Activities in Santa Fe

El Rancho de las Golondrinas

Address 334 Los Pinos Road, Santa Fe, NM 87507 Map, Website

El Rancho de las Golondrinas is about 25 minutes outside of Santa Fe, and well worth a stop on the road to Albuquerque or a day trip from Santa Fe more

Georgia O'Keefe Museum

Address 217 Johnson Street, Santa Fe, NM 87501 Map, Tel 505.946.1000 Call, Hours 10am-5pm daily; Thursdays until 8pm, Cost Adults $8; Under 18 Free Website

Even if you are only going to see a few museums with your children, the Georgia O'Keefe museum is a good choice. The artwork is engaging, but perhaps more importantly, it is small and easy to navigate, making a quick exit easy. After you pay for your admission, the museum staff will loan you a short children's book about O'Keefe (My Name Is Georgia: A Portrait by Jeanette Winter ). Take the time to sit down on one of the benches in the lobby and read it to your child. The book, does a wonderful job of introducing Georgia O'Keefe's work and her passion. My son (3 at our visit) was absolutely engrossed, and that interest carried him through the exhibits. more

Museum of Spanish Colonial Art

Address 750 Camino Lejo, Santa Fe, NM 87502 Map, Hours Tues-Sun 10am-5pm, Cost $6.00 Adult; kids under 16 free Website

Dedicated to housing high-quality examples of Spanish colonial art, this small museum is just the type of place where my kids do well. Instead of rooms full of dreary paintings, you'll see santos, silver, furniture, tools, tinwork and textiles. I found it easy to strike up a conversation with my 3 year old about topics like "why are the keys so big" or "why did the lights fixtures have candles in them." Like any good three-year-old, he was fascinated with the tools, but also interested in the mock rooms set up with period objects. more

Palace of the Governors

Address 105 W Palace Ave, Santa Fe, NM Map, Hours Tues-Sun 10am-5pm, Cost $8 adult; 16 and under are free, Free Friday evenings 5-8pm Website

This history museum, inside the old Palace of the Governors does a great job of blending a history lesson in with some interesting old artifacts. Our kids were particularly interested in the small windows cut out of the thick walls and the "trap doors" in the floor. Hobby horses were available for the kids to ride through the frontier history section and there is a working printing press room to view as well. When the kids get tired of looking at artifacts, let them take a break in the grassy central courtyard and then continue on your tour. more

Saint Francis Cathedral Basilica

Address 213 Cathedral Pl, Santa Fe, NM Map, Tel 505-982-5619 Call,

This beautiful cathedral has stained glass windows that most kids will enjoy, but the real treasure (for kids) is the tile labyrinth outside the entrance. Set into the church's courtyard, kids will enjoy tracing following the tiles from the starting point to the center while you sit on one of the shaded benches and watch. more

San Miguel Mission

Address 403 El Camino Real, Socorro, NM 8701 Map, Tel 505-835-2891 Call, Website

This adobe Mission, the oldest church in the US, must have provided a cool respite from the heat of Santa Fe summers back in the days before air conditioning, and the cozy space must have felt huge back in the 1600's. Something about the whitewashed adobe interior and the wooden beams makes the space wonderfully homey, a welcome contrast to the ornate altarpiece and decorations. An interesting display gives information about the history of the church, and glass panels in the floor of the alter provide a view of its older subfloors. Take a moment to talk to your kids about archeology and the quest to understand more about the people who first built this mission, an interesting display near the entrance that will give you the information you need. more

Santa Fe Children's Museum

Address 1050 Old Pecos Trail Santa Fe, NM 87505 Map, Tel (505) 989-8359 Call, Hours Wed-Sat 10am-5pm; Sun 12-5; Closed Mon-Tues, Cost All visitors $8 Website

A welcoming and shaded outdoor play space makes this smallish childrens museum shine. Both indoor and outdoor activities are varied and well maintained, with plenty of things for all ages to do. Activities include water play areas, a climbing zone, attended crafts and a face painting area. There is also a small gift shop and a few vending machines, but no cafe. Bring your own food for a picnic outdoors. more

Santa Fe Climbing Center

Address 825 Early St #A, Santa Fe, NM 87505-1680 Map, Tel (505) 986-8944 Call, Website

Take a break from the art galleries with some rock climbing lessons (perhaps in preparation for the real thing on the walls of Las Conchas canyon). The Santa Fe Climbing Center also offers outdoor guided excursions. more

Santa Fe Farmer's Market

Address 1607 Paseo de Peralta, Santa Fe, NM 87501 Map, Hours Generally Saturday and Tuesday from 7am-noon, but check the website for details Website

Every item in this lovely farmer's market is made from local ingredients, whether it is fresh produce, jelly, or "kitchen art" (like dried chilies). We found a good mix of fresh and ready-made items that could be eaten on the spot as well as prepared items to take home or give as gifts. more

Reader Favorites

Bandelier National Monument

Address Frijoles Canyon, Tsankawi New Mexico Map, Tel (505) 672-3861 ext. 517 Call, Website

Bandelier is best known for its ancestral Pueblo dwellings. It was inhabited from the 1100s into the mid-1500s. Ladders are provided so you can enter cliff dwellings. Talk about an exciting history lesson! more

Casa Grande Trading Post, Turquoise Mining Museum & Petting Zoo

Address 17 Waldo Street, Cerrillos, NM 87010 Map, Tel (505) 438-3008 Call, Website

Take a drive 20 miles south of Santa Fe on Hwy 14, The Turquoise Trail National Scenic Byway and stop in the town of Cerrillos at the Cerrillos Mining Museum & Petting Zoo. There are goats and a llama, chickens & turkey all in a large corral and you can buy food in the Trading Post to feed them. Once there you can visit the Trading Post, tour the Turquoise Mining Museum and see displays of the Cerrillos Mining District and artifacts of the area.$2 admission. Open daily. more

Kidz Zone Santa Fe

Address 3005 St Francis Drive, Santa Fe, NM 87505 Map, Website

Great place for kids to play. Good, healthy food. Newest children museum type activities more