Where was Breaking Bad filmed? Albuquerque locations are touring by bike

ALBUQUERQUE – The temperature hovered close to 100 degrees as we cycled past seedy motels, drug dens, dive bars and abandoned warehouses.

It’s the most fun I’ve had on a two-wheeler in years.

Our party of eight – including guide Brad Frye – was on a Biking Bad tour through downtown Albuquerque to see a dozen locations where the iconic “Breaking Bad” TV series was filmed.

The show, which aired on AMC from 2008 to 2013 and can now be viewed on Netflix, won 16 Emmy Awards and is listed in the 2014 Guinness World Records as the highest rated TV series of all time. based on its ranking of 99/100. on metacritic.com.

“Breaking Bad” told the story of Albuquerque High School chemistry teacher Walter White – played by Bryan Cranston – who had been diagnosed with terminal cancer. To secure his family’s financial future before his death, White teamed up with a former student – Jesse Pinkman – to build a crystal meth empire.

Java Joe's in downtown Albuquerque was used as the filming site for Tuco's hangout spot during production of

Certainly, the three-hour, 10-mile tour took us through some of the less appealing parts of downtown Albuquerque. Frye, who has led the Biking Bad tours for six years for Routes Bicycle Tours & Rentals and has overly watched the show three times, described the tour as an in-depth examination of the city’s “gritty western charm”.

But we also walked through beautiful tree-lined neighborhoods with homes dating back over a century and saw the progress of an on-going multi-million dollar downtown revitalization project. This has led to the opening of upscale bars, theaters and art galleries along the corridor of Central Avenue of Albuquerque – historic Route 66.

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‘Breaking Bad’ shines the spotlight on Albuquerque

The Biking Bad tour stops at the Albuquerque house where the character's parents lived

Albuquerque’s sunny climate, wide desert open spaces with sweeping views of the Sandia Mountains just east of town, cultural diversity, and generous tax incentives have made it a popular filming location for movies and movies. TV shows. No production has raised the city’s visibility higher than “Breaking Bad”.

“We have certainly seen an increase in tourism as a result of this spectacle,” said Brenna Moore, communications manager for Visit Albuquerque, the city’s tourist board. “It raised awareness in the city, especially in international markets. “

“Breaking Bad” finished its race eight years ago. A popular spin-off called “Better Call Saul” – telling the story of Walter’s lawyer, Saul Goodman, who has ethical issues – is still being filmed in Albuquerque.

Most of the important “Breaking Bad” filming locations can be seen on the bike tour, although a few – including Walter White’s house in the eastern part of town – require a drive. Here are my favorite “Breaking Bad” sites.

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Jesse Pinkman’s house

Biking Bad tour guide Brad Frye explains some of the twists and turns that took place in the Albuquerque home where the "breaking Bad" the character Jesse Pinkman lived.

Bad things have happened inside this stately two-story Spanish Colonial home on a quiet street a few blocks from downtown Albuquerque. Built in 1920, the 3,600 square foot home was put on the market in 2015 for $ 1.6 million. “Methamphetamine lab not included,” noted listing agent Coldwell Banker in a tongue-in-cheek press release.

Jesse’s fictitious parents lived in an even older house a few blocks away. Mr. and Mrs. Pinkman’s house dates from 1909 and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The Candy Lady boutique

Debbie Ball, owner of The Candy Lady store in Albuquerque, made the simulated crystalline blue meth featured in

This Old Town boutique is a must-see for “Breaking Bad” aficionados who want to experience the dark humor that helped make the show so thrilling.

Owner Debbie Ball – “the Candy Lady” – rose to fame in Albuquerque when she started making X-rated cakes and candies in the 1980s. When “Breaking Bad” started production, she was approached by the master of props in the series to make a sweet concoction that looked like methamphetamine.

“The sex was good until the drugs started,” she joked about the development of her store.

Ball produced 150 pounds of Blue Tinted Rock Candy which was used in the show’s first three seasons. Today, she says 20-30% of her sales come from “Breaking Bad” memorabilia, including packets of Blue Rock candy.

I ingested it while channeling my inner skinny Pete and badger, two of the show’s characters that sell meth. I did not get high, but I had a stomach ache.

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Walter White’s house

Breaking Bad die-hards know the address by heart – 308 Negra Arroyo Lane. Of course, that’s not the real address of the White Residence, a modest three-bedroom ranch in a part of town known as Northeast Heights.

Most of the show’s most dramatic – and entertaining – scenes were filmed here. One of the most memorable is the season three episode in which Walt – upset that his wife Skyler wouldn’t let him have dinner with the family – threw a pizza on the roof. The pizza is stuck.

Many fans have since tried to replicate Walt’s feat in some sort of twisted pilgrimage. It got so bad that the owner erected fences around the property to keep pizza fans away. There are also red cones on the street in front of the house to prevent onlookers from parking too close.

It is a private residence, so if you decide to visit, don’t linger. I took a photo a block away and quickly left. The landlady was sitting in the front yard and it was clear she didn’t want company. Hard to blame her.

Car wash A-1

This Albuquerque car wash was called A-1 on

Fans of the show know that in the first season, Walt worked part-time at a car wash to help make ends meet. Later in the series, he and Skyler bought the car wash as a facade to launder millions of dollars of meth.

This business, known as A-1 Car Wash (“Have an A-1 Day!” Was a frequent line on the show) is a five-minute drive from the White Residence. It’s now called Mister Car Wash, which is part of a Tucson-based chain that has more than 300 car washes in 21 states.

Los Pollos Hermanos, the Dog House and this Motel

Our Biking Bad tour took us to several downtown restaurants that were used as filming locations. Java Joe’s, which drug dealer Tuco used as a hangout, is worth a visit for the colorful mural painted on the east side of the building.

The Dog House drive-in theater in Albuquerque was a popular filming location during the production of

The Dog House Drive-In was a popular filming location and the place where Jesse gave his money to a homeless man. The restaurant’s retro neon sign with a dog wagging its tail is fun to see after dark.

Walt and methamphetamine conspirator Lydia met frequently at the Grove Café on Central Avenue, a popular breakfast spot. This is where Walt poisoned Lydia with Ricin Stevia.

“People love to joke, ‘Watch out for the Stevia at The Grove,'” said Managing Director Andrew LoBue, adding that the restaurant’s appearances on the show “got us on the map.”

Right next to the Grove is the Crossroads Motel. The low-end lodge has been described as a drug den and a place for other illicit activity. At first glance, the Crossroads was perfectly cast.

This southern Albuquerque Twisters fast food starred as Los Pollos Hermanos, the base of operations for drug lord Gus Fring.

Los Pollos Hermanos, which drug lord Gus Fring used as a base of operations, is actually a fast food restaurant called Twisters. It’s about a 20-minute drive south of downtown Albuquerque.

Apparently all the restaurants and hotels in town have some sort of “Breaking Bad” connection. We stayed downtown at the Hotel Andaluz, named after a region of Spain called Andalucia. When it opened in 1939, it was the first building in New Mexico with air conditioning.

Andaluz hosted the closing night for the cast and crew at the end of the show’s final season.

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Dan Fellner of Scottsdale is a freelance travel writer. Contact him at [email protected] or visit his website at https://global-travel-info.com.

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