Santa Fe, New Mexico

One of our favorite places to visit for a long weekend is Santa Fe, New Mexico. It is unlike anywhere else we have been to in this country.

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Santa Fe has a unique style and charm. You cannot get very far without seeing these beautiful chile ristras. The southwestern architecture is unique and the gardens are abundant and flowing.

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There are many ways to keep busy in Santa Fe. Often there is an art show or festival going on. There are great museums, including the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum which is a favorite. Santa Fe is an enclave for artists and has many galleries to browse. Canyon Road is well known for it’s galleries and restaurants. Seeing the opera at the Santa Fe Opera House is a highlight due to it’s notoriety and it’s open air venue.

As much as the architecture, culture and style of Santa Fe are unique, so is it’s food. There are many, many wonderful restaurants to choose from. On our most recent trip, we had a memorable dinner at La Boca – a gourmet Spanish-style tapas restaurant with incredibly creative and flavorful dishes.

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A somewhat touristy spot but fun for people-watching is Coyote Cafe. We sat on the 2nd floor balcony for a drink and some ceviche, overlooking the busy street below in the center of town.

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I loved this sculpture of The Virgin of Guadalupe. In Santa Fe art is everywhere.

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Two of our favorite stops on this trip were the famous Cafe Pasqual’s Restaurant and the candy and curiosity shop – Todos Santos.

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Cafe Pasqual’s is a Santa Fe institution and once you’ve been here, you’ll know why. The food is the epitome of southwestern home cooking and is comforting, warm and inviting as if your southwestern grandmother was cooking just for you. We had avoided it in the past because of the long lines but got there early this time and waited it out. It was worth it!

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Todos Santos is primarily a candy and confectionary shop but it’s really so much more. The chocolates were handmade with interesting southwestern flavors and beautifully wrapped. But it was the decor, artwork, crafts and odd items that made this worth the trip. Something they are known for are their PEZ dispensers that are transformed into works of art. I had seen them at a friend’s house in her collection and had to bring some home.

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There is much more to Santa Fe than can be included in one visit (or one post). Suffice to say that if you haven’t been to Santa Fe, it should be on your list. And even if you have been more than once like me, there are many reasons to go again. Next time I am going to try to stay at Ten Thousand Waves, a Japanese spa that a friend told me about.  And I’m sure that there will be no problem finding more amazing places to eat and beautiful art to view.

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