Monday, January 23, 2012

2012 SW Travel Destinations - SANTA FE, NEW MEXICO

Come on in...what would a travelogue of the SW be without that requisite blue door?  By the way, the ability to enlarge photos here by clicking on them, has been restored to the original configuration - no black photo strip with smaller photos any longer. Click away, and click again - they will enlarge enough to not need magnifiers now!
Situated at 7,000 feet in the foothills of the southern Rocky Mountains, Santa Fe was founded between 1607 and 1610, making it the second oldest city as well as the highest (in elevation) and oldest capital in the U.S. Today, its unique offerings of art, culture and ancient traditions make it a world-class tourist destination, drawing more than 1 million visitors each year.
The city's full name when founded was "La Villa Real de la Santa Fé de San Francisco de Asís" ("The Royal Town of the Holy Faith of St. Francis of Assisi") – the shortened "Santa Fe" literally translates into “holy faith” in Spanish.
The City of Santa Fe was originally occupied by a number of Pueblo Indian villages with founding dates between 1050 to 1150.
The Santa Fe Plaza is a National Historic Landmark.  The city-square was originally, and is still to this day, the center gathering place in town - "the heart of Santa Fe." The landmark has since grown into a playground for many tourists interested in Spanish, Native American, and Mexican cultures, including music, design, jewelry, art and dance, and a grand place to rest your feet and soak it all in...
We actually watched a ribbon waving wedding procession, joyfully parading through the heart of The Plaza, this trip.
The Palace of the Governors is an adobe structure located on Palace Avenue on the Plaza. It served as the seat of government for the State of New Mexico for centuries. The Palace of the Governors is the oldest continuously occupied public building in the United States.
Since its establishment, the Museum at The Palace of the Governors has worked to protect, preserve and promote traditional Southwest Native American arts and crafts. Museum policy reserves the portal of the Palace of the Governors for the use of authorized participants in the Native American Vendors Program to display and sell wares they have made.
Music and opera are well represented in Santa Fe with the annual Santa Fe Opera productions, which take place between late June and late August each year. 
The city and the surrounding areas have a high concentration of artists. They have come, over the decades, to capture on canvas and in other media, the natural beauty of the landscape, the flora and the fauna. Santa Fe is home to world-class museums, as well as beautiful art galleries, many of which are located around the historic downtown Plaza, and up Canyon Road.
If you travel to Santa Fe, plan on a few days, at's awful hard to take in all the splendor and charm this town has to offer in just one  day. Look up...look down - you never know where you'll find an interesting tidbit of history.
Next up, more Santa Fe to come (told you it couldn't be done in one day) - art galleries, restaurants and, it was a summer of horrific forest fires on the outskirts of town...Happy Monday!


Jackie said...

Oh I remember the fires! I hope I can go hang out with you all next year!! I really want to see this place it is on my bucket list!

Anonymous said...

Can't say enough about this website – its alot better than mine.

Cindy said...

I LOVE Santa Fe! I try to go thru Santa Fe and Taos on my way to Denver. ( a little out of the way, but so worth it!) I never get tired of the scenery. Great pictures!