Days 1-3: Santa Fe, New Mexico
Arrive into Albuquerque, pick up your rental car, and follow the Turquoise Trail into Santa Fe, where you’ll settle in to your “pueblo revival-style” accommodations, at the foot of Canyon Road, within walking distance of Santa Fe’s historic plaza. Visit Bandelier National Monument to marvel at the Frijoles Canyon ruins, some of the most important in the Southwest. Later, stroll Canyon Road to peruse the outstanding art galleries. Spend another day with a super interesting Santa Fe local, who will tailor the day to your liking, focusing on area pueblos, historic sites, and Santa Fe hot spots. Morning, noon, and evening, savor Southwest cuisine, featuring distinct flavors of chipotle, red and green roasted chiles, lime, cilantro, posole, tortillas… yum! Opera one evening? Your call!
Day 4: Abiquiú, New Mexico
Head north, past Camel Rock, Black Mesa, the town of Espanola, and a fabulous fruit and vegetable stand, to Abiquiú, the former home of Georgia O’Keeffe and a landscape that became the inspiration behind her life’s work. Stay at the one-of-a-kind Las Parras de Abiquiú Guesthouse, set on 55 acres, surrounded by white cliffs and expansive mesas – the same ones that graced O’Keeffe’s canvases.
Days 5-6: Farmington, New Mexico
Before leaving Abiquiú, take the Georgia O’Keeffe Home and Studio Tour and visit Ghost Ranch. When you’re ready, make your way to Farmington, your small-town-base for exploring the wonders of Chaco Culture National Historic Park. Take a full day to do just that, accompanied by an exceptional – and exceptionally knowledgeable – guide, who will take you out for full day of cultural immersion in Chaco Canyon.
Days 7-9: Durango, Colorado
You’re off to Durango, a combination mountain-desert-river-college-cowboy town. You’ll love it! Hang your hat at the historic Strater Hotel on Main Avenue, where you can walk right out the door to restaurants, shops, and galleries.From your base, you’ll ride the rails on the original Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad, a beautiful trip from the downtown station to the upper reaches of the San Juan Mountains and back. Spend your second day in Mesa Verde National Park, featuring substantial dwellings of the Ancient Puebloans. Choose from an early-morning Ancient Ones Tour and time visiting the various ruins, or a day with a private historian, who will add more in-depth meaning to your visit.
Days 10-11: Taos, New Mexico
Drive from one amazing mountain community to another – though the two could not be more different! Taos combines rich Hispanic culture, ancient Indian pueblos, and an air of spiritual, historic, and artistic, capped with a healthy dose of natural beauty. Filled with authentic New Mexico soul, the 45-room Taos Inn offers a wonderful base for exploring Taos and Taos Pueblo. Spend one full day your way – visiting museums, perusing craft stores and art galleries, marveling at Taos Pueblo, inhabited by the Taos Indians for over six centuries. Make hard choices – like choosing which of the many excellent restaurants to dine at each day.
Day 12: Albuquerque, New Mexico
Enchanted yet? We think you probably are! Bid farewell to the Land of Enchantment, flying home from Albuquerque.
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