Stoners are sometimes portrayed as potato-chip-munching layabouts, but times are changing. More Americans are consuming cannabis as states continue to legalize medicinal and recreational marijuana.
With marijuana entering the mainstream, stoners can find hospitable homes in certain parts of the U.S. Specifically, Portland, Oregon, is the best city for weed in 2023, according to a collaborative study from Real Estate Witch and Leafly, the leading online cannabis discovery marketplace and resource for cannabis consumers.
Cities across the U.S. are creating their own cannabis culture, with some becoming destinations for new residents and tourists alike.
Portland, Oregon, is a stoners’ paradise
Portland’s basketball team is called the Trail Blazers, and in this city, there’s more to light up than 3-point baskets.
Portland is a great city for stoners because weed is affordable and accessible. A high-quality ounce of marijuana costs just $210 in Portland – $106 less than the average price nationwide. The city also has 13.7 dispensaries per 100,000 residents, which is more than four times the number in the average city.
In fact, Portland has cheaper weed prices and more dispensaries per capita than Denver, causing the Mile High City to slip from No. 1 in the 2022 ranking to No. 2 in 2023.
Liz Vasquez, a chef and cannabis educator in Portland, credits the city’s weed scene to the quality of cannabis grown in Oregon, and she said she hopes Americans across the country adopt the weed-friendly attitudes common in her state.
“Oregon has a natural climate that benefits growing cannabis,” she said “It grows so beautifully here.”
Crabs and cannabis: Baltimore scales the weed rankings
Baltimore is America’s most improved weed city, coming in at No. 5 after rising 20 spots from the 2022 ranking.
Baltimore has only 2.4 dispensaries per 100,000 residents, which is 23% less than the average American city. However, more retailers are expected to open when recreational cannabis sales begin in July, meaning Baltimore could rise even higher in future rankings.
The city doesn’t boast a high concentration of dispensaries, but what it lacks in quantity, it makes up for in quality. Baltimore dispensaries are rated 4.5 stars out of 5 on Leafly.
Baltimore residents are also passionate about pot. They search for 12 marijuana-related keywords online more than any other city except Pittsburgh.
Washington, D.C., is the capital of overpriced weed
Cannabis connoisseurs may find themselves regularly emptying their pockets if they live in the nation’s capital.
For the second year in a row, Washington, D.C., has the most expensive weed in America, according to Real Estate Witch. In the District, an ounce of high-quality cannabis costs $590 – 87% more than the national average price of $316.
High prices make D.C. one of lowest-rated cities where weed is legal for recreational use. Nearby Richmond, Virginia, and Virginia Beach, Virginia, are the only two fully legal cities that rank lower.
The easiest place to find a cannabis dispensary is… Oklahoma City?
Stoners might assume that popular weed destinations, such as Portland or Denver, would have a marijuana dispensary on every block. But weed enthusiasts looking for a city with the most-accessible cannabis should cast their gaze to the middle of the country.
Among the 50 most-populous U.S. metros, Oklahoma City has the most dispensaries, with 48.7 per 100,000 residents – nearly 16 times more than the average city. Oklahoma City also has two cannabis-prescribing doctors per 100,000 residents, which is six times more than the average city.
Oklahoma voters haven’t fully embraced cannabis culture, rejecting a March referendum that would have legalized recreational marijuana. Yet Oklahoma City remains a medical marijuana haven in a traditionally conservative state that has many Americans looking for homes in the Sooner State.
Stoners won’t starve in San Jose, California
Getting hit by a case of the munchies isn’t so bad for stoners in San Jose, California. San Jose has 19.4 Taco Bells per 100,000 residents – three times more than the 6.3 in the average city.
San Jose has more than just Crunchwrap Supremes to offer cannabis lovers, though. The city has the most head shops in all of California, with two per 100,000 residents.
It also has some of the cheapest cannabis costs in the country. The price of medium- and high-quality weed is 17% and 18% lower than the national average, respectively.
No sweet home Alabama for stoners
Weed-loving Americans looking for a Southern outpost won’t find a warm welcome in Birmingham, Alabama. Birmingham is the worst place for stoners to live in 2023, according to Real Estate Witch.
In Birmingham, marijuana is expensive and hard to find. A high-quality ounce of cannabis costs $340 – 8% more than the average price — and the city has just 0.5 dispensaries per 100,000 residents – 84% less than the national average.
Local residents also show little enthusiasm for cannabis online. They rank No. 47 out of 50 in Google search activity for marijuana-related terms and No. 45 out of 50 in site visits to Leafly.com.
“Although we’re heartened by the advance of medical and decriminalization,” said David Downs, senior content manager at Leafly, “it’s a shame access is still so low and punishment is high in some places.”