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Plan Your Visit

Sunset reflection in waterWelcome to Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge.

Visitor Center

Here, volunteers are available to provide you with a map and will let you know what is happening on the refuge. Displays in the visitor center explain habitat management and introduce you to the wildlife that call the refuge home. A nature store with field guides, checklists, and nature themed gifts will help enhance your visit. The attached headquarters offices are where the business of the refuge is conducted. Accessible restroom facilities are located in the building to the west.

Current Hours: September through May

  • Daily – 8am to 4pm. 

Summer Hours - June, July, and August:

  • Thursday - Monday 8am to 4pm. 

*The visitor center only is closed: Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day, New Year's Day and the Fourth of July and on Tuesday and Wednesdays during June, July, and August. May close early on the day before the above and other federal holidays. The auto tour loop remains open with associated fees.



The Refuge

(Including auto tour route)


Open 365 days a year: 

  •  The tour loop is open one half hour before sunrise to one half hour after sunset. 
  • Some parts of the refuge are closed to public entry, so please consult the maps or call the visitor center to become familiar with those areas.

Enjoying the Refuge

Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge offers many opportunities to enjoy wildlife-dependent activities, including wildlife watching, hiking, hunting, fishing, wildlife photography and more. The refuge’s nature trails and the auto tour loop are accessible all year. Check out the visitor activities and plan your visit sections of our website for more information.


  • The visitor center parking lot can accommodate motor homes as well as cars. You are welcome to unhitch and use your tow vehicle on the Auto Tour Loop but it is not required.  
  • Please drive carefully on gravel roads and stay on designated roads and turnouts. 
  • The speed limit is 25 mph. 
  • There are both one-way and two-way sections so observe signs carefully.  
  • Prepare for vehicles ahead of you to stop suddenly – most likely a visitor is watching an interesting bird or other wildlife. 
  • Auto Tour Loop roads are wide, so pull over to allow others to pass safely. 


  • From the north (Socorro, NM), drive nine miles south on I-25 to exit 139, go east one-fourth mile on US 380 to the flashing signal at the village of San Antonio, turn right onto Old Highway 1, and drive south nine miles to the Visitor Center. 
  • From the south (Las Cruces, NM), drive north on I-25 to exit 124 (San Marcial), go east on the dirt road 1.5 miles, then north on Old Highway 1 to the visitor center. 
  • The lat/long to the visitor center is 33.804777, -106.890917.

Page Photo Credits — Sunset reflection in water
Last Updated: Jan 28, 2016
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