Santa Fe, the capital of New Mexico, which has been inhabited for thousands of years by the Tewa peoples, was established by Spanish colonists in 1610. The city, which has been listed as one the ten best places to retire in the US, has been designated as a UNESCO Creative City in Design, Crafts and Folk Art due to its artistic and cultural richness.
Cafe Pasqual's, a colorful yet unpretentious eatery in downtown Santa Fe, specializes in New Mexican cuisine inspired by the culinary traditions of New Mexico, Old Mexico, the Mediterranean and Asia. Featuring homemade bread and ice cream, as well as organic beef, pork, eggs, dairy and produce, Cafe Pasqual's, which has been in business for nearly 40 years, is owned by chef Katharine Kagel, a cookbook author, and James Beard Award winner. Highlights include the breakfast chorizo burrito with scrambled eggs and home fries, the red or green chile organic enchiladas, the vegetarian quinoa burger, and the carne asada skewers with grilled spice-rubbed skirt steak, guacamole, and tomato-jalapeño salsa. The restaurant offers communal table seating, ideal for large groups or families.
Santa Fe Scavenger Hunt Adventure
While in Santa Fe, take part in a scavenger hunt, a fun way to explore the city. Intended for teams of two to five people, the challenge begins on the Old Santa Fe Trail, which guides visitors along the historic and cultural sights of the city, where they will encounter churches, cathedrals and countless works of art. Using a smartphone, the scavenger hunt can be completed at any pace over the course of three hours. The software, which tracks team points and publicly posts the final score is an exciting activity for families, friends and those with a competitive edge.
Santa Fe Railyard Arts District Food Tour
The Santa Fe Railyard Arts District Food Tour, a three and a half hour walking food tour, enables visitors to understand the impact the arrival of the railroad in 1880 had on the city. The Railyard Arts District, a lively and dynamic neighborhood, which features some of the city’s best food, is the perfect place to understand the history of the city. The tour includes two sit-down restaurant visits, a wine tasting, and an additional snack stop. Visitors will meet and greet a number of chefs, distillers, and brewers in the area and see the Santa Fe Farmer's Market, the Santuario De Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe Church, which dates back to 1777, and the SITE Contemporary Arts Museum, a 18,000-square foot space that features renowned international and contemporary art exhibits.
La Boca, a Spanish restaurant serving small plates paired with Mediterranean and South American wines, was founded in 2006 by chef James Campbell Caruso. A winner of the International Wine and Food Society’s Award of Excellence, La Boca is an ideal spot for a carefree lunch, a lively happy hour or an outstanding dinner. The restaurant offers an intimate setting that features a top-notch wine bar and weekly live music. During happy hour, from 5 to 6 pm, select tapas are up to 50 percent off menu prices, and there are numerous wine and beer specials. Menu standouts include the grilled octopus with sunchoke purée, the paella with wild caught shrimp, the New Mexico flat-iron steak, and the spicy patatas bravas. For dessert, try the lemon ginger crema catalana or the gateau Basque.
Must-visit spots in Santa Fe include Canyon Road, which features a wealth of art galleries that display a wide variety of contemporary, Southwestern, indigenous American, and experimental art, as well as Russian, Taos Masters, and Native American works. The city also features numerous outdoor sculptures, which range from Baroque to Post-modern, including statues of Francis of Assisi and Kateri Tekakwitha. Performance Santa Fe, founded in 1937, attracts renowned musicians, dancers, and actors to the city from August through May. Also, the Santa Fe Opera presents productions from late June to late August. Other live events include the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, the Santa Fe Desert Chorale Festival, and productions by the internationally-acclaimed Aspen Santa Fe Ballet, and the Maria Benitez Institute for Spanish Arts, which offers Flamenco and Spanish Guitar performances year-round.