Come to Santa Fe, New Mexico for the sunshine – 300+ days a year – and stay for the art, cuisine and photographic possibilities. Be sure to bring along your sun screen, appetite, walking shoes and plenty of film, as there is plenty to see and do here.
Santa Fe, the capital of New Mexico, is located high in the desert with an altitude of more than 7000 ft (2134 m). Although hot in the summers, snow is part of the winter climate with skiing nearby. I visited in mid-April and enjoyed three bright, sunny days, a welcome respite from spring on the “Wet Coast”, but it could just as easily been cold and snowfall can occur in April.
I chose Santa Fe for it’s reputation as a city full of art, most famously, the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum. I wasn’t disappointed. Full of public and private galleries, there is something for everyone. Contemporary art, folk art, tribal and western art, sculpture, photography (I counted six galleries dedicated to photographic art alone), pottery, jewelry, textiles, and ethnic galleries, it is all here. The “Old Town” is built around a central plaza and features pueblo-style adobe structures, old and new.
After a day of exploring, kick back in one of the many cafes or restaurants and enjoy the fine cuisine and a well deserved margarita. Again, the choices are broad from Asian to Mexican and a lot of fusion in between. For a quick and inexpensive bite, try the lunch counter at the Five and Dime on the Plaza, home of the Frito Pie.
The adobe architecture, spring trees, and public art everywhere kept my cameras busy and I was pleased to find The Camera Shop just off the Plaza which carried a good selection of 120 and 35mm films.
A friendly little city that is easy to navigate on foot, it is well worth a visit.