Hey There, Albuquerque :: 5 Reasons to Love the 505


Albuquerque has a bad reputation . . .

Some of it is earned. Some of it not so much.

When I told friends and family I was moving to New Mexico, some got a bit mixed up and thought I was moving to Mexico.


Many of them haven’t visited Albuquerque. All they know is what they see on the news–or more often some imaginary version of New Mexico they’ve created in their head.

A lot of people wonder why in the world a non-native like me would stay in this dry desert place. Maybe you’re wondering the same thing.

So if you’re in need of a fresh perspective on Albuquerque, let me share five reasons I love the 505.

Hey There, Albuquerque :: 5 Reasons to Love the 505

Red AND Green

This is one that my friends and family completely understand. Whenever they visit Albuquerque and try red or green chile, they are hooked. And I now bring red chile to family holidays in California!

New Mexico has unique food choices that you can’t get anywhere else. If I’m out of town for more than a few days, I come back craving New Mexican chile.

And the tradition of chile peeling parties in the fall makes it that much better!

When those roasters come out and I smell roasting chile in the air, it makes me SO excited. My husband’s family gathers together to peel green chile and stock up for the year.

Hey There, Albuquerque :: 5 Reasons to Love the 505

The Mix of Cultures

One thing I want for my daughter is for her to experience as many cultures as possible. 

I love the opportunities that Albuquerque provides in this area.

Just a few weeks ago my husband stumbled across a Turkish cultural center and festival . . . right in our neighborhood! Our daughter got to try new foods and see a bit of Turkish culture without traveling the globe. (Although I hope she gets to do plenty of that . . .)

Letting our kids experience different cultures is one of the best ways we can help them learn to be compassionate, inclusive, and empathetic human beings.

I’m grateful I can do that through a variety of restaurants, cultural centers, and festivals right here in Albuquerque.

The Snow

I’m a California girl. The only time I got snow growing up was when we drove up to the mountains.

Albuquerque doesn’t get a ton of snow, but that’s what I love about it! 

Any time this town gets more than a dusting, it shuts down. But the snow doesn’t stay.

By mid-morning people are driving around like nothing ever happened. I’m sure visitors and transplants from places like Michigan laugh at us, but I’m okay with it.

The fact that I can get some pretty white snow, a day off, AND go out around town after? 

That’s my ideal snow day!

Hey There, Albuquerque :: 5 Reasons to Love the 505

The Sandias

I have NEVER seen mountains turn such a beautiful shade of pink in my life.

One of the reasons I love our house is that my front window faces the Sandias. When the sun hits them just right, it’s breathtaking.

Albuquerque has an amazing treasure right in her backyard.

The Sandias have so much to offer. There are trails to enjoy. The tram provides spectacular views. And it’s all just a short car ride away.

The People

People call it the “land of mañana,” and I totally get it.

In California, everything was about being busy and going ALL. THE. TIME. Here in the 505, it’s a bit different. Things always seem more relaxed to me.

Albuquerque has an atmosphere different than anywhere else I’ve been in the United States.

When I first moved here, it honestly drove me crazy. But over time I’ve come to appreciate the more relaxed and laid-back atmosphere.

You can always find the negative in anything.

If that’s all you focus on it’s easy to get caught up in it. But don’t forget to look at the things you love about Albuquerque. Because our town really has a lot to offer.

So, Albuquerque moms, tell us . . .

What do you love about Albuquerque?

Originally published June 2019. 

The opinions expressed in this post are those of the author. They do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of ABQ Mom, its executive team, other contributors to the site, its sponsors or partners, or any organizations the aforementioned might be affiliated with.