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These Are The Top 5 Underrated Cities To Visit In The U.S. This Spring

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Many of us are planning spring trips, and while you could go to the classic favorite destinations like Miami or LA, why not visit somewhere under the radar?

2 women walking near blooming flower bushes under spanish moss tree in South Carolina

The benefit of traveling to underrated destinations is that the experience tends to feel more authentic and unique and it's a great way to avoid crowds and tourist traps.

Forget packed beaches and tourist traps.

This spring, experience the REAL America in these 5 overlooked gems:

Charleston, South Carolina

pink house on rainbow row Charleston, SC

This city is truly the jewel of the South; if you haven’t been to Charleston yet, you're missing out. 

An award-winning destination, Charleston is walkable and irresistibly beautiful thanks to its pastel-colored buildings, cobblestone streets, and towering oak trees dripping in Spanish moss.

You’ll feel as if you’ve been whisked into the movie Gone With The Wind when you walk through one of the city's gorgeous plantations.

Aside from historical sites like Fort Sumter or Boone Hall plantation, Charleston also boasts a thriving culinary scene. 

The restaurants offer the best of southern comfort food, from biscuits to fried green tomatoes and shrimp and grits.

Spring is my favorite time to visit as it's the best time to see the plantations' indulgent gardens come alive in lush blooms. 

The magnificent colors are a sight you won’t want to miss; plus, exploring all day is much more comfortable before the summer heat arrives.

Taos, New Mexico

Ancient City of Taos, New Mexico USA

This southwestern town has been the muse of many great artists for a good reason. 

Surrounded by mountains and steeped in over 1000 years of native american history, artsy Taos is guaranteed to inspire.

It's well worth it to spend a day perusing the numerous galleries and museums in this thriving artists colony.

Taos is also an excellent destination to discover Native American culture as you can visit Taos Pueblo, a centuries-old adobe community and UNESCO World Heritage site.

Spring is an ideal time to enjoy soaking in the mineral hot springs while daytime temperatures are still cool.

Whether you fancy checking out breweries, taking to the mountains, or immersing yourself in culture–Taos has it all.

Crystal River, Florida

close up photo of a manatee in florida

It's true that Florida is an amazing spot for a spring escape, but you'll have to battle crowds on the beaches in popular spots like Miami or Destin. 

Why not visit somewhere just as beautiful that has more breathing room? 

Let us introduce Clear Rivers, a coastal Florida city just an hour from Tampa famous for its manatees and crystal turquoise waters.

In this hidden gem, you can swim alongside friendly wild manatees in clear turquoise waters that rival those of the Caribbean.

You’ll also find unspoiled forests to hike through, as well as emerald springs that are perfect for kayaking.

This small, funky town offers all the best parts of Florida– sun, picturesque waters, and the fresh seafood, but with a lower key vibe.

Mackinac Island, Michigan

marina on mackinac island michigan

If you’re centrally located in the U.S. and looking for a unique, relaxing getaway, don’t sleep on this storybook-like island. 

This city stuck in time has been car free for over a century and its streets are filled with horse drawn carriages and bicycles.

Surrounded by the deep blue waters of Lake Huron, the island's best draws are its natural attractions.

Visitors can take a short hike to the stunning limestone Arch Rock, wander through pine forests, or soak in views of the coasts.

While spring may be still be too chilly to swim, it's considered off season so you’ll see fewer tourists.

Aside from its nature and historical sites, this quaint town is beloved for its locally made fudge.

Chino Hills


A recent report showed California is the number one state Americans most want to visit in 2024. 

If you’re looking for an alternative to the traffic of L.A. or the busy tourist sites of San Francisco, Chino Hills may pique your interest.

Located just over 30 minutes from L.A., Chino Hills is the best of both worlds if you’d still like to get a taste of Los Angeles while basing yourself somewhere less popular.

This underrated city offers plenty to explore including Hindu and Buddhist temples that will leave you wondering if you somehow woke up in Thailand.

But the real highlight comes from the foothills of Chino Hills State Park being eclipsed in bright oranges, purples, and yellows of blooming flowers.

Chino Hills State Park is one of the best places to catch a super bloom–a rare botanical phenomena where a higher than usual number of flowers bloom all at once, creating a surreal technicolor landscape.

Officially, it's too early to be 100% sure if 2024 will see a super bloom, but experts have said the key conditions look promising to create this magical occurrence.

Which of these hidden gems is calling your name? Let us know in the comments!

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