2021 set record for New Mexico tourism

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Life was a highway for a lot of people in 2021 – and the New Mexico Tourism Department said the Land of Enchantment was a popular pit stop.

“There were a lot of destinations in New Mexico that saw boosts and tourism in 2021,” said New Mexico Tourism Department Communications Director Cody Johnson. “Particularly, I mean, places that really rely on outdoor recreation. You know, some of our mountain towns up in the Enchanted Circle, like you know, Red River and Taos, Angel Fire saw really good healthy visitation numbers last year.”

The New Mexico Tourism Department also brought Tamale-wood to Hollywood.

“Entering LA was a big move for us,” Johnson said. “We did run an ROI study at the end of last year. That did report to us that just entering LA and New Mexico True Advertising influenced around 80,000 trips, just from New Mexico True being in Los Angeles.”

New Mexico had 39 million visitors in 2021 and just over $7 billion dollars in direct spending, according to the new report.  

It’s a big relief for Johnson who said it was estimated to take up to seven years to recover from COVID-19-related tourism disruptions.

“But here we are kind of beating out even the most favorable projections for recovery. That’s super encouraging to us,” he said.