Why It's Hot:
The international district in Albuquerque is aptly named. There is probably no more diverse area of the city, and it teems with ethnic restaurants and unique shopping experiences
. Its population is made up of Native Americans, New Mexicans, and immigrants from Central and South America, Mexico, Asia Europe, Africa and other places around the globe.
The international district is bounded by Lomas on the north, Gibson on the south, San Mateo on the west and Wyoming on the east.
The international district is close to the University of New Mexico, Kirtland Air Force Base, Sandia Labs, CNM and the Albuquerque airport
. Living options range from condos and town homes to detached homes with large yards. The area is one of the more affordable parts of the city, with housing prices averaging about $145,000.
A visit to the district wouldn't be complete without stopping off at Ta Lin Market, where specialty foods from around the world are housed in one place. Find fresh tofu, teas, fresh seafood, produce and international items. Whether you're on the lookout for a Chinese hot sauce or a can of British beans, you'll find it there.
Ganesh Indian Grocery store is located at 6320 Linn Avenue, across from the New Mexico State fairgrounds.
Every weekend, the flea market
at New Mexico Expo has treasures and finds for bargain hunters. It opens at 7 a.m. Saturday and Sunday.
shopping is nearby, a drive of less than 10 minutes.
is a budget hotel along Central Avenue. Other nearby hotels that are more midrange can be found in the Uptown
Routes 777 and 66 run along Central Avenue; Route 11 runs along Lomas; routes 140 and 141 run along San Mateo, and several routes can be found along Gibson and Wyoming. Check the ABQ RIDE bus routes.
Albuquerque steakhouse favorite The Cooperage
is within the district; hear their live entertainment on weekends.
Mexican restaurant El Norteno
has been winning awards for years. You haven't lived in Albuquerque if you haven't eaten here!
For a bit of Colombia, try El Pollo Real, known for its charbroiled chicken and fresh juices.
For Vietnamese food, don't miss May Cafe
or Cafe Trang
A pod of food trucks arrives at Ta Lin Market every Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. The wide variety of trucks parked outside Ta Lin give hungry customers a wide variety of choices, such as bbq, Jamaican, desserts and much, much more.
Albuquerque Public Schools
has several schools in the district. Both La Mesa Elementary and Van Buren Middle Schools lie within the area's boundaries. Students from the area attend Highland High School.
The area has overcome its share of challenges. One of the more economically depressed parts of the city, it was long known by locals as "The War Zone," but it has long since come out of that, becoming a go-to destination for locals and visitors. The city and state now recognizes the area as the International District, naming it that officially, thanks to local representatives. With the remodeling and expansion of Ta Lin Market, which is a key stakeholder in the area, the area has started a renaissance. Now known for its ethnic diversity and great food, the district is a regular place to visit for locals and visitors.