Have you ever pictured what it would be like to live in 18th and 19th century New Mexico? Visiting this living history museum, you definitely can. El Rancho De Las Golondrinas, also known as the "Rancho of the Swallows," strives to maintain the richness of this region's culture by displaying Spanish colonial buildings dating back to the 1800s. Now, with its dedication to preserving the history, heritage, and culture of this region, you'll definitely get a "look-at-me-I'm-deep-into-history" type photo with this one!
El Rancho De Las Golondrinas is located on what was once El Camino Real, "the Royal Road," a road that stretched from Mexico City to Santa Fe in a spot that provided an official rest stop for travelers and caravans. In 1932, a woman named Leonara Curtin and her mother purchased the property. Leonara Curtin, is known for the founding of Santa Fe’s Native Market which provided income to local artists during the Great Depression. After Leonara's marriage in 1946, Leonara and her husband decided to transform the land into a historic museum that people could engage themselves with the rich culture of New Mexico. The ranch that once was a rest stop for travelers and caravans in the 1800s is now a living history museum open to those curious about the history and culture of the 18th and 19th century New Mexico.
Bring your camera, and experience a bread baking class or participate in a new activity like traditional weaving and colcha embroidery. Step into El Rancho De Las Golondrinas where guides dressed in 18th and 19th-century clothing demonstrate milling, hide tanning, blacksmithing, weaving, and planting crops. Don't miss out on this immersive cultural experience! Since El Rancho De Las Golondrinas sits on top of 200 acres of land, make sure to give yourself two hours to explore the area and all its historical wonders.
Head over to the Leonara Curtin wetland preserve adjacent to the ranch for incredible botanical photos. This 35-acre natural preserve is home to various plants and wildlife and has 3 plant communities or zones—riparian/wetland, transitional, and dry uplands.
Since it isn’t a year-round attraction, look out for varying hours/days the ranch is open. The museum is open for self-guided tours: June 1 through October 6, Wednesday - Sunday, from 10 am to 4 pm. For the months of April, May, and October the museum is closed to the public but offers Docent-guided tours Monday through Friday. It must be done by reservation only and a two-week advance notice is required. During the months of November through March, the museum is CLOSED.
Cover image by Chris Light is licensed under (CC By-SA 4.0). Image made available on Wikimedia Commons. Information is made available on golondrinas.org.