Museum of International Folk Art

#4 in Best Things To Do in Santa Fe
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Key Info

706 Camino Lejo

Price & Hours

$12 for adults; free for kids 16 and younger
Hours vary seasonally, see website for details

Details

Museums Type
2 hours to Half Day Time to Spend

scorecard

  • 4.0Value
  • 4.0Facilities
  • 4.5Atmosphere

Of all the museums run by the New Mexico Department of Cultural Affairs, this one is probably the most unique. Southwestern art is definitely represented, but the Museum of International Folk Art also showcases more than 135,000 objects and has interesting displays representing daily life in societies all over the globe. At this museum, you'll encounter African, Asian, Middle Eastern, contemporary Hispanic and Latino, European, North American and Spanish Colonial pieces ranging from household objects, ceramics and paintings to toys, puppets and costumes. Don't worry about boring your kids: the large collection of colorful toys from around the world is sure to spark their interest.

Past museumgoers called this site everything from "fascinating and unusual" to "amazing and delightful," with many adding that there's something for everyone to see here. Visitors loved the quirky, colorful art and said they ended up spending more time than they thought here because of the extensive number of works on display. Others recommend taking a tour for even more insight into the collection.

Located about 2 miles south of the Santa Fe Plaza on Museum Hill, the Museum of International Folk Art is open Tuesday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. During the summer, the museum is open every day. Guided tours are available most days at 10:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. Admission is $12 for adults ($7 for New Mexico residents); discounts are available for students and seniors and kids 16 and younger can enter for free. You could also opt to purchase a CulturePass, which grants you access to multiple museums and historic sites in New Mexico, including the New Mexico History Museum, for a set price. For information on collections, exhibits and workshops, check out the museum's website.

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#1 Canyon Road

If there's any doubt that Santa Fe is a prime destination for art lovers, Canyon Road quashes it. Situated just east of the Santa Fe Plaza, Canyon Road is home to a slew of art galleries selling renowned artwork from famed artists, such as Fernando Botero and cultural treasures like hand-woven Navajo rugs and Southwestern wood carvings. The area is touted as an art lover's mecca because of the variety of mediums used to highlight art. Pop into the different galleries (there are more than 100) along the street and you'll find everything from jewelry and pottery to sculptures and paintings. The street itself is also a feast for the eyes: Many of the galleries found here are housed in historic adobe buildings laced with brilliantly colored flowers, art installations are often showcased outside and the spicy odor of chile peppers wafts from the doorways of top-notch eateries like Geronimo Restaurant and Compound Restaurant.

Recent visitors said the best way to experience this arts district is simply by strolling down the street, adding that it's a wonderful way to experience art without being stuck indoors or inside a single museum. Travelers were impressed with everything from the variety of art to the pueblo architecture and said there are ample opportunities to snap photos of this vibrant site.

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