Visiting Ruidoso During the Pandemic

*Updated 2/25/2021*

TRAVEL NOTICE: The state of New Mexico is no longer requiring visitors or residents to quarantine if they’re traveling from “high risk” states. However, it’s recommended that visitors quarantine for 14 days and receive a COVID test when arriving in New Mexico.

MASK REQUIREMENT: Face coverings are mandatory except when eating, drinking, or because of medical conditions. Individuals violating the mask mandate could face up to a $100 fine.

STATE RESTRICTIONS: New Mexico counties adopted a modified red-to-turquoise tiered system to address COVID-19 under Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham’s latest response plan on February 24th, adding the least restrictive turquoise tier for low risk counties. The state’s system will be updated every other Wednesday to reflect county tier distinctions. Lincoln County is now under Yellow Level restrictions, which designates the area as high-risk. **Latest update on 2/24**


  • Face Coverings: Required in public.
  • Mass Gatherings: Limited to 10 persons, 80 vehicles.
  • Non-Essential Retail: Operating at 33% of maximum occupancy.
  • Food & Drink Establishments: Now operating with to-go, delivery, or indoor/outdoor dining at 25% of the maximum capacity inside, and 75% capacity outside. Any establishment serving alcohol must close by 10 pm each night.
  • Places of Lodging: Hotels, motels, RV parks and short-term vacation rentals that are New Mexico Safe Certified may operate up to 60% occupancy. 25% of maximum occupancy for all others; 5 guests maximum for vacation rentals.
  • Close-Contact Businesses: Salons, gyms, tattoo parlors, and massage parlors can operate at 33% of maximum occupancy or 20 customers at one time, whichever is smaller.
  • Outdoor Recreational Facilities: Places like golf courses and ski basins can operate at 33% of maximum occupancy.
  • Non-Tribal Casinos: Closed.
  • State-Run Museums & Historic Sites: Reopened.
  • Camping is Limited: Expect camping restrictions in the Lincoln National Forest.
  • Safety Precautions: COVID-19 safe practices are in effect throughout Ruidoso with hand sanitizer stations available in Midtown and extra steps being taken among businesses and lodgers to ensure guest safety.

VISITOR RECOMMENDATIONS: Due to the ever-changing regulations, we recommend checking in with businesses before you visit them to confirm hours and services. Stay up to date with the latest news on the New Mexico Department of Health’s website, the Village of Ruidoso’s COVID-19 Crisis Response Center, and right here on Visit Ruidoso.


  • Don’t travel if you are sick, or if you have been around someone with COVID-19 in the past 14 days. Do not travel with someone who is sick. Not sure? Get tested and play it safe.
  • Masks are required for everyone in New Mexico. Although not all states have the same rules, the Village of Ruidoso greatly appreciates everyone’s help to stay safe and enjoy their time in Lincoln County.
  • Practice social distancing by staying at least six feet from others.
  • Do not congregate in large groups. Avoid gathering with others outside of your household. Due to indoor capacity limits, minimize time inside and be courteous to others.
  • Enjoy outdoors responsibly and take steps to prevent overcrowding of recreation areas and outdoor spaces to stay safe. Be prepared before you go with a plan, stay close to home, practice social distancing, and make sure you’re picking up your trash to promote cleanliness and protect others.