When is the best time to vacation in Santa Fe? Well one can argue this question as Santa Fe offers so much diversity in so many realms (landscapes, culture, art, theatre, cuisine, history, outside and inside activities, etc). However, my favorite time is between September and November. During these months, temps can be 80s, 70s, 60s and even the 50s as Thanksgiving nears. Hotel rates drop mid-October and mid to low seasonal rates begin in November, December, January and February. Skiing (downhill, cross country and snowboarding) starts the end of November, which is a real treat! One can argue that springtime in Santa Fe, New Mexico has similar climate temps and hotel rates are classified in mid-season range. The fall festivals however make September thru November a clear winner. Summer temps rest between the 60s and mid-80s, no wonder this is peak season for New Mexico travelers which take hotel rates to high-season range and make availability tighter. Who can resist those amazing summer festivals though- some of the best in the world come to show art at Folk Art Market, Indian Market, Spanish Market and others. Winter can be chilly with daily highs reaching the upper 40s and evening lows creeping into the 10s. But the sun’s rays are constant, even during winter days, which make the sunshine days so appealing. The number of days with any measurable precipitation in Santa Fe is 80 annually! I’ve enjoyed many a winter day where temperatures has hit
the 70’s! Just don’t forget the sunscreen if you‘re outside skiing, hiking, touring, etc. as the sun is intense! Santa Fe is definitely unique. It’s a wonderful place to get away to, spend time, immerse yourself in any time of the year…. So to sum it up: The best time of year to visit Santa Fe, New Mexico is whenever you’re able! Any month, any season, any day of the week – Santa Fe is open offering: Stores, shops, galleries, museums, restaurants, historic sites- all available to visitors 12 months a year! World class exhibits, pueblo tours, cultural events, art, art and more art! So many options to choose from- let Pueblo Bonito Inn- Santa Fe, NM help you plan that memorable Santa Fe vacation. Our staff has over 50 years of combined living experience in the City Different! Call us directly at 1-800-461-4599 and make reservations to enjoy the only historic adobe pueblo-style compound nestled in downtown Santa Fe who has won 2011, 2012 and 2013 “Guest Favorite bed and breakfast award”! You’ll be glad you did…
Pueblo Bonito Inn- Santa Fe host many bird enthusiasts year round who love the variety of birds in areas around Santa Fe, NM. On our secluded, quiet grounds guests enjoy viewing visits from a variety of winged creatures like the ones featured on our blog post Oct 2013. Most recently Evening Grosbecks have found a free “handout” at our back door! Valuable sources of information and sightings for birders are available at the Randall Davey Audubon Center- just a short drive from Pueblo Bonito bed and breakfast inn. Randall Davey Audubon Center offers incredible birder walks, information, tours, events, etc. A great place to add to a “to do list” while visiting Santa Fe, New Mexico. Do you like hiking? birding? nature? creation? reptiles? or just the great outdoors? Well, Randall Davey Audubon Center is the perfect place for you to enjoy! Center hours of operation: Monday – Saturday 8:00- Sunset; Visitor center & gift shop hours: 10-4 Monday – Saturdays. Closed Sundays! For more information call the Center directly: 505-983-4609 (Much of the following information is compliments of Randall Davey Audubon Center website):
In the meantime, here are a few Special Birding Events and Suggested Spots to consider:
FREE SATURDAY MORNING BIRD WALKS at the Randall Davey Audubon Center and Sanctuary. Taking off at 8:00 am a guided bird walk, led by experienced birders is one of the best ways to get to know our local birds. Both experienced and novice birders are sure to discover new species and witness them in their natural habitat.
BEST BIRDING SPOTS AROUND SANTA FE AREA: A few great outdoor birding hot pots are: Hyde State Park and Road and the Santa Fe Ski Basin. Both capture the interest of many bird species. The extended area near Hyde State Park and along the trails off the road to the ski area includes several hiking options, each of which has birding opportunities. Williamson’s Sapsucker’s (breeding), Hammond’s and Cordilleran Flycatchers, Western Tanagers, Nuthatches (Red and White-breasted, Pygmy), Mountain Chickadees, Steller’s Jays, and Western Warblers are some of the species anticipated within the Black Canyon campground and trails. Further up Hyde Park Road, Blue Grouse are sometimes seen at elevations between the Borrego Trail to the ski basin. The Santa Fe Ski Basin has a great trailhead for those who want to venture into the high mountain back country. Species expected include Hermit Thrush, House Wren, Junco, Cordilleran Flycatcher, Lincoln’s Sparrow, Gray Jay, and Clark’s Nutcracker. We’d be remiss if we didn’t mention Randall Davey Audubon Center east of downtown Santa Fe where a wide variety of birds reside and visit during migration. Nestled at the mouth of the Santa Fe Canyon, our Audubon Center encompasses 135 acres and includes miles of hiking.
HUMMING BIRD SPOT: Terrero General Store and Post Office- a hidden treasure! One of our favs to for taking a leisurely drive from Pueblo Bonito b&b inn through the Pecos National Wilderness, winding pass Montessori Lake, the State fish hatchery, Dalton Canyon (remember Billy the kid and the Dalton gang?), and glorious mountain landscapes ending at a sleepy log cabin with antique gas pump out front call “Terrero General Store and Riding Stables“. This is a gem! Providing hours, days, months of busy hummingbird viewings. Three common hummingbirds to this area are the Broadtail, Rufus, and Calliope. Broadtail are first to arrive the end of March, then Rufus begin to appear late June and finally Calliope make appearances in early July.
September, October, November and December are wonderful months to visit Santa Fe and New Mexico. Birding is such a fun hobby and/or profession and we invite our bird loving friends and family to enjoy all Santa Fe has to offer at the 2011, 2012, 2013 Guest Favorite b&b- voted by our guests from over 8,500 properties within the US & Canada!! CHECK OUT OUR INTERNET SPECIALS!
Courtesy Pueblo Bonito bed breakfast inn- Santa Fe, NM
If ever anyone needed a “reason” to visit Santa Fe, mid-December brings a few to mind! Check out the events beginning December 13, 2013 that would create a special pre-holiday Santa Fe getaway for folks of all ages! (don’t forget shopping lasts all year long in Santa Fe!).Friday Dec 13, 2013:
Christmas at the Palace Location: New Mexico History Museum Santa Fe’s beloved Christmas at the Palace brings the community together. This 29th-anniversary evening will bring hot cider, live music, entertainment, and the visit from Mr. and Mrs. Claus. Share the legendary magic of the Palace of the Governors. Free!
Saturday Dec 14, 2013:
11:00 am. Falstaff Location: Lensic Performing Arts Center- just two blocks from Pueblo Bonito bed and breakfast inn. An undisputed master of Falstaff, Music Director James Levine conducts Verdi’s opera for the first time at the Met since 2005. Robert Carsen’s production—the first new Met Falstaff since 1964—is set in the English countryside in the mid-20th century. Ambrogio Maestri sings the title role of the blustery Sir John Falstaff, opposite a marvelous ensemble that includes Angela Meade, Stephanie Blythe, Lisette Oropesa and Franco Vassallo. (3 hrs, 20 min)
Sunday Dec 15, 2013:
4 PM – 9 PM Santa Fe Symphony – Christmas Treasures Location: Lensic Performing Arts Center. Join The Santa Fe Symphony this holiday season for a wonderful afternoon of Christmas favorites! This special performance will feature Resident Conductor of the Phoenix Symphony Joseph Young as the Symphony performs Williams’ Festival Fanfare, Arnold’s Holly & the Ivy, Silvestri’s
5:30-7:00 pm Las Posada. The annual candle-lit procession of Las Posadas travels around the Santa Fe Plaza and concludes in the Palace Courtyard. This version of an old Hispanic tradition recreates Mary and Joseph’s search for a place to give birth to the Baby Jesus – and throws in a few devils for good measure. Stay for carols in the Palace Courtyard, along with cookies and refreshments. Free Community Event!
Pueblo Bonito bed breakfast inn provides Santa Fe visitors a unique opportunity to surround themselves with the magic of historic Santa Fe! 18 enchanting guest rooms come complete with a unique working corner kiva fireplace, foot thick adobe walls and traditional historic Santa Fe architectural features! Walk to all downtown Santa Fe activities, historic sites, restaurants, galleries and shopping with out the hassle and expense of parking! Special Seasonal discounts are always available! Voted “2013 Guest Favorite B&B” from over 8,500 properties in US & Canada. BOOK NOW for best availablity: 1-800-461-4599
Ongoing December 2013 Santa Fe Events:
All Day: Tako Kichi: Kite Crazy in Japan Location: Museum of International Folk Art. A popular pastime and festival activity for centuries, Japanese kites remain a delightful and entertaining tradition. Traditional kites from Japan are made from a split bamboo framework and layers of hand made washipaper. The kites are often finished with colorful painted narrative illustrations, legendary heroes, and design elements that reflect Japanese folklore. Everything about these kites is based on kite-making traditions and aesthetics of distinct regions within Japan.
All day: Cowboys Real and Imagined Location: New Mexico History Museum. Cowboys Real and Imagined (through March 16, 2014) blends a chronological history of Southwestern cowboys with the rise of a manufactured mystique as at home on city streets as it is in a stockyard. Artifacts and photographs from the museum’s wide-ranging collections are joined by archival footage, oral histories, musical performances, and a programming series that includes showings of classic Western movies filmed in New Mexico.
7 AM – 12 PM Saturdays. Santa Fe Farmers Market Location: The Railyard. Community, family, food, green living, health and beauty, home and garden, shopping, on going events. Visit the Santa Fe Farmers’ Market for a celebration of Northern New Mexico’s unique culture and history. In addition to great produce, baked goods, jams, and other locally grown foods, the market features crafts and other local unique items.
Courtesy of Pueblo Bonito bed and breakfast inn- Santa Fe, NM
November Bird Watching can prove to be quiet exuberating when Santa Fe visitors take note of crystal blue New Mexico skies! Not only are our skies a glorious crisp blue in color, but some of Gods most amazing creatures have recently been spotted on the grounds of Santa Fe‘s Pueblo Bonito bed and breakfast inn! Closeby areas – such as the Galisteo Basin- are also known for bird watching and recent spotting have been as follows:
Downing Woodpecker:Though I am not an expert birdwatcher, I have seen an active little Downy Woodpecker on several occasions balancing on the branches of tall Chinese elms at Pueblo Bonito bed and breakfast inn- Santa Fe, NM. He frequently makes his presence known by the rap-tap-tap of his pecking on a nearby light pole! His beautiful black-and-white colors are prominently displayed and easily identifiable even for my beginning bird watching knowledge!
American Kestrel: North America’s littlest falcon! Evidently The American Kestrel packs a predator’s fierce intensity into its small body. It’s one of the most colorful of all raptors from what I‘ve read. The American Kestrel spotted on the grounds of Pueblo Bonito bed and breakfast inn looked very much like the photo below to the right. Beautiful slate-blue head and wings with contrasting rusty-red back and tail. It was definitely on the prowl as it perched for a few minutes on our telephone lines then and swooped quickly across the street for what we assume was a tasty dinner treat!
These little beauties are frequently seen around Santa Fe as their migration begins in the November. They tend to hop the grounds of Pueblo Bonito bed and breakfast inn for both fall and spring visits. It is my understanding they winter in forests and feed in both deciduous and coniferous trees, often at higher elevations (Santa Fe is 7000 ft with nearby Sangre de Cristos mountains to 13,000+ ft).
In fall through spring, harriers can be found in wide-open grasslands, or fields in outlaying areas of Santa Fe county. Recently I sighted a Northern Harrier during flight just off 285 south of Santa Fe. Note the low, slow, coursing flight style, the bird’s V-shaped wing posture, and its white rump- all indications of correct classification of Northern Harrier. During migration in the fall and spring, you can see these magnificent birds high in the sky over nearby mountain ridges and hills.
November Travel to Santa Fe, New Mexico is a delightful experience for birdwatchers, history buffs, black Friday shoppers, Thanksgiving travelers, and so much more! The staff at Pueblo Bonito bed and breakfast inn have been serving Santa Fe visitors for over 28 years! We strive to make your New Mexico bird watching visit memorable. Special Discount rates available on line (click here) or call 1-800-461-4599. Awarded: 2013 Guest Favorite Inn; 2012 Guest Most Likely to Return; 2011 Top Santa Fe Lodging.
Photos: All About Birds
One of Santa Fe, NM’s best kept travel secrets is visiting in September, October and November. Fall and Pre-winter travel dates provide cooler temperatures (70s, 60s and even 50s by Thanksgiving) and lessened crowds (a selection of more popular Santa Fe restaurants will not require an hour wait!). One can reasonably argue, springtime to be equally preferred boasting similar climate temps and discounted room rates, however fall festivals and breathtaking foliage create a special travel season for Santa Fe , New Mexico.
Where to stay – another coveted travel secret- is the “2013 Guest Favorite Inn” awarded to Pueblo Bonito b&b in downtown. Nestled quietly next to the NM State capitol, this 150 yr old adobe pueblo-style compound creates a perfect travel package for history buff seeking to experience authentic Old Santa Fe accommodations. Mid-October thru Mid-May really highlight the glories of Pueblo Bonito Inn as each of it’s 18 enchanting guest rooms boast a working corner kiva fireplace! No need to imagine here. Slumber off to the real sound of crackling wood with a soft scent of pine providing a therapeutic ambiance of relaxation and enjoyment. Last, but not least the third best kept Santa Fe Travel secret is what to do… so many choices on any day of the week during the September, October and November months. We offer just a few:
SEPTEMBER SANTA FE TRAVEL EVENTS:
Aug 31-Sept 2: Labor Day Weekend: Fiesta Fine Arts & Crafts on the Plaza!
Sept 5, 7, 8: FIESTA de SANTA FE:*Burning of Zozobra- Thursday night celebration of burning of Old Man Gloom; Entrada de Don Diego de Vargas- Friday Fiesta Royalty reenactment; Food Booths; Band Stand on the Plaza; Parades- Friday, Saturday and Sunday day & night provide local culture through music, food, dance, arts and craft; Pet Parade: Saturday morning around the plaza locals share proudly their favorite pets in theme.
Sept 7: GREEN CHILI HARVEST FESTIVAL at SF FARMERS MARKET located at Santa Fe Railyard. Celebrate Northern New Mexico’s unique culture and history in chili. Produce, baked goods, jams, and other locally grown foods, and crafts. Every Tues & Saturday through November!
Sept 14, 15: PILAR ART STUDIO TOUR: In Pilar, NM.
FALL GOLD SALE at SKI SANTA FE in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains!: Enjoy mountain air, gold foliage and a trip aboard Ski Santa Fe’s Super Chief Quad Chairlift. Food by La Casa Café & Beer Garden by Santa Fe Brewing on the deck with live music. Great savings at Ski Santa Fe Sports Shop Pre Season Blowout Sale. Season Pass Sale.
Sept 21, 22:
*SANTA FE TRIATHALON: Sat 21st: 7:30 am Geneoveva Chavez Community Center: 5k run; 12 mile bike; 400 m swim.
*HIGH ROAD TO TAOS STUDIO TOUR: Scenic Byway is a lovely, winding road through Sangre de Cristo Mountains between Santa Fe and Taos with magnificent vistas of snow-capped peaks, alpine meadows, and charming traditional Spanish and Pueblo villages
*POJOUQUE RIVER ART TOUR: A uniquely Northern New Mexico tri-cultural art experience, includes nineteen studios and thirty-seven artists and artisans.
*SANTA FE RENESSANCE FAIR: 10 am – 6 pm A community event with proceeds to support the homeless. Held at
El Rancho de las Golondrinas- a Spanish colonial outdoor living history museum. 200 acres of historical recreations, including working gristmills, blacksmith, wheelwright and many other outstanding attractions of history to discover!
Sept 25-29: SANTA FE WINE/CHILI FESTIVAL: Demos and Testing’s; Parings and an Auction; Golf Tournament; Grand Tasting at the Opera House; Seminars and Luncheons; And so, so much to experience and enjoy in diverse cultures, foods and drinks!
Sept 28-29: HIGH ROAD TO TAOS STUDIO TOUR (2nd Weekend); POJOUQUE RIVER ART TOUR:
OCTOBER SANTA FE TRAVEL EVENTS:
October 5,6: *Harvest Festival at El Rancho de las Golondrinas- Bringing the harvest in with villagers as they crush grapes for wine by foot, string chile ristras, make tortillas, bake fresh bread and much more! Sat/Sun 10-4.
October 5-13: INTERNATIONAL ALBUQUERQUE BALLOON FIESTA: Always a breathtaking event with mass ascensions; evening glows; races; rides; special shapes; pin trading and so much more for every age to enjoy. Take the rail runner from Santa Fe depot in the morning to avoid the traffic/parking and return via rail runner to Pueblo Bonito b&b. This allows you to see the fiesta on the perfect weather day!
October 12-14: ABIQUIU STUDIO TOUR-Around beautiful Abiquiu, NM (just a 75 min drive from Pueblo Bonito Inn- Santa Fe). 10-5.
October 16-20: SANTA FE INDEPENDENT FILM FESTIVAL: Five days of fun! Independent film screenings, community events, educational workshops- located within a short walk from Pueblo Bonito b&b inn!
October 19,20: GALISTEO STUDIO TOUR- A sleepy little village about 20 minutes from Pueblo Bonito b&b surrounded by spectacular foliage. An annual event which is the only time of year the public is invited to tour private studios and meet artists that call Galisteo (a classic New Mexican Village) home. 10-5.
NOVEMBER SANTA FE TRAVEL EVENTS:
Nov 1-20: IT’S ABOUT TIME – 14,000 Years of History thru Art: New Mexico History Museum (short walk from Pueblo Bonito Inn- Santa Fe). Trace art in the American Southwest from the earliest Clovis culture to present day. Native American, Hispanic and European American art. Exhibit emphasizes the prime objects of artistic change as part of the centennial celebration of New Mexico statehood.
*Nov 2 & 24: SANTA FE SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA AND CHORUS: Professional full-sized orchestra with volunteer chorus. Performance include: Nov 2: Voyages of Discovery; Nov 24: Handel’s Messiah (a must do for Thanksgiving visitors!).
Nov 7,8,9: TONY HILLERMAN WRITERS CONFERENCE! An intimate writers conference open to writers of all genres.
Nov 8,9,10: Fuze SW 2013: Food and Folklore Festival- New Mexico Museum of Art. Folklore and customs that created a uniquely New Mexican culinary tradition in a series of keynotes, talks, panel discussions, breakout sessions, creative interludes, and—of course—food! –
Nov 15,16, 22, 23: Greer Garson Theatre :‘Our Lady of 121st Street’. Comedy created by co-artistic director of New York’s Labyrinth Theatre Company. A group of acquaintances attend wake of former teacher (a nun) whose body was stolen. As the search for her corpse continues, we meet a cast of characters both hilarious and tragic.
Nov 24- THANKSGIVING HOLIDAY in Santa Fe! You’ve never experiences Black Friday the Santa Fe way! Come host in the Holidays via New Mexico style. If it snows- the Ski Basin will open. If it doesn’t, the shops and cultural events will be in full force! No way you can loose by celebrating Thanksgiving in Santa Fe, NM. Great nightly and group rates always available at your favorite Santa Fe bed and breakfast inn- Pueblo Bonito 1-800-461-4599 www.pueblobonitoinn.com