Taos, New Mexico is a popular getaway destination for families who enjoy the warm desert air and a peaceful atmosphere. Home to historic adobe buildings such as Taos Pueblo, as well as museums and Carson National Forest, Taos has plenty to offer when it comes to entertainment and recreation. Book a stay at a vacation rental in Taos today. Check out the top kid-friendly activities in Taos that the whole family can enjoy.
1. Hike With Llamas
For a little recreation and an unforgettable experience, sign up for a “Take a Llama to Lunch” hike with Wild Earth Llama Adventures. Trek with the llamas through the trails of New Mexico’s Sangre de Cristo Mountains, and then enjoy a gourmet lunch when you reach your destination. During the llama trek, your knowledgeable guides can answer any questions you have about these magnificent creatures, and they also know a thing or two about the local wildlife and plants along the trekking trail.
2. Raft Down the Rio Grande
For an exhilarating experience down the rapids of the Rio Grande, sign up for a Taos Box whitewater rafting trip. Float down the 16-mile Rio Grande Gorge with helpful guides who make sure your journey is both safe and exciting. As you fly down the rapids, make sure to keep your eyes peeled for bighorn sheep peeking out from behind the rocks. When the journey ends, all riders are provided a delicious meal at the river’s edge to refuel.
3. Go on a Hot Air Balloon Ride
New Mexico is known for its beautiful natural scenery, and one of the best ways to take it all in is with a hot air balloon ride. Taos Balloon Rides offer trips above the 600-foot deep Rio Grande Gorge, where there’s beauty as far as the eyes can see. Each flight lasts about one hour, and guests are treated to a celebration brunch once the balloon lands.
4. Check Out the Grande Gorge Bridge
The Rio Grande Gorge Bridge is one of Taos’ most visited sites, as its arches stretch 10 full miles over the Rio Grande, and it’s the second highest bridge of the U.S. Highway System. Take a drive up to the starting point, and pull over at one of the rest areas, and then have your camera ready for some amazing shots of the spectacular surrounding views. Your kids may be tempted to peek over the edge, which is safe as long as they stay within the marked perimeters. Streetside vendors are set up near the bridge during the day, so you can also grab a snack or some souvenirs to take home to friends and family.
5. Visit the Taos Pueblo
The Taos Pueblo is a Native American community that sits at the base of the Sangre de Cristo Mountain Range in Taos. People have lived in the pueblo for over 1,000 years, and current residents believe the structures were built between 1000 and 1450 AD. While the community members run businesses and live on the premises, visitors are welcome during daytime hours. Pay a visit to the community, and check out the unique structures built from adobe clay, then stop by one of the curio shops for a piece of hand-crafted jewelry or pottery.
6. Stroll Through Taos Plaza
Referred to as the “Heart of Taos,” Taos Plaza has a little something for everyone. Located in the center of Taos Historic District, the plaza was originally built as a defense area 300 years ago by Spanish colonists. Today, it’s home to a wide variety of shops and eateries, and monuments dedicated to early settlers. Take a walk along the beautiful grounds, then stop by Ranchos Plaza Grill for some authentic New Mexican cuisine and flan for dessert.
7. Visit the Millicent Rogers Museum
Millicent Rogers was a prominent figure in New Mexico during the 1940s and 50s who fought for the civil rights of Native Americans. Raised in a wealthy family and an heir to her oil tycoon father’s fortune, Millicent was a well-known socialite and art collector throughout the 1920s, and she switched her focus after moving to Taos in 1947. During her time in Taos, Millicent purchased over 2,000 Native American artifacts, which are now on display in her museum, along with exquisite jewelry and art that she collected over the years. Your kids are sure to love the eclectic mix of pieces displayed throughout the museum, many accompanied by glamour photos of Millicent herself.
8. Take a Pottery Class at Taos Clay Studio
Let your kids express their artistic sides with a visit to Taos Clay Studio. The studio teaches classes every day, and all ages are welcome. All students get a turn at the potter’s wheel and receive their own piece to glaze and take home as a memento of the day. The studio accommodates 12 people at a time, so it’s a good idea to call before arriving to ensure there’s plenty of space for you and your family.
9. Learn About History at the Kit Carson Home and Museum
Learn about American trailblazer Kit Carson by spending the day at the Kit Carson Home and Museum. Kit was a famed mountain man and trapper, who then moved on to become an Indian guide and an important figure in the Civil War. When the war ended, he retired to Taos and built a Pueblo home on what’s now known as Kit Carson Road. Stop by the museum to check out the unique artifacts and paintings, many of which feature Kit’s own home. The museum offers a printable “kids guide” online to help your young ones get to know Kit before you visit, and admission is free for kids 12 years old and under.
10. Visit Wild Rivers Recreation Area
For an exhilarating evening under the stars of the beautiful desert sky, head to the Wild Rivers Recreation Area, which runs alongside the Rio Grande River for 7 miles. Wait for the magic to begin as the skies darken, and millions of stars twinkle within your view.
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