Fall Guide

Fall Guide: Things to Do in Santa Fe, NM

Fall is here! There's a crispness in the air, the aspen leaves have turned a golden yellow and some mornings you can smell a hint of burning piñon after a cold night.  A great way to warm up and get into the season, is to spend a day exploring New Mexico’s rich art, history and diverse cultures at the four state museums in Santa Fe (New Mexico Museum of Art, New Mexico History Museum/Palace of the Governors, Museum of Indian Arts and Culture, Museum of International Folk Art) and the seven historic sites located throughout New Mexico.

Whether you’re a local or visiting Santa Fe, there’s always something new to see, learn or do at our 13 sites.

Fall at the New Mexico Historic Sites

Coronado Historic Site
Enjoy Birding and the Bosque

Thanks to the lower elevation and proximity of the Rio Grande, we can get many different birds than what you might see a short drive north near Jemez Historic Site. Coronado Historic Site, with its flat wide-open space perched above the edge of the Rio Grande, is a bird watcher's dream. Where the desert and mesa meet the Rio Grande and bosque, CHS is a great opportunity to see the diversity of birds that inhabit or seasonally visit the area. Here you will see common city birds like House Finches and Mourning Doves, but also more exotic birds like the Greater Road Runners (our state bird!) on the trails and even a rafter of wild turkeys in our bosque.

Bernalillo, NM |nmhistoricsites.org/coronado | 505.867 .5351

Los Luceros Historic Site
Harvest Days

Visit Los Luceros Historic Site this fall to enjoy the apple harvest and the changing cottonwood leaves. The historic orchard will open for apple picking remain open while the fruit lasts or until October 17. Los Luceros features un-sprayed apple varieties such as Winesap, Red Delicious, and Golden Delicious. You'll receive a bag for apple picking and a booklet with activities and links to virtual content such as: Apple recipes, cooking demonstrations, crafts, virtual tours, history talks and more

Los Luceros will be holding an apple pie decorating competition and photo contest which will be voted on through social media the week after the festival and winners will be announced on Sunday, October 24. Winners will receive Culture Passes courtesy of the New Mexico Department of Cultural Affairs.

Dusk 'til Dawn Hours

Los Luceros Historic Site will extend its hours from sunrise to sunset on the first Sunday of each month. During this time, entrance into Los Luceros will be free for New Mexico residents and includes access to the site’s visitor center, historic buildings, trails, and picnic areas. The early morning and late evening are ideal for bird watching at Los Luceros, which boasts a large diversity of species including bald eagles, hummingbirds, migratory waterfowl, as well as one of the largest concentrations of flicker woodpeckers in New Mexico. Also, the edge of the Rio Grande on the property at sunset is an ideal location to view bats beginning their nightly feast. The extended hours are also a great opportunity for visual artists to capture more of the natural beauty of Los Luceros.  

Alcalde, NM | nmhistoricsites.org/los-luceros | 505.476.1165


Fall items now available in the four Museum Shops
You will find an array of unique and authentic items at the Museum Shops. Find a wide selection of shawls, wraps and scarves to keep you warm and stylish. Find your next favorite accessory at the Shop inside the Museum of International Folk Art. While you're there, pick up your items to build your ofrenda for Dia de Los Muertos on November 1. You'll find sugar sculls, papel picado, trinkets and more to honor your loved ones who've passed on.

Head downtown to the Shops inside the New Mexico History Museum and pick up all you need for your fall dining table decor. It's never too early to start thinking about Thanksgiving! We have napkins, candles, coasters and more to make your fall tablescape complete.  To kick it up a notch in the kitchen, check out our selection of cookbooks, and find inspiration for your next holiday meal.


  • Spiegelberg Shop at the New Mexico History Museum, 113 Lincoln Avenue, Santa Fe, NM
  • New Mexico Museum of Art Shop, 107 W. Palace Avenue, Santa Fe, NM
  • Colleen Cloney Duncan Museum Shop at the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture, 710 Camino Lejo, Santa Fe, NM
  • Museum of International Folk Art Shop, 710 Camino Lejo, Santa Fe, NM

Foundation members receive a 10% discount at all four shops and at shopmuseum.org and Circles members receive 15% off.



Refuel at Museum Hill Café

After all this adventuring, you're going to need to stop and refuel. After visiting the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture and the Museum of International Folk Art, stop by Weldon's Museum Hill Café for lunch, Wednesday through Sunday, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., or Friday evenings between 5 and 7 p.m.  Reservations are required, please call 505.984.8900.

Opt for a light lunch such as grilled salmon or a Greek salad, or if you're more in the mood for some fall comfort food, try the soup of the day or enchiladas Suzias. Museum Foundation members receive a 10% discount, please present your current digital or plastic membership card.

Museum Hill Cafe is located at 710 Camino Lejo on Museum Hill in Santa Fe.

If Online is More Your Speed

Stay cozy and visit from home.

View a Conversation with the Curator Zoom talk from the Foundation’s online archive here or explore the museums and historic sites virtual tours and online programs here.