Best Places to Live

Santa Fe, NM

Population: 83,008
iStock/ablokhin

Move here if you want to … have a personal transformation.

It is not hyberbole to say Santa Fe is a magical place. From the transcendent breakfast burritos to the immersive art experiences, there’s a reason Santa Fe’s motto is, “The City Different.”

A lot of people come to Santa Fe because it offers a different kind of lifestyle — and an invitation for self-reflection and evolution. Living here means being surrounded by desert vistas, sunshine, cultural traditions and an abundance of visual and performing arts.

The city is also home to Southwestern College, a graduate program focusing on counseling and art therapy, which means for a small city, there are plenty of mental health professionals here to help facilitate your personal transformation.

We asked someone who retired to Santa Fe to tell us their favorite thing about living here. The answer?

“People. Sunsets. The fragrant smell of pinion logs burning in our fireplace. The aroma of fresh chiles being roasted outside during the season. Taking out-of-town visitors hiking at Kasha Katuwe and showing them Meow Wolf and blowing their minds both places. And the fact that you would never, ever, ever mistake this dusty little cowboy town for anyplace else on earth.”

Like we said: magic.