July 2022 - The Life You Love

A Weekend in Santa Fe

Welcome to the worst travel guide for Santa Fe. Well, maybe not, but definitely not the most thorough. We were in Santa Fe for less than 48 hours and drove 4.5 hours each way so we only experienced one full day and then a few hours the next day. Here’s how we made the most of our trip (but organized by area and with a couple suggestions that we unfortunately didn’t get to experience).

Day One

Check out the Santa Fe Farmer’s Market. The farmer’s market at the Santa Fe Railyard was awesome, even in early spring when people were just starting to harvest their crops. Tons of fresh produce and eggs, but there were also tables for sage, juices, baked goods, sauces, herbal remedies, and even cookbooks from a local photographer that focused on seasonal recipes inspired by locals. While you’re there, you can go check out some of the trains and grab some photos of those as well.

Grab lunch and coffee at Opuntia Cafe. This is a great place to enjoy local foods while surrounded by plants (that you can also take home with you). I had their breakfast hash and it was delicious. The sweet potato and kale had a bit of heat that balanced out all of the flavors and the lavender jam was to die for. I always appreciate a restaurant that can take a simple meal like a breakfast hash and turn it into a memorable dish. Their emphasis on local seasonal foods makes all the difference. I wish I grabbed a tea for the road while we were there.

Stop by Altar Spirits for a drink. There’s a relatively new distillery right by the Farmer’s Market and Opuntia. I fell in love with Altar’s decor and drinks. There’s an obvious homage to the mystical and metaphysical, with their spirits being named Altar and Sigil, as well as their slightly witchy decor. If I could hire them to decorate my apartment, I would. The drinks were delicious as well! The spring sour on was my favorite, but everything I tasted was great.

Immerse yourself in the fever dream that is Meow Wolf. Every time I try to explain Meow Wolf to someone, I just stumble over the phrase “immersive art exhibit, but weird” while I pull up their Instagram. I’ve wanted to visit this place for years and I was so excited to finally check it out! Unfortunately, we went over Easter weekend and it was way too busy to actually immerse myself in the exhibits and thoroughly explore every inch, but it was still a really unique experience full of art that will make you laugh, gasp, wonder, and admire. It’s an amazing place to visit and it makes me want to visit their other locations as well.

Refuel at Paloma. This is something we did NOT get to do so I can’t comment on how good it was, but if the day had been ideal, we would have visited Paloma for dinner. There are great reviews on Google and their Mexican-inspired menu looks delicious. 

Day Two

Start your day at Cafe Pasqual’s. It’s a small cafe and there’s probably going to be a wait, but you’ll see why. The outside is unassuming and blends into the nearby shops, but when you stop inside, you’re surrounded by festivity and art. We went for brunch and it was delicious. When you go, make sure you order something with salsa and get the Xmas salsa so you can try the red and green salsas. I ordered an omelette full of fresh local ingredients and topped with Xmas salsa. Delicious!

Wander through the shops. There are quite a few stores in the area where Cafe Pasqual’s is located. We stopped in a chili shop, a mineral shop, and a vinegar and olive oil shop. The chili shop had some basics, like chili powder, but also had quite a few chili-based souvenirs and unique chili-infused products (like popcorn and chocolate). The mineral shop had some of the most beautiful crystals and fossils I’ve seen. The owner is clearly very knowledgeable and passionate. The olive oil and vinegar shop was really interesting because you could try any of their products. I’m not one to take shots of olive oil, but it was cool that you could taste before you purchased.

There are TONS of other places to visit and restaurants to try while you’re in Santa Fe. If we had more time, there were breweries, cave dwellings, bars, and more restaurants we would have loved to try. And so many art galleries, museums, and exhibits! I would definitely go back to Altar Spirits and Meow Wolf. If you’ve ever been to Santa Fe, let me know your recommendations in case we get a chance to go back!