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Taos Pueblo - Page 2


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The Governor and his staff deal with civil and business issues within the village and relations with the non-Indian world. The War Chief and staff deal with the protection of the tribal lands, resources and wildlife outside the pueblo walls. All adults who live on tribal lands are expected provide their services for community duties when needed.


The tribe holds its culture and traditions very close to their hearts and their oral traditions and native language is unwritten and unrecorded. Much of their history, rituals and traditions are considered sacred and therefore off-limits to non-tribal members. However, visitors to the pueblo can still marvel at the architecture and hospitality provided by the pueblo.


Tourism, native crafts, and food concessions are an important part of the pueblo economy and numerous vendors can be found within the pueblo, displaying pottery, silver jewelry, leather works, bread, and more. These shops are open to the public, but unless a door clearly states it is a "shop,” no entrance should be made to any building, as these are private homes.


Drying rack and adobe oven at Taos Pueblo

Drying racks have been used for centuries for drying  meat, vegetables and animal

hides for clothing. Adobe  ovens, called  hornos, are still used by the women for

 baking breads, pastries, wild game and vegetables.

This photo available for prints & downloads HERE.



One of the main highlights of the pueblo is the San Geronimo Church built in 1850. Though, it is one of the "youngest” buildings in the village, it provides a wonderful example of mission architecture, as well as an interesting look at how the tribe incorporated their values into the Catholic religion. The church, which is listed as a National Historic Landmark, continues to serve as an active church and requests for "no photography” inside should be respected.


The remains of the first San Geronimo Church, destroyed in 1847, can also be seen sitting inside the cemetery. However, the cemetery itself should not be entered by visitors.


One of the main events of the summer is the annual Taos Pueblo Powwow, a gathering of spiritual leaders and tribal members, that features costumed dancers, singers, and other ceremonies, as well as a wide array of vendors and artists. Other events are also held throughout the year. The tribe also owns and operates the Taos Mountain Casino just south of the pueblo.


Taos Pueblo is open daily to the public year round from 8 am to 4:30 pm, with the exception of special ceremonies, tribal funerals, and a ten-week period during the late winter/early spring. Fees are charged for admission and camera use.


The Taos Pueblo requests that the following rules/etiquette be followed when visiting:

  • Please report, and pay the appropriate fee for, each camera that is carried into the pueblo area.

  • Please respect the "restricted area" signs as they protect the privacy of residents and the sites of native religious practices.

  • Do not enter doors that are not clearly marked as curio shops. Each home is privately owned and occupied by a family and is not a museum display to be inspected with curiosity.

  • Please do not photograph members of the tribe without first asking permission. When permission is granted, it is customary to tip the individual.

  • Absolutely no photography is allowed in San Geronimo Chapel or anywhere on Feast Days.

  • Do not enter the walls surrounding the ruins of the old church and cemetery.

  • Do not wade in the river -- it is the sole source of drinking water.

  • Do not climb onto any structures or ladders.

More Information:


Taos Pueblo

Taos, New Mexico




© Kathy Weiser/Legends of America, updated June, 2017


Also See:


Ancient & Modern Pueblos - Oldest Cites in the U.S.

Ancient Cities of Native Americans

The Tiwa Tribe - Fighting the Spanish

Pueblo Indians - Oldest Culture in the U.S.

Pueblo and Reservation Etiquette

The Mountain Song of Taos – or, The Taos Hum


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