You’ll be met when you arrive in Sante Fe and taken to your hotel, an award-winning inn and spa in the heart of downtown Sante Fe – giving you an excellent opportunity to experience the life and spirit of this great city. The next day you’ll have time to stroll through this quintessential New Mexican city, soaking up the atmosphere and wandering around the galleries in the Plaza and the art, sculpture and artefact stores that line the Canyon Road. Especially vibrant is the daily native crafts market in front of the Palace of Governors, whilst Shiprock on the Plaza specialises in textiles and jewellery.
Within easy walk of your hotel is the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum offering great insight into the creative process and the light and landscape that inspired her phenomenal paintings.
Stay: Six nights in the Inn and Spa at Loretto in Sante Fe.
New Mexico/Santa Fe
Day 3: Abiquiu House and Studio
Today your rental car is delivered to your hotel – ready for you to take off into Georgia O’Keeffe country. Just 50 miles away to the north west of Sante Fe is Abiquiu House – home of the famous artist – with its established gardens and inspirational scenery. It was here that O’Keeffe did some of her most important work.
Day 4. : New Mexico museums of art and history
A day of culture beckons, and there are few better ways of discovering the soul of a nation than visiting the New Mexico Museum of Art – dedicated to being a catalyst and showcase for national creativity and expression. Similarly, the New Mexico Museum of History will help you trace the influences of the past that have helped shape the Sante Fe of today.
Day 5: Taos
You’ve discovered the art and the history of Sante Fe and the state of New Mexico. Now it’s time to explore the surrounding countryside. Take the high road to Taos, and the low road back to Sante Fe and you’ll be able to call in on traditional weavers’ villages, see colonial churches like the ‘Lourdes of the Southwest’ – Santuario de Chimayo – and travel through picturesque towns like Cordova, Truchas and Ojo Sarco. The route is very scenic and includes stop-and-photograph spots like Carson National Forest. On the way back you’ll be following the Rio Grande as it carves through narrow canyons and chasms.
Day 6: Ghost Ranch
Journey west of Taos to Ghost Ranch and you’ll find yourself in a place of deep multi-coloured canyons and cliffs, rolling grasslands and fast-flowing streams. Small wonder that Georgia O’Keeffe was so taken with this part of the eastern Colorado Plateau. Her second house is here, complete with adobe walls and the large glass window that presented her with magnificent views of the parched red landscape and the flat top of Pedernal Mountain.
Returning to Sante Fe, you can finish off your New Mexican experience with a final flourish – by indulging in the five course tasting menu at O’Keeffe’s Table in the famous Eloise Restaurant.
Day 7: Sante Fe – Home
Time to say ‘adios’ to Sante Fe and New Mexico and transfer to the airport for your flight home.
It was a great experience and now I have dipped my toes in the Ultimate waters I shall be back for more.- JE, October 2014