MUST-Do Experiences in Santa Fe

For those venturing to “The City Different” for the first time, there are several must-see attractions that you absolutely cannot overlook. Regardless of the duration of your stay, it’s imperative to experience these iconic sites that define Santa Fe’s unique charm. Two Casitas offers the following recommendations to ensure that your visit to Santa Fe is complete before you bid adieu.

Canyon Road – The Art and Soul of Santa Fe

Discover Canyon Road, Santa Fe’s hidden gem. Home to the second-largest collection of art galleries and artists after New York City, this vibrant art scene boasts hundreds of galleries, most prominently lining Canyon Road. Among them is Waxlander Gallery, owned by Phyllis Kapp for 27 years, situated at 622 Canyon. After exploring this mile-long street of galleries, treat yourself to award-winning dining experiences, with El Farol being a personal favorite. On your return journey, admire the centuries-old architecture along Acequia Madre, a testament to Santa Fe’s rich history.

While many first-time visitors flock to Santa Fe Plaza, Canyon Road offers a distinct cultural experience, blending art, dining, and history against the backdrop of the Sangre De Christo Mountains. With over 100 galleries showcasing a diverse range of art, from Native American to contemporary works, Canyon Road invites you to immerse yourself in its unique ambiance. Originally a residential area, it evolved organically into an arts district, preserving its rustic charm and artist-owned galleries.

For a truly magical experience, visit Canyon Road during the annual farolito walk on Christmas Eve. Join in the festive atmosphere as luminarias light up the street, accompanied by caroling and bonfires—a cherished tradition that epitomizes the holiday spirit in Santa Fe.

As a personal recommendation, explore Waxlander Gallery for your art shopping needs, owned by Wendy’s mother. Plan your Canyon Road adventure with a comprehensive list of establishments and indulge in art, jewelry, or culinary delights. Don’t miss out on this enriching journey through Santa Fe’s artistic heartland!

Santa Fe Plaza

Located near the Santa Fe Plaza, San Miguel Mission Church is recognized as the oldest church in the U.S. San Miguel Mission is located one block south of the famous Loretto Chapel where it is believed that Saint Joseph built a miraculous staircase. There is no missing Santa Fe`s landmark, The Cathedral of Saint Francis of Assisi.

The Plaza is also where you can shop while visiting these sites. Native American jewelry is sold under the portal. Also, the Museum of New Mexico and The Fine Art Museum are certainly worth of a visit. The Georgia O`Keeffe Museum is located only blocks off of the Plaza and a wonderful restaurant is right next door.

Walk into La Fonda Hotel, the oldest and best preserved hotel in Santa Fe, with great bars and restaurants worth visiting. Top off your tour by climbing up to the cross of the martyrs where you will get 360 degree views of Santa Fe and learn the history along the way.

The RailYard District

We affectionately call this district “the new Soho of Santa Fe”. The RailYard is truly the new gathering place for all of Santa Fe’s’ locals and visitors. Have a great meal and view contemporary art, see exciting performances, choose from the best of locally grown produce, ride your bike or take a train, find a gift for a friend, relax or play in the RailYard Park. Make sure you set aside some time to check out the Santa Fe Farmers Market in the RailYard District. Open throughout the year, you`ll find dozens of vendors selling everything from locally grown produce, flowers, cheeses, cider and tongue-numbing green chile salsa.

Experience the essence of Santa Fe with our curated list of must-do activities. From exploring the vibrant art scene along Canyon Road, indulging in award-winning dining, and admiring centuries-old architecture along Acequia Madre, to joining the festive farolito walk on Christmas Eve, Santa Fe offers a myriad of unforgettable experiences.

Enhance your stay by booking one of our vacation rentals, immersing yourself in the unique charm and comfort of Santa Fe’s accommodations while exploring the city’s rich cultural tapestry.