Top 5 Hikes Near Santa Fe

Santa Fe is home to many hikes that are just a short distance from the city, including various trail systems that provide convenient access for both travelers and locals alike. Many of our Santa Fe vacation rentals are located near these hikes or are just a short drive away!

Top 5 Hikes Near Santa Fe

Dale Ball Trails 

The popular Dale Ball trail system offers over 23 miles of trails, including the famous Picacho Peak. Because these trails are located only a few miles from town, we recommend avoiding the area on the weekends and trying to visit early in the morning to avoid crowds.
The area is well maintained and includes signs so you don’t get lost, but always make sure to plan ahead so you know where to go. Many of the trails are multi-use and make for a great place to hike, walk the dog, or ride a bike. We’ve included some of our favorite hikes from these trails below:

Picacho Peak Trail

Arguably the most famous part of the Dale Ball Trail system, Picacho Peak is a shorter hike but offers stunning views of the city once you reach the summit. There is a good mix of shade and sun, making for a more pleasant experience while ascending to the top. This is a 3.3-mile long trail that begins at the Cerro Gordo trailhead and permits leashed dogs.

Short Hikes Near Santa Fe

These trails are perfect if you don’t want to drive far, are short on time, or are looking for easy hikes that everyone in your group can do together.

Sun Mountain

The Sun Mountain Trail is only 1.4 miles long, but is steep in places and offers a stunning view at the top. The summit is a great place to watch the sunset, and you’ll be able to see downtown Santa Fe and the surrounding mountains, including Atalya and Picacho Peak. The trailhead is located off of Old Santa Fe Trail road, and parking is limited, so make sure to arrive early to secure a spot.

Arroyo Hondo Open Space Trail

The Arroyo Hondo Trail is the easiest trail on this list and is much less steep than the others. Instead of hiking up a mountain, you’ll loop around a large hill and have views of the surrounding area from scenic vista points. We recommend this hike for those looking for a relaxing hike instead of an intense climb up a mountain. The full loop is 2 miles long and is also used by bikers. There are two trailheads, one located on Arroyo Hondo Road, and the other on Old Agua Fria Road.

More Trails Near Santa Fe

Atalaya Mountain Trail

The Atalaya Mountain Trail is one of Santa Fe’s quintessential hikes that provides a panoramic view of the city and surrounding mountains. This is a 6.4-mile trail that begins at the St. Johns College trailhead and is dog friendly as long as you use a leash at all times. If you’re looking to extend the hike, you can link Atalaya to Picacho Peak and the Dale Ball trail system if you’re looking for more miles and views.

Aspen Vista Trail

The Aspen Vista Trail is another popular hike but is located a little further from the city than the other hikes on this list. This trail, also known as the Tesuque Creek Trail, is a long hike at 11.6 miles total but makes for a great day in the mountains. The hike ascends up a gradual forest service road, passing a stream and waterfall before ending at the top of the Santa Fe Ski Area. To get here, you’ll need to drive about 30 minutes up Ski Basin road to the Aspen Vista Picnic Ground, where the hike begins.

Once you get back from your hike, we highly recommend staying in one of our Santa Fe vacation rentals with a hot tub. Nothing is better than relaxing at one of these properties after a hike! With many events canceled for summer 2020 in Santa Fe, getting outside for a hike is one of the best ways to experience the area.