1. Bar Harbor, 2. Telluride, 3. Jackson Hole, 4. Lake Tahoe, 5. Sedona, 6. St. Augustine, 7. Monterey, 8. Steamboat Springs, 9. Breckenridge, 10. Sonoma. Small towns are a hallmark of American life, full of charm and welcoming residents. U.S. News examined communities with a population of fewer than 50,000 people that have an abundance of restaurants and attractions in addition to having a distinct personality all their own to assist you in deciding which areas are the best small towns to visit in the USA. So, avoid the throng in the city and begin preparing for your escape to a small town.
- Bar Harbor
- Jackson Hole
- Lake Tahoe
- St. Augustine
- Steamboat Springs
Bar Harbor, Maine, is well-known for being the entrance to Acadia National Park and has a long-standing reputation as a picturesque retreat that encapsulates all the state’s best attributes. Its location along Frenchman Bay affords visitors a wealth of tranquil water vistas to their left and right, as well as rugged coasts that seem to have been plucked from a landscape painting.
Additionally, it serves as the ideal starting place for some of Maine’s top whale-watching excursions. In addition, the community cultivates a unique charm that gives the impression that you have left reality and entered a storybook. However, the quantity of mouthwatering local lobster will undoubtedly bring you back to reality. This is the kind of location you go to refresh and rediscover the simple pleasures: taking a leisurely stroll, admiring the water as the day wears off, and indulging in delectable local cuisine. Bar Harbor is perfect for all of that. Keep reading to explore more best small towns to visit in the USA.
Location: Mount Desert Island, Hancock County, Maine, United States
Best Times to Visit: June to August.
- #1 Best Cheap Summer Vacations
- #1 Best Small Towns to Visit in the USA
- #2 Best Mountain Towns to Visit in the USA
There are two leading hypotheses for the exceedingly unusual name of this Colorado hamlet. The word “tellurium,” a nonmetallic element that frequently denotes the presence of gold mines, is whence Telluride gets its name. This is the first reason why so many explorers traveled to the area. However, many locals would tell you the moniker is simply a shorter way of saying “to hell you ride”-a clever justification that draws attention to the treacherous ski slopes that draw numerous winter tourists each year.
Powder lovers will find the more than 2,000 skiable acres perfect for all levels of skiers, from beginners to specialists. “To hell you ride” also refers to the region’s rowdy atmosphere. Locals and visitors assemble frequently for a foot-stomping good time in Town Park or one of Telluride’s bars. The fantastic time you’re sure to enjoy here is what ultimately matters; it doesn’t matter where the name came from.
Location: Colorado’s Rocky Mountains, The United States
Best Times to Visit: mid-June to August and from mid-November to early April
- #1 Best Places to Visit in Colorado
#2 Best Small Towns to Visit in the USA
#3 Best Mountain Towns to Visit in the USA
With miles of national forests in every direction and Grand Teton National Park to the north, the Jackson Hole valley has mostly avoided being affected by the expanding travel sector. Instead, local businesses like forestry, ranching, and, in the 19th century, fur trading have helped it endure. However, Jackson Hole has lately promoted the expansion of tourism. Formerly working-class communities like Jackson and Grand Teton now have renowned art galleries and theaters, and the area has been converted into a burgeoning winter wonderland by massive ski resorts. Many individuals don’t consider western Wyoming while making travel plans for a lavish trip. We caution those travelers to reconsider.
Location: Wyoming, The United States
Best Times to Visit: April, May, September and October
- #3 Best Ski Vacations
- #3 Best Ski Vacations in the USA
- #3 Best Small Towns to Visit in the USA
Despite your best efforts, it will be difficult to capture the breathtaking grandeur of Lake Tahoe in words. As one of the best small towns to visit in the USA, Lake Tahoe attracts more than 2.7 million visitors annually. Visitors are attracted by the area’s imposing mountain peaks, sheer granite cliff faces, and crystal clear waters, which have given Lake Tahoe the distinction of being one of the country’s most picturesque bodies of water. Even though the gorgeous blue lake is reason enough to visit, the Lake Tahoe region’s surroundings also provide some of the best skiing in North America, miles of hiking trails, and hundreds of picturesque viewpoints.
However, there’s still more. The main characteristics of Lake Tahoe’s neighbors appear to have been absorbed. Along the lake’s north bank, you may indulge in upscale dining and shopping while playing your luck in the Reno-style casinos on the south shore. There are also many activities that Lake Tahoe is pleased to claim as its own, such as mountain gondola rides, hot air balloon excursions, and gorgeous boat rides across the water’s mirror-like surface.
Location: The Sierra Nevada of the U.S
Best Times to Visit: March to May and from September to November
- #4 Best Places to Visit in California
- #4 Best Small Towns to Visit in the USA
- #5 Best Adventure Vacations in the U.S
One of the most beautiful spots in America is frequently used to describe Sedona. You won’t find a scenery anywhere else that is as vividly colored. For years, both established painters and aspiring newcomers have been drawn to the area’s towering red cliffs and angular sandstone buttes set against an almost perpetually blue sky. Additionally, these blazing rock formations in north-central Arizona served as the setting for blockbuster films including “3:10 to Yuma,” “Broken Arrow,” and “Midnight Run.”
However, Sedona is more than just attractive red rocks. Spiritualists have come to the area in recent years to take advantage of the various New Age “vortexes” that are said to have spirit-balancing properties that can be discovered there. You also should plan a spa day for the day in Sedona. A bottle of local wine and a traditional treatment like a red clay wrap or blue corn body scrub are excellent ways to unwind after a strenuous day of hiking.
Location: Arizona, The United States
Best Times to Visit: March to May
- #2 Best Places to Visit in Arizona
- #2 Best Day Trips from Phoenix
- #4 Best Cheap Romantic Getaways
The abundance of Spanish-era landmarks is the Ancient City’s main lure, but it also has a variety of shops, restaurants, live music venues, and art galleries. Visitors with kids should visit the St. Augustine Wild Reserve and the St. Augustine Pirate & Treasure Museum. Shopaholics can’t resist the opportunity to browse the boutiques on St. George Street, while art fans will enjoy the unique collection of art at the Lightner Museum. And when you’re prepared to unwind, get your belongings and head to the beach. St. Augustine provides easy access to the Atlantic Ocean and year-round sunshine, like many coastal Florida towns do. St. Augustine is definitely one of the best small towns to visit in the USA.
Location: St. Augustine, Florida, The United States
Best Times to Visit: March and May
- #4 Best Weekend Getaways in the South
- #7 Best Small Towns to Visit in the USA
- #8 Best Places to Visit in Florida
The Monterey Peninsula is unique among all of California’s regions. Here, time slows down, the houses are modest (with the exception of those in Pebble Beach), and the way of life is the ideal fusion of SoCal casual and NorCal chic. The town of Monterey pulls the majority of visitors on the peninsula’s northern side, while Carmel-by-the-Sea attracts the mellow, affluent crowd further south. Real estate is extremely expensive, which helps preserve the small-town feel along Monterey’s breath-taking coastline.
This region is perfect for a pit stop on a road trip or a weekend getaway for two. Have you heard about the golf courses there? Some of the most sought-after fairways in the world are located along this section of the California coast. Additionally, it is a year-round whale-watching location and the starting point for several of the top California cruises. Monterey may be the ideal location for your upcoming vacation when you consider the wealth of natural beauties, five-star hotels, and seafood eateries.
Location: California’s rugged central coast, The United States
Best Times to Visit: April and May
- #2 Best Day Trips from San Francisco
- #4 Best Cheap Honeymoons in the U.S
- #5 Best Places to Visit in California
For lovers of the outdoors and thrill seekers, Steamboat Springs, which got its name from its well-known hot springs, is a must-visit location. Although there are working ranches all around this Colorado city, tourists are drawn there by the abundance of outdoor activities available. In the summer, camping and fishing are popular activities, whereas snowshoeing and snowmobiling are best enjoyed in the winter (Steamboat Springs is a popular departure point for some of the best Colorado snowmobile tours). However, skiing is the most well-known pastime in the area. Steamboat Springs (also known as Ski Town, USA), which has about 3,000 skiable acres and more inexpensive prices than other ski resorts like Aspen and Vail, is a great place to find fresh snow.
Start your trip off with a ride on the Steamboat Gondola for panoramic views, regardless of the season. While those seeking some peace and relaxation can unwind in Strawberry Park Hot Springs mineral pools, outdoor enthusiasts can trek to Fish Creek Falls, hit the slopes at Steamboat Ski Resort, and ride bikes along the Yampa River Core Trail, or jump on a zip line. There are more than 100 pubs and restaurants, as well as art galleries and the Tread of Pioneers Museum, in downtown Steamboat Springs if you prefer more urban activities. In case of bad weather, while you’re there, you may play tennis, go ice skating, and more at the Howelsen Ice Arena and the Tennis Center in Steamboat Springs.
Location: Steamboat Springs, Colorado, The United States
- #6 Best Ski Vacations in the USA
- #9 Best Places to Visit in Colorado
- #9 Best Small Towns to Visit in the USA
Breckenridge, a town founded in 1859, still exudes the same Victorian elegance it did at the height of the gold rush. In addition to enduring its change from a silver and gold mine village to one of the nation’s most favored skiing resorts, it has maintained its down-to-earth and welcoming attitude. Additionally, Breck, as it is known locally, is only a short drive from other well-known Colorado locations, such as Vail, which is located 40 miles to the northwest, and Denver, which is located 80 miles to the northeast.
It’s also a well-liked starting place for many of the top snowmobile trips in Colorado. Runs on the Tenmile Range and nights spent refueling at downtown restaurants and pubs, as well as a variety of breweries and even a distillery, characterize Breck winter days. Winter sports are replaced with hiking and cycling in the summer. But regardless of the time of year, Breckenridge’s majestic sunsets and starry skies are a sight to behold and well worth returning to again.
Location: Breckenridge, Colorado, The United States
Best Times to Visit: November through April
- #2 Best Ski Vacations in the USA
- #4 Best Mountain Towns to Visit in the USA
- #5 Best Places to Visit in Colorado
It’s possible to think of Sonoma, a county in Northern California, as the laidback, unpretentious sister of Napa because of its rustic attractions and variety of wineries. There are several tiny cities worth visiting in its undulating hills, which rise into the Sonoma Mountains and descend to the Pacific coast: If you’re looking for an urban getaway with museums and popular restaurants, consider Santa Rosa. However, stop by Glen Ellen for a taste of small-town America. Sonoma, not Napa, should be your California wine region trip if you’re looking for a relaxed introduction to world-class vintages and stunning properties. Consider scheduling a guided tour if you’re only visiting for a single day. The best California tours include a few full-day excursions to Sonoma.
Sonoma is all about the wine. You will see undulating hills covered in rows of grape vines and majestic buildings everywhere you look. Some of the top destinations include Jacuzzi Family Vineyards, Cline Cellars, and Ravenswood Winery, and many of them are included on the best Sonoma tours. However, visitors seeking a city fix can do so at the lively and iconic Sonoma Plaza. If you want to experience California’s seaside air, visit Sonoma Coast State Park and hike one of the many coastal trails there. You won’t have much trouble finding anything but rest and relaxation in Sonoma, regardless of how you choose to spend your time there.
Location: Sonoma, California, The United States
Best time to visit: June and October
- #2 Best Wine Vacations
- #3 Best Cheap Romantic Getaways
- #4 Best Romantic Getaways in the USA