Things to do in Santa Fe
Santa Fe is truly a town for everyone with sweeping outdoor expanses that attract thrill-seeking adventurers and lovely art galleries and folk festivals that cater to a more subdued crowd. There are things to do in Santa Fe no matter what kind of traveler you are. Nature buffs should head to the Sangre de Cristo Mountains and admire the stunning trails that tempt hikers and trail runners with their clean alpine air and sparkling views. Hotels can arrange for horseback riding, mountain biking, skiing, white water rafting on the Rio Grande and Chama Rivers.
For more relaxing things to do in Santa Fe, travelers can spend days wandering through the more than 250 art galleries that showcase some of the finest artists in America. Canyon Road, the cluster of adobes that make up the bustling main street in town, have around 80 galleries to look at, but there are many smaller neighborhoods that offer less foot traffic during your art excursions, like the Railyard District. If you’ve exhausted your art gallery list in town and are still wondering what to do in Santa Fe, rent a car and drive 90-minutes up to Taos, NM. Taos has made its name as a quirky town of artists and writers who’ve fled to the gorgeous mountain town for inspiration.
All year there will be moments of enchantment in Santa Fe, it’s just in the nature of New Mexico. Winter travelers can witness the magical farolitos, candles in paper lanterns that line the streets at night. Cars are cleared off the streets and the crisp smell of piñón wood lingers on the air. Check out the list below for the best of what to do in Santa Fe.
The 6,290-foot-high peak is a landmark along the Old Santa Fe Trail.
This Anasazi settlement has petroglyphs and wooden ladders that lead to ancient cave dwellings.
Even non-opera fanatics come out in astounding numbers during the short but sweet Santa Fe Opera season, which lasts from late June through August.
At O’Keeffe’s second home, Ghost Ranch, take a guided tour through the surrounding landscapes that inspired her.
The hub of Santa Fe’s avant-garde art scene, this nonprofit contemporary museum has hosted seven biennials, among the nation's only modern art biennials featuring international artists since 1995.
Every year serious art buyers and trinket hounds descend on Santa Fe for this weekend-long event, celebrating hispanic culture in these parts.
Drive through the chichi-rustic village of Tesuque, just north of town, to reach this vast sculpture gallery and working bronze foundry. Stroll the lawns and gardens and admire hulking statues and stabiles by more than 100 of the nation's most acclaimed contemporary sculptors.
Arguably Santa Fe's most photographed building, this ornate Romanesque cathedral stands in grandiose contrast to much of the city's traditional Pueblo Revival architecture.
Stop by for the century-old steam train, mining-history relics, and old-fashioned melodramas performed in the adjacent Engine House Theater.
The town's historic Plaza has a brand-new $125 million sibling, the refreshingly modern Railyard. Located on Old West holy ground - the storied stop of the Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe Railway - the complex is home to a performance space, museum, and market.
It's easy to miss this simple storefront gallery tucked down a quiet side street near the Plaza, but duck your head inside and you'll discover walls hung with some of the mid-20th century's most revered photographs.