Many travel wish lists include cities such as New York, Los Angeles or Atlanta. But less well-known cities can be equally riveting. Here are 10 underrated cities with unexpected appeal:
1. Kansas City, Mo. // Kansas
City's downtown is undergoing
a $4.5 billion face-lift that includes
a nine-block entertainment
and shopping neighborhood.
You'll find Art Deco
architecture, public art and a
lot of affordable sightseeing.
Then you can unwind among
friendly residents at one of
many renowned barbecue
Rock and Roll
Hall of Fame.
3. Truth or Consequences,
N.M. // Kathy Clark of the
town's Chamber of Commerce
describes T or C as "the most
outrageous, fun, eccentric,
funky 1950s town in America --
with hot mineral water." Others
call it America's most affordable
4. Fredericksburg, Va. //
Fredericksburg, where George
Washington grew up, is an historic
town that was at the Civil
War's crossroads and blends
Colonial and Victorian influences.
History buffs love it.
5. Makawao, Hawaii // Who
knew there would be an Old
Western town in the middle of
Maui? Hawaii's cowboy town,
Makawao, has a main street
lined with frontier-style storefronts
occupied by trendy boutiques
6. Pittsburgh // No longer a
steel town (the mills closed in
the 1970s), Pittsburgh is clean,
vibrant and blessed with physical
beauty: three rivers, five
huge parks and gorgeous views
from just about anywhere. It
also has several first-rate museums,
including the four
7. Charleston, S.C. // Charleston
is the South's gem and has
streets so fresh and clean they
almost sparkle. It also has upscale
dining and shopping, Fort
Sumter (where the Civil War began),
and several military-themed
8. Asheville, N.C. // Locals call
it the Paris of the South. Its reverence
for aesthetics is manifest
in well-preserved architecture
and the buzzing River Arts
District. Visit America's biggest
private residence (George Vanderbilt's
250-room Biltmore Estate)
or take in stunning Blue
Ridge Mountain scenery.
9. Davis, Calif. // Intellectual,
progressive residents mingle in
bustling cafes while others
stroll around the tree-lined
University of California campus.
Take in a performance at
the world-class Mondavi Center
(yes, as in the wine maker).
10. Tulsa, Okla. // Tulsa's on the
rise. Its industrial-chic Blue
Dome District ends any idea of
provincialism, as do its Performing
Arts Center (by the architect
of New York's World
Trade Center) and its spectacular
Philbrook and Gilcrease museums.
Best of all, Tulsans make
you feel at home.
[Los Angeles Times]
10 underrated cities that deserve a visit
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