Once the capital for the Spanish “Kingdom of New Mexico,” the Mexican province of Nuevo Mexico and the American territory of New Mexico (which contained what is today Arizona and New Mexico), Santa Fe has long been a seat of government.
Now serving as the capital for New Mexico since 1912, Santa Fe enjoys a rich history alongside a booming economy and bustling tourist industry.
The city is nestled in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, the foothills of the Rockies, immersed in natural beauty, and has an average of 325 days of sunshine and blue skies. The town was formally founded in 1608 and made a capital in 1610, making it the oldest capital city in the United States.
Santa Fe was originally slated to be a stop on the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway. However, as the tracks were laid out into New Mexico, changes were made and the railway was built through Lamy, a town south of Santa Fe, instead. This resulted in a slow economic decline that lasted into the 1900s.
Santa Fe is recognized internationally as a center for arts and culture. Since the opening of the Museum of New Mexico in 1909, and the Museum of Fine Arts which is now the New Mexico Museum of Art by 1917, Santa Fe has had a long history as a city that treasures the arts. The state museum’s emphasis on local history and native culture did much to reinforce Santa Fe’s image as an “exotic” city.
Today, Santa Fe is a world-renowned travel destination unparalleled in richness of history, heritage, arts and culture. Santa Fe is recognized as one of the most intriguing cities in the nation, due largely to the city’s preservation of historic buildings and a modern zoning code that mandates the city’s distinctive Spanish-Pueblo style of architecture. This architecture is based on the adobe (mud and straw) and wood construction of the past.
Thousands of tourists flock to the city each year and marvel at the many splendors it has to offer. Fine dining and an exciting night life are only a few of the reasons why it attracts so many visitors. In Santa Fe there are activities for members of the entire family to enjoy.
The city is proud to preserve the traditions of the city’s rich cultural heritage, which helps to make Santa Fe one of the country’s most diverse and interesting places to visit, work and live.