Santa Fe is home to some of the most important and treasured historical sites in the American Southwest. From the adobe-style architecture to the gorgeous mountains surrounding the city, a journey to the Land of Enchantment is a timeless experience. Pecos National Historical Park sits 30 minutes from El Farolito and is a spectacular hidden gem that’s full of history. A Civil War battlefield, an old mission church, and breathtaking pueblos await you in this well-preserved corner of New Mexico. For more sights, activities, and things to do around Santa Fe, request our free Vacation Guide!
Your Guide to a Day at Pecos National Historical Park
Hours and Admission
Park hours fluctuate between the summer and winter seasons. From Memorial Day until Labor Day (summer hours), the park opens at 8:00 a.m. and closes at 6 p.m. From Labor Day until Memorial Day (winter hours), the park opens its gates from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 a.m. Admission and guided tours through the park are both free, making this a perfect way to explore the area around Santa Fe on a budget!
Hiking and fishing are the two main activities in Pecos National Historical Park. The Ancestral Sites Trail and Glorieta Battlefield Trail give guests the opportunity to explore the Pecos Pueblo, the mission church, and a famous Civil War battlefield. These mostly paved trails are both less than a three-mile round trip, making it an easy hike for most visitors.
Pecos National Historical Park is one of the few good spots for fishing in New Mexico. The river is only open for the fishing season from September through November. You must make a reservation at least 30 days in advance of your visit. The park divides the Pecos River into three separate mile-long sections for a select number of anglers each day. If you choose to cast your line here, keep in mind that the park requires you to practice catch and release fishing with single, barbless hooks. There’s nothing better than reeling in your prize as you take in the beautiful surroundings of the peaceful river.
Free Guided Tours
In addition to hiking and fishing, guided tours through the park are incredibly popular and provide guests with a fun and engaging way to learn about the history of the area. Four tours highlight different aspects of Native American culture, Civil War history, and a touch of Hollywood glam around Pecos National Historical Park. Tour dates and times change depending on the season. Check out the list of the tours below!
- Ancestral Sites Tour (one hour)
- Civil War Walking Tour (1.5 hours)
- Forked Lightning Ranch Van Tour (1.5 hours)
- Battlefield Hike (two hours)
A Visit to Historical Glorieta Pass
The Battle of Glorieta Pass
The Battle of Glorieta Pass was a key skirmish between Confederate and Union troops for possession of New Mexico territory from March 26 through March 28 in 1862. Confederate Soldiers attempted to push through Union occupied territory but failed to break the blockade, eventually retreating to Texas and Arizona. The Battlefield Hike and Civil War Walking Tour both explore Glorieta Pass and are great ways to learn about the little-known Civil War in the Southwest.
After enjoying the day exploring Santa Fe’s rich history, come back and take a breather at El Farolito. Our charming bed and breakfast is in the heart of the city, putting you within easy walking distance of plenty of sights and attractions! Relax and rejuvenate in one of our cozy and authentically decorated accommodations before enjoying a restful night’s sleep. Then, wake up and indulge in a delicious breakfast to start your day off right!
Don’t forget to request your free Santa Fe Vacation Guide to start planning your getaway to the Land of Enchantment!