New Mexico
New Mexico’s Conversos and Crypto-Jews
Learn the history and experience the unique culture of conversos and Crypto-Jews — Spain’s Jewish citizens who were forced to leave their country for not converting to Christianity.
Rating (4.83)
Program No. 11007RJ
6 days
Starts at
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6 days
5 nights
12 meals
5 B 3 L 4 D
Getting There
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Registration, Orientation, Introductions, Welcome Dinner
Albuquerque, NM
Best Western Plus Rio Grande Inn

Activity note: Hotel check-in from 3:00 p.m.

Afternoon: Program Registration: After you have your room assignment, come over to the Road Scholar table to register with the program staff, to get your welcome packet containing your name-tag, up-to-date schedule and other important information, and to confirm the time and location of the Orientation session. If you arrive late, please ask for your packet at the front desk when you check in. Orientation: The Group Leader will greet everyone with a warm welcome and lead introductions. We will review the program theme, the up-to-date daily schedule and any changes, discuss safety guidelines, emergency procedures, roles and responsibilities, and answer any questions you may have. Transportation for program-related activities will be via motorcoach unless specified otherwise. Please be aware that program activities, schedules, and personnel may need to change due to local circumstances. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding.

Dinner: In the hotel meeting room enjoy a plated meal or buffet with salad, selection of entrées and dessert plus coffee, tea, water; additional beverages available for purchase.

Evening: Take the rest of the evening to continue getting to know your fellow participants, relax, and get a good night’s sleep for the full day ahead.

History of Sephardic Judaism, Indian Pueblo Cultural Center
Albuquerque, NM
Best Western Plus Rio Grande Inn

Activity note: Getting on/off motorcoach; standing at museum; walking up to several blocks over paved terrain in Old Town.

Breakfast: In the hotel meeting room at 7:30 a.m.; selections usually include fruit, yogurt, pastries, oatmeal, eggs, potatoes, turkey sausage, juice and coffee.

Morning: This morning our expert instructor will introduce us to the fascinating history of conversos and Crypto Jews in New Mexico, dating back to the time of the Spanish Inquisition.

Lunch: Plated meal from a select menu at a popular restaurant in Old Town includes salad, selection of entrées, coffee, tea, soft drinks and water (additional beverages available for purchase.)

Afternoon: After lunch we'll board our motorcoach and travel to the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center. This beautiful, unique center preserves and perpetuates Pueblo culture through tribally curated exhibits. The museum on the lower level showcases the history, culture and arts of the Pueblo people of New Mexico in two permanent exhibitions.

Dinner: In the hotel meeting room.

Evening: We'll continue learning about Crypto-Jewish history with a lecture about "The Columbus Question."

Field Trip to Acoma Pueblo, "Meet a Converso"
Albuquerque, NM
Best Western Plus Rio Grande Inn

Activity note: Getting on/off motorcoach; standing and walking for up to 2 hours over uneven and rough packed dirt terrain at Acoma.

Breakfast: In the hotel meeting room.

Morning: After breakfast we'll board our motorcoach and depart for Acoma Pueblo. Acoma's ties to Jewish history in New Mexico lie in the Pueblo's relationship to Jewish trader Solomon Bibo, the only non-Indian to become governor of a Native American Pueblo. Built on top of a 367-foot-high mesa to protect it from attack, the old pueblo has no electricity and no running water, but its residents vie for chances to live there for a year at a time. There are other pueblo villages at the base of the mesa, where most of the Acoma Indians dwell. We'll go to the top of the mesa where we'll explore the old village, visit the old Spanish church and meet some of the inhabitants of this remarkable historic place.

Lunch: At Acoma Pueblo, choice of chicken or vegetarian wraps and soft drinks.

Afternoon: After returning to the hotel we'll "Meet a Converso" and hear a discussion about the converso/Crypto-Jewish heritage of people in the area.

Dinner: In the hotel meeting room.

Evening: Optional video in the meeting room.

Stories of Conversos and Crypto-Jews, Hispanic Cultural Cntr
Albuquerque, NM
Best Western Plus Rio Grande Inn

Activity note: Getting on/off motorcoach; standing for an hour at the Hispanic Cultural Center.

Breakfast: In the hotel meeting room.

Morning: We'll begin the day with an expert-led lecture expanding our knowledge of the lives of conversos and Crypto Jews. We'll then travel to the National Hispanic Cultural Center, which will help to expand our understanding of the area's Hispanic history and culture.

Lunch: Plated meal from a select menu at a popular local restaurant includes selection of entrées, coffee, tea, soft drinks and water (additional beverages available for purchase.)

Afternoon: Return to the hotel and free afternoon.

Dinner: This meal has been excluded from the program cost and is on your own to sample local cuisine. The Group Leader can offer suggestions and give directions.

Evening: At leisure.

Field Trip to Santa Fe
Albuquerque, NM
Best Western Plus Rio Grande Inn

Activity note: Getting on/off motorcoach; standing at museums; walking from several blocks up to a mile over paved terrain with inclines.

Breakfast: In the hotel meeting room.

Morning: This morning we'll depart for an all-day field trip to Santa Fe. On arrival, we'll go to Museum Hill for visits to the the Museum of Indian Arts & Culture and the Museum of International Folk Art. The Museum of Indian Arts and Culture features pottery, jewelry, sculpture, baskets, and other objects made by Native Americans from the earliest times to modern day, scrupulously documented and beautifully displayed. Most of the work is from the Southwest. The Museum of International Folk Art focuses on indigenous populations from around the world through their art – ranging from ceremonial dress and masks to furniture. The museum hosts the largest collection of international folk art in the world, including wings featuring some of the 106,000 pieces donated by collectors Alexander and Susan Girard and Lloyd Cotsen's Neutrogena collection. After our museum visits, we'll travel downtown to the Santa Fe Plaza.

Lunch: This meal has been excluded from the program cost so that you can dine at a Santa Fe restaurant of your choice. There are a number of restaurants within walking distance of the Plaza offering a variety of cuisines.

Afternoon: Free Time. There are many colorful shops and galleries in the area, as well as a number of museums. You'll have a "Culture Pass" that provides admission to the state museums (Palace of the Governors, the New Mexico History Museum and the New Mexico Museum of Art) adjacent to the Plaza. The Palace of the Governors and New Mexico Museum of history feature historic documents and exhibits relating to the settlement of New Mexico and Santa Fe. The New Mexico Museum of Art offers changing exhibits by famous past and present artists of New Mexico and the Southwest. Other nearby museums and sites of interest include the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, dedicated to the work of this extraordinary artist, the Museum of Contemporary Native Art, the state capitol building, which houses an impressive collection featuring work by New Mexican artists, and the Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi. We'll meet our motorcoach at a designated time and location near the Plaza and depart for Albuquerque.

Dinner: In the hotel meeting room.

Evening: Program closing.

Hotel checkout: 12:00 p.m.
Albuquerque, NM

Breakfast: In the hotel meeting room. Breakfast is the last meal included in the program.

Morning: Hotel checkout time is 12:00 pm. We hope you enjoy Road Scholar learning adventures and look forward to having you on rewarding programs in the future. Please be in touch via the Road Scholar Social Network, where you can share memories, pictures, and comments. Best wishes for all your journeys!

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