Albuquerque, New Mexico

Santa Fe Adjacent

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What's it like to live in Albuquerque?

Relatively low COL

No real traffic

Not too big of city but definitely not too small with plenty of room for growth.

Pretty good food options for a city this size

The abundance of easily accessible hiking trails

Best weather I've experienced outside of CA and Hawaii, the summers and winters are both tolerable.

If I get bored, LA is only a 90 minute flight away.

The food is great. The art is interesting. The cost of living is low. The people are laid back, mostly. The climate is great. We get a real taste of all seasons without the sucky ones lasting too long. There plenty of places to do interesting outdoor stuff like hiking, camping, birding, rockhounding, fossil hunting, gold panning, etc. There are a large number of wildly different ecological habitats in short driving distance. We've got a large number of micro-climates so you can be on the desert floor burning at 100 degrees, drive an hour to the top of one of our mountains, and then need to put on a sweater or jacket to keep warm. I'm sure there is other stuff I'm forgetting.

Now buckle up because other people will be along shortly to tell you about all the bad stuff here.

Having grown up in Albuquerque, then lived in Vegas for 22 years, and having travelled the U.S. a fair amount, I’m tuned-in to the +/- of New Mexico and Albuquerque in particular.

Albuquerque possesses many attributes for living here, and these traits are baked into the culture, for example:


…has a vibrant arts and cultural attraction scene, due to ongoing resources being earmarked starting decades ago. The BioPark, Aquarium and Zoo are nationally recognized, the annual International Hot Air Balloon Fiesta is amazing and is one of those events/places, like the Grand Canyon, Lake Powel, Fisherman’s Wharf, etc. that simply must be experienced in person to understand and appreciate.

…has more parkland/open spaces per capita than any city in the country, actually more than double the runner-up city of Raleigh; again, due to forward thinking and purchases of large urban/suburban land tracts starting decades ago.

No matter where you are in Albuquerque you have the Sandia mountains to the east of you. Sandia means watermelon and it won't take you very long to find out how they got such a strange name. Often, during the sunset the mountains get a reddish pink hue and the scattered trees on them look like little black dots. The overall appearance reminds one of a slice of watermelon full of seeds. Breathtaking.

Speaking of the mountains I would like to say what beautiful colors they are. Which color you may ask…all colors, the play of light and shadow combines to give you an ever changing colorful mountain range. They go from blinding white to coal black with every color or combination of colors in between each and every day. They are no specific color and every color imaginable and change right before your eyes.

5 Pros And Cons of Living In Albuquerque New Mexico - Why you should move to Albuquerque, New Mexico