Chama Travel Guide

More village than town, the tiny hamlet of Chama is nestled deep in the beautiful high country of northern New Mexico. Surrounded by mountains, with a pristine river running through it, Chama’s main tourist draw is the wealth of outdoor recreation in the region. The historic Cumbres and Toltec Railroad terminates here, providing a scenic journey across the border to Colorado.

Chama is literally in the middle of nowhere. The nearest town of any size is Santa Fe]], 110 miles to the south. But plenty of visitors come throughout the year precisely because of its remoteness. Apart from taking a ride on the legendary Cumbres and Toltec Railroad, most people are here for the amazing, uncrowded outdoor recreation possibilities. Fishing, horseback riding, boating, hiking, biking, and hunting are a real pleasure around Chama, and in the winter the snowmobiling and Nordic skiing scene is unparalleled.

Everything in Chama is within easy walking distance, and there isn’t much at that. However, visitors will find enough casual restaurants, outdoor shops and motels to take care of their needs. You don’t come to Chama for the city life, you come here to escape it. Chances are, if you made it to Chama, you came by car. You’ll need it if you want to access any of the recreation sites in the area because there is no public transportation whatsoever.


Cumbres and Toltec Scenic Railroad: this historic narrow-gauge railway, with views that will leave you drooling, runs from Chama over the Cumbres Pass and through the Toltec Gorge before spitting you out in Antonio, Colorado.

Cumbres Pass: snow mobilers and cross-country skiers flock to this high country region during winter for some of the finest backcountry recreation in America.

El Chorro Falls: one of America’s highest waterfalls spills off the dramatic Brazos Cliffs during the spring months of April and May.