Toni’s Top 10 Travel Tips: Santa Fe, New Mexico

The colors of New Mexico draw tourists to Santa Fe like paint to canvas.  There, pink adobe walls stand still against the backdrop of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, and its desert sky is as bright blue as the state gemstone itself—turquoise.  Though the summers are rich with tourism, the Santa Fe winters are truly magical, and treasured by the locals as one of their best-kept secrets.  “The Land of Enchantment,” is one of my favorite places in the whole world, which is why I want to share the ultimate way to visit Santa Fe and its surrounding areas.

Toni’s Top 10 Travel Tips: Santa Fe, New Mexico

10.  Inn of the Anasazi

This Rosewood property is just steps away from the historic plaza and many Santa Fe sites.  Walk into the lobby, and be greeted by the wonderful aroma of mesquite firewood and mouth-watering cuisine prepared by Chef Juan.  Some of his specialties are the empanadas and egg yolk ricotta and spinach ravioli, and for breakfast, don’t leave without trying the blue corn and blueberry flapjacks.  The Inn of the Anasazi is dog friendly, and many of its luxury rooms have cozy fireplaces to enjoy.

Inn of the Anasazi

9. El Santuario de Chimayo

Situated 28 miles outside of Santa Fe, thousands of people make pilgrimages each year to this tiny church in Chimayo.  It’s believed to have healing powers for those who pray for their ailments and cleanse their hands in the Holy Dirt.  Chimayo is the symbol of culture and hope in Northern New Mexico. Go and partake in the magic of this sacred town and its sanctuary.

chim

8.  Ski Santa Fe

The base elevation of Ski Santa Fe is 10,350 feet and just a fifteen-minute drive from the town center, nestled in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains.  It’s one of the highest ski areas in the United States and perfectly suited for the leisurely skier or snowboarder to the most avid, extreme winter sports aficionados.  The gorgeous vistas atop the mountain also make for other fun, wintry activities like snowshoeing, sledding, and cross-country skiing.

Ski Santa Fe

7.  Taos Pueblo

Tau-Tah or “The Place of the Red Willows” has earned the prestigious UNESCO World Heritage site designation as North America’s oldest, continuously occupied village.  For centuries, this Native American site served as a major trading center, and today, the Taos Indians are still known for their pottery, paintings, and jewelry.  This multi-leveled structure is truly a sight to see and worth the hour and a half drive from Santa Fe.  About 150 people live in the village proper, and 1,900 Taos Indians live on the surrounding Taos Pueblo lands.

Taos Pueblo

6.  Canyon Road

With more than 250 galleries, Santa Fe is an art lover’s paradise, and the array of art to choose from is really quite amazing: modern and traditional art, photography, sculpture, pottery, textiles, and more.  Canyon Road is the heart of this artsy city and scene.  Look for Michael Heningtons Gallery to find some of the best pieces, rich in culture and storytelling.  That’s where we found the wonderful works of one of our favorite young artists Ryan Cunningham.

Canyon Road
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5.  Geronimo

I’ve had the privilege of having wonderful food all over the world, and there are two restaurants that are my absolute favorites, Le Duc in Paris and Geronimo in Santa Fe.  Geronimo is a lot easier to get to and doesn’t require a six-month wait like Le Duc, but aside from that, it’s the most delectable meal.  The must-tries there are the: Hudson Valley Foie Gras, Fiery Sweet Chile and Honey Mexican Prawns, Peppery Elk Tenderloin, and Banana Cream Pie.

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4.  10,000 Waves

Maybe it’s all the years that I spent traveling abroad or the fact that I grew up swimming in rivers, but whatever the reason, I gravitate toward natural hot springs and earthy spas.  Even the short drive through the National Forest to get there from Santa Fe is therapeutic.  Inspired by the gorgeous mountain hot springs resorts in Japan, at 10,000 Waves, you can’t go wrong with the reasonable prices and unique services.

10,000 Waves

3.   Santa Fe Artists Market Winter Shows

This outdoor art exhibition alternates between the Railyard and Cathedral Park, two of the most unique and beautiful venues in Santa Fe.  There are over 100 active local artists whose diverse work produces a fun and festive setting.  Meet the artists and take home your very own piece of Santa Fe.

Santa Fe Artists Market Show

2.  Dragon Room Lounge at the Pink Adobe

This little haunt is one of the top 19 bars in the world and probably one of the only ones that is frequented by the locals.  I always gauge how authentic and good a place is by the support of its citizens.  Come see the real Santa Fe, and don’t forget to ask for the Taos Lightning Storm 12 (Taos Lightning Rye Whiskey, Ginger Beer, splash of St. Germain Elderflower, Peychauds bitters and fresh lemon juice).

Dragon Room Lounge

1.Santa Fe Restaurant Week

This year’s incredibly fabulous foodie event is from February 23 – March 2, 2014.  Around 100 restaurants throughout New Mexico participate, and I’m talking about the best of the best renowned local chefs.  Reservations are encouraged, so make sure to check with Open Table or directly with the restaurant to make sure that they’re participating in this deliciously fun event.  ¡Buen Provecho!

Santa Fe Restaurant Week

Now, go and find what you’ve been seeking…

 

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