Have you ever considered a vacation in sunny Cincinnati, Ohio? How about Boise, Idaho? Well, according to travel pros Lonely Planet, you absolutely should.
Lonely Planet published its Best in the U.S. list for the eighth year in a row, highlighting the top 10 underrated spots you have to visit.
At No. 1 is California’s Redwood Coast, an undeniably gorgeous stretch of redwoods (although, “underrated”? Really?). Rounding out the list is Southeastern Utah, described by Lonely Planet as “quintessential Americana road trip country.”
Without further ado, the list.
10. Southeastern Utah
From Arches National Park’s multicolor sandstone to the breathtaking Natural Bridges, this area of Utah is a sight to be seen.
9. Minneapolis, Minnesota
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Spoonbridge and Cherry 🍒#spoonbridgeandcherry This giant spoon and cherry was erected in 1985 by artist Claes Oldenburg and his wife, Coosje van Bruggen and is the centerpiece of the Walker Art Center’s Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, the largest urban sculpture park in the world. The spoon itself weighs 5,800 pounds and the cherry, another 1,200 pounds. The cherry’s stem also acts as a fountain which sprays into the bowl of the spoon and off into the pond beneath. Even the pond itself has meaning, being shaped to resemble a linden seed, drawing attention to the rows of linden trees planted nearby. #walker #publicart #art #artist #sculpture #illustration #sculpturegarden
Why wouldn’t you want to visit the happiest state in the U.S.? Boasting new boutiques and farm-to-table restaurants, Minneapolis also has a revamped IG-worthy sculpture garden.
8. Kentucky Bourbon Country
Come to Kentucky for its picturesque rolling hills, stay for its bourbon. Here, you’ll find some of the country’s most well-known distilleries.
7. Richmond, Virginia
Richmond is not only full of history, it’s also an outdoor enthusiast’s dream. Here, you’ll find a 52-mile bike trail along the James River. After your hike, hit up the city’s many microbreweries and cideries.
6. Midcoast, Maine
Go camping, try a pint at a craft brewery, hit up a vineyard, sit down at a farm-to-table restaurant, eat all the lobsters at the 70th Maine Lobster Festival: Maine has it all.
5. Cincinnati, Ohio
Cincinnati might seem like an unusual vacation spot, but its stunning skyline is surprising easy on the eyes. And new to the city is its Brewing Heritage Trail, where you’ll find plenty of beer, eateries and fun shops.
4. Florida’s Space Coast
From Kennedy Space Center and Cape Canaveral to the new ATX (astronaut training experience) and Merritt Island (where you can go on a nighttime kayak), Florida’s Space Coast is a destination the entire family will enjoy.
3. Chattanooga, Tennessee
Rock climbers, hikers and mountain bikers, this one’s for you. Chattanooga has some of the best rock climbing and trails in the country. The Ocoee River is also one of the top spots for white-water rafting.
2. Boise, Idaho
Boise has award-winning wineries and craft breweries galore. It’s also home to plenty of music festivals, including Treefort Music Festival and Punk in Drublic (a punk rock and craft beer festival). Here, you can also hit the Boise River Greenbelt for hiking, biking, river rafting and more.
1. California’s Redwood Coast
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Headed onto the Lady Bird Johnson Grove Trail you first get to cross this really cool bridge. How many of you have crossed this bridge? Photo: S. Gayner @redwoodseth [Image description: redwood bridge leading into a forest of trees.] #redwoodnps #findyourpark #ladybirdjohnsongrove
You’ve seen it in plenty of movies, from Jurassic Park to Rise of the Planet of the Apes: the redwood forest. Seeing California’s 2,000-year-old redwoods up close is an unforgettable experience, and this year, you can see it for free. To celebrate its 100th anniversary, the Save the Redwoods League is offering free entry to over 40 redwood state parks the second Saturday of every month.
BRB, packing our bags.