Pueblos – Just a short distance from Santa Fe is the San Ildefonso Pueblo where you can see the world famous Black on Black pottery that Maria Martinez created which help bridge the Pueblos to the outside world after she took her pottery to the World’s Fair in St. Louis in 1904. This propelled San Ildefonso into international prominence and sparking a pottery revival which inspired many Pueblo artists to renew their artistic traditions. She alone was the pioneer for marketing pottery beyond their own people and created an economy for pottery and the arts. The traditional name for this pueblo is Po-woh-ge-oweenge “Where the water cuts through“. There is historical relevance of the land because it was where they held out during the Spanish Re-conquest of 1692. Never surrendered and fought from the Black Mesa nearby.
Next stop are the Puye Cliffs ancient dwellings of the Santa Clara Pueblo. Take the adventure tour to learn all about the ancient ruins. The traditional name for this Pueblo is Kha’p’oo Owinge which means “Valley of the Wild Roses”. The tour takes approximately 2 ½ hrs. and is choked full of information from your guide. It is well worth the time to tour these fabulous ruins. Puye Cliffs offers special tours that will enhance your understanding and enjoyment of this deeply spiritual attraction in northern New Mexico. The adventure tour includes both the Mesa Top Summer dwellings along with the Cliff side tour of the Winter dwellings.
The History – The Northern Pueblos of New Mexico represent eight of the 19 Pueblo Tribes in the state .They are the oldest tribal communities in the US having descended from the ancestral cultures that once inhabited Chaco Canyon, Mesa Verde and Bandelier.
The Pueblos were given their name by the Spanish (pueblo means town) who came upon Pueblo villages when they explored present-day New Mexico beginning in the late 1500s.
Pueblos remain on their original homelands to the day. The Northern Pueblos belong to 2 language groups, the Tewa (Tesuque, Pojoaque, Nambé, San Ildefonso and Santa Clara) and the Tiwa (Picuris & Taos).
A roundtrip to some select NM pueblos and Puye Cliffs then back to Santa Fe is $325.00 + tax + entry fees and takes 4-5 hours.
For more information check out these links:
San Ildefonso Pueblo: