5 Must-See Towns Along the Enchanted Circle Scenic Byway

Explore the best of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains with a drive along the Enchanted Circle Scenic Byway! Circling New Mexico’s tallest mountain, Wheeler Peak (13,159′), this winding itinerary makes for a perfect day trip. Cruise at altitude along the 86-mile route while enjoying stunning views and traveling through charming historic towns like Taos, Angel Fire, and Eagles Nest. Book a Red River vacation rental to serve as your home base and get ready for adventure!  

Red River 

Red River invites you to experience the best of New Mexico’s outdoor activities with a ski area, hiking and biking trails, plenty of trout fishing opportunities or maybe even a visit to the Red River Fish Hatchery. Shop and dine in downtown’s unique boutiques and eateries or learn about the mining history of the town with a visit to the Little Red Schoolhouse Museum. No matter whether you decide to get out on the mountains or explore the charm of town, Red River is a perfect place to stay along the Enchanted Circle Scenic Byway.  


Quieter than the nearby resort towns, this historic village offers an authentic feel and offers plenty of nearby outdoor recreation opportunities for hikers and fishermen alike. The center of town features an adobe church originally built in the 1880s which makes for a must-see historic site along the Enchanted Circle. 


The largest town along the route, Taos is a hub for art, culture, and outdoor enthusiasts. Take your pick of local galleries and museums to spend the day exploring or grab a bite to eat at a favorite local eatery which you may find are some of the best restaurants along the Enchanted Circle Scenic Byway. There is no shortage of outdoor adventures to be found with hiking, biking, skiing, golfing, rock climbing and more. Want to relax outdoors? Spend the day soaking in a hot spring. Feeling more adventurous? Hop into the seat of a horse’s saddle or white-water raft for a day trip you will never forget!  

Angel Fire 

Home to the Angel Fire Ski Resort, this village offers year-round outdoor activities. When you aren’t hiking, or snowshoeing through Carson National Forest, explore local galleries and shops to bring home a piece of art or jewelry unique to New Mexico. In the summer, buckle your helmet before racing through the largest bike park in the Rocky Mountains, the Angel Fire Bike Park. After a day of outdoor adventure, quench your thirst and appetite at Enchanted Circle Brewing! 

Eagles Nest  

A small community along the Enchanted Circle Scenic Byway route, Eagles Nest boasts a unique charm with a quaint main street. Eagles Nest Lake State Park is the main draw of this area with a fishing hotspot regularly stocked with trout and salmon. Located at 8,300 ft in elevation, this lake offers summer fun without the heat and breathtaking panoramic views.