up in the sangre de cristo mountains is the quaint little pueblo of taos, new mexico. garland and i decided to take a trip here because we had heard about it for years but had never been. she was driving back to el paso from santa barbara, so we decided to meet in the middle and stay a few days.
the scenery when i first arrived was effulgent. there was a light dusting of snow on the ground from the day before and having arrived late in the afternoon, the sun was beginning to set and it shined golden light on the vast, snow covered pastures and up into the mountains; illuminating taos.
garland meant to stay in taos for five days and i was only going to stay for two before returning to el paso. however, after the two days were over, and so much left to see in the town where people complain that there is “nothing much to do,” i decided to extend for the full five.
here are my recommendations from our experience:
taos plaza is the main square and shopping district in town. when we were there it was decked out in holiday lights and decorations, but is also filled with statues and monuments. this is a fun place to submerge yourself into the taos experience and shop for turquoise, silver and native american art.
considered to be one of the oldest continuously inhabited communities in the united states, as well as a UNESCO world heritage site, the taos pueblos are a must see! the beautiful adobe structures sit at the bottom of a snow covered mountain and have a bubbling brook running through. i’m sure its even more lovely in the spring!
on our way to the earthship (see below) we crossed the gorge bridge. it sits 575 feet about the river and is the 7th highest bridge in the united states. you will surely feel some vertigo, but the view is stunning! make sure to stop and snap a photo!
projects like the earthship biotecture give me hope for the future. the compound is about 20 minutes from downtown taos and all of the structures are made out of recycled materials, solar powered and completely self sustainable. they build these structures all over the world! the entire tour will only take you about 20 minutes, so do something good for yourself and the planet and educate yourself.
speaking of sustainable buildings, the taos mesa brewery is also a green building–made out of recycled and repurposed materials, and using solar energy to heat the building. it’s a great spot to apres ski, if you’re into that sort of thing, or just get a local brew and some tacos. we were there during a fundraiser and saw lots of beautiful elderly locals waltzing and two-stepping to the bluegrass country music.
i loved this museum! i loved it not for its curation, but for it’s subject. millicent rogers was a beautiful oil heiress from the east coast who spent the later part of her life in taos. she befriended the natives and collected their art, textiles and jewelry. her incredible collection is on display at the museum and her life story will embolden you to live an unconventional and beautiful life.
for simple, elegant fair with a new mexican twist and a minimalist setting try love apple. to start i ordered the squash pumpkin and poblano soup, while garland ordered the grilled endive and leeks. we both ordered the tamale with mole entree. remember to bring cash or check, credit cards will not be accepted.
located at the taos inn, adobe bar is a fun place to start off your night. there always seems to be a band playing and the margarita selection will leave nothing to desire.
the alley cantina is the night scene. they have fantastic live music, a lively crowd and shuffle board! we ordered some late night chile rellenos that were the best we had the entire trip– and there were many rellenos!
for the morning after a night at the alley cantina, elevation coffee just makes sense. the non-fat latte was possibly the best i’ve had, though as a tea drinker, you may want to decide for yourself.
by far the best dining experience in taos. do not miss! it is great for breakfast and brunch offering latin-french cuisine and house blended teas. i highly recommend ordering the creole and the green chili sausage bowl with either the mint or ginger tea.
also located at the taos inn, doc martin’s was great to catch a late (8:00pm) dinner. i ordered the chile rellenos which with its pepita and goat cheese creme fraiche were a more gourmet rendition of the ones i had at the alley cantina. garland ordered the stacked blue corn enchiladas. if i were to go again i would probably order the rabbit & rattlesnake sausage just to say i have.
our meal at lambert’s was much welcomed due to their “lighter fare” options. after all of the rich chile rellenos and new mexican cuisine we wanted something with “more vegetables.” i started with the beet salad, followed by the grilled scottish salmon over coconut basmati rice and broccoli. garland had the salad special and an elk coq au vin. the meal was so fantastic we decided to order dessert, ginger bread cake with ginger ice cream for me and creme brulee for garland. we didnt share. the scenery is lovely and the staff is great.
located on the way to ski valley in el prado, medley is by far the most aesthetic venue. the husband-wife chef/owners have created innovative new mexican inspired classics. i had the signature smokey fried chicken and garland had the steak. make sure to check out their wine store too!
we stayed in a 3 bedroom 3 bath airbnb right off of the main road. it was perfect. the experience was smooth and comfortable. i cannot recommend this company enough! you simply must try it on your next vacation!
looking for a relaxing spa experience, we made the trip to ojo caliente hot springs despite the yelp reviews which advised against it. the experience left much to be desired and i think time would have been better spent visiting a different hot spring or perhaps visiting 10,000 waves in santa fe on the way back to el paso.