Mesilla is a small town in Doña Ana County, New Mexico. The old historic town is just less than 10-minute drive from where I live in Las Cruces. I frequent the town for coffee at the famous local coffee house “The Bean.”
The first time I visited the town on a weekend, I was surprised how quiet (read: peaceful) it is. I was expecting a number of tourists to have bombarded some of its historic sites. But no, just me and a handful of curious people who seemed to have enjoyed strolling on the alleys and stepping back into a slower pace of living.
I was able to see everything in two hours. But if you are fond of checking out shops, then you may want to spare half a day to enjoy Mesilla.
Mesilla (“Little Tableland”) is the best-known and most visited historical community in Southern New Mexico. Since its’ beginning, around 1848, Mesilla has had a major influence on the economic, cultural, historical, and political life of the Mesilla Valley. From the Gadsden Purchase, to the Civil War, to the Butterfield Stage Coach Trail, to the trial of Billy the Kid, to being a lively social center in the 1880s–Mesilla has been a prominent part of the rich history of the Southwest.
Today, many of Mesilla’s population of nearly 2,200 residents are direct descendents of Mesilla’s early settlers. As such, they have retained many of the “hearty folk” qualities of the original founders. Mesilla has a rich and diverse heritage with the integration of Indian, Spanish, Mexican, and Anglo-American cultures. Perhaps the greatest import of the past history is the physical character of the community itself. The traditional adobe structures and architectural features modified through time because of style and technology still remain as a reminder of the long and significant history of the town.
A small square in middle of the historic Mesilla Plaza.
The Basilica of San Albino is just located right across the square.
Just a block away from the plaza is the famous restaurant La Posta.
Then there’s Billy the Kid!
Just a walking distance from the plaza is the privately-owned Gadsden Museum.
From antique instruments and uniforms, to old clothing, to jail cell bars, to special dolls and religious artifacts — everything is inside Gadsden Museum. Since it is privately-owned, call ahead for an appointment.
Address: 1875 Boutz Rd, Mesilla, NM 88046
Surrounding the plaza are little shops.
The Mesilla Town Hall is also near by.
Christmas Carols at Mesilla Plaza.
If you happen to be in Mesilla during Christmas season, stop by the plaza as it transforms into a space decorated with lights and listen to live Christmas carols.
Visit this well-preserved historic town of Mesilla, New Mexico!
Here’s the link on how to get there.
Where to stay.
Find your hotel accommodation using this link: Find the Best Deals at hotels.com!
Or search for hotels in Mesilla that are within your budget.
See more of my New Mexico travels.
See also: My other travel adventures.