Life at a Higher Level.
Taos has many excellent restaurants, from great little spots to have lunch to the finest dinner cuisine.
Home to Kit Carson, The Millicent Rogers Museum and New Mexico Indian Pueblos, Taos offers a kaleidoscope of things to do. Activities include skiing/snowboarding, mountain biking, hiking, star gazing, bird watching, llama trekking, ballooning, white-water rafting and much more.
Taos was widely known as The Soul of the Southwest, until it recently adopted a new official slogan, Life at a Higher Level. This refers to the strong artistic, cultural and spiritual currents palpable here, as well as the 7000-foot altitude.
Native Americans, Greeks, Celts and Mayans all used labyrinths. During the crusades, labyrinths represented the pilgrimage to the Holy Land. Today, they are used for reflection, self-understanding, meditation and prayer.
Unlike mazes, labyrinths have no dead ends. There is only one path leading to the center, and out again.
Labyrinth walking is a simple form of focused walking meditation. Studies have shown that focused walking meditations are highly efficient at reducing anxiety, lowering blood pressure and promoting restful sleep.
When you walk to the center and out again, you will have physically traveled about a quarter mile. Spiritually, your journey may be much longer, even touching the infinite.
Taos Ski Valley is a world class ski resort appealing to expert skiers (Over 50% of slopes are Black Diamond or Double Black Diamond). The Taos Ski Valley also is known for its first rate children’s ski school. Taos Chile Line runs a regular shuttle bus to Taos Ski Valley during ski season. Angel Fire is a newer ski area with more gentle slopes, but it has plenty of intermediate to expert runs. Both resorts allow skiing and snowboarding and they are 20-30 minutes from San Geronimo Lodge. Red River Ski Area has a ski / snowboard mountain that is great to learn on. All of these locations have nearby cross-country skiing.
Ojo Caliente Mineral Springs Resort & Spa is the oldest natural health spa in the country with seven geothermal mineral water pools soothing visitors for centuries. It is located across the Rio Grande Gorge along hwy 285. About 15 miles north-west of the lodge in Arroyo Hondo are the John Dunn Hot Springs. Take a dirt road along interesting terrain down to John Dunn Bridge. Cross the bridge to the trailhead at the first switchback. It’s an easy quarter mile hike down to the hot springs and its free! You may just be the only ones there. Clothing is optional.
Taos has many excellent restaurants, from great little spots to have lunch to the finest dinner cuisine. We have a collection of many menus at our front desk for you to view. Some popular favorites are Graham’s Grille, The Gorge Bar & Grill, Alley Cantina, or Orlando’s. Our personal favorites are Taos Burger Stand (they have great burgers and beer) and Love Apple (this one is a bit fancy and it is totally worth it).
Take the road to Taos Ski Valley (20 miles from the lodge) or the Enchanted Circle Drive, an 85 mile loop through Angel Fire, Eagle Nest, and Red River. If traveling from Santa Fe, you might want to come or return by the spectacular high road which adds 40 minutes to the trip and passes through several interesting mountain villages, notably Penasco, Truchas, and Chimayo.
Off road or on, there are miles and miles to conquer (or just coast on) on bike in Taos. From savagely beautiful to super serene, the views you can take in on two wheels are unbeatable here.
Enjoy the scenic beauty and inspiring solitude of New Mexico’s unspoiled wilderness with experienced naturalist guides and sure-footed llamas packed for a full-day and multi-day hikes.
The Williams Lake Trail starts at upper Taos Ski Valley (20 miles from the lodge). Hike two miles to Williams Lake (11,200 feet) situated in a magnificent alpine bowl. If you are intrepid and well-acclimated, you can ascend a higher difficulty 8-mile trail from Williams Lake to the summit of Wheeler Peak – the highest point in New Mexico (13,063 feet). For an easy stroll, walk the level trail along the west rim of the Rio Grande Gorge, 12 miles from the lodge. We have a collection of maps at our front desk for you to view. In the summer time you can experience one of the most breath-taking and magical full moon hikes on the planet right here at Williams Lake. See the calendar of full moon hikes below.
The Rio Grande Gorge features several rock climbing locations with panoramic desert vistas. The Sangre de Cristo (blood of Christ) mountain range features sweeping thousand-foot granite cliffs and forested hiking trails along rivers and streams. Twenty-seven miles west of town, Tres Piedras (three rocks) has some of the most pristine beginner climbing terrain in the country. Book your rock climbing day trip below.
Today, it is the center of shops and monuments in town. Walk around the Plaza and visit souvenir stores, artist galleries, jewelry stores, and popular local restaurants. Two hour free parking. Taos Plaza is the Heart of Taos. This is the center of the Taos Historic District where locals gather for Taos Plaza Live concerts, May through October and visitors enjoy the shops and galleries that surround the Plaza all year long.
The original Spanish settlement of scattered farms evolved in Taos Valley about 1615. But in 1680, the settlers were driven out by the Pueblo Revolt. Spanish authority was not reestablished until 1696 with the reconquest by Don Diego de Vargas. The area was firmly resettled by 1710. In 1796 the Don Fernando de Taos Land Grant was given to 63 families by the King of Spain. This resulted in the establishment of the current Taos Plaza and surrounding community. Don Fernando de Taos became the most important settlement in the area outside of the ancient San Geronimo de Taos Pueblo two miles to the north. Homes were built in large quadrangles, thus offering a fortress-like structure.
Hostile raiding Indians from outside the Taos area were thwarted in their attempts to enter the village. Sentries stationed at the corners of the fortified village kept vigil day and night. A huge gate offered the only means of entry and exit to and from the Plaza. The enclosure served as a refuge for livestock at night, and merchants displayed their wares there during trade fairs. Over the years, there were many fires within the Plaza and many buildings were lost and rebuilt. Because the buildings were contiguous, a fire in one usually spread to others. The character of the present structures around the Plaza dates from the 1930s.
A 1,280 foot span cantilever truss bridge, just 12 scenic miles from the San Geronimo Lodge. It is the fifth highest bridge in the United States, rising 650 feet above the Rio Grande. The bridge was dedicated on September 10, 1965 and is a part of U.S. Route 64, a major east-west road. In 1966 the American Institute of Steel Construction awarded the bridge “Most Beautiful Steel Bridge” in the “Long Span” category. The bridge has appeared in several films, including Natural Born Killers, Twins, She’s Having a Baby, Wild Hogs, and Terminator Salvation. You can park free and walk across for a thrilling view or hike the one-mile trail right alongside the gorge.
For a town of just 7,000 people, Taos has an amazing concentration of culture with over 40 fine art galleries and many excellent museums. In Taos’ quaint, historic environs you will find the Kit Carson Home and Museum and the Taos Art Museum & Fechin House which was once the home of Nicolai Fechin, a Russian painter and woodcarver. Here you will find a gift shop and original artist’s studio on premises. Other museums include the Millicent Rogers Museum, the Harwood Museum of Art, the Blumenschein Home and Museum, the La Hacienda De Los Martinez, the Governor Bent House and Museum, the Mabel Dodge Luchan House, and El Rincon Trading Post and Museum. All have small entry fees, or you can buy a pass to visit all of the museums.
The top tourist destination in Taos, just three miles from San Geronimo Lodge. It is a 1,000 year-old ancient Indian village, still inhabited today by Native Americans. Daily tours are available and there is an entry fee.
An Earthship is a type of passive solar house made of natural and recycled materials. Designed and marketed by Earthship Biotecture of Taos, New Mexico, the homes are primarily constructed to work as autonomous buildings employing green architectural solutions. They are off the grid homes, minimizing their reliance on public utilities and fossil fuels. You can take a guided tour of a typical home for a fee.
We had a great 2-night stay in April. It was mid-week and before peak season, so we were the only people there. The staff was very friendly & accommodating (especially with my pick breakfast preferences). The bed was so comfortable!
Blue Sky Retreat is a hidden gem if you need a great place to stay in Taos. It is family friendly, clean, well maintained and affordable. Joshua, the property manager, went above and beyond to make our family's Christmas vacation a special one.
Hot air balloon rides into and over the Rio Grande Gorge since 1991. Balloon flights begin at dawn with a ride into the desert outside Taos, New Mexico, inflation of the huge lighter-than-air craft, boarding the basket, and floating upward with an experienced, licensed pilot.
Famous for its big Class III-IV whitewater rapids, ‘The Taos Box’ spans a 16-mile stretch of the mighty Rio Grande as it travels through the 700′ deep Rio Grande Gorge. Our trip features the earliest launch slot on the river ensuring an uncrowded pristine beginning to your adventure. Awe-inspiring views await around every bend as you plunge through twenty sets of rapids. This is New Mexico white-knuckle rafting at its best!
Rio Grande Stables offers the largest selection of Horseback Trail Rides in the Taos area. They have 1, 2, 3 & 4 hour rides, as well as 1/2 day with lunch excursions and two entirely different all Day adventures.