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Taos New Mexico & the Land of Enchantment • We Weblog The World

Considered one of my greatest regrets about dwelling in Austin for over 10 years was that I didn’t go to New Mexico sufficient. I imply, it’s loopy—think about dwelling subsequent door to the aptly-named Land of Enchantment, and solely going a number of instances? The excellent news, after all, is that journey is commonly about high quality greater than high quality. And all of my journeys to the quick west had been extremely memorable, even when I didn’t take sufficient of them.

The higher information? If you happen to’re stressing over the Santa Fe vs Taos debate, what I’m about to say will calm your nerves. (Even when the conclusion I attain is lower than definitive.)

New Mexico’s Crown Jewel

Whereas Taos vs Santa Fe tends to dominate the dialogue for guests to New Mexico, the state is greater than its northern reaches. Specifically, the beautiful White Sands Nationwide Park within the south is an absolute gem of a vacation spot, to say nothing of spots peripheral to that, together with the mountain village of Ruidoso and the ramshackle city of Alamogordo. There’s additionally the truth that, having lived in Texas throughout all my New Mexico journeys, I used to be considerably blinded to simply how particular the state is.

Taos, New Mexico

Methods to Examine Taos and Santa Fe


In some methods, the vibes of those two cities are related—non secular, earthy, possibly a bit witchy. Santa Fe has older ladies promoting handmade jewellery; Taos has chili peppers hanging on buildings in all places. Santa Fe, nonetheless, despite this, is a bigger metropolis, and has a bit sooner tempo of life.


When selecting Santa Fe or Taos, vacationer enchantment issues. The Taos Pueblo seems like a dwelling museum, whether or not you discover San Francisco de Asis Mission, or go to Fechin Home Artwork Museum. In Santa Fe, it’s extra about getting misplaced within the streets though sure points of interest (Georgia O’Keefe Museum; Cross of the Martyrs viewpoint) predominate.


With regards to meals, you received’t go hungry in both of those cities. Clearly, my favourite factor to eat when visiting them is conventional New Mexican delicacies like sopapillas. Nevertheless, whether or not you are taking a extra Tex-Mex route, and even go woo-woo vegan, you’re assured to eat nicely in all places in northern New Mexico.


On condition that the cities are lower than 90 minutes from each other by automotive, there’s not a whole lot of differentiation in panorama, whether or not you find yourself preferring Taos or Santa Fe. Assume towering, terra-cotta coloured mountains and limitless blue skies, the place clouds slowly transfer towards the horizon because it somebody has painted them there.

Lodges and procuring

Whereas I can’t assure they’ll be reasonably priced, you’ll have your decide of lodging in each Taos and Santa Fe, from roadside motels, to boutique inns to luxurious properties in each the resort and trip rental class. So far as procuring is worried? Let’s simply say that I hope you want dreamcatchers.

Santa Fe

How Many Days Do You Want in Santa Fe and Taos?

How lengthy you spend in northern New Mexico actually relies upon upon how far you’re coming from, and what the remainder of your journey seems to be like. If you happen to’re simply driving down from Colorado and even over from Texas, it would is smart merely to spend 2-3 days in Taos and Santa Fe, particularly in case you’re persevering with to move south to White Sands, or west into Arizona or Utah.

Paradoxically, I discover this can be a superb period of time to spend in case you’re flying in from distant, assuming you will get an reasonably priced fare to Santa Fe’s very small airport. Sadly, since that is so usually not the case, you’ll in all probability have to fly to El Paso or Denver, which means {that a} longer highway journey across the Desert Southwest might be justified.

Different FAQ on Visiting New Mexico

Is Taos definitely worth the drive from Santa Fe?

On condition that Taos is lower than 90 minutes from Santa Fe by automotive, I’d say the drive is sort of actually price it. Even in case you don’t find yourself having the time to dig deep into Taos, it’s tough to not really feel charmed by the adobe mud structure constructed amid the desert panorama, to say nothing of the chili peppers hanging in all places.

What’s so particular about Taos?

Taos has enchanted vacationers since lengthy earlier than the social media period, with a cityscape that hearkens again to the pre-American period and a panorama that additionally evokes instances lengthy since previous. Taos can also be good in that it’s an awesome ski vacation spot within the winter, despite being extraordinarily sizzling throughout the summer season.

What’s the vibe of Taos?

The earnest reply to this query is that Taos has an earthy, non secular vibe, which attracts earthy, non secular individuals there. The extra cynical response? No matter earthiness and spirituality as soon as existed in Taos has been co-opted, turning it right into a Disneyland from the “Coexist” crowd, whose pilgrimages there make it much more synthetic.

The Backside Line

Evaluating Santa Fe vs Taos isn’t as high-stakes as another metropolis debates, given how shut they’re to at least one one other. The fact is that the majority vacationers will find yourself visiting each of those locations—it’s actually a query of which is able to get probably the most consideration. If I’m sincere, I’ve points with each of them—they each have a sure “previous women within the desert promoting turquoise” vibe, at the least for the informal customer. However, whereas Taos’ timeless structure seems to be impossibly attractive towards the desert panorama, the truth that Santa Fe is a “actual” metropolis provides it the benefit for me. 

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