Santa Fe Plaza

Photo of Santa Fe Plaza, with an obelisk monument in the center, surrounded by buildings. LOC photo
Santa Fe Plaza, Farm Security Administration - Office of War Information photo.

Photo courtesy of the Library of Congress (

Quick Facts

The Santa Fe Plaza has long been the spatial, economic, and social center of New Mexico’s capital city. Accordingly, it is the location of various historic buildings and events throughout New Mexico’s history. Now half its original size, the Plaza is landscaped with flagstone, walks, benches, and trees. It includes storefronts, a Civil War memorial, a Santa Fe Trail marker, and a monument commemorating the annexation of New Mexico. The Plaza was founded by the Spanish in 1609 as a strategic location for defense. It later served as the endpoint marker of the Santa Fe Trail after Mexico gained its independence. During the Spanish occupation, the Plaza was unpaved. When Anglo-Americans arrived in about 1850, they brought the Plaza to its current size—about one city block—and enclosed it with buildings facing the Palace of the Governors.

Site Information


Safety Considerations

El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro National Historic Trail

Santa Fe National Historic Trail

Old Spanish National Historic Trail

(Location Image courtesy of the Library of Congress)

El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro National Historic Trail, Old Spanish National Historic Trail, Santa Fe National Historic Trail

Last updated: November 29, 2021