While it might not seem so at first glance, this beautiful New Mexican outpost offers loads of outdoorsy options (and ancient Native American history) for families.
While you're there
Spend an afternoon at the new 13-acre Railyard Park, a gorgeous plaza and pedestrian promenade with shops, restaurants, artists' studios, and children's play areas and gardens. Check out the farmers market, held on site every Tuesday. Take a fly-fishing lesson in the Pecos Wilderness Area with a pro from the Santa Fe Fishers School & Guide Service; float high above the mesas in a hot-air balloon, or go white-water rafting on the Rio Grande. Young art lovers will want to hit up the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, with its roomy galleries and the artist's colorful depictions of the surrounding mesas and plateaus.
Where to stay
Just four blocks from downtown's historic plaza, the Old Santa Fe Inn offers large, Southwestern-style rooms, decorated with art by local artisans. Rates start at $243 a night and include free Wi-Fi and parking (a big plus in Santa Fe) and complimentary breakfast complete with a burrito bar, local red and green salsas, fresh fruit and granola, Starbucks coffee, and fresh breads from Santa Fe's popular Sage Bakehouse. Bonus: The inn allows small pets if you'd rather not board Rover.
* All hotel prices are approximate.
Drive the scenic High Road (285 to Highway 76) 72 miles south to Taos Pueblo, a vibrant, 1,000-year-old Native American community of multistoried adobe dwellings where little has changed in centuries. A National Historic Landmark as well as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the pueblo is considered to be one of the oldest continuously inhabited settlements in the country.