What makes living in Taos remarkable? Over 500 years of rich, cultural history, 350 days of sunshine every year, landscape that inspired the likes of D.H. Lawrence, Ansel Adams and Georgia O’Keefe, and only 15 residents per acre!
Taos, as it is known today, is comprised of several Spanish villages first settled in the 16th century, such as Arroyo Seco, Arroyo Hondo, Des Montes, El Prado and Ranchos de Taos. The original name of Don Fernando was changed in the early 20th century to Taos, the Tiwa word for “Red Willow People,” used by the local Taos Pueblo Indians for centuries to describe members of their tribe who still live at the base of Taos Mountain overlooking Taos Valley. During the last century Taos became known as a prominent artist colony.
Today the Town of Taos attracts visitors and residents from all over the world with its relaxed life style, traditional adobe architecture and variety of outdoor activities from world-class skiing at Taos Ski Valley to white water rafting on the Rio Grande River. Destination Taos offers information and resources for life at a higher level.
For the less adventurous, historic Taos Plaza and surrounding areas offer nationally recognized restaurants, museums, and galleries. An impressive collection of hotels, B&Bs and the luxurious El Monte Sagrado Resort, a member of Leading Small Hotels of the World, welcome tourists. The active business climate is served by the Taos Chamber of Commerce. Taos boasts the award winning Taos News and solar radio KTAO 101.9 FM.
Taos is located at an elevation of 6,950 feet sharing space on the famous Enchanted Circle with neighboring towns of Red River, Eagle Nest, and Angel Fire, New Mexico.” Taos Ski Valley elevation is 9,207 feet. The sun shines 70% of possible hours annually with warmest month temperature averages in the 80s and low winter temperatures average near 10 degrees. Annual precipitation in town is 12 inches with an average annual snowfall of 35 inches. Taos Ski Valley averages 312 inches snowfall annually.
A little more than 38% of Taos County’s 1,444,480 acres is privately owned. The rest belongs to federal and state governments and Native Americans. 21% of county land is engaged in agricultural activities. County property tax is calculated at 1/3 of assessed value times a tax rate which varies within the county.
Taos County population reported in the year 2010 is 32,937 with a median age of 34. Ethnic composition is 36.2% Anglo, 56.1% Hispanic, 7.3% Native American and 1% Other. Tourism is the county’s primary industry with the majority of visitors coming from the states of Texas, California, Colorado, Florida and New York.
Transportation needs are addressed by The Chile Line public transit system. RTD Bus Line offers national connections and shuttle service to and from the Town of Taos, Santa Fe, and Albuquerque International Sunport. Opportunities for community college, associate degree and graduate programs are available from the University of New Mexico Taos. Continuing education programs include UNM Taos and Southern Methodist University Fort Burgwin. Information courtesy of The Taos News and Taos Chamber of Commerce.
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