Ground zero for Santa Fe’s  art market is the intersection of Paseo de Peralta and Canyon Road, the beginning of a half-mile strip of more than 80 galleries. In the summer, Canyon Road is a sea of strolling art lovers, aficionados and amateurs alike. It’s especially thronged on Friday evenings, when most galleries have an open house or an exhibition opening.
There’s a city parking lot at the north end of the road, and public restrooms (9:30 a.m.–5:30 p.m. daily) are near the south end, in the complex at 225 Canyon Road, behind Expressions gallery.
In addition to the galleries, you’ll also pass the mid-19th-century house El Zaguán, which contains the offices of the Historic Santa Fe Foundation (545 Canyon Rd., 505/983-2567, www.historicsantafe.org , 9 a.m.–noon and 1:30–5 p.m. Mon.–Fri., free). Named for its long internal hallway (zaguán), the building was the home of a local merchant, James L. Johnson, from 1854, and then occupied by several other city bigwigs after he lost his fortune in 1881. Its garden, laid out in the late 19th century, is a lovely place to rest in the summer.
At 630 Canyon Road, the Quaker meetinghouse is the former home of Olive Rush, who painted the Santa Fe Trail mural at La Fonda  and willed her house to the Quakers after her death. In the 1920s, Los Cinco Pintores, the band of young realist painters who also called themselves the “five little nuts in five mud huts,” lived in houses they built around the intersection with Camino del Monte Sol. (Will Shuster is the best known of the five today, in part because he started the Zozobra tradition; Walter Mruk, Fremont Ellis, Joseph Bakos, and Willard Nash were the other four.)
Head beyond the shops and through a residential stretch to the far north end of the road to see John Gaw Meem’s enormous Cristo Rey Catholic Church (1120 Canyon Rd.), built of 180,000 adobe bricks around a steel frame. It opened in 1940 but looks as if it could be much older; inside is a dramatic mid-18th-century baroque stone altarpiece, salvaged from La Castrense, the military chapel that used to occupy the south side of the plaza.