Santa Fe, New Mexico

Santa Fe was never on my radar. I'd flown into ABQ airport once for a race, but that was my extent of New Mexican travel. But boy, let me tell you; if you want a mix of unique art, margaritas that will knock you on your feet, and an unreal outdoors scene then maybe Santa Fe is the place for you. Oh, and if you love turquoise then it's a no-brainer. 

It's the oldest capital in the United States (1610) and has deep history all throughout the city limits. The culture is lively and unlike any other place, I've visited in the States. With theaters, numerous art galleries, and delicious Southwestern cuisine, Santa Fe is a hub for many interesting tourists including A-list celebrities getting away from the LA scene. 

Thankfully, I was fortunate enough to experience Santa Fe as a 'part-time' resident. I frequented the grocery stores, the local coffee shops, and explored the endless trails that surround the city (while adjusting to the 7,000+ feet of elevation). Phew! 

Perhaps, my favorite part of Santa Fe was the adobe style homes and vibrant colored doors. It was so different that anything found in the Midwest and I really grew to love the character around every corner. Each home had a unique door, different from their neighbors and I made it my aim to capture as many as I could before departing the city. Another notable feature was the peculiar mailboxes displayed throughout the city. It was as if people saw a mailbox as a work of art, another variance between their casita and the next. 

So the door scene was great, but the outdoor scene was also pretty rad. See what I did there- haha! Minutes in every direction from home were trails just waiting to be blazed by running shoes, mountain bikes or casual photo-taking kicks. Evening hikes were a part of post-work life and the spring sun-sets had us racing down from Picacho Peak at least once a week. One weekend we rented mountain bikes and found ourselves enthralled by down hill thrills and shocked at just how steep inclines can be on a bike. Need to work on the whole changing gears thing. There was never a day we didn't find a way to spend outside someway. Maybe that's why the Marg's always tasted so good- they were well earned each time. 

Santa Fe completely exceeded my expectations. It's a place I'll hold near to my heart as it showed me the importance of culture, history and the great outdoors. I look forward to going back and until then I'll be browsing the thousands of photos I took and drooling over my next homemade Sopapilla. Until next time Santa Fe! 

-Emma