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New Mexico

Santa Fe and Taos: A Tale Of Two Cities

Program No. 11009RJ
Get an insider’s perspective on Santa Fe and Taos alongside local artists, exploring several world-class museums, enjoying traditional music and learning about Native cultures.

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At a Glance

Less than 70 miles from one another, Santa Fe and Taos are the jewel cities of northern New Mexico, seemingly enchanted places set amidst the majestic Sangre de Cristo Mountains. Adobe pueblos built by ancestral peoples still stand, elegant Spanish colonial plazas serve as meeting places as they have for four centuries and beautiful museums display the work of artist-pilgrims who gathered here to find inspiration in the land. Examine Santa Fe and Taos through the eyes of those who have called them home and discover not only what they share, but also what sets each apart.
Activity Level
Keep the Pace
Walking up to four miles daily over varied terrain. Standing for up to two hours at a time. Getting on/off motorcoach multiple times a day. Elevations up to 7,500 feet.

What You'll Learn

  • Learn about artist Georgia O'Keeffe and visit the New Mexico Museum of Art.
  • Be moved by the ancient Native traditions and cultures preserved in a local pueblo and gain insight into the enduring nature of the Pueblo people.
  • Enjoy a cooking demonstration by a local James Beard Award-winning author and chef and visit the historic village of Chimayó.

General Notes

Select dates are designated for small groups and are limited to 24 participants or less.
Featured Expert
All trip experts
Profile Image
Jerry Rightman
Who would have ever thought that a retired veterinarian would become a dedicated art lecturer? Jerry Rightman is just that person and is an active member in the art community of Santa Fe, applying his talents as a docent at the New Mexico Museum of Art and the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum. He has received rave reviews for the many years that he has been teaching for Road Scholar.

Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.

Profile Image of Jerry Rightman
Jerry Rightman View biography
Who would have ever thought that a retired veterinarian would become a dedicated art lecturer? Jerry Rightman is just that person and is an active member in the art community of Santa Fe, applying his talents as a docent at the New Mexico Museum of Art and the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum. He has received rave reviews for the many years that he has been teaching for Road Scholar.
Profile Image of Lois Frank
Lois Ellen Frank View biography
Lois Ellen Frank, PhD, is a Santa Fe-based chef focused on Native American foods. She is also a Native American food historian, culinary anthropologist, photographer and James Beard Award-winning author. She is a featured instructor of the Southwest Indian Nations at the Santa Fe School of Cooking, and is chef and owner — along with Native Chef Walter Whitewater of the Diné Nation — of Red Mesa Cuisine.
Profile Image of Elizabeth Mesh
Elizabeth Mesh View biography
Elizabeth Mesh is an educator, artist and actor with a master’s and license in art therapy. She has led thousands of people at the SITE Santa Fe art museum. She has also been on over 20 film and TV sets in New Mexico. Biking, hiking, blue skies and clean air make New Mexico a place she loves to share. Elizabeth has been teaching traditional and expressive art for two decades and has been featured on the Home and Garden Network Television’s segment “That’s Clever!”
Profile Image of Vannetta Perry
Vannetta Perry View biography
Dr. Vannetta Perry is a retired educator and lifelong resident of New Mexico who is deeply rooted in the southwest. Her family homesteaded and ranched in Southwestern New Mexico and farmed in West Texas. As an educator, Dr. Perry worked in the university setting, teaching biology and directing science outreach programs. Her love for travel was sparked when she led research studies in developing countries. Since retiring, Dr. Perry has continued to share her love of travel and education as a travel director and leader.
Profile Image of Colleen Patrick
Colleen Patrick View biography
A native of Colorado and a relative newcomer to New Mexico, Colleen Patrick has spent a lifetime visiting and learning about Pueblo culture, pottery and the movement of Native Americans and Spaniards throughout New Mexico. Colleen has been in the travel business since 2006, but has been a traveler since her childhood. She learned to appreciate new cultures and new places as a child and has loved sharing new places and cultures with guests for many years.
Profile Image of Omar Villanueva
Omar Villanueva View biography
Omar Villanueva holds a master's degree in classical guitar performance from the University of New Mexico. He is a multifaceted guitarist who performs classical, Spanish and popular music. His repertoire includes renaissance, baroque, classical, romantic and Latin music arrangements for solo guitar. He is also an accomplished and awarded singer of music from Latin America and New Mexico. He has been performing in New Mexico and surrounding states since 2004.
Profile Image of Sherry Moon
Sherry Moon View biography
Sherry Moon is a certified interpreter for the profession of heritage interpretation and an experienced group leader. She has a bachelor's degree in Mass Communications and has taught communication and art. For nearly 20 years, she has been a group leader specializing in the Southwest and Alaska/Yukon. As president of the Rocky Mountain Guides Association, she is regarded as a local expert. Her interests include the arts, history, heritage, geology, reading, outdoor activities, and socializing with friends.
Profile Image of Ellen Morris Bond
Ellen Morris Bond View biography
Ellen Morris Bond has spent most of her adult years in northern New Mexico, graduating from the University of New Mexico Honors Program. She completed a Master’s Degree in Community Development at University of California-Davis. As a non-profit director, Ellen forged strong collaborations with local and regional organizations such as health councils, community foundations, tribal groups, hospitals, public schools, rural health clinics, and faith groups. She now volunteers with the local acequia/water organization and leads art and architecture groups at La Fonda of Santa Fe.
Profile Image of Sheryl Russell
Sheryl Russell View biography
Sheryl Russell was born to a farming family in Kansas. At the University of Kansas, she studied education in theatre and English literature, followed by decades of work in retail and communications systems in Dallas, New York City, and the California Bay area. Sheryl felt that she had “come home" when she moved to Santa Fe. Here she found a cultural diversity, architectural style, and historic richness that supported the next 30 years of leading explorations and study of native Southwest cultures and their history.
Profile Image of Ana Pacheco
Ana Pacheco View biography
Ana Pacheco's family settled in Santa Fe in 1692. She was the city historian from 2015-2017 and is the author of eight books on Santa Fe and New Mexico history. She was the founding publisher/editor of La Herencia, a quarterly magazine on New Mexico history, from 1994-2009. Pacheco wrote a weekly column, A Wonderful Life, for the Santa Fe New Mexican, documenting the oral histories of the elder community from 2007-2013. Since 2019, Pacheco has provided a two-hour historical walking exploration of her hometown.
Profile Image of Terri Ross
Terri Ross View biography
Terri Ross is a longtime transplant to New Mexico. First arriving in 1994, she began exploring the rich history and varied landscape of the state. She has led more than 80 group programs around the corner and around the world. She is also a local speaker in her adopted hometown of Albuquerque, making presentations on a variety of topics including travel journaling and scrapbooking, New Mexico history, traveling the Navajo lands, and driving on New Mexico Highway 4.
Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on, a website that supports local bookstores.

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