People choose to move to different cities for a variety of reasons. Job opportunities, for example, or to live closer to family. But recently, a real estate site decided to look at another factor: which are the best weed cities in the U.S.?
The site, Real Estate Witch, crunched the data on a number of factors. They used a wide variety of sources, including the U.S. Census Bureau, the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Bureau of Economic Analysis, Google Trends, Price of Weed, DISA Global Solutions, and Yelp.
To the shock of no one, Denver, a city that is always ahead in areas such as marijuana delivery and cannabis cafes, ranked at the top of the list. One factor that played a big role is the number of dispensaries per capita, which is 9.8 per 100,000 residents in the Mile High City. That’s a whopping seven times the national average.
Choosing the Best Weed Cities in the U.S.?
Real Estate Witch approached the task of ranking the best weed cities in the U.S. with an admirable dedication to thoroughness. They used at least nine different factors based on reliable data sources.
As can be seen, they ranged from the logical (that dispensaries per capita number) to the more “outside of the box” (Taco Bells per capita). But they gave the most weight to logical factors. The nine factors they listed, in order of how the weight given them in the rankings, included:
- Legality of marijuana
- Google Trends data for 13 common marijuana search terms
- Price of 1 ounce of high-quality marijuana and 1 ounce of medium-quality marijuana every three months as a percentage of annual income
- Price of 1 ounce of high-quality weed
- Price of 1 ounce of medium-quality weed
- Number of dispensaries per 100,000 residents within 25 miles
- Number of head shops per 100,000 residents within 25 miles
- Number of Taco Bells per 100,000 residents
- Music festivals within a 100-mile radius, small concert venues per 100,000 residents, movie theaters per 100,000 residents, and number of local hiking trails.
You have to give Real Estate Witch this much: based on these factors, they know their cannabis consumers.
Which U.S. Cities Are Best For Cannabis Consumers?
Real Estate Witch not only listed the best cities, but they also offered some interesting findings from the data. First, here are the top 10 best weed cities in the U.S.
- Portland, Oregon
- Las Vegas
- San Jose
- San Francisco
- San Diego
- Los Angeles
The first thing that jumps out is that all 10 are in the western U.S. That makes sense because legalization started in the west, with Colorado and Washington leading the way. However, of the next 10 cities in the rankings, nine of them are not in the West. They are:
- Virginia Beach, Virginia
- Riverside, California
- Hartford, Connecticut
- Richmond, Virginia
- New York City
- Oklahoma City
The area of the country missing from the best weed cities list is the South, although more southern states than ever have legalized medical marijuana. No southern city makes an appearance until New Orleans, ranked 27th, followed by Orlando (31), Tampa (32) and Jacksonville (33), although you could argue that Florida is not much like the rest of the South.
Data in the Real Estate Witch study also found that Las Vegas has the most head shops, Sacramento has the least expensive weed prices, and Oklahoma City (where only medical marijuana is legal) ranks the highest for “pot passion” based on how often residents there search for the most common cannabis-related terms.