Take the Turquoise Trail south on Hwy 14 from Santa Fe
Photos of scenes along Turquoise Trail
Santa Fe TrailHigh Road to TaosHwy of LegendsRiver Road to Taos
   DIRECTIONS:   To find Hwy 14 or the Turquoise Trail from Interstate 25 take exit 278 A or exit 276 A off the freeway.   If you are in Santa Fe, you can take Cerrillos Road south.    The road passes under the Interstate where you connect with Hwy 14.   As you travel down Hwy 14, you will exit off 14 and travel west about one-fourth mile to find Cerrillos. Get back on Hwy 14 for a few more miles and you will come to the old mining town of Madrid.   Travel further south and either take Hwy 536, the Sandia Crest Scenic Byway, to the top of the peak. Or you can continue south passing through Cedar Crest.    Take Interstate 40 west to the exit for Hwy 337.    This road and will take you to Tijeras.
To view scenes along the highway SCROLL DOWN so that the top of the map is at the top of your screen.        ROLL MOUSE over the camera eyes and the photos will appear.

  • Visit the picturesque, old adobe town of Cerrillos

  • Ride Horseback through the Cerrillos hills canyons

  • Visit the old mining town of Madrid now filled with shops & galleries

  • Tour the Old Coal Mine Museum in Madrid

  • See a Melodrama during the summer at the Engine House Theatre

  • Take in the breath-taking vistas at the top of Sandia Peak

  • Visit the Museum of Archaeology in Tijeras


Along Hwy 14 Cerrillos Cerrillos Madrid Madrid Road to Sandia Peak Highway 337 South Cerrillos Tijeras Pueblo Archeological Site

History of the Cerrillos area

Before the arrival of the Spanish in the late 1500s, the area around Cerrillos produced a large amount of turquoise. The area for trading these gems extended as far south as the Valley of Mexico.

The first town to be formed in the area was called Los Cerrillos. It was an early Spanish settlement harboring refugees from the 1680 pueblo revolt. That first community has not survived but another grew up in the late 1800s.

That community which still remains was founded as a mining town around the time of the lead strike of 1879. In its heyday, it sported 21 saloons and 4 hotels. Now there is a picturesque adobe village left with a trading post, galleries, and an adobe church.

      Other Places to Visit

Sandia Peak rises to 10,678 ft.    Highway 536 winds its way to the top offering many long views. At the top is an observation deck with spectacular views and the Sandia Crest House where you can dine and enjoy the view. You can also venture in the wilderness from here and hike through aspen groves and meadows.

Tinkertown Museum along the Sandia Crest National Scenic Byway is an animated, miniature Old West Town.    It is open from 9 to 6 daily from April through Oct.

Back to Museums List


Tijeras is an archeological site open to the public. The ruins were first mapped in 1930. It is an ongoing project. One discovery you can view from afar is the opening of an ancient mine visable on the hill.

From as early as 400 AD, native peoples inhabited the area around Tijeras. They relied on agriculture for survival. From 900 to 1200 the main construction was found to be masonry. Kivas were found in the major villages. From 1200 to 1315 AD there was a large increase in population. Many multi-story pueblos were built complete with irrigaion systems. Constuction began at Tijeras (which means scizzors) in 1313 AD and soon grew up to be one of the larger settlements in the area. The highest levels of population were achieved from 1315 to 1600.

The Tijeras Canyon Pass between Sandia and the Manzano Mountains has been a natural route for travel between eastern New Mexico and the Rio Grande Valley. In 1763, the Spanish settlers moved into the area of Tijeras through the same route.

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