For six years the characters on Breaking Bad thrilled and delighted millions of television viewers. But one of the show’s most impressive and memorable characters wasn’t a human being at all. It was the city of Albuquerque, the real-life setting for the vibrant fictional universe created by the Breaking Bad production team.
To give the show a more authentic feel, producers chose to film it almost entirely in New Mexico. The haunting, wind-swept, desolate New Mexico landscape served as the ideal setting for this bleak but mesmerizing program. Actual Albuquerque locations formed the backdrop for many amazing scenes, and it was Albuquerque in particular that left a lasting visual impression in the minds of viewers.
Even though Breaking Bad is no longer on the air, the locations where its most memorable scenes took place are still around. They’ve now been reinvented as tourist attractions for those who can’t let go and want to immerse themselves in the Breaking Bad experience.
Organized tours of the most significant sites are available. But most visitors prefer to customize their trips so they can follow in the footsteps of Walter White all on their own.
Northeast Heights Neighborhood
This is the part of the city where the infamous “Heisenberg” actually resided. While you can’t go inside (a real family lives there) you can drive by the outside of the house where Walter White and his nefarious alter-ego rested their heads each night. Hank and Marie’s home is also in Northeast Heights, and you’ll be able to find that up in the foothills of this quiet, attractive residential neighborhood.
Other noteworthy Northeast Heights locations include La Palomita Park, where Mike used to take his granddaughter, and Paul’s Monterey Inn, the steakhouse and bar where Jesse and Walter often met to plan strategy. Unfortunately the latter is no longer open for business, but at least for now its exterior remains fully preserved.
If you’re in Northeast Heights around lunch or dinner time you can stop in at the Savoy Wine Bar & Grill (a Walter White favorite, and still open) for a bite to eat. And if your car is getting a bit dusty from the desert winds by all means head on over to the Octopus Car Wash for a quick hose-down. The Octopus is the real-life version of the A-1 Car Wash, which Walter bought and ran as a front for money laundering.
Northeast Heights and downtown Albuquerque have the densest conglomeration of Breaking Bad-related attractions.
The list of destinations worth visiting in the downtown area includes Jesse Pinkman’s house, Jesse’s parents’ house, Taco’s hideout, the parking garage where Walt planted a bomb in Gus Fring’s car and the car park where Hank got in a shootout with the Cartel.
Albuquerque is a highly walk-able city and these and other downtown destinations are easily accessible on foot. But if you’re a cycling enthusiast you can sign up for a Breaking Bad bicycle tour sponsored by a bike-rental store called Routes Rentals. Or if you want something more relaxing you can relive your Breaking Bad memories in an open-air trolley operated by the aptly-named ABQ Trolley Company.
TV Shows End but Great Memories Are Never Cancelled
The locations we’ve suggested are just a sampling of the Breaking Bad locations you can see—and sometimes even enter—if you visit the Albuquerque area. Maps available online can provide you with the names and addresses of many more points-of-interest.
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