Brandon and I headed out to Taos, New Mexico for a quick trip a few weeks ago. It’s been such a crazy December, and we just needed a night away from obligations. It’s a quick 3.5 hour drive to Taos from Colorado Springs, so it was the perfect overnight getaway – and the perfect escape from my *quite literal* laundry list.
Taos is known for its cultural and artistic ventures, so there was plenty of exploring to do. The boutiques are filled with art and crafts – mostly boasting a southwest/native american flare. I was personally crazy about the turquoise and silver rings! So pretty!
While we were there, the annual “Lighting of Ledoux” was going on, which is a celebration to kick off the Christmas season in Taos. Ledoux street is in the heart of Taos Plaza, and the streets are lined with Farolitos (paper bags with candles in them). It was so magical to walk the dimly lit street while candle light glimmered along the roads and even along the rooftops of adobes.
El Monte Sagrado hosted us for the evening, and I’m going to go on record and say that it is THE place to stay in Taos. The grounds are gorgeous! It feels like a total sanctuary in the heart of the city – which is appropriate since “El Monte Sagrado” actually means “The Holy Mountain” and the word sagrado stands for “sanctuary”. We stayed in one of the Native American suites, which was decked out from head to toe with Native American art and decor. I especially loved the Spanish style Kiva stove it our room. It was perfect for cozying up to in the morning, as I watched water flow through the manmade pond/creek outside – which runs directly through the resort and outside the patios of the Native American suites.
While at the resort, you can catch a drink at the amazing Anaconda Bar, eat at one of the two restaurants, or spend a relaxing few hours in their salt water hot tub and pool, that is surrounded by lush vegetation.
Now, one of the main reasons I would add Taos to your travel list is for the food alone. There is a healthy amount of southwestern and mexican fare in the city, and since those two go hand in hand at the top of my favorites list, I was in restaurant heaven. Here are a few of my recommendations (and yes, I ate at all of them in less than 24 hours. #judgemeallyouwant)
Guadalajara Grille – Recommended to us as the best Mexican food in town by the locals. It’s a family owned and operated, super casual restaurant. There is debate over which is the best of the two locations in Taos (north or south). But there is no argument that the Horchata is some of the best you will ever have. We ate chips and guacamole on Saturday, and headed back on Sunday for tacos and tostadas, before we left town.
Lambert’s – Located in the plaza, you can pick up salads, sandwiches and a few dishes of Mexican fare here. I opted for the chile relleno, but overheard another patron say that the beet salad is life changing. Definitely grab a margarita here. So good!
Rancho Plaza Grille – Another Mexican restaurant that has been around for ages. You can pick up sopapillas the size of your head for $1.50 here.
Love Apple – If there is one restaurant you add to your travel time, make it this. With shabby chic vibes, and out-of-this-world food, you are in for one dining treat at the Love Apple. They pride themselves in local, organic cooking, collaborating with local growers and artisans to create the menu. Brandon and I ordered the rainbow trout and it was by far the best I had ever had. The whole restaurant had a romantic vibe, but I could see it being a great place to stop with a few friends for low-key conversation.
The last day of our trip, we spent some time exploring the Taos Pueblo – which is an active Native American community. The Pueblo itself has been actively inhabited for over 1000 years. We took a free guided tour (donations welcomed) which was extremely informative. It was honestly quite the disheartening experience. There is a lot of rich history located on the grounds, and a grave reminder of all that was taken from these people. I’m not trying to spark a political discussion here – just saying it’s a surreal experience, and if you get the chance to take a visit I would love to hear how it made you feel.
Hope you enjoyed my Taos travel recap! If there are any specific questions you have, feel free to post them in the comments below.