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Santa Fe Visit

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Jun 26th, 2011, 10:51 AM
  #1
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Santa Fe Visit

We will spend the first week of August in Santa Fe and will attend two opera performances. We'd like to hike if it isn't too hot. and we plan a day trip to Taos. Any other suggestions for what we might do, especially if the weather is extremely hot duing the day? We've rented a house and plan to prepare some meals there but hope to visit several of Santa Fe's good restaurants. We love good food and are especially interested in restaurants with typical food of the area.

We would appreciate suggestions for activities and things not to miss.. We're considering Tent Rocks, bandelier National Park, the Canyon Road galleries and shops, Chaco Canyon and some hiking trails in the area.

I have a list of restaurants including The Shed, Andiamo, Bistro 315, Santa Cafe, O'Keefe Cafe, The Compound and Orlando's in Taos for lunch.

Comments or other suggestions would be much appreciated. I have used the Europe forum extensively but this is our first experience with the US forum. Thanks in advance.

MaryAnn
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Jun 26th, 2011, 10:57 AM
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There are lots of threads on here on Santa Fe; I suggest that you spend a bit of time looking at what's already on here and then come back with questions that might be a little more specific. Try searching with my name and Santa Fe in the advance search option, lots of suggestions from me and other Santa Fe knowledgeable Fodorites.

Any outdoor stuff [hiking etc] should be done in morning -it is HOT here already. Also, make sure you know about altitude and how to prepare for it, especially if you are coming from sea level.

You have some good restaurants picked. Bandelier maybe have restrictions due to fire danger,.
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Jun 26th, 2011, 11:01 AM
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Ditto about the altitude awareness! We're at 7,000 feet elevation...and many of our friends who visit complain of feeling tires/light-headed during their first day of a visit.

Also...check about any big festivals going on. Summer is Festival season here in SFE.

PS--your listed restaurants are all EXCELLENT!
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Jun 26th, 2011, 05:35 PM
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Thanks to both of you. The information is helpful - especially the cautionary note about the altitude. Some of us will be arriving from the Sierra Nevada and others from sea level. Does it take about a day to adjust?
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Jun 26th, 2011, 06:06 PM
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Could be more than a day, different for each person. Drink LOTS of water, way more than you think you need. Since it is so dry here, you can't feel yourself getting dehydrated. Also, sunscreen,hats, sunglasses, chapstick are all a must.
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Jun 27th, 2011, 06:50 AM
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Two restaurants you might want to add to your list

Max's http://www.maxssantafe.com/

Restaurant Martin http://www.restaurantmartinsantafe.com/

Both excellent
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Jun 27th, 2011, 06:59 AM
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Yes! Those are 2 more great places for dinner.
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Jun 27th, 2011, 09:42 AM
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We live at close to sea level, and have never experienced any altitude-related issues the 1/2 dozen times we've been to Santa Fe. But, we don't plan anything too strenuous for the first day or two either.

I suppose everyone has to go to Bandelier at least once, but we actually found the visit to Puye to be a more intimate, and in a way, spiritual experience. Tsankawi is also interesting.

If you're into Farmers Markets, Santa Fe's is a pretty good one. We've only been on a Saturday, but I think it has an expanded schedule during the summer. Some nice museums in the area, too. We particularly like the Museum of Indian Arts & Culture up on Museum Hill. And, since you mention an interest in the local food, check out the schedule at Santa Fe's School of Cooking. My wife's enjoyed a couple classes there.
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Jun 28th, 2011, 05:06 AM
  #9
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Thanks to everyone for your helpful relies. We love Farmers Markets and have save the website for the Santa Fe market. Since we are renting a house, it will be fun to shop there.
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Jun 28th, 2011, 05:37 AM
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santafe.org/Visiting_Santa_Fe/Things_to_Do/Road_Trips/Taos_and_the_High_Road

Had a wonderful time there late August September

my wife was doing an art show there

Hilton on the Plaza was great bidding Priceline $69

got upgrades as an HHonors member hotels close to tha Plaza

with free parking best this was the cheapest I found.

elevation made it cool we hike Bandelier was nice

also did the high road cool and nice thought the pueblo

sort of tourist trappy enjoyed the museums.

The Shed was my fav there lunch cheaper less crowded better

vibe also the Cayote Cafe was nice...

yelp.com for good food reviews

overall we passed a very nice time there 7500 ft high

so take time to adjust easy to overdo get fatigued.
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Jul 8th, 2011, 09:09 AM
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We're firming our plans for our week in Santa Fe. We'll be attending the opera 2 nights and the chamber music festival another evening. We have a good list of restaurants but the list seems short of southwestern/New Mexican cuisine. Our list includes The Shed and La Choza. Anyone have others to suggest. We plan to include Andiamo, The Compound, Santacafe, the O'Keefe Cafe and perhaps others but are still looking for restaurants with typical food of the region.


Thanks so much for all of the information you have already provided. We're really looking forward to our stay.
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Jul 10th, 2011, 01:43 PM
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For breakfast add Tia Sophia's to your list which is on San Francisco on the plaza. They serve traditional New Mexican cuisine for breakfast and lunch only and no Sunday's. They are popular and have a wait at times but it moves quickly so don't get discouraged if there is a line. Also, Cafe Pasquals is very good for any meal but is known for it's breakfast items. I think she serves one of the best mole sauces I've ever had (chicken mole enchiladas). This place is very popular and the wait can be long on holiday weekends.

I would choose The Shed over La Choza as it's by the plaza, it's the same family as La Choza which you'll need to drive and while I've been eating at both for many years The Shed is a favorite for me and my friends whom I've sent there. It has the most charming courtyard seating but after all these years we love eating at the bar (first-come, first served) with the locals. Green Chile Stew, a Shed Red 'rita with a cheese enchilada smothered in red chile (a #4) is delicious as is the blue corn taco and enchilada plate (#10 & 11).

Anasazi for a pre or post-dinner cocktail. They have a nice patio with umbrellas serving a nice menu of snacks and meals and the bar inside is a place we enjoy many times during a visit. They have one of the best lamb dishes in Santa Fe.

If the weather is nice I recommend dining outside at La Casa Sena, which is located in a courtyard down the same portal that The Shed is located. If you see Goler Shoes the entrance to the courtyard is right by that store.

Bistro 315 is a go-to favorite for us and has been consistently delicious for many years. They have outdoor dining as well albeit 6 tables or so. Very good food and nice wine list, too.

Il Piatto & Osteria D'Assisi are other Italian restaurants to consider.

For food of the region, that is Northern New Mexican cooking which includes The Shed, Tia Sophia, etc. A lot of the restaurants you've mentioned and others listed will have a Southwest influence to their style. Geronimo is still on an Asian kick but is still delicious.

It's fun to have a margarita on the patio at Ore House. Food isn't worth giving up a meal in Santa Fe for but the people watching in the plaza is fun. Maria's on Cordova is good New Mexican and is known for their margaritas and tequilas. But watch out as their drinks pack a punch!

You'll love the opera house. Watching the sun set while enjoying the opera makes for a magical evening.
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Aug 9th, 2011, 08:59 AM
  #13
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We spent a wonderful week in Santa Fe. We loved everything about it - the music, the food, the weather and the people. What a great city! Too bad it is a bit of a trip from the east coast or we'd be regular visitors.

We stayed in a condo about 10 minutes walk from the plaza and loved having our own kitchen and a lovely walled patio for relaxing meals. We had a car but pretty much used it only for day trips out of town.

We attended the opera twice - the sky was amazing both evenings and there was a "monsoon" the first evening after the performance started. The opera house was perfectly dry and a wonderful vantage point for the dramatic weather and the dramatic production. We also attended the Chamber Music Festival. All performances were first rate.

During the day we toured the area, going to Taos one day and hiking on the Rio Grande gorge. What a sight! We drove on the High Road to Taos and on the Low Road returning and thought both were beautiful. We briefly checked out Canyon Road but didn't linger. We hiked the Tusuque as well. We ran out of time to visit the Turquoise Trail. There was a large art fair ("Girls, Inc"?)at the plaza on Saturday and Sunday where we spent lots of time looking and a little time buying. We loved the Farmers Market and cooked at home a few times. We visited the O'Keefe Museum where, sadly, they they had a special exhibition and had left only 4 O'Keefe paintings on view- not many for the museum that has the largest collection of O'Keefes in the world. We also visited the folk art museum and the SF art museum.

We ate at O'Keefe Cafe, Santacafe, The Shed, Andiamo and Orlandos (in Taos) and would recommend all. Surprisingly, all except The Shed had lots of empty tables. Someone said the economy is having an impact on Santa Fe tourism. We had delicious gelato at "O Gelato".

One of my lingering memories is of the sky. It is so very blue and the clouds are so interesting and variable throughout the day and week. We loved Santa Fe and hope to return soon.
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Aug 9th, 2011, 09:27 AM
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Glad you had such a grand time, Santa Fe is really a special city. Next time you come to NM, make some time for ABQ - there is really lots to see and do here too!
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Aug 9th, 2011, 04:18 PM
  #15
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DebitNM, I got lots of help from your posts. Thanks so much for all the information that helped make our trip such a pleasure!
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