Santa Fe, New Mexico, is one of the most remarkable towns in the Southwest. It boasts a rich history, a diverse art scene, and spectacular scenery, offering an array of recreation opportunities for outdoorsy types. Although Albuquerque is larger and more urban, if you're moving to New Mexico, you may want to consider Santa Fe. Here are six reasons to move to and stay in Santa Fe:
Santa Feans are known to be some of the most outdoorsy people in the country, and it's easy to see why. The city is bordered by Santa Fe National Forest to the east, offering acres upon acres of uninterrupted nature. In the city, Santa Fe Railyard Park has wide open spaces for recreation, biking and walking trails, and children's play areas.
Plus, although some picture the city (and entire region) as one big desert, the Sangre de Cristos Mountains provide some amazing skiing opportunities. The Ski Santa Fe Resort is particularly loved by locals, who take advantage of New Mexico's sunny winters by skiing and boarding down the slopes of the 12,000-foot peak.
Santa Fe is world-renowned for its art scene, found all throughout the city's many galleries, cafes, shops, and restaurants. Canyon Road is the city's main art thoroughfare, boasting dozens of galleries and boutiques full of paintings, photographs, pottery, rugs, folk art, handmade jewelry and more.
That's not the only art worth seeing, though! Fiestas de Santa Fe is an annual celebration held each autumn to commemorate the Spanish colonists' conquest of the city in the 17th century. The Fiestas include reenactments, parades, an arts and crafts market in the city's Plaza, mariachi music and religious ceremonies. Dating back to 1712, it's the oldest civic celebration held in the U.S.
People have lived in and around Santa Fe for centuries. In fact, the Indian Pueblo Ogapoge once existed near what is now Santa Fe's downtown plaza area– it was likely built in the 2nd century.
When Spanish colonists began to build the city in the 1600s, they centered it around the Santa Fe Plaza, which is still considered the city's cultural mecca. On either side of the plaza are two amazing historic buildings: The Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi and the Palace of the Governors, both of which were originally built as adobe buildings in the 1600s.
Another great reason to move to Santa Fe? The cuisine! The New Mexico city is well known for its amazing New Mexican food, and especially its green chile. You'll have year-round access to farmers markets, great restaurants, and even the oldest microbrewery in New Mexico: Santa Fe Brewing Company!
Because of Santa Fe's history with Native Americans and Spanish settlers, both cultures are very pervasive within the city.
Head to the Palace of the Governors, the Santa Fe Indian Market or the Native American museums on Museum Hill to learn more about that particular history and culture and how it's affected Santa Fe as a city.
The Hispanic culture can be clearly seen through visits to the historic missions or the Santuario de Guadalupe shrine.
Santa Fe is bursting with local art of all kinds, but it's also a huge music capital of the U.S. Opera is an especially important part of the local music scene, hosting an annual opera festival called Santa Fe Opera. The festival takes place at the outdoor Crosby Theater and is responsible for debuting dozens of American and International operas.