History is all too often translated into a collection of stories about people and events that are far removed from our own present lives. Many times, history is seen as something that is read from a dry book or a dull lecture rather than being experienced through active questioning and tangible discovery. The caretakers of El Rancho de las Golondrinas believe that history should be experienced in a different way through hands-on experiences that brings history alive through fun adventure.
El Rancho de las Golondrinas (The Ranch of the Swallows) invites visitors to travel back in time and immerse themselves into the past; 300 years into the past to be exact. The period between 1710 and 1930 are interpreted by costumed docents eager to share their expertise and knowledge with visitors. Visiting the ranch at any time of the season is bound to be a wonderful experience but one of the best times to visit is during one of their ten fun-filled festivals and events throughout the season that suit a wide variety of interests. The ranch is truly a wonderful repository of craftsmanship, history and celebration.
Spring & Fiber Fest: Life on the Trails of the Southwest – June 3 & 4
The ranch kicks off the season with the Spring and Fiber Festival. Thanks to the abundance of acequias (waterways) of the area, El Rancho de las Golondrinas was the first stop for voyagers traveling south on El Camino Real and the last stop for those traveling north. The Spring and Fiber Festival offers visitors a chance to learn about the people, goods and livestock that once brought the desert roads of the Santa Fe Trail to life.
Activities are ample and include sheep shearing, wool dying, spinning, blacksmithing, tin stamping and green chile roasting in addition to a fiber arts marketplace, bread baking in a traditional horno (a mud adobe-built outdoor oven) and archery lessons.
Herb & Lavender Festival – June 17 & 18
Enhance your senses and get your hands on all things lavender at the Herb and Lavender Festival. Learn about planting, growing and harvesting different varieties of lavender as well as how to infuse oil, bread and even sew sachets with dried herbs. Ever heard of Navajo tea? How about comfrey oil? Natural remedy connoisseurs and amateurs alike will undoubtedly learn something new about lavender, essential oils and the power of herbs. Visit the marketplace and shop for great lavender treasures. Warning: you will likely leave the ranch smelling like a wonderful lavender field!
The 24th Annual Santa Fe Wine Festival – July 1 & 2
El Rancho de las Golondrinas is the quintessential setting for a wine festival; nestled in the hillside just beyond the city limits. Celebrate the season with handmade local wines from 18 New Mexico wineries, mouthwatering food from over 10 vendors and plenty of live music. If you aren’t spoiled for options yet, the festival also offers a wide variety of unique arts and crafts for sale. You don’t want to miss the longest running wine festival in the state.
¡Viva México! Fiesta – July 22 & 23
El Rancho de las Golondrinas captures the essence of México during their 10th annual ¡Viva México! festival with traditional cuisine, lots of arts and crafts activities and plenty of music and dance. The colorful event celebrates the undeniable historical and cultural ties that connect our state with its southern neighbor.
Each event at the El Rancho de las Golondrinas is truly unique and there are so many one-of-a-kind experiences to be had at each one that make visiting on more than one occasion completely worth the time.
Take Rancho de las Golondrinas’ advice. History should be experienced in a different way. Visit this living history museum and let them interpret history through their many hands-on experiences. We’re sure that this will make your visit a memorable and historical one!