I haven’t always lived in Santa Fe, but I got here as soon as I could.
It was 1995 when we first visited this enchanting city for a New Year’s Eve wedding and week-long celebration with old friends and new friends. Was it that we spent the night of the wedding in a clear tent sitting by a roaring fire watching the snowfall while talking with new friends who became some of our favorites or was it the incredible energy we absorbed being here? Whatever it was, it resonated with us and we have returned to Santa Fe as often as we could to get more of that special je ne sais quoi.
Pilgrimages to Santa Fe
Over the years, we have been known to use birthdays, anniversaries, the snow, lack of snow, a craving for Cafe Pasqual’s, the mountains and the opera as excuses to visit The City Different. But everything changed for us in October 2013 when we planned a 10-day visit, rented a house and drove out here with the dogs so we could experience “life in Santa Fe as a local” while celebrating David’s birthday.
We went to the amazing farmers market and stocked up on spectacular, locally-grown produce and other incredible edibles. We settled in, ate like royalty, had friends over for dinner, loved the climate and fell hard for the peace and serenity. We found the people to be genuinely kind (and grateful for the privilege of living here) and we knew within a few days, this was what we wanted. (In fact, this blog post titled “Ten Reasons to Visit Santa Fe Now,” perfectly encapsulates our experience and, to prove it, the last sentence of the opening paragraph reads “We are ready to relocate.”)
We Made the Move in 2017
Though it took four years to turn our dream into a reality, we finally did it and moved to Santa Fe in the fall of 2017, which prompted revitalizing this blog with a new name and energy that reflects the joy we have found living here.
As I explore my new community with abandon, I will share some of my favorite finds including world-class restaurants that are waiting to be discovered (not the ones that already have been found) and stories and insider tips surrounding the vibrant local food economy (the Santa Fe Farmers Market is truly one of the nation’s top farmers markets and many restaurants happily and quietly support the farmers and ranchers). There’s always provocative and thought-provoking goings-on about town (can you believe there are 20 theater groups and more than 800 non-profit organizations that 75,000 people are able to support), breathtaking sunsets, sunrises and skies (these daily beauties never cease to amaze me), interesting people (it seems even the grocery store is filled with eclectic types I want to know), curious stores (sure, there are so many touristy shops near the Plaza. But there are some extremely well-merchandised retail shops featuring items you won’t find anywhere else), exquisite artwork and talented artists (friends, there is so much more to the art world than Canyon Road), dramatic hiking trails (yes, the nearby Santa Fe National Forest features thousands of acres of pinon and juniper woodlands to explore on foot and/or on bike–to be exact it’s 1.6 million acres), sensational health and wellness spots that appeal to people of all ages, as well as some of the nation’s top dog parks and an overall adoration of canines.
My promise to you is this. The more I learn, the more secrets I will share. Because everyone should experience an unknown city the way the locals do. It’s the best way to travel and will serve to enhance the already magical experience that is Santa Fe.
The following images represent the city’s philosophical essence, the temperate climate with four spectacular seasons, wide-open spaces and stunning natural beauty. It is this that has mesmerized me and made the privilege of living here even more profound.
Please join me on this adventure as we celebrate the most treasured aspects of the Land of Enchantment and uncover some of the more secretive and magical reasons people flock to Santa Fe. Whether for distinctive and memorable vacations, rejuvenating getaways or to relocate, there is much to treasure in this southwestern sanctuary in the high desert.