The 5 Best Neighborhoods in Albuquerque

Moving to Albuquerque?

You probably have a lot of questions about the city. One of the biggest being, of course, where you should you live? It’s hard to get a feel for the city and its neighborhoods before you’re actually on the ground.

So we’ve done the work for you. Here are five of the best neighborhoods in Albuquerque, New Mexico. You’re bound to love your new city if you set up house in one of these ‘hoods.

1. Nob Hill

Boutiques, restaurants, and bars abound in this hip part of town. It’s one of the most walkable parts of the city, situated around Central Ave (the original Rt 66). Residents love the old neon signs, vintage-style homes, and easy access to the University of New Mexico and the UNM Hospital.

While many of the houses were built in the 40s, 50s, and 60s (with mid-century charm to boot) the neighborhood itself is over 100 years old. Funky and full of personality, Nob Hill is the place to be if you want to reside somewhere that emulates big city pedestrian life in car-worshipping Albuquerque. This area of town is host to several events each year, including the Albuquerque Pride Parade and RT 66 Summerfest (an open air concert and festival).

Living in Nob Hill isn’t cheap, though—according to Zillow, the average price of a home in this ‘hood is $310,000. Apartments and townhomes are also available if you can’t spring for a single-family spot.  Highlights of the neighborhood include:

La Montanita Co-op-The flagship branch of the central NM cooperative food market.

Guild Cinema-ABQ’s independent movie theatre.

Nob Hill Farmer’s Market-A weekly market during spring and summer.

2. Huning Castle

If you’re looking for historic charm in the heart of downtown, you may want to find a home in Huning Castle. Named after Franz Huning, a German immigrant who later became a prominent entrepreneur in Albuquerque, Huning Castle has a solidly residential feel, with homes built between the late 1800s and the mid 1960s. It’s located between downtown and Old Town and has easy access to all of Central Avenue.

You may recognize the neighborhood from the uber-popular AMC show Breaking Bad, too, as Jesse’s house is located here. While homes here tend to be large, you can find smaller places if you’re on a budget. There are also several apartment complexes.

While crime is an issue here more than in other areas of the city, the walkability and easy access to the entire city more than makes up for it. Since it’s a pretty small area, homes tend to sell quickly and at a high price.  Highlights of Huning Castle include:

Albuquerque Country Club-Become a member here for golf, tennis, and more.

Paseo Del Bosque Trail-A terrific wilderness area that goes north-south through the city, along the Rio Grande.

Albuquerque Zoo-The 64 acre zoo is perfect for kids of all ages.

3. North Valley

Part farming oasis and part leafy suburb, the North Valley of Albuquerque is—you guessed it—located in a green valley that runs along the Rio Grande. It’s a quiet, peaceful part of town, populated by older people and families. There are many working farms in the North Valley, situated along the historic acequias (irrigation canals) and producing a range of local and organic fruit, veggies, honey, and more.

This area of Albuquerque blends into a separate municipality called Los Ranchos De Albuquerque, which has a similar vibe and population. Plenty of quaint shops and restaurants exist here, too, as north 4th st acts as Albuquerque’s “Antique Mile.”

You can buy a huge property with land for horses in the North Valley, if you’re so inclined, but it’s also easy to find a home that’s a little more modest: the average home cost is about $206,000.

Highlights include:

Los Poblanos Historic Inn and Organic Farm-A gorgeous lavender farm, hotel, and restaurant popular with visitors from all of the world.

Casa Rondena– Terrific winery that’s also popular as a wedding venue.

Bachechi Open Space-Maintained by the county, a great place to walk.

4. Foothills

Encompassing a large number of neighborhoods to the east of Tramway Boulevard in Albuquerque, the Foothills area is the spot to be in if you want both mountain views and mountain access. Located in the foothills of the Sandia Mountains, homes in this area tend to be newer construction—and a little more pricey, at around $295,000 as the median price.

Imagine walking out of your house and directly onto a trailhead that leads into the mountains…because it’s possible in the Foothills. If you like snow, you’re in luck—the higher elevation in this part of town means that you’re guaranteed to get some white stuff in the winter.  But don’t be fooled into thinking this is a rural area, as the Foothills neighborhoods are just minutes away from many main thoroughfares in the city. You can do your grocery shopping and be out on the trail fifteen minutes later.

The Foothills are home to a host of families, senior citizens, and others looking for a quiet place near nature.

Highlights include:

Elena Gallegos Open Space-Beautiful hiking area with many places to picnic.

5. Uptown

Easily accessible from interstate 40, Uptown is a perfect spot for families and others who want to be close to shopping and amenities. So named for its proximity to the popular ABQ Uptown shopping center, many of the houses in this area are vintage mid-century ranch homes—complete with ample backyards.

With a decidedly suburban feel, the Uptown neighborhood combines quiet living with access to upscale dining and shopping. It’s an easy commute from Uptown to almost anywhere in the city. Residents like the good schools and fairly affordable home prices, at around $200,000 on average.

Highlights include:

ABQ Uptown– the large open air shopping center that gives the neighborhood its name, with retailers like The North Face, J. Crew, and Williams-Sonoma.

Coronado Mall– With flagship chains JC Penney and Macy’s, this is the largest shopping mall in New Mexico.

Winrock Center– More shopping, with a movie theatre to boot.

Carrie Murphy