Exploring Santa Fe the Budget-Friendly Way

Warmer temperatures inspired the folks to venture out and about and do some walking here at 7000 feet.

They found that Santa Fe has a couple of very affordable and beginner-friendly golf courses, so Thursday they ventured out to Marty’s course. That’s Marty Sanchez’ Links de Santa Fe, at a really nice municipal recreation facility near the county landfill. OK, it sounds kind of funky, but the course wasn’t anywhere near the dump, had a really friendly pro shop, nice electric carts, and spectacular views from almost every fairway, tee box, and green. For just $28 per person starting at 1 PM, you can ride and play as many holes as you want and can fit in before dark. Of course, even riding, the folks weren’t quite adjusted to the altitude yet so they only played 18.

And they dispute the claim that golf balls travel farther at elevation than at sea level, Dad said that they did not go any further into the weeds then they do at home.

They ventured into downtown Santa Fe on Friday. Most of downtown has narrow, one-way streets and you have to pay for parking, so the decided to take everyone’s advice and catch the bus, which stops right outside the campground. Very cost-effective.

Once downtown, they were almost overwhelmed by all the galleries and shops - fine art, jewelry, pottery, and southwestern crafts everywhere. There was also almost a flea-market-like line of vendors around the town square, mostly Native Americans selling sterling jewelry and some pottery. Mom said it was all very beautiful, but she couldn’t justify the prices after learning our favorite biscuits had gone up in price by 30%. Right answer, in a pinch they could eat our biscuits, well the broken ones, but what could we do with a clay pot?

All that walking worked up their appetites, but rather than coming back to the coach so we could all eat, they stayed in town and ate at the Coyote Cafe cantina. Coyote Cafe is one of the most well-known Santa Fe restaurants, originally owned by Mark Miller, who’s father Mark the folks had met almost 20 years ago at Benmarl Vineyards near Newburgh, NY. The Millers own Benmarl, but anyway…we’re starting to babble like Mom does.

The folks had also eaten at the Coyote Cafe that was open briefly in Austin, TX. Chef Miller no longer owns CC, but the folks said the food is still very good and the cantina offers more casual dining on a rooftop terrace overlooking some of Santa Fe. Mom smelled like Mahi Mahi tacos and Dad like duck quesadillas when they got back, and they both talked about some kind of green salsa they both liked as well.

After eating, they checked out the Santa Fe Cooking School’s store, a couple more galleries, and of all things a “crafts of Poland” shop. Who knew great Aunt Violet’s wooden plates and Grandma’s pisanki Easter eggs were worth so much! They claim they tried to find a store with local foods so they could bring something tasty back to us, but we aren’t sure we believe them.

After all, there are two panaderias near the campground and we haven’t seen a single sweet potato empanada….. We don’t think they’re trying too hard…. Plus we are now out of marranitos!!