Published: December 13th 2010July 31st 2009
Just another one of our quick trips to SANTA FE for the INTERNATIONAL SPANISH MARKET. It is only about an hour from Albuquerque. On the way we had to stop for breakfast in Sile (bacon, beans, eggs, tortillas and red chili). Oh yes...you learn to love this and it does not let go. If you move away from the area you will have chili dry-ice shipped to you wherever you are. It's the fruit of New Mexico!
Santa Fe has many festivals during the summer and the Spanish market is one of them. Parking was a pain, but the walk is not that bad, because you have art shops all along the way. The market itself has about a 100-150 stalls of people selling everything from paintings, sculptures, skulls, saints, etc in the CENTRAL PLAZA of Santa Fe. Believe it or not, but Santa Fe is the oldest capitol city in the US. There are NATIVE AMERICAN ART STALLS all over the place also selling mostly turquoise products. There is live music and the ever-present surrounding museums and art galleries. We made our way across to the CATHEDRAL BASILICA OF ST. FRANCIS OF ASSISI. The cathedral has some spectacular stained-glass
windows. Next we were off to the SAN MIGUEL CHAPEL. Apparently this is the oldest church in the US. We could not go in since mass was in progress. So we did the next best thing and sat down for a glass of wine and cheese at the Pink Adobe (a local favorite) right across the street.
A couple weeks later we took another quick little side trip to Santa Fe. This time to the SANTA FE OPERA. This place is known world-wide and people flock here - you will see why when you go. We try to expand our cultural horizons. Tickets could be hard to come by since the season is only about 2 months long. The tradition is the TAILGATE IN THE PARKING LOT before the opera. Oh yes you heard that right - tailgate at an opera.
We took our friends the Jaramillo's with us and well we also learned a lot. We ordered food from a service there. It was cold and not very good. Everybody brings their own tables and chairs and food. Well now we'll know for next time. Make the effort and come prepared. At least just bring a couple
New Mexican church!
lawn chairs to sit in. Pack a small basket with fruits, cheeses and crackers and a nice bottle of wine. Our food may have been disappointing, but we were absolutely stocked up on champagne, wine, vodka, etc. We had a good time at the picnic tables with the beautiful SANGRE DE CRISTO MOUNTAINS in the background. We were told that OPENING NIGHT is the night to go. If you have $3,000 then yeah you can go. Dress code is whatever you want it to be. Full suit, jeans and boots or casual as can be. The opera itself is spectacular. It is an open air theatre built into the side of a hill with the sun setting and New Mexico colors running across the sky. The views are spectacular and so is the opera.
Personally I don't know much about operas, but we had a good time with Don Giovanni. The opera itself was almost 4 hours and it was incredibly hot, but we had a great time. This is definitely something to do if you have the chance. Bring your own stuff and enjoy the tailgate - it is 75% of the fun.
The next day we
One of the dancers!
were back in Santa Fe for the Santa Fe INDIAN MARKET. Santa Fe is known for its markets during the summer and this is just another one similar to the Spanish Market. People come from all over for turquoise and Indian bread. There are dancers and performers and music and stalls with all kinds of things.
Afterwards we headed about 20 miles south to a place called Tent Rocks National Monument. It is located in Cochiti Indian Pueblo, about 5 miles from Sile. This is a hidden treasure in NM, with its limestone rocks that are naturally shaped like tents. It is something to see with great hiking trails and natrual wonders! We have always known that it was there, but we have never known how truly beautiful it is. It starts out as just a little dirt-path and then gets narrower and narrower until finally you have to really find your way one foot in front of the other through cliffs that rise up on your sides. Definitely a little gem that very few people are aware of.
Not the most exciting of trips, but THE MARKETS OF SANTA FE were in one of our books, and
THE SPANISH MARKET is one of the festivals listed. The Santa Fe opera was in 2 of our books so 55 down and 3,267 to go.
From the Markets of Santa Fe
There are more photos below