An Escape For The Creative Spirit
Discover a creative destination as rich in arts and culture as it is in natural splendor. Take heart, creative spirits: Santa Fe might just be the inspiration you’ve been craving.
Nestled at the base of the ruggedly inspiring Sangre de Cristo mountains, Santa Fe, New Mexico elevates visitors in more ways than one. Since its founding more than 400 years ago, the “City Different” has carved out a rich cultural identity unlike any other U.S. destination. The historic New Mexico capital proudly fuses European and Native American heritage, and boasts global acclaim for its art galleries, distinct pueblo-style architecture, and virtually indescribable regional cuisine. With its crisp mountain air and expansive artistic spirit, Santa Fe offers a hub of inspiration for adventure-seekers and creative conquistadors alike.
Here’s a two-day itinerary of Santa Fe weekend experiences that will open your mind, nourish your soul, and forever elevate the way you engage.
Launch your creative adventure at the Stagecoach Foundation headquarters. Established in 2017, this 19-office facility is an ideal blank canvas for any project in filmmaking or digital art and technology, designed to connect visiting innovators with young community members ready for real-world skills training.
The next stop on your City Different tour is the Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA). At this 140-acre fine arts learning institution you’ll take in Santa Fe’s picturesque mountain backdrop and become part of a centuries-old cultural and artistic celebration.
When it comes time to dine in Santa Fe, you’ll have a bounty of mouthwatering Southwestern cuisine to spice up your City Different tour. Stay at IAIA for an easy bite or venture into town to feast on a smothered burrito (a Santa Fe staple) at Tomasita’s or Tia Sophia’s. Red chile, green chile, “Christmas” – it’s all perfection if you can handle a little heat.
Jean Cocteau Cinema
Seize the afternoon like a true film aficionado at Santa Fe’s Jean Cocteau Cinema. Helmed by author, producer and Santa Fe philanthropist George R.R. Martin, this beloved indie movie theater hosts community events, book signings, art exhibits, and musical acts from around the globe.
Dinner at IAIA Gallery
Thursday evening showcases the Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA) Museum of Contemporary Native Arts during dinner and an art show. Here, you can interpret and discuss contemporary Native American art works, and let authentic Native flute melodies transport you to the storied pueblos of Northern New Mexico.
Meow Wolf Santa fe
Dive into Day 2 at Meow Wolf, Santa Fe’s legendary and ground breaking art collective and cafe. Offering works from architecture to sculptures to augmented reality, this immersive experience amplifies the status quo of artistic expression. Through Meow Wolf’s interactive installations, visitors can conquer new dimensions of story, performance, and learning.
Another day in Santa Fe means another chance to wow your taste buds. Take a short stroll from Meow Wolf to Duel Brewing for a Belgian pint and house-made sandwich. Or get your al fresco on at Santa Fe’s downtown Plaza (you can’t go wrong with a blue corn enchilada and silver coin marg at The Shed).
site santa fe
Your planned City Different exploration concludes at SITE Santa Fe. Featuring experimental curatorial approaches and innovative exhibition design, this contemporary visual art museum always transcends the traditional. Just another reason Santa Fe is #1 among the Top 10 Art Cities in America.
Madrid, New Mexico
If an inspired detour is more your speed, follow the scenic Turquoise Trail (Highway 14) to nearby Madrid, New Mexico. Here you’ll find a colorful ghost-town-turned-creative-hub surrounded by timeless natural beauty. Home to more than 40 unique art galleries, local turquoise jewelers, artisan shops, and cozy spots to grab a hot bite or a cold local brew, Madrid is where off-the-beaten-path leads to creative bliss.
Santa Fe’s colorful nightlife is at its peak on Friday evenings. So if you want to discover the city’s cultural charms after hours, take a curated Art Walk through the historic Santa Fe Railyard or explore Canyon Road’s 100+ galleries and boutiques. Bar hop downtown (sip an award-winning craft cocktail at Hotel St. Francis’ Secreto Lounge). Or pair one of Santa Fe’s prized Green Chile Cheeseburgers with some lively country western tunes at Cowgirl BBQ.
With 270 days of sunshine a year and a landscape that’s a masterpiece of its own, Santa Fe offers an outdoor playground made to set your inner virtuoso free. Take a drive up the road to the Art Colony of Taos, where you can soak in majestic scenery and explore over 1,000 years of tradition at the Taos Pueblo. Embark on a whitewater rafting adventure along the Rio Grande. Or ride off into the idyllic Santa Fe sunset on horseback. Wherever your Santa Fe story takes you, inspiration is sure to find you.