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The title of North America's Best Ski Town is certainly a debatable one. But a majority of USA Today readers have singled out Taos, New Mexico as the continent's top ski destination.
Located in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains in northern New Mexico, Taos Ski Valley boasts more than just some of the best skiing and snowboarding conditions around. It's also an underrated destination for food, arts and culture.
"For more than 60 years Taos has offered some of the best skiing in North America in addition to unrivaled culture, art, cuisine and outdoor activities," Taos Ski Valley's vice president of marketing Suzanne Brown said in a statement. "Today Taos continues to be a place full of history and a distinct mountain mystique."
As Brown alluded to, Taos is much more than a ski town. Notable nearby attractions include the Rio Grande Gorge Bridge — which boasts breathtaking views as one of the country's highest bridges — the Millicent Rogers Museum celebrating the arts and cultures of the Southwest and the ancient Taos Pueblo.
And Taos isn't resting on its laurels. The town is in the midst of a $300 million renovation that includes a new-look base area and the opening of a new 80-room hotel, The Blake at Taos Ski Valley.
"We are evolving to bring even more modern amenities and new experiences to the ski valley, without compromising our unique personality and appeal," added Brown.
But while Taos is clearly deserving of its new title, there's no question that it has some serious competition, including Jackson Hole, Park City, Whistler and Telluride, which was named the top ski resort in the U.S. and Canada in this year's Conde Nast Traveler Readers' Choice Awards.
Those planning a ski vacation to Taos or anywhere else this season will want to consider traveling the second week of January. According to Ski.com, the week of January 9-14, 2017 will be ideal for skiers looking for the best combination of low prices, small crowds and excellent snow conditions.