THE BLOG

The 18 Most Underrated Cities In The U.S.

05/22/2014 07:09 pm ET | Updated Mar 06, 2015

By Helen Anne Travis

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Here at Global Yodel, we get to discover a new spot on the map every day. Our Yodelers take us from the islands of Russia to the beaches of Chile, introducing us to the people and places that make their hometowns unique.

Along the way we've discovered some incredible places that rarely make the top destination lists compiled by traditional travel media. So we decided to start a series dedicated to promoting the world's most underrated cities. It seemed fitting to start in the country we call home, the United States. And funny enough, it worked out alphabetically that the first city on our list is the hometown of Global Yodel's founder!

So without further ado, here are our nominations for the 18 most underrated cities in the USA. Think your hometown fits the bill? Tell us about it »

Anacortes is home to the founder of Global Yodel and one of the most amazing parks in the Pacific Northwest. It's a sleepy town, but if you like the outdoors you'll never get bored. Summers are beautiful, but here's why you should visit in the winter »

Beaufort

A small, seaside town, Beaufort is located between the more well-known cities of Charleston, SC, and Savannah, GA.  Antebellum homes, Spanish moss, and graveyards full of Revolutionary and Civil War soldiers: Beaufort is the epitome of the American south. Discover the best spot to watch the tide roll in »

Just 20 or so minutes from San Francisco, Berkeley is home to killer farmers' markets, awesome donuts, and a top secret rope swing »

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The perfect Des Moines day starts with a fresh-squeezed orange juice and ends with a six-pack of tallboys on a rooftop with a view of the Iowa Cubs fireworks. Learn where to get the best pizza in Des Moines »

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No list of underrated US spots is complete without a nod to the Motor City. Sure the city's bankrupt and its streets are lined with abandoned homes, but it's not all doom and gloom for Detroit. The people that stuck around are the kinds of diehards that make things happen. Slowly but surely, Detroit is becoming cool again »

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Duluth may feel like a small town, but summer nights here have all the buzz of a big city. Fun fact: Duluth was once home to more millionaires per capita than any other city in the world. Discover the best spot to catch the sunrise »

When you think of Arizona you probably imagine a dry and barren desert with a few cacti scattered around for good measure. That may describe some parts of the state, but the area around Flagstaff is the total opposite. Tucked between snow-capped mountains in the middle of the largest contiguous pine forest in the country, Flagstaff is home to epic scenery and some of the best pizza and burgers in the world »

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Grand Rapids has many of the perks of a big city but few of the hassles. There are beautiful beaches here, a strong creative community, and lots of locally-produced craft beers. Learn where to get the best tacos in Grand Rapids »

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In Greensboro the air smells like barbecue and people wave to each other not due to southern hospitality, but out of acknowledgment of another working toward the betterment of the community. The town is home to a town drunk, an omnipresent nosy sourpuss and a ghost. Meet them all »

Kaua'i Hawaii

We asked local Jackson Koorenhof what would be surprising about Kapaa to an outsider. His answer: that a place like this still exists in the world. Kapaa is the closest you can get to experiencing what life was like before skyscrapers, freeways, and hundreds of visitors took over the rest of Hawaii. This is pure Aloha in its truest form »

Madison, WI

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The deer stands that dot Madison's forests represent the area's deep hunting roots. Built to withstand snow, rain and the passing of generations, the stands also serve as a narrative for accepting change to local Jason Vaughn. Here's why »

Montara is a small coastal town of 2,000 located 25 miles south of San Francisco. Visit in the fall or spring when the weather's warmer, or come in the winter to see the world's best surfers ride the beach's 80-foot waves. Dress warm, the weather changes fast out here »

With a population of barely 900, a walk to the Palouse post office can take all day if you run into the right folks. When you visit, say hello to everyone. And walk slowly, there's no rush. This is the spot where time stood still in all the right places »

 

Pine Plains, NY

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In Pine Plains there is a line. On one side, the owners of Fortune 500 companies keep their ponies. On the other side, locals earn their livings slaughtering cows. This is the real New York »

Seward, AK

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When it comes to Alaska, Anchorage is usually the star of the show. But a two and a half drive south brings you to Seward, home to fjords, glaciers and some of the best-tasting wild salmon and halibut in the world. If you go, you have to check out the Yukon Bar »

Sisters is a rodeo town located between the high desert and the Cascade Mountains. It's a sweet place surrounded by volcanoes and populated by gentle quilters and antler-craftsmen. Learn which star of TV's The Office may have a cabin here »

Spokane is often overshadowed by its big sister Seattle. In this Washington city the summers are warm (sometimes even hot!), autumns are short but sweet, and the winters last just long enough to make you look forward to spring. Is it pronounced "Spo-can" or "Spo-cane" »

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When people think of New York, they think it's all one big city. It's rare anyone knows anything other than Manhattan, let alone what locals call "upstate NY". The Adirondacks Park is filled with beautiful mountains and forests. You can also find some great prime rib here »

 

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