Not every girlfriend getaway begins or ends in Las Vegas. Not that you can’t have a lot of fun there, but instead of the traditional shopping and cocktails, we sent Fit Globetrotter Dena Roché to New Mexico for a Southwestern alternative to the typical getaway. Think natural spas, galleries and outdoor opera in and around Santa Fe.
An ancient Native American proverb reads, “Don’t allow the grass to grow on the path of friendship.”
While girlfriend getaways are a dime a dozen, Santa Fe offers something different. The city weaves adventure, culinary treats, culture and the requisite pampering with a memorable landscape and unpretentious locals.
We couldn’t have said it better, Dena. Read the full article to see why experts are gushing about Santa Fe, and find everything you need to plan your getaway on Santa Fe’s Official Travel Website SantaFe.org.
Whether you’re looking for an athletic challenge to get your adrenaline flowing, or you’re planning your vacation around cooler temperatures and a landscape beautiful enough to lose yourself in, chances are you’ll find something to love about autumn in Santa Fe. Nestled in the southern foothills of the Rocky Mountains, Santa Fe is the perfect place to find leisurely walks, and hiking trails, as well as more active events like the annual Buffalo Thunder Half Marathon and the International Mountain Bicycling Association’s World Summit. Athletes have always loved the challenge offered by trails like the 22.2 mile Dale Ball system, and the expansive La Tierra system. And, at an elevation of 7,000 feet above sea level even power shopping on the Plaza can qualify as a sport.
No matter how you decide to spend your time in Santa Fe, you’ll be surrounded by some of the most vibrant fall colors in the southwest thanks to the pristine 1.6 million acre Santa Fe National Forest. We always get a kick out of sharing our mountain vistas, hiking trails, and scenic country roads with visitors. But, we want your first taste of the cleanest air in the country to be as refreshing as possible, so you can fall head-over-heels in love with Santa Fe the way visitors have for hundreds of years. So, here are a few useful tips to get you prepared for your change of altitude.
Lots of water seems to help with just about everything, and elevation is no exception. So drink up. Sure, bathroom breaks might add a little time to your road trip, but you’ll be ready to hit the trail or hit the town as soon as your bags hit the hotel floor. And trust us, you’ll want to experience as much as possible.
Break your diet and go for those carbohydrates (we recommend the locally loved sopapillas with honey). Seriously. Carbs give your body the immediate energy it needs to let you play hard hiking, biking, or checking out all of Santa Fe’s art markets.
We don’t want to brag, but Santa Fe was just nominated Best Food Town in America by USA Today and Rand Mcnally’s ‘Best of the Road.’ So come hungry. We also have a top ranked local farmer’s market which can provide a bounty of
fresh, seasonal gastronomic surprises. Remember, this is for your health.
Even if you don’t happen to be running in the Buffalo Thunder half marathon, this is still good advice. Don’t try to see and do everything Santa Fe offers that first night here. Even locals can’t fit all Santa Fe’s great music, cuisine, shopping and hiking trails in one weekend. And we live here. Go ahead and take that extra day or two off work and give yourself the time to relax. And, don’t forget to include a few hours at one of our great spas in your schedule. Remember, vacations are supposed to be relaxing.
There are arguably other cities as exotic as Santa Fe. Just not on this continent.
It strikes you the first time you see The City Different. When city officials came up with that name early last century, they got it exactly right. For rarely does a place speak to so many people on so many levels.The landscape conspires to take your breath away. The sunsets are so beautiful and the stars so clear that you can’t take your eyes off the skies. But you’ll quickly see that there’s much to admire in our historic city. The narrow, winding streets invite you to walk closer together. The 400-year-old adobe buildings say, Hey, what’s the hurry? Linger a little. And you’ll find that lingering is easy to do here.
There’s certainly plenty to explore, from the spectacular Sangre de Cristo Mountains outside of town to the world-renowned galleries, museums, boutiques and restaurants just outside your door. The list is almost endless. This site can only whet your appetite and help you plan your perfect visit, whether you’re here for a shopping excursion, an outdoor adventure, a rejuvenation weekend or a food odyssey.
To truly understand why the readers of Conde Nast Traveler put Santa Fe near the top of their must-see list, you’ll just have to experience it first hand. And start a love affair of your own. It only takes one visit to see that this is one of the world’s extraordinary places. And you’ll want to return again and again.
Canyon Road is the heart of art in Santa Fe. This charming neighborhood has developed into global destinationteeming with diverse and captivating art collections. You’ll find Contemporary, Native and Folk Art, sculptural works, textiles, ceramics, jewelry and fashion, to name but a few. Whatever your tastes, you are likely to be sated here. The vibe is mellow and inviting as people mill about, following the road where it takes them, resulting in an easy unfolding of the perfect kind of day.
Amazingly, there are over 100 world-class galleries available for your viewing pleasure on Canyon Road. This density of art creates a dynamism of experience that is easily accessible.
Begin your expedition at the bottom of the canyon just off Paseo de Peralta. A whimsical sculpture of three dancing lambs will greet you on the left at Gallery 203B. Just across the street, a more recent addition, Arroyo focuses on a Western sensibility in a multitude of forms.
Be sure to take your time as you walk amid the fragrant pines and spreads of colorful blooms, back-dropped against the canvas of the azure summer sky. You can feel the stress dropping away with each step, as you partake of the visual wonderment.
Ventana Fine Art serves up vibrant Contemporary fare, Chalk Farm Gallery takes us to the stratosphere and beyond with it’s Visionary art, and don’t miss the magical outdoor sculpture garden at Wiford Gallery.
You’ll want to have your camera ready for the stunning sights that abound, including our legendary monsoon cloud formations that typically gather in the summer afternoons.
It’s easy to spend a whole day taking in the sights.
Canyon Road first developed as a farming community. A bucolic terrain settled by the Spanish, Santa Fe is the oldest capital city in the United States.
The history of Santa Fe pulses in the architecture on Canyon Road, from the warm adobe walls ofTerritorial and Spanish homes, to the few surviving farmhouses that still exist.
Artists began to populate here in the 1880’s, many were drawn to the area for relief from respiratory ailments which were soothed in the dry, high desert air. Eventually, artist colonies formed and flourished. Like Paris in the 30’s and 40’s, one’s creativity blossomed in the fecund ground of Santa Fe’s idyllic ambiance. Canyon Road even had a unique “residential arts and crafts” zoning classification.
After drinking in the beauty of this enchanting road, you will work up an appetite, and Canyon Road does not disappoint. You have an array of choices as well;
Casual settings with tasty food can be found atThe Teahouse, known for their Cowboy Chai, orCanyon Hideout Cafe. If you want to indulge in award-winning cuisine, The Compound or Geronimoare memorable choices.
For scrumptious tapas and drinks, try El Farol, Santa Fe’s oldest restaurant which has live music Thursdays through Sundays.