Summer's in full swing in Santa Fe County, where exhilarating outdoor adventures keep you on your toes. Here in the southernmost stretch of the Rocky Mountains, find your joy as you hike and bike winding mountain trails, splash your way to gorgeous waterfalls, and explore state parks packed with history and stunning scenery. Immerse yourself in the region's rich traditions with the return of in-person annual events, including a lively wine festival, the world-famous Santa Fe Indian Market and the 97th Burning of Zozobra. When you're ready to embrace life at a slower pace, take in the healing waters at a restorative spa set in an oasis of beauty. There are so many ways to celebrate summer with us.
Re-connect with Nature
“Heaven is under our feet as well as over our heads,” Henry David Thoreau wrote in “Walden,” and once you venture into the beautiful country of northern New Mexico, you see what he meant, especially at Nambé Falls. Part of Nambé Falls and Lake Recreation Area, this spectacular site, with its stunning double-drop waterfall, has re-opened to the public—just in time, as this is a perfect place to cool off in the heat of summer. One easy hike leads to views of the waterfall from above, and another short trail takes you through a river to a beach area by the lowest pool. Take the second option and you'll splash through water and get wet, a real treat in summer.
There's so much to do in Cerrillos Hills State Park, steeped in history and surrounded by sweeping mountain views. Discover the area's turquoise, lead and silver mining history along five miles of interpretive trails amid hills formed by volcano remnants 30 million years ago. This treasured park also offers hiking, mountain biking, birding and picnicking. Don't miss the Star Party, Tarantula Hike and other cool events.
For some of the best hiking trails in the country, head to Dale Ball Trails, a 25-mile network through the Sangre de Cristo foothills. With panoramic views and paths that wind through juniper forests, this is a paradise for hikers and mountain bikers that covers an expansive area between Santa Fe County and the Santa Fe National Forest. Locals love these trails, in part because an advanced wayfinding system makes it easy to navigate.
High in the foothills of the Rockies, Hyde Memorial State Park offers an elevated getaway with campgrounds tucked into ponderosa pine forests and awe-inspiring alpine trails for hikers of every level. Along the way you'll see mountain meadows filled with wildflowers of every color, silvery streams rushing by as well as deer and other wildlife. This is the place to connect with nature, and reconnect with yourself.
Exciting Events are Back
Raise a glass as you make a toast to New Mexico, the first wine-making region in the country, during the annual Santa Fe Wine Festival at El Rancho de las Golondrinas, August 14-15. For nearly 30 years, this lively event has brought locals and visitors together to celebrate New Mexico's winemakers. You'll sample award-winning wines from around the state, and purchase bottles to take home. Enjoy live music and take in the sights on the grounds of the Southwest's premiere living history museum.
Shop for exquisite treasures at the Southwestern Association for Indian Arts 99th Annual Santa Fe Indian Market, August 21-22. This year's market will be an in-person, limited ticketed event, allowing visitors to shop in assigned time slots. This year's smaller, curated market will include Native American artists and artisans as well as some of the longtime annual events, such as the fashion show and the live auction. The event also includes an online market.
Who isn't ready to say goodbye to the woes of the past year? That's exactly what you'll do, when you join locals in one of the best-loved traditions of the year. The 97th Burning of Zozobra takes place on Friday, September 3. This pageantry of live music, dance and spectacle culminates with the ritual of wildly cheering on Zozobra, a menacing 50-foot tall puppet also known as Old Man Gloom, as he goes up in flames, taking all your gloom with him. This is one event you won't want to miss.
Get social with us on social media! Meet some of our engaging locals—business owners, entrepreneurs, artists, chefs—who talk about what's hot and happening in Santa Fe County. We're calling this exciting new video series Todo Local (translated to Everything Local), because everyone's a local when they tune in and pick up some great insider tips.
Join us for the debut of our first Todo Local video, showcasing Santa Fe County's Ale & Spirits Trail. You'll hear from the owners of the wildly popular Santa Fe Brewing Co., Beer Creek Brewing Co. and Tumbleroot Brewery and Distillery. Our series premieres on Facebook Live on August 26th.
A Spa Sanctuary
When you're ready to relax and unwind, spend the day at Ojo Santa Fe Spa Resort, where ancient hot springs in a lush valley provide a natural sanctuary. Soak and float in thermal pools and a saltwater swimming pool, then enjoy a restorative massage. Next up, maybe a yoga class followed by lunch at Blue Heron restaurant's spring-fed pond. Savor healthy fare like a salmon-veggie wrap, or indulge your appetite and dig into an iconic New Mexico green chile cheeseburger. Explore winding trails in a cottonwood forest or just sway in a hammock beneath a turquoise sky. However you spend this day, you'll marvel at how your stress simply slips away.