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Santa Fe ( SAN-tə FAY, - fay; Spanish: [santaˈfe], Spanish for "Holy Faith"; Tewa: Oghá P'o'oge; Northern Tiwa: Hulp'ó'ona; Navajo: Yootó) is the capital of the U.S. state of New Mexico. It is the fourth-largest city in New Mexico with a population of 84,683 in 2019, the county seat of Santa Fe County, and its metropolitan area is part of the larger Albuquerque–Santa Fe–Las Vegas combined statistical area, with a population of 1,178,664 in 2018. The city was founded in 1610 as the capital of Nuevo México, after it replaced the capital San Juan de los Caballeros (near modern Española) at San Gabriel de Yungue-Ouinge, which makes it the oldest state capital in the United States. With an elevation of 7,199 feet (2,194 m), it is also the state capital with the highest elevation.It is considered one of the world's great art cities, due to its many art galleries and installations, and is recognized by UNESCO's Creative Cities Network.
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Cultural highlights include Santa Fe Plaza and the Palace of the Governors, and the Fiesta de Santa Fe, as well as distinct New Mexican cuisine restaurants and New Mexico music performances. Among the numerous art galleries and installations are, for example, the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, as is a gallery by cartoonist Chuck Jones, along with newer art collectives such as Meow Wolf.
The area surrounding Santa Fe was occupied for at least several thousand years by indigenous people who built villages several hundred years ago on the current site of the city. It was known by the Tewa inhabitants as Ogha Po'oge ("White Shell Water Place"). The name of the city of Santa Fe means "Holy Faith" in Spanish, and the city's full name as founded remains La Villa Real de la Santa Fe de San Francisco de Asís ("The Royal Town of the Holy Faith of Saint Francis of Assisi").
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Los Alamos is a town in Los Alamos County, New Mexico, United States, that is recognized as the development and creation place of the atomic bomb—the primary objective of the Manhattan Project by Los Alamos National Laboratory during World War II. The town is located on four mesas of the Pajarito Plateau, and has a population of 19,369 as of 2019. It is the county seat and one of two population centers in the county known as census-designated places (CDPs); the other is White Rock.
Las Vegas is a city in and the county seat of San Miguel County, New Mexico, United States. Once two separate municipalities (one a city and the other a town), both were named Las Vegas—West Las Vegas ("Old Town") and East Las Vegas ("New Town"); they are separated by the Gallinas River and retain distinct characters and separate, rival school districts.The population was 13,753 at the 2010 census. Las Vegas is located 110 miles (180 km) south of Raton, 65 miles (105 km) east of Santa Fe, 122 miles (196 km) northeast of Albuquerque, 257 miles (414 km) south of Colorado Springs, Colorado, and 326 miles (525 km) south of Denver.
Rio Rancho (Spanish: Río Rancho) is the largest and only city in Sandoval County, part of the expansive Albuquerque metropolitan area, in the U.S. state of New Mexico. A small portion of the city extends into northern Bernalillo County. It is the third-largest city in New Mexico, and one of the most rapidly growing. As of the 2010 census, Rio Rancho had a population of 87,521. The name Rio Rancho derives from Los Ranchos, the Spanish colonial ranches established along the Rio Grande in the Albuquerque Basin, and throughout historic Nuevo México. There were large ranches also in neighboring Corrales. Since the late 20th century, it has developed as a suburb of Albuquerque.
Taos is a town in Taos County in the north-central region of New Mexico in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. Initially founded in 1615, it was intermittently occupied until formally established in 1795 by Nuevo México Governor Fernando Chacón to act as fortified plaza and trading outpost for the neighboring Native American Taos Pueblo (the town's namesake) and Hispano communities, including Ranchos de Taos, Cañon, Taos Canyon, Ranchitos, El Prado, and Arroyo Seco. The town was incorporated in 1934. As of the 2010 census, its population was 5,716. Taos is the county seat of Taos County. The English name Taos derives from the native Taos language meaning "(place of) red willows". Taos is the principal city of the Taos, NM Micropolitan Statistical Area, which includes all of Taos County.