You love the outdoors, but you also love a hip city—it’s not a combination of interests everyone has!
Whether you’re looking to move or just looking to take a trip to a city with a great culture, great food, and a great vibe, that ALSO has plenty of opportunities for the outdoor adventure lover, this list has you covered! Here are the top 10 Perfect US Cities for Outdoor Enthusiasts in 2019 (in alphabetical order).
Austin may not be top of mind when thinking of epic outdoor adventures, but it should be! Austin is an amazing city for outdoor lovers and a great hub to exploring some of the most beautiful parts of Texas. From spelunking, swimming, hiking, canoeing, biking and more—Austin is a great city for outdoor lovers. With a hip vibe and great food, Austin attracts outdoor and music lovers from all over.
Cambridge, Massachusetts is a city in the greater Boston area that is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts. With tons of urban walking opportunities, residents of Cambridge also enjoy hiking, biking, canoeing, kayaking, skiing and even snowshoeing in the winter months!
Fort Collins, Colorado
Not only do residents of Fort Collins have quick access to Rocky Mountain National Park, they enjoy river running, canoeing, kayaking and whitewater rafting on Cache la Poudre River. The city is home to 50 parks, 280+ miles of trails for walking, hiking and biking. Fort Collins is full of outdoor adventure for every type of adventurer—from easy to difficult. Try some even more laid back activities like birdwatching, horseback riding, golfing and hot air balloon rides.
They say Knoxville is a hidden gem, and upon visiting it’s not hard to see why. Knoxville offers something for just about everyone and has a temperate climate year-round—summers aren’t too hot and the winters don’t last too long. With mountains, music, art, great food, and great culture, Knoxville really is a dream for outdoor enthusiasts.
Knoxville’s Urban Wilderness is an outdoor adventure area where you can hike, bike, climb, paddle, swim or wander in the woods, all within the heart of the city. There are over 50 miles of trails and greenways connecting lakes, parks, a nature center, and a 500-acre wildlife area. Not only that—it’s only a 45-minute drive to Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
Minneapolis is surrounded by 13 lakes, the Mississippi River, and a waterfall—and it has been named the most bikeable city in the US, with more bicycle infrastructure than any city in the country.
In Minneapolis, you’re never more than 6 blocks away from a park. With a vast urban wilderness, it’s no wonder outdoor lovers and cyclists are flocking to Minneapolis. Fishing, water sports, biking, hiking, swimming, wildlife viewing, and more await you in Minneapolis. In the winter, residents take part in ice fishing, ice surfing, ice hockey, cross country skiing, and more.
Of course Portland, Oregon makes the list! According to walkscore.com, Portland, Oregon is the 14th most walkable city in the United States. While there is walking, biking, and urban wilderness within the city, in Portland you are never far from more vast wilderness areas. State parks, hiking, skiing and snowshoeing on Mount Hood, ice skating, winter sports and more—Oregon is an amazing state for outdoor lovers. Other activities include whitewater rafting, canoeing and kayaking, swimming, wildlife viewing, fishing, golf, horseback riding, camping and more.
You might be surprised to see Reno on this list, but don’t let the stereotypes fool you! Just 22 miles from Lake Tahoe, the Reno area offers a vast array of breathtaking views and outdoor adventure. Outdoor activities in the Reno area include snorkeling, swimming, stand-up paddleboard, kayaking, canoeing, hiking, zip lining, and mountain biking, In the winter, go skiing and snowboarding in the Sierra mountains or go hiking and snowshoeing on area park trails.
Salt Lake City, Utah
Utah is an amazing state for outdoor lovers and Salt Lake City is no exception to that. With close access to hiking, biking, hot springs, skiing, state parks and more, it’s a mecca of outdoor activity and adventure. With so much going on in the city and surrounding areas, you’ll never run out of things to do in SLC.
San Francisco, California
San Francisco should definitely go down as one of the top greatest US Cities for outdoor enthusiasts. With an incredible year round temperature, stunning views, mountains, water activity and more—San Francisco is a great place to live if you love spending time outdoors. There’s sailing, surfing kayaking, stand up paddleboarding, fishing, biking, hiking and so many city parks and outdoor attractions. Just across the Golden Gate is the Marin Headlands and Muir Woods National Monument and beach—there is really something for every type of adventurer in San Francisco.
Last but certainly not least, no list of cities perfect for outdoor lovers would be complete without Seattle, Washington. Seattle has a lively and bustling urban life and is surrounded by unmatched natural beauty, breathtaking mountains, and an abundance of water. From the city you can see the Olympics, the Cascades, Puget Sound, Mt Rainier, islands, lakes, and hills. Hike up mountains, go trail running, take a mountain bike ride, kayak, go skiing, stand-up paddleboard, go rock climbing, backpacking, swimming, learn to sail, take up mountain climbing, fishing and more!
What is your favorite city for outdoor enthusiasts and why? Let us know in the comment section!