Explore, immerse and discover. With Destination Discovery, you’ll experience our unique destination from a local’s perspective. Whether you have an hour, an afternoon, or a day, Destination Discovery will provide you with insider recommendations for authentically-inspired local experiences, no matter how much or how little time you have available. Discover our Destination!
Exploring the vast high desert landscape around Santa Fe is a special experience not to be missed. For a great day trip head just south of town on 1-25 to Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks National Monument, a spectacular collection of cone-shaped rock formations produced by volcanic eruptions that occurred 6 to 7 million years ago. Next head to the Turquoise Trail Sculpture Garden and Studio via Bonanza Creek Road. The 35 acre tract of land features contemporary larger than life sculptures set against the stunning backdrop of the Southwest. Movie buffs will want to stop at Bonanza Creek Movie Ranch. The ranch is spread out over several thousands of acres and features over 5 ponds, one movie town and 2 home sets. More than 130 movies have been filmed there, including the 1955 classic The Man from Laramie. Reservations for tours are required so be sure to call the Ranch at least 24-hours prior to your visit. Finish the day in Madrid, NM browsing the eclectic galleries and boutiques. Be sure to stop in the Mine Shaft Tavern for an authentic New Mexico green chile cheeseburger - the perfect way to warm up, before heading back to Santa Fe via the Turquoise trail scenic byway.
Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks Nat. Mon. | Cochiti | (505) 761-8700
Turquoise Trail Sculpture Garden | 3453 NM-14 | (505) 471- 4688
Bonanza Creek Movie Ranch | 15 Bonanza Creek Ln | (505) 471- 4248 Madrid, NM | On the Scenic Turquoise Trail (State Highway 14)
Mine Shaft Tavern | 2846 NM-14, Madrid, NM | (505) 473-0743
Exploring on foot is one the best ways to experience downtown Santa Fe! From the hotel entrance turn right on to Old Santa Fe trail towards the Plaza. Along the way stop at Senor Murphy’s Candy maker, creator of the delectable Green Chile Pistachio Bark. Next, make your way to the Plaza and discover authentic handmade Native American jewelry at the Palace of the Governors, the oldest government building in the U.S. and location of the New Mexico State History Museum. You won’t want to miss a stop at Susan’s Christmas Shop on Palace Ave. This charming store is revered by locals and visitors alike for their impressive collection of local handmade ornaments – an enchanting experience any time of year. For an afternoon pick-me-up visit Kakawa Chocolate House on Paseo de Peralta. Rest your feet as you indulge in the classic sipping chocolate at this quaint café located in a historic adobe home. While you’re there, stroll down De Vargas street to see the Oldest House in the Country, now a museum and gift shop. You’ll find plenty more to see and do along the way so be sure to have your camera ready.
Senor Murphy’s | 100 E San Francisco St | (505) 982-0461
Palace of the Governors | 105 W Palace Ave | (505) 476-5100
Susan’s Christmas Shop | 115 E Palace Ave | (505) 983-2127
Kakawa Chocolate House | 1050 Paseo De Peralta | (505) 982-0388
Oldest House | 215 E De Vargas St | (505) 988-1944
Santa Fe’s 1.6 million acre National Forest is an expansive winter playground. From novice to advanced, the mountain offers something for everyone. Start your day at Cottam’s Ski Shop off Hyde Park Road for snowshoe and cross country ski rentals. There’s also a groomed sled trail out back, perfect for families or those who just want to unleash their inner child. Continue up Hyde Park Road to the Big Tesuque Trail, a favorite for alpine snow shoeing this single track trail puts you right in the thicket of the towering Aspens. If cross country skiing is more your speed, head to the Aspen Vista Trail. The wide fire road trail offers just the right incline for a peaceful climb up and slightly exhilarating decent. For those looking for a more subtle cross country track, continue up Hyde Park Road to the Norski trail. This two mile loop offers level tracks and is protected by towering Aspens. Thrill seekers flock to Ski Santa Fe to play on the downhill slopes. Tottemoff’s Café is located mid-run offering great libations, live music and fantastic green chile stew. Once the winter snow makes way for spring flowers, each of these trails transform into stunning hiking and biking trails.
Cottam’s Ski Shop | 740 Hyde Park Road | (505) 982-0495
Big Tesuque Trail | Hyde Park, NM-475 to US Forest Rd 102 Aspen Vista Trail | Hyde Park, NM-475 to Aspen Vista Picnic Area
Norski Trail | Hyde Park, NM-475 to Norki Trail Head Ski Santa Fe | 1477 NM-475 | (505) 982-4429