-old boundary dispute between the United States and Mexico caused by a change in the course of the Rio Grande. The memorial includes a museum, theatre and art galleries, and hosts many festivals and special events throughout the year. Admission is free.

Hueco Tanks State Park & Historic Site
Hueco Tanks State Park & Historic Site
6900 Hueco Tanks Road #1

Seen as a paradise for world-class climbing and archeological research, Hueco Tanks encompasses three low mountains that rise 6,787 feet above sea level. Its structure once sheltered tribes such as the Jornada Mogollan People, Mescalero Apaches and Tigua Indians, giving them a stronghold. Here, thousands of rock and cave paintings of masks and stories can be observed. The famous structure of this arroyo provides unique hollows, or huecos, that capture rainwater. For a dry and weary land, Hueco Tanks can hold pockets of water for months at a time while the Chihuahua Desert lays baked. Known as the best spot for bouldering in the world, the ideal time to visit is November through March when it is not as hot.

Franklin Mountains State Park
Franklin Mountains State Park
Transmountain Rd./Woodrow Bean

This high-desert mountain allows outdoor enthusiasts of all skill levels to explore almost 27,000 acres on over 100 miles of trails. Sitting in the center of the city, a trip to the park is never more than a 15 minute drive from any part of town. For the best view in town, hike your way up to North Franklin Peak, the highest peak in the park at 7,192 feet. With over 2,000 feet of elevation gain from the trailhead to the top, this is certainly a rite of passage for many hikers. Camping and guided hiking and biking tours available.


El Paso Holocaust Museum & Study Center
Photograph by El Paso Holocaust Museum & Study Center

The El Paso Holocaust Museum & Study Center was established to educate the public about the Nazi Holocaust, and to honor those who perished and those who survived. The museum houses exhibits that trace the rise of the Third Reich, the mass deportations of millions of German and European citizens to ghettos and concentration camps, their valiant resistance efforts, and the liberation of the camps by Allied Forces in the closing days of World War II. Admission is free.

El Paso Museum of Art
Photograph by El Paso Museum of Art
1 Arts Festival Plaza

The El Paso Museum of Art (EPMA) houses a permanent collection of over 7,000 works of art from the Byzantine era to the present. Among the collection’s strengths in American, Mexican, and European art are Renaissance and Baroque masterpieces from the likes of Botticelli, Canaletto, and Van Dyck, as well as 20th century works by notable natives like Tom Lea. In addition, the museum hosts a robust schedule of temporary exhibitions. The museum school also offers diverse classes, hands-on workshops, and popular camps for adults and children alike.

El Paso Museum of History 3-D Digital Wall

Located at the entrance of the El Paso Museum of History, the 3-D Digital Wall is a vast collection of images and videos exploring El Paso’s past and present. It examines its people and its many cultures on giant 3-D touch-sensitive TV screens. Admission is free.

Keystone Heritage Park

Keystone Heritage Park comprises an Archaic-period archaeological site, wetlands, and a desert botanical garden. The 4,500-year-old site is one of the oldest villages in the United States. The wetlands are home to many birds, and over 200 species have been spotted there on their seasonal migrations. The botanical garden features a variety of native plants, and includes a pavilion and a replica of an Archaic period brush hut. The newest component, the Chihuahuan Desert Experience, is a work in progress that will feature a chance for visitors to stroll the 900-mile length of desert over a 17-acre recreation of the plant indigenous life.

La Viña Winery
Photograph by La Vina Winery
4201 S. Highway 28

La Viña Winery is New Mexico’s oldest winery. The vineyard provides “Estate Bottled” New Mexico wines with a new complexity. New plantings of Italian and Rhone varietals complement production of Cabernet, Zinfandel and Chardonnay. Check the website for a list of annual festivals and events.

Licon Dairy
11951 Glorietta Rd
(915) 851-2705

Established in the 1950’s, Licon Dairy is not your traditional dairy. Families will enjoy feeding and petting the friendly animals that include buffalo, llamas, deer, ostrich, peacocks and many more. The on property pond is well stocked with fish and allows for paddle boating. You won’t want to leave without a taste of the dairy’s traditional Azadero cheese, made fresh daily.

McKelligon Canyon
Photograph by Franklin Mountain State Park
1331 McKelligon Canyon Drive

Nestled on the south eastern side of the Franklin Mountains and surrounded by desert canyon walls, McKelligon Canyon is a popular destination known for its rock climbing, hiking, running, walking and biking. Visitors have a variety of rock climbing routes to choose from and the symmetric terrain is filled with crevices and cracks. All hiking trails including the Ron Coleman Trail begin at the end of McKelligon Canyon and are open year round. Please note, McKelligon Canyon is part of the Franklin Mountains State Park and therefore is subject to fees and restrictions from the Texas parks and Wildlife Department.

Mt. Cristo Rey
Photograph by Celebration of our Mountains
McNutt Rd.

Standing atop the Sierra de Cristo Rey (formerly known as the Cerro de los Muleros, Mule Drivers Mountain), in Sunland Park, New Mexico, the 29 ft. tall limestone statue of Christ serves as a shrine to thousands of faithful in the El Paso and Southern New Mexico area. Because of Mt. Cristo Rey’s proximity to Mexico, it’s best to hike up the mountain in a group. The well maintained trail is about 4.4 miles round trip and provides stunning, unparalleled views of Texas, New Mexico and Mexico.

Sombra Antigua Winery
Photograph by Sombra Antigua Winery
430 La Vina Road

Family-owned and operated, Sombra Antigua is housed in an attractive and appealing tasting room. The winery sits in the oldest commercial vineyard in New Mexico. Planted here are grapes for a variety of red and white signature wines. This beautiful winery sits among the vines and pecan trees offering a perfect venue for relaxed wine tasting, entertaining and visiting with friends and family.

Sunland Park Racetrack and Casino
Photograph by Sunland Park Racetrack and Casino

Wheather you’re playing one of our slot machines, dining at one of our restaurants, betting on a horse race, or stopping by to see a concert, you’ll have the time of your life at Sunland Park Racetrack and Casino. Enjoy over 700 state-of-the-art slot machines and year-round simulcast wagering from tracks all over the world.


El Paso Chopin Music Festival

September 23-October 21, 2018

Featuring pianists from Mexico, England, Germany, Hungary, Poland, Canada, Russia, China, Taiwan, Yugoslavia, Moldova, and the United States, the festival has received rave reviews, with every concert playing to a full house. The Festival’s founder and artistic director, Dr. Lucy Scarbrough, was inspired to establish the Festival because of the great influence that Chopin’s music has around the world. “Frederic Chopin was one of the great world ambassadors.” Dr. Scarbrough has said. “His music is truly a universal language of beauty that knows no barriers of nation or culture.” Chopin is the master of the piano. He is credited with originating the modern piano style, and that style is Chopin’s own, readily recognizable and distinctive style. The music of this fine romantic composer is featured in the Festival to provide an opportunity for residents and visitors to the tri-city region to hear the piano played with unsurpassed elegance, power, and expression.

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La Vina Winery Fall Harvest Festival

October 13-14, 2018

Taste and/or purchase many different award winning wines while enjoying live music and offerings from a select group of vendors.

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Dia de los Muertos Festival

November 3, 2018

The annual event will feature a variety of performances, dancers, vendors, food trucks, tours, and more.


November 2018

Downtown Arts Festival Plaza and its surrounding areas come to life with lights, food, holiday shopping, festivities and an outdoor ice skating rink. WinterFest is a month long festival that is open every day and has something for all ages. Skate to holiday hits, enjoy charity and promotional nights and much more.

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Sun City Bacon Fest

April 2019

Experience the only bacon party in the Sun City! Bacon Fest, presented by Southwest University, will feature over 30 local restaurants and food trucks that will have a variety of sample-sized bacon-inspired eats, drinks and sweets available for purchase. Enjoy live entertainment throughout the day and sign up to win prizes through a variety of contests. If you love bacon, this event is for you!

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