If you love the charm of fictional places like Stars Hollow, you’re going to adore these 12 most beautiful small towns in the United States! Whether you’re looking for the perfect quaint getaway or your new home, these are the places to be. Let’s check them out!
Most of us are aware of the larger cities in the U.S., like New York City, New York; Houston, Texas and San Francisco, California. However, how many of you have heard of places like Milton, Delaware; New Harmony, Indiana or Woodstock, Vermont? These are small towns that are charming and scenic with a slower paced lifestyle. Here are some of the most beautiful small towns in America.
As much as I love visiting an exciting city, I’ll tell you a secret: I would rather spend the rest of my days tucked away in a town like Mayberry or Stars Hollow than living the big life in a penthouse suite on the upper east side! While cities are fun places to vacation, there’s just something magical about life in a small town. At least, that’s how TV makes it seem! If these 12 gorgeous small towns don’t convince you of that, I don’t know what will!
Most Beautiful Small Towns in the United States
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1. Breckenridge, Colorado
Breckenridge is in Summit County, Colorado. As of the latest U.S. Census (2010), the town had a population of just 4,540 full-time residents. The town is most popular for the Breckenridge Ski Resort, which sees an average of 1,600,750 skiers annually. While you’re there, visit Hoosier Pass for a family photo at the Continental Divide!
2. Milton, Delaware
Milton is in Sussex County, Delaware. As of the latest U.S. Census (2010), the town had a population of 2,576. Amazingly, that’s 55% more people than the 2000 Census! If you love historical Victorian and Colonial architecture, just take a stroll around town. History is very important to the people of Milton, and many of the homes have been restored back to their original glory. This hidden gem is just a quick drive from all of the most popular beach resorts in Delaware.
3. Stanley, Idaho
Stanley is in Custer County, Idaho. As of the latest U.S. Census (2010), the town had a population of 63, making it the tiniest of these most beautiful small towns in the United States. One of the town’s most popular features is the breathtaking views of alpine vistas, mountain passes and timbered corridors. These scenic views can be seen from one of three scenic byways- Ponderosa Pine, Salmon River and Sawtooth.
4. New Harmony, Indiana
New Harmony is in Posey County, Indiana. As of the latest U.S. Census (2010), the town had a population of 789. The town is best known for the New Harmony Historic District, which features 32 Early and Middle 19th Century buildings. New Harmony is within the limits of the Evansville metropolitan area, so you’ll get the best of both worlds: small town charm and all the conveniences the small nearby city has to offer.
5. Camden, Maine
Camden is in Knox County, Maine, about midway up the coast. As of the latest U.S. Census (2010), the town had a population of 4,850. In winter, Camden’s hot spot is the Camden Snow Bowl Ski Area, home of the annual U.S. National Toboggan Championships. During the summer, Camden is a lot like Nantucket and Cape Cod, playing host to the wealthier Northeast coast residents. Don’t worry, though, you can still find plenty of moderately priced lodgings even during the height of tourist season.
6. Berlin, Maryland
Maryland is full of beautiful small towns, but Berlin tops the list. Located in Worcester County, as of the latest U.S. Census (2010), Berlin had a population of 4,485. Two movies were filmed in Berlin- the 1999 Runaway Bride and the 2002 Tuck Everlasting. In 2014, the town was voted Coolest Small Town in America by Budget Travel. It’s just about a 20-minute drive from Ocean City, so you can combine your small town vacation with a beach vacation.
7. Clinton, New Jersey
Clinton is in Hunterdon County, New Jersey, kind of in the middle of the northern part of the state. As of the latest U.S. Census (2010), the town had a population of 2.719. The most notable landmark in Clinton is the 10-acre Red Mill Museum Village, which is home to the Hunterdon Art Museum, which features over 40,000 historic artifacts. This small town is just over an hour away from New York City (depending on traffic), an hour from the Pocono Mountains, and about 90 minutes away from the beaches of New Jersey.
8. Ligonier, Pennsylvania
Ligonier is in Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania. As of the latest U.S. Census (2010), the town had a population of 1,573. The town is most known for the Idlewild Amusement Park, the 3rd oldest amusement park in the U.S., established in 1878. This small town is about a 90-minute drive from Pittsburgh and the northern parts of West Virginia and Maryland.
9. Bell Buckle, Tennessee
Bell Buckle is in Bedford County, Tennessee. As of the latest U.S. Census (2010), the town had a population of 500. If you love going antiquing, this is the small town for you! Bell Buckle is most noted for its antique shops and preserved Victorian homes. The entire downtown area is listed on the National Register of Historical Places.
10. Woodstock, Vermont
First, let me point out that this isn’t THE Woodstock where the big music festival was held in the 60s. That one is in New York. Woodstock is in Windsor County, Vermont. As of the latest U.S. Census (2010), the town had a population of 3,048. One of the most popular tourist attractions in Woodstock is the Billings Farm and Museum, which features an operating dairy farm and a restored 1890 farmhouse.
11. Friday Harbor, Washington
Washington state is another one that’s just filled with beautiful small towns. Friday Harbor in San Juan County is among the most popular. As of the latest U.S. Census (2010), the town had a population of 2,162. Friday Harbor is the only town located on the San Juan Islands. You’ll need to take a ferry (or maybe a little seaplane) to reach it, which just increases its appeal if you ask me! Fun fact, this small town is the setting for the 1998 film Practical Magic.
12. Harpers Ferry, West Virginia
Harpers Ferry in Jefferson County, West Virginia is probably the most recognizable and famous of these beautiful small towns. Just about everyone has heard of it, even if you’re not quite sure exactly why it sounds so familiar. FYI, you most likely learned about it in your American History lessons, as it played a major role in the Civil War. As of the latest U.S. Census (2010), the town had a population of 286. The town is popular for the Harpers Ferry National Historical Park, which is set on 4,000 acres and sees close to 500,000 yearly visitors.
The United States is full of beautiful small towns like these, so if you don’t live near any of our top 12 picks, there’s still a good chance you’ll find a charming village within driving distance of your own home town! If you already live in a gorgeous small town, we’d love to hear about it!