About a month ago we went for a long road trip that took us to Colorado, Utah, Arizona, and New Mexico. After spending several days in the Grand Canyon and Arizona, we retreated to Santa Fe, New Mexico.
Santa Fe is nestled at the foot of Sangre de Cristo Mountains and has an elevation of about 7000 feet above sea level.
We stayed at a rustic lodge, just at the outskirt of the town proper.
Here we spent a couple of relaxing days together, including quiet dinners under the soft light of Santa Fe sky.
Though that sky can turn turbulent in no time.
It was in 1610 that the Spanish founded this town, that is now known as Santa Fe. Come to think of it, it was 10 years before the Pilgrims even landed in New England. Santa Fe is an eclectic mix of something old and something new.
The iconic Route 66 passes through the heart of this town. What better photo to represent this mixture of old and new than the picture below.
With the name Santa Fe or “Holy Faith” (it was named originally as La Villa Real de la Santa Fe de San Francisco de Asís, the Royal Town of the Holy Faith of Saint Francis of Assisi), it is quite obvious that this town has a rich religious history.
Below is the Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis Assisi which was built in 1869.
Not too far from the cathedral is the Loretto Chapel which was built in 1872.
This chapel is known for its “miraculous” stairway. The staircase is an impressive work of carpentry, and is built without attachment to a wall or pole.
However, the real life of today’s Santa Fe, is after the church mass and is outside the cathedral and chapel, when the whole downtown is turned into one big marketplace.
See the bursting colors of the marketplace.
We were even fortunate to witness a group of young Spanish dancers performing live and for free, at the center of the town. An old tradition that is handed down to the new generation.
Below is a photo of different “dancers” that I saw in Santa Fe, hovering among the flowers. Initially I thought they were hummingbirds as I heard a certain “buzz” when they were flying. But actually they are a type of moth.
For some reason, this town like chili peppers. Not just in their food, but also in their art.
Bunch of peppers being sold in the sidewalk.
String of peppers hanging as ornaments.
We also sampled some of its unique cuisine. It was more than just peppers.
Visiting Santa Fe was a memorable experience for us. It left quite an impression on me.
I think I like our visit so much that I even brought a token home from our stay there.
Yes, that is a traffic ticket. And I admit, it was all my fault.
(*some photos taken with DSLR and some with an iPhone)