For the last post (for the time being) in my series on one of our favorite places to vacation, northern New Mexico, I want to tell you about some fun ways to spend your time here. First on any tourist’s list should be visiting the Taos Pueblo. Designated a World Heritage Site by UNESCO and a National Historic Landmark, the pueblo has been continuously inhabited for 1000 years or more, making it the oldest continuously occupied community in the country. Currently 150 residents live within the Pueblo village from which running water and electricity are prohibited. In total, 1900 Native Americans live on Pueblo lands.
As a visitor it is a wonderful experience to observe ceremonial dances, pow wows, and trade fairs. Even when there is nothing special happening, shopping is plentiful in the village buildings. In many cases you are buying right from the artist and the prices are much lower than at the shops in town so it is worth the trip!
It is a profound experience to tour the Pueblo; one that is sure to leave a lasting impression. On the first visit our family made to the pueblo, we observed a member of the village picking garbage out of the creek from which residents draw their water. He engaged us in conversation about village life and we asked if it was his job to remove the trash from the water supply. His words have stayed with me for these past ten years. He said, “It is all of our job; I’m just the one who does it.” Wonderful message for our children to hear!
Another draw is the Rio Grande. Visitors can visit the stunning expanse of the Rio Grande Gorge Bridge, in itself an amazing site and a favorite area to take visitors to the town, or hike down to the river at the Wild and Scenic Recreation area north of town. For the more adventurous, a raft trip down the rapids south of town fills the bill. No matter your preference the river provides much entertainment and many activities that are not to be missed.
A final experience that is not to be missed is horse back riding in northern New Mexico. Our family has ridden most years we have visited. We have traveled on horseback everywhere from the desert area in the Pilar area to the south of Taos, to the Indian Horse Property on the Taos Pueblo lands to the mountainous Taos Ski Valley, reminiscent of the Austrian Alps. Whichever ride you choose, don’t forget your camera like we did one of the the times when riding in those beautiful mountains!
Oh well, we still had beautiful memories of that ride and a good excuse to go back again!
For more information about things to see and do in Northern New Mexico, rowse Woodall’s listings of New Mexico RV camping resorts.