“#1 Cultural Destination in the U.S.” – Travel + Leisure 2010
Called the Dancing Ground of the Sun by early Native American inhabitants and nicknamed The City Different by founding frontiersman at the turn of the 20th century, Santa Fe is a paradise for history buffs and cultural explorers alike.
November is a great time for a trek to Bandelier National Monument and its nearby Tsankawi ruins, where you’ll hike a trail blazed by Ancestral Puebloan people. It is also the perfect time to visit Pecos National Historical Park—the site of what was once the Southwest’s largest pueblo to explore and learn about the history of the Pecos Valley.
Do you want to experience December differently this year? Then plan a visit to The City Different. Santa Fe never looked prettier dressed in all her holiday color and lights! Add to that a town nestled in historic traditions, then throw in some snow, mix in a bit of annual celebration and voila! You have the perfect Santa Fe winter holiday getaway! It’s our good fortune to have a myriad of festive events that spotlight a different kind holiday season. Bright blue skies with crisp frosty air and ski ready landscape? Got it. World renowned regional cuisine? Always. Holiday music and performing arts? Hello! We’ve got it all.
On October 12, 2017, Santa Fe lost one of its avid and colorful local ambassadors, Billie Frank. Billie was a travel writer and blogger who in conjunction with her husband Steve Collins wrote and published, “The Santa Fe Traveler,” a blog that was read by many in Santa Fe, in New Mexico and even around the United States. Billie was a concierge at two of Santa Fe’s finest hotels for four years and her background in sales, marketing and customer service were evident throughout her respected travel blogs.
She had great love for The City Different and in memory of her spirit and literary gifts, we are reposting a blog from March 11, 2017, that showcases that love. Billie’s sense of place in Santa Fe is honored and deeply admired by her friends, colleagues and those who were lucky enough to meet her.
Day of the Dead, or Dia de los Muertos, is a holiday that has been celebrated on November 1–2 in Mexico for many years and has gained a following recently in New Mexico. The holiday focuses on gatherings of family and friends to pray for and remember loved ones who have passed on, and help support their spiritual journey.
Just north of Santa Fe a whole new world awaits as you enter the diverse and beautiful cultural landscape of Pueblo country, nestled along the lush Rio Grande Valley, with sweeping horizon mountain views. Visit The Poeh Center (Poeh) at Pueblo of Pojoaque, known as the “water gathering place,” and it will capture your imagination and offer an authentic Native American experience.
The mission of the Poeh (“pathway”) came about as a comprehensive effort for the Pueblo of Pojoaque to uphold the traditions and revitalize the arts and culture of their people, post Spanish contact in the 16th Century and a later smallpox epidemic, nearly eradicated their community and way of life. All the more reason that the Pueblo of Pojoaque made it a priority to continue teaching their children the history dating back to 500 A.D.; cultural traditions, dances, language, arts and crafts. In addition, this fosters education and an understanding of Puebloan culture for non-Native people and visitors from around the world.
From legendary ghost towns and saloons to charmingly eccentric art galleries and studios, the attractions along the Turquoise Trail will ensure that your visit to Santa Fe and surrounding areas is an authentic one. A journey along the scenic trail is the quintessential Santa Fe day trip; it’s a chance to get in touch with the remarkable history and spirituality of the Native American people, adventurous miners and explorers. The trail extends for about 60 miles along State Highway 14 and passes alongside numerous old Wild West mining towns, who in their glory days, extracted gold, silver, zinc, and coal, not to mention turquoise.
Seeking a transformative journey that will take you to great heights? Taos Pueblo is just a heartbeat away from Santa Fe. As a designated World Heritage Site and one of 19 Indian Pueblos in New Mexico, a visit to this special place will transport you to another time and immerse you in the living, breathing Pueblo culture and traditions that have been passed on from generation to generation since time immemorial.
Nestled in the hills just south of Santa Fe, sits the Village of Cerrillos, an official “ghost town” whose streets welcome day‐trippers year‐round. Ghost towns exist all over the world but there’s something that makes those in America uniquely enchanting and even romantic. While the majority of abandoned towns across the country were paved over to make way for suburbs, Cerrillos found a second life.
Here in Santa Fe we are grateful and joyous for our history, food and scenic wonders. With 325 days of sunshine a year, you will revel in fun times gliding down a snowy hillside or immersing yourself in our rich history and culture. It’s easy for us to go and on about the wonders of Santa Fe because magic is real in The City Different. Now is the time to celebrate with a November visit. Join us in giving thanks. Here’s a nod to a few of Santa Fe’s best November activities.
An Insider’s Guide to Walking Ancient Paths and Rock Art
Just beyond the edge of Santa Fe and a short hike through the deep silence of the terrain lies a rocky ledge that seems to whisper to passersby, the dark stone speaking a cryptic language.
Carved into the boulders of the ledge at the La Cieneguilla Petroglyph Site and throughout the Southwest are thousands of petroglyphs thought to originate from the pre-contact time of the Spanish colonial era. Despite a great deal of scholarly study throughout modern history, no one can say for certain what these depictions meant to the people who created them. Not only does their meaning remain shrouded in mystery, but many of the etchings’ depictions are indecipherable, leaving curious visitors to speculate.