5 Reasons Santa Fe is Worth a Visit Any Time of Year
We like Santa Fe, New Mexico but we’ve been told multiple times that its only a summer destination…we politely disagree.
Santa Fe (Spanish for Holy Faith) is the oldest capitol city in the United States and known for its rich history, artistic culture, and of course being the most visited city in New Mexico.
Summer may seem like the most enticing time to be in here, especially if you’ve seen Georgia O’Keeffe paintings, rightfully so as everything is greener, but the town is much busier. We say if you’re in the vicinity, it’s worth a stop any time of the year. Here are five Santa Fe stops we found that are great no matter what the season!
Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi
Dedicated in 1886, the adobe and French-Romanesque Cathedral is one of the city’s most recognized and photographed landmarks. While we did snap a few photos, it’s the labyrinth that caught our attention. A word of advice, show up before 4:30pm if you want more than just a glimpse of the inside (which is all we got).
Blue Corn Café and Brewery
We love New Mexican fare and this café hit the spot dead on! We are big fans of locally-grown ingredients, authentic flavors and a nice kick of spice. The combo plate, green chili sauce and beer delivered on all fronts (totally made up for our Taos food misses). We suggest the Cerrillos Road location (the brewery is here) and sitting at the bar, it’s a great place to mingle with locals and fellow travelers.
We are always in search of a good, locally roasted cup o’ joe and that is exactly what the crew at Iconik delivered. They have a vintage vibe that goes beyond the décor with a vintage 1923 roaster. It’s wild to think that you can still use a roaster from the 20’s much less connect it to a computer to ensure the perfect roast. We left with a good coffee buzz and 3 bags of coffee…and I’m sad we didn’t purchase more.
Constructed in the 1870s, this Gothic structure once served as the Loretto Academy, operated by the Sisters of Loretto. However, what was initially a design flaw (no way to get to the choir loft) is now a mysterious carpenters “miraculous stairway”. It contains 33 steps in two full 360-degree turns, with no center or side supports. After completing the stairway, the carpenter disappeared without receiving payment for his work. However, if you want to see the stairs today it will cost you a whopping $3 because it’s privately owned and operated. The only downside is the staircase is no longer mysterious as they had to add rails for “safety”, oh well, it’s still interesting to see in person.
Finding excellent ethnic food is no small task and judging from the awards displayed on the walls, we aren’t the only ones that feel this way. This place is tucked away in a generic looking shopping center and wouldn’t exactly catch your eye in passing. But we all know the hole in the walls are some of the best finds. Owner-Chef Ahmed Obo is from Lamu which is a small island off the coast of Kenya where his mother taught him how to make the unique cuisine he serves today, and yes it’s very tasty.
Blue Mesa Alpaca Farm
Bob & Louise Hazen run a true working ranch. Aside from the farms namesake Alpaca’s they also raise and train mini mules (we didn’t even know such a thing existed before), Haflinger and Rocky Mountain horses. They’re a sweet couple that love running their farm store, giving farm tours, and teaching children and adults about Alpaca’s.
If you’re an RV’er like us, Bob and Louise allow free overnight stays to Harvests Host members. So, you can spend the whole day on the farm, explore Santa Fe and earn extra Wild Camping bragging rights.
Bonus Stop – Random Brontosaurus
Along I-25, also known as the Dinosaur Trail, sits a family of Brontosaurus and one strong T-Rex. When we talked to the young girl who lived on the property and asked “why the dinos”, she gave a ‘duh’ response of “because we live on dinosaur trail”. Worked for us! To add a cherry on top of her interesting dino family, she also told us her favorite place in town is the Cathedral Basilica. What a fantastic answer for a girl no older than 15 with dinosaurs in her front yard!