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Posted by on May 3, 2013

Santa Fe Driving, Parking, and Public Transport

Santa Fe Driving, Parking, and Public Transport

Helpful tips to getting around Santa Fe

Shonto Begay Lights Too Close Acrylic on Canvas 17.5" x 44"

Shonto Begay, Lights Too Close
Acrylic on Canvas, 17.5″ x 44″

Getting to Canyon Road and the Downtown Plaza Area

  • Avoid NM 14 (Cerrillos Road.)  On the map, NM 14 looks like the most direct route into Santa Fe from northbound I-25.  Unfortunately, Cerrillos Road also is the slowest and most congested route as it is Santa Fe’s main commercial strip.
  • Take NM 466 (Old Pecos Trail) if you’re headed directly to Canyon Road, but be sure to stay on Old Pecos Trail when it veers off to the right at the third stoplight.  Also use Old Pecos Trail if you’re on southbound I-25 and headed for any downtown or Canyon Road location.
  • Take US 84/285 (St. Francis Drive) if headed to the Plaza, the Guadalupe district or the new Railyard from northbound I-25.  From St. Francis, turn right (east) on Paseo de Peralta.

Parking on Canyon Road and Downtown

  • Arrive on Canyon Road before 10:00 AM and you’ll have your choice of free on-street parking with no time limits.  Come even earlier and enjoy breakfast at the Teahouse at the corner of Palace Avenue before the galleries open.  If you arrive after 10:00 AM there may be spaces in the public lot located between East Palace and Camino del Monte Sol.  Instead of driving up Canyon Road to get there, drive up East Alameda Street, turn right on East Palace, then right on Canyon Road.  The lot will be on your right.
  • Use the map on p. ? to find a parking facility downtown.  Don’t count on using on-street parking in the Plaza area, and don’t attempt to drive up to the Plaza: there’s no parking and all the “one-ways” are very confusing.  If you are lucky enough to find a space on the side streets, most meters have a two-hour maximum at $1 per hour.  Take along a roll of quarters and watch your time.  Parking regulations definitely are enforced in Santa Fe.
  • Leave your car parked and take the Santa Fe Pick-UpThe “Pick-Up” is a free shuttle service that follows a fixed route connecting Canyon Road, the Plaza, and the Railyard.  Shuttles run every 15 to 20 minutes Monday through Saturday from 6:30 AM to 6:30 PM.  Look for white vans with the red pick-up truck logo.  Download a route map at or call 505-231-2573.
  • Leave your car at the hotel and take a cab.  Downtown Santa Fe is really quite small so the cab fare will be very reasonable, even if you are staying in one of the hotels out Cerrillos Road.  Cabs do not cruise around town looking for fares, so you’ll have to call in advance: Capital City Cab 505-438-0000.  When on the Plaza in summer, look for Santa Fe Pedicabs, two-passenger human-powered shuttles.  They will take you anywhere in the downtown, Canyon Road, and Railyard neighborhoods.  Flag one down or call 505-577-5056.

Leave your car and take the bus

Santa Fe Trails bus service is an excellent alternative, especially if you are lodging on Cerrillos Road.  The Route 2/Cerrillos Road bus runs about every 15 minutes on weekdays (30 minutes on weekends) and delivers passengers directly to the Downtown Transit Center on the west side of the New Mexico Museum of Art, one block from the Plaza.  From the Transit Center, take the “M” bus to Museum Hill.  You can find routes and schedules online or call 505-955-2001.

If you have questions on seeing Santa Fe sights or shopping, please contact Medicine Man Gallery. (505) 820-7451