Santa Fe in New Mexico has announced that it kicked off the holiday season at sundown on Thanksgiving with its annual farolito lighting, located at the city’s downtown plaza. The city center was filled with traditional farolitos – or flickering votive candles – tucked inside small, sand filled paper bags. As the glowing decorations light up the plaza, caroling began and warm cider and cocoa served to celebrate the beginning of winter.
The plaza, located in the 400-year old downtown district, is the epicenter of holiday shopping in Santa Fe.
Santa Fe’s must-visit shops include: Back at the Ranch, considered a must stop for celebrities visiting Santa Fe, as this is known for its handmade cowboy boots; Doodlet’s, which offers folk art, children’s items, and selection of fun things; James Reid Ltd., offering handcrafted silver and gold belt buckles and fine leather belts; Mira, boasting Latin American and Asian folk art, contemporary fashion, and housewares; Montecristi Custom Hat Works; and Ortega’s on the Plaza, which sells Native American and local jewelry and crafts.
Also available are: Patina Gallery, which has its own distinctive mix of art in clay, wood, fiber, and mixed media; Santa Fe Weaving Gallery, boasting hand-woven art to wear; and the Rainbow Man, a local and Mexican folk art store where shoppers have been able to purchase Native American jewelry and crafts and the historic photographs of Edward Curtis since 1945.
On Christmas Eve, over 1,000 farolitos will once again be placed around the plaza, marking the beginning of the "Farolito Walk", Santa Fe’s version of a Christmas light display.
Santa Fe was recently awarded “Best Food Town” during the Rand McNally/USA Today Best of the Road competition. The Santa Fe Convention & Visitors Bureau is a department of the City of Santa Fe and is responsible for marketing the city.