Jump into summer in Santa Fe County, where endless adventures await. Get outside for spectacular hiking and mountain biking beneath turquoise skies, then cool off at one of the most stunning waterfalls in the Southwest. Shop acclaimed farmer's markets and journey into another dimension at the world-famous interactive installation known as Meow Wolf. Whether you spend a weekend or a week in this enthralling region of the Rockies, you'll bring home amazing memories to last a lifetime.
Be sure to join PBS Television Network travel host Darley Newman for a live event, a tour of Santa Fe County on Thursday, June 2 to get ready for your trip. Find the details below.
With miles of breathtaking, wildflower-filled high desert trails, Santa Fe County offers an incredibly diverse and scenic range of terrain for hikers and mountain bikers of every level. We’re also a mecca for mountain bikers, ranked by USA Today as one of the country’s top mountain biking towns and a recipient of the Silver-Level Rider Designation by the International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA). Check out our video for an exciting look at nature's playground.
Marvel at the cascading waterfalls that tumble from 100 feet through a sheer-walled gorge at Nambé Falls and Lake Recreation Area. Part of Nambé Pueblo, this picturesque outdoor getaway north of Santa Fe is a popular spot for picnicking, hiking, fishing and camping. Two short trails, each a quarter-mile long, lead to the falls. Rent a kayak and explore the lake, which is a favorite fishing spot for locals.
Let your cares float away at scenic Santa Cruz Recreational Lake, located in the foothills of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. This summer oasis offers something for everyone, from boating and rafting to fishing, hiking, camping or simply relaxing and sharing a picnic. The serene lake sits behind the Santa Cruz Dam, built in 1929.
You’ve never seen anything like the fantastical world brought to life by Meow Wolf. This otherworldly immersive experience, created by a collaborative group of young artists, begins inside a Victorian mansion that harbors a mind-bending mystery. Follow clues as the house unfolds into twisting tunnels, secret passages and, ultimately, a parallel universe or two. Whether you solve the mystery or not, you'll have a blast letting your imagination run wild.
Children and families have been discovering the joys of learning, play and community at the Santa Fe Children’s Museum since it opened in 1985. With its giant sandpit, adobe playhouse, Southwest horticulture garden and greenhouse, puppet theater and other areas and activities, this popular museum delights all ages with its dynamic, hands-on, exploratory environment.
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Connect with nature at the Wildlife West Nature Park in Edgewood. The 122-acre wildlife refuge park and enhanced zoo, operated by the New Mexico Wildlife Association, provides a habitat for 25 species of native rescued wildlife, including elk, mountain lions and black bears and a chance to see snowy and great horned owls along the Birding Trail. The Family Music Festivals, held on various Saturdays this summer, are a fun place for live music, food truck fare and a raptor show.
A Feast of Farmers Markets
The Santa Fe Farmers’ Market is one of the oldest, largest, and most successful growers’ markets in the country, with more than 130 farmers and producers from 15 northern New Mexico counties. A bustling community hub on Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. throughout the summer, the market is the place to buy fresh produce, meat, cheese, New Mexico chile, baked goods and so many other goodies, while listening to live music and watching Santa Fe's colorful life stroll by.
Shop for fresh vegetables, fruits, herbs, and other fare, all grown in the Pojoaque Valley and northern New Mexico, at the Pueblo of Pojoaque Farmers’ and Crafts Market. Find fava beans and sugar snap peas, cilantro and saffron, peaches and chokecherries, Native crafts, flowers and more at this laid-back market at the Poeh Cultural Center in Pojoaque, held Wednesdays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m
The Eldorado Farmers’ Market offers fresh produce and dairy products, along with baked goods, jams and jellies, arts, crafts, cooking demos and live music. The friendly neighborhood market takes place at La Tienda at Eldorado Shopping Center on Fridays from 3 to 6 p.m.
A Live Event with Smithsonian Associates
Travel expert Darley Newman takes you on a virtual journey through Santa Fe County via Zoom on Thursday, June 2, 7:00 p.m. -8:30 p.m. ET in a Destination Cities streaming series special from Smithsonian Associates. The Emmy Award-nominated PBS television host shows you some of the exciting ways to experience our celebrated and unique art, culture, history, food and national parks, revealing hidden gems and internationally acclaimed attractions. Tickets are $25 for members and $30 for non-members. To register, visit
(Picture: Courtesy of Travels with Darley at Ten Thousand Waves)
Cajun crawfish and Cajun specialties? You betcha, at the 15th Annual Crawdaddy Blues Festival at The Mine Shaft Tavern in the old mining town of Madrid. You can also feast on classic gumbo, soft shell crab, oysters and more, to the sounds of live music from many rollicking bands. It all takes place May 21-22, from noon until 7 p.m.
Art in the Park
View Cerrillos turquoise jewelry, metal art, woodwork, and many other treasures handcrafted by artists all along the Turquoise Trail, gathered in one scenic setting during Art in the Park in Cerrillos Hills State Park Visitor Center on Saturday, May 28, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Fun on the 4th
Celebrate Independence Day in an old-timers way at the Fourth of July Parade & Pie Walk in Madrid. The parade down Main Street kicks off at noon, followed by a Pie Walk in Connie's Photo Park. Show up early for the annual Madrid Miners baseball game in the historic Oscar Huber Memorial Ballpark. Game time is 10 a.m.
Folk Art Treasures
One of the most colorful places on the planet, the International Folk Art Market, July 6-10, brings more than 150 master folk artists from around the globe to Museum Hill for the world's largest place to buy folk art. Shop handmade jewelry, clothing, textiles, paintings and dozens of other one-of-a-kind works. Live world music, dance and food are part of the fun.
Photo: Gabriella Marks