Retirement in New Mexico includes affordable living, a mild climate, and a rich culture.
From open vistas, snowy mountains, rolling plains, deserts, and beautiful landscapes, there is something for everyone in New Mexico.
THE NORTHWEST REGION
The northwestern part of New Mexico is the area that most people associate with New Mexico.
This region is rich with an abundance of Native American culture.
Here you can explore America’s largest Indian reservation, the Navajo Nation, and enjoy the natural desert beauty of the Four Corners – the point where Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico and Utah meet.
Two of the most popular retirement towns in this region are:
Farmington, which is nestled in the picturesque San Juan River valley, is the largest city of this area.
To the north of Farmington, you can see the rugged San Juan Mountains in Colorado and to the west the desert highlands of Arizona.
Activities include hiking, golfing, museums, local art galleries and a local theatre. Farmington is a great town for retirement in New Mexico.
Many retirees have discovered the town of Bloomfield, New Mexico.
With a population of over 7,000, it is a small town that offers many of the services and lifestyle choices of a much larger city.
Enjoy snow skiing, biking, hiking, and golfing. Plus, fish for trout or enjoy other water recreation on Navajo Lake.
RETIREMENT IN NEW MEXICO
THE NORTH CENTRAL REGION
The north central area of New Mexico is the perfect place to retire – especially, if you enjoy the outdoors.
One of the most popular regions of New Mexico, it offers snow skiing and snowboarding at Taos Ski Valley, Red River, and in Santa Fe.
If you are into mountain climbing, check out the highest mountain in New Mexico, Wheeler Peak (13,161 feet).
Raft down the Rio Grande Gorge.
Other activities in the north central area include hiking, biking, fishing, and golf.
Two of the most popular cities for retirees are:
- The state’s capital, Santa Fe, is located in north central New Mexico.
- There are five major ski resorts within 90 miles of Santa Fe, as well as an abundance of streams and trails for fishing and hiking.
- While expensive to live in, Santa Fe offers big city amenities without big city hassles.
Santa Fe retirement offers plenty of sunshine and low humidity year-round.
Santa Fe, which is New Mexico’s capital, is located in the north central part of the state.
Known as “The City Different”, Santa Fe has all the amenities found in a much larger city.
If you are interested in the arts and outdoors, then this may be the retirement community for you.
Cultural activities include the Santa Fe Opera House, which is an outdoor amphitheater for the opera enthusiast and the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, which brings in renowned musicians every year.
Santa Fe is also home to some of the finest art galleries in the world. Actually, there are over 150 galleries located in the city.
For the retirees who are interested in continuing education, there are several colleges located here, including Santa Fe Community College and the College of Santa Fe.
Plus, the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque is only 60 miles away.
There is an excellent healthcare system located here.
St. Vincent Hospital is a state of the art regional medical center.
There are also several very nice assisted living facilities for seniors.
Santa Fe offers convenient travel to and from its city.
- The Santa Fe Trails’ bus system offers city-wide transportation to it’s citizens and visitors.
- The Santa Fe Municipal Airport is open to private aircraft and American Eagle. However, the nearest International airport is located in Albuquerque, which is an hour away.
- The Rail Runner Express offers train service between Albuquerque and Santa Fe.
- Downtown Santa Fe is so compact that the easiest way to get around is by foot or bike.
The North Central area of New Mexico is the perfect place to retire – especially, if you enjoy the outdoors.
As one of the most popular regions of New Mexico, this area offers snow skiing, mountain climbing, hiking, biking, fishing, and golf.
Santa Fe has five major ski resorts within 90 miles.
The Santa Fe Ski Resort is located 16 miles from Santa Fe. It is one of the highest ski areas in the United States.
There are several golf courses located near Santa Fe.
- The Towa Golf Resort is a public golf course opened year-round.
- The Black Mesa Golf Club is one of the finest golf courses in the whole state of New Mexico.
For those retirees who enjoy hiking there is an abundance of streams and trails located near the city to enjoy.
IS SANTA FE RETIREMENT FOR YOU?
While housing is expensive, Santa Fe has a lot to offer retirees and may just be the retirement community that you have been searching for.
Taos, located in the north central area, has a large retirement community. Clean air and a lively cultural scene has Taos ranked 82nd in Retirement Communities.
Taos is home to the Taos Ski Valley – a skier’s paradise.
THE NORTHEAST REGION
This is the area “where the plains meet the mountains”.
The eastern slopes of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains turn into rolling plains, giving this region its dramatic landscape.
If you are an angler, a boater, or a scuba diver, then the Northeast region of New Mexico is the place for you.
Many retirees, who enjoy snow skiing, call this area of New Mexico home.
Angel Fire is located in this region.
It offers some of the most beautiful scenery anywhere and plenty of snow for some fantastic skiing. Typically, there is snow on the ground by Halloween.
There are plenty of tourists during the winter months but the summer months provide a more relaxed atmosphere.
This is a great place to work part-time, if you had planned to work during part of your retirement years.
Many people are discovering Angel Fire to be a great place to retire.
Eagle Nest, located on the shores of Eagle Nest Lake, has some of the best scenery, hiking trails, big game hunting, fishing and snow skiing in the state.
It has a newly renovated main street with numerous specialty shops.
This is another great place to retire.
RETIREMENT IN NEW MEXICO
THE CENTRAL REGION
This area is known as the “Heart of New Mexico”.
Albuquerque, the largest city and only metropolitan area in New Mexico, is located in this region.
Rich with culture and heritage, Albuquerque has over 19 historical museums and a beautiful Botanical Garden to enjoy.
With over 14 golf courses, biking trails, the University of New Mexico, good restaurants, and numerous casinos, there is something to do for everyone.
The city is known as the hot air ballooning capital of the world.
With more retirees moving to this area every year, there are many retirement communities around the city to choose from.
Rio Rancho is a favorite among retirees.
While close enough to Albuquerque to enjoy the big city amenities, the residents of Rio Rancho have been able to keep it’s small town charm.
Corrales, a picturesque village, is located between Albuquerque and Rio Rancho.
The residents work hard at maintaining its rural character.
Located near the Rio Grande, Corrales has many vineyards and wineries.
THE SOUTHWEST REGION
The Southwest Region of New Mexico is the Old West with its mining and ghost towns.
This area is also home to the second-largest city in New Mexico, Las Cruces.
With its low taxes, affordable housing, state-of-the-art medical facilities, and beautiful year-round weather, it is no wonder many retirees are calling Las Cruces home.
This is a very friendly town to retirees with seniors receiving discounts for waste services, bus transportation, and classes at New Mexico State University.
With great year-round climate and low taxes many retirees are finding Silver City, New Mexico a great place to live.
There are museums, art galleries, and antique shops located in the historic downtown area, and many of the art galleries are considered to be some of the best in the Southwest.
If you are an outdoor enthusiast, you will love Silver City. Located only eight miles northeast of town is the Gila National National Forest, where you can bird watch, camp, ride mountain bikes, hike, backpack, hunt (big and small game), and white-water rafting.
Many retirees are finding Silver City New Mexico a great place to live.
Nestled in the foothills of of the Pinos Altos Mountains, this historic mining town enjoys great year-round climate and low taxes. The abundant sunshine and low humidity has attracted many retirees and artists – who are making up the bulk of new residents.
Located 115 miles northwest of Las Cruces, Silver City retains a sense of the remote wilderness – largely due to the nearby Gila National Forest and Wilderness.
For the retiree who enjoys the arts and the great outdoors, then Silver City is a dream come true.
- Stroll through the historic downtown, where there are museums, art galleries, antique shops, cafes, and restaurants.
- In recent years, Silver City has become an art mecca, and many of the art galleries are considered some of the best in the Southwest.
- There is an 18-hole championship golf course located near the historic downtown.
- If you are an outdoor enthusiast, then you will love this area. There is bird watching, camping, year-round bicycling, hiking, white-water rafting, and hunting (big and small game) in the Gila National Forest. The Gila Forest covers 3.3 million acres – so, you are unlikely to come across any large crowds.
- There is year-round trout fishing on Quemado Lake and Snow Lake. On Lake Roberts you can fish for trout during the cooler months and channel catfish during the warmer months.
- There is quality healthcare at the Gila Regional Medical Center.
- Western New Mexico University is located in Silver City and offers a lifelong learning program.
- Grant County Airport in Silver City offers daily service to and from Albuquerque, NM.
TRUTH OR CONSEQUENCES
With its affordability, low crime, beautiful scenery and slower pace, the town of Truth or Consequences is becoming a favorite with retirees.
Located on the banks of the Rio Grande, retirees can enjoy hiking, golfing, fishing, and bathing in the soothing hot springs year-round.
THE SOUTHEAST REGION
This region of New Mexico is the lowest part of New Mexico. The area is mainly desert terrain with some mountain scenery from the Sacramento and Guadalupe Mountains.
Ruidoso New Mexico
Ruidoso New Mexico is a year-round resort town that many retirees are calling home.
Nestled in the Sierra Blanca mountain range, Ruidoso offers plenty of sunshine, affordable housing, and abundant outdoor activities.
Located in the south-central part of the state, Ruidoso has been able to retain a certain rustic charm.
While being fairly isolated, Ruidoso still has many of the same amenities as those found in a larger city.
- The Lincoln County Medical Center provides excellent healthcare to its residents and visitors. The center offers a clinic, hospital, and nursing home.
- There is a regional and municipal airport that serves the Ruidoso area. However, the nearest International airport is in El Paso, Texas, which is two hours away.
- There are several museums, two casinos and a performing arts center. Shops, antique stores, bars, and restaurants line the main street.
- With it’s Alpine scenery, Ruidoso offers such activities as skiing, snowmobiling, snowboarding, hiking, fishing, golfing, and camping.
Only minutes from Ruidoso is Ski Apache , which offers all levels of skiing.
From beginner group lessons to one-on-one ski and snowboard lessons, the Ski Apache resort, which is the second largest ski mountain in New Mexico, offers something for every visitor.
Plus, there are plenty of triple and quad chairs to help keep the lift lines short.
The Links at Sierra Blanca has consistently been ranked in the Top 10 Best Golf Courses in New Mexico.
There is also Ruidoso Downs Racetrack, which has some of the best quarter-horse racing in the nation.
On Labor Day, the track is the site of the All-American Quarter Horse Futurity.
A Place To Call Home
Ruidoso New Mexico could very well be the retirement community that you have been looking for.
Other points of interest:
- In Ruidoso you can ski down Ski Apache, the second largest ski mountain in New Mexico. Retirees can also enjoy some of the best quarter-horse racing in the nation at Ruidoso Downs.
- In White Sands, outside of Alamogordo, you can hike through the largest natural reservoir of gypsum in the world.
- In Capitan you can spend time enjoying the Lincoln National Forest-home of Smokey Bear Historical Park.
- For the avid sky watcher there is the UFO Museum and Research Center in Roswell, Alamagordo’s New Mexico Museum of Space History and the National Solar Observatory at Sacramento Peak near Cloudcroft.
A couple of the popular towns for retirees in this area are:
Carlsbad, situated at the northern tip of the Chihuahuan Desert, enjoys mild winters and hot summers.
Low crime and a small town atmosphere make Carlsbad a great place for retirees.
With plenty of sunshine, Carlsbad offers hiking, golfing and water activities on Lake Carlsbad. And, of course, there are the Caverns to explore.
Affordable housing, a strong economy, and a variety of living choices all add to the appeal of retiring in Roswell.
Enjoy golf, hiking trails, scenic bike trails and seven museums.
And, of course, you will want to enjoy the Amazing Roswell UFO Festival that is held annually on the 4th of July weekend.
Cloudcroft is a small mountain village located in the Lincoln National Forest.
This area offers hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding, hunting, golf, bird watching, downhill and cross country skiing.
New Mexico does have a personal state income tax, which ranges from 1.7% to 4.9%. For complete information, go here.
New Mexico also has a Gross Receipts Tax, which resembles a state sales tax. This tax applies to services as well as tangible goods. For more information, go here.
ONE OF THE BEST STATES TO RETIRE IN
Abundant sunshine, spectacular scenery, affordability, low crime, skiing, year-round golf ,and a wide range of other outdoor recreational opportunities have helped to make retirement in New Mexico very popular.
“The Land of Enchantment” could just be one of the best states to retire in.