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New Mexico has more PhDs per capita than any other state
We’re a smart bunch here in the Land of Enchantment. The state is home to more PhD holders per capita than any other state in the country. Why? The government. Albuquerque hosts Sandia National Laboratories and a number of other research facilities. Then there’s Los Alamos National Laboratory, Intel, and several land management agencies including the Forest Service and National Park Service. And don’t forget that Microsoft was famously established in an Albuquerque garage.
Taos Pueblo has been inhabited for over a thousand years
For at least 1,000 years, the people of Taos Pueblo have lived in their surreal, multi-story-apartment-like town. Human habitation of the area dates back perhaps 5,000 years, but it wasn’t until around 1,000 AD that the current adobe dwellings were constructed by two different groups of Tiwa peoples who came together to build the still-thriving community.
New Mexico is more than desert
New Mexico can proudly claim one of the most diverse landscapes in the world — with a range of incredible outdoor adventures to match. We sport snow-capped 13,000ft peaks dressed in pines and spruce. We have brilliant wildflower fields and jungle-like riparian forests of towering cottonwoods. We have white sand dunes and vast expanses of prairie. Truth be told, there is no one thing New Mexico looks like.
New Mexico has more cows than people
With under 20 people per square mile and around 13,500 ranches covering over 60% of the state, there’s way more livestock in New Mexico than people. So head out on those unpaved roads, commune with the cattle, and watch the Milky Way float overhead in our crystal clear skies
Santa Fe was founded 10 years before the Pilgrims landed at Plymouth
While we typically think of the founding of America dating to the time of the Pilgrims, the Spanish were in New Mexico long before the Mayflower bumped up against that Massachusetts rock. Santa Fe is not only the oldest European city west of the Mississippi River; it’s the oldest capital city in North America, dating to 1610
The first atomic bomb was exploded in New Mexico
On July 16, 1945, the very first atomic bomb was detonated in the desert sands of the Jornada del Muerto in south-central New Mexico. Known by its code name, Trinity, it was of the same design as the bomb dropped on Nagasaki, Japan, a few weeks later. The Trinity Site is located on the White Sands Missile Range and is now a National Historic Site.
You can’t legally dance while wearing your sombrero
You were thinking about it, but don’t. Step away. Back down. Just say no. Dancing while wearing your sombrero might land you in jail here.
It’s home to the largest hot air balloon festival in the world
Every October, over 500 hot air balloons — and tens of thousands of balloon aficionados — gather for the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta, which began in 1972 and has grown every year since. One reason pilots love to fly Albuquerque is because of the Box — a set of predictable wind patterns that set in as autumn creeps towards winter over the Rio Grande. The Box allows balloons to fly north at low elevations and then cruise back south at higher elevations.