Plan Your Visit

Visitors on the Refuge / © Deanna Nichols

Welcome to Valle de Oro National Wildlife Refuge!

Access Valle de Oro by foot, horseback or bicycle.  Visitors to the refuge in vehicles will be asked to park in designated parking areas at the Welcome Center (the tan house with the green roof) and then access the interior of the refuge by walking, jogging, hiking, bicycling or horseback riding. Dogs on leash of 6 feet or less are allowed. Driving on the refuge will be limited to approved vehicles only, including those for conducting maintenance, research, and education/interpretive programs.  

We look forward to providing access to our new parking lot, bathrooms and seating around the new Visitor Center in the near future. And cannot wait to open the new Visitor Center when we are able to do so safely.  

The decision to remove public driving access reflects our final vision for the refuge, our 2017 Environmental Assessment planning document, which was created based on community input. This change in access will allow us to protect wildlife and their new habitat as it is being restored at the refuge while also accommodating recreation.  Our staff are exploring ways we can provide accommodations to support visitors with disabilities.  

 If you have any questions or concerns please reach out to Valle de Oro staff at:  We appreciate your support and understanding as our refuge takes the steps to transform into the place we have envisioned together.  


 As of July 29, 2020, access to Valle de Oro NWR will be open 6am to 6pm daily. However, due to COVID-19, Welcome Center operations are currently suspended. Please check the kiosk at the entrance to the refuge or our refuge website ( for maps and updated refuge information.    


Valle de Oro National Wildlife Refuge understands that time in the outdoors is a part of a healthy lifestyle and can help relieve stress. For this reason we are working hard to keep the refuge open for walking, jogging, bicycling, horseback riding, wildlife watching and dog walking. However, due to the number of construction projects continuing on site and for the safety of our visitors and the security of the construction sites, we are temporarily altering our refuge open hours to 6am - 6pm daily.

We urge visitors to follow CDC and State of New Mexico guidelines, maintain adequate social distancing, avoid overcrowding, exercise good hygiene and stay out of closed construction areas when visiting the refuge.

 Directions: Valle de Oro National Wildlife Refuge is located 5 miles south of downtown Albuquerque, New Mexico. The Physical address of the Refuge is: 7851 2nd. St. SW, Albuquerque, New Mexico 87105. For visual directions to Valle de Oro National Wildlife Refuge, please view the  interactive map.  

From Interstate 25 northbound/southbound, take Rio Bravo exit 220.  Head west on Rio Bravo.  Turn left (south) onto 2nd street.  Follow 2nd street 3.5 miles south to Refuge located on the right (west side) of 2nd street. There is no entrance fee.