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12 Most Fun Cities in America

Las Vegas

According to a recent study, the 12 most fun cities in America are:

  • Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Orlando, Florida
  • Miami, Florida
  • Atlanta, Georgia
  • San Francisco, California
  • New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Austin, Texas
  • Chicago, Illinois
  • Honolulu, Hawaii
  • New York, New York
  • Cincinnati, Ohio
  • Denver, Colorado


The personal-finance site WalletHub recently ranked 182 U.S. cities on their selection of fun activities.  Researchers considered 65 factors ranging from diversity of restaurants to number of casinos per capita.

The 12 most fun cities in America are:

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Las Vegas, Nevada

Not surprisingly, Las Vegas has the largest number of casinos in the country.  The Neon City also boasts a high number of music venues.  It’s one of the few cities where public drinking is allowed.  And it has lots of 4.5-star or higher restaurants, and 13 Bilt restaurants.  When I lived in Newport Beach, I used to road trip to the Neon City with a friend; now I go back as often as I can.  Some of my favorite attractions are:

Orlando, Florida

Orlando leads the nation in amusement parks.  It also has one of the highest numbers of fitness centers per capita.  The Orlando area boasts 46 Michelin restaurants.  I’ve been many times to the central-Florida city, but my favorite trip was when my maternal grand-mother took 26 of us on a week-long family vacation to Disney World.  Popular attractions include:

Miami, Florida

Miami has some of the most beautiful beaches in the country, and it’s the best city for boat tours and water sports.  Miami ties for most restaurants per capita with Chicago, San Francisco, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, and Orlando.  The Miami area has 68 Michelin restaurants and 24 Bilt restaurants.  I’ve been to Miami several times for work and play — and once was stranded there overnight when a late connection caused me to miss my flight to San Salvador.  Intriguing attractions include:

Atlanta, Georgia

Southern grace meets cosmopolitan modernity in the Peach State’s capital city.  The Atlanta area boasts 258 Bilt restaurants.  I’ve been to Atlanta several times, but my favorite visit was the one when a pilot (briefly) let me “fly” a private plane en route to Valdosta.  Popular attractions include:

San Francisco, California

San Francisco ties for most dance clubs per capita with Houston and Las Vegas.  The Bay area has 171 Michelin restaurants and 38 Bilt restaurants.  I’ve been several times to San Francisco, but my favorite visit marked the start of a family road trip down the coast of California.  Interesting attractions include:

New Orleans, Louisiana

New Orleans is one of the most unique cities in America.  Even getting around is a special experience in the Crescent City; as Tyra Burton, Senior Lecturer of Marketing in the Department of Marketing and Professional Sales at Kennesaw State University in Georgia, points out, “The streetcar is a fun experience in New Orleans and low cost at $1.25/trip.”  I have been to New Orleans many times, and my favorite memories are from visiting a dear friend there.  Popular attractions include:

Austin, Texas

Austin is an eclectic city with ubiquitous entertainment, especially live music.  The Texas capital has 20 Bilt restaurants.  I spent time in Austin when I was seeing the editor of a Texas news site.  Popular attractions include:

Chicago, Illinois

Chicago is known for its modern architecture and its location on Lake Michigan.  The Chicago area has 154 Michelin restaurants and 124 Bilt restaurants.  I’ve been to Chicago several times, and used to meet a friend there during the Christmas season.  Popular attractions include:

Honolulu, Hawaii

Honolulu ties for most festivals per capita with Las Vegas, New Orleans, Miami, and San Francisco.  I spent several days in Honolulu as a break before starting a new job during my misspent youth as a wage worker.  Interesting attractions include:

New York, New York

New York ties for most park playgrounds per capita with Chicago and Charlotte.  The New York area boasts 396 Michelin restaurants and 1,446 Bilt restaurants.  I’ve visited the Big Apple many times, and my favorite memories are from visiting with my family when my paternal grand-parents lived on Long Island.  Significant attractions include:

Cincinnati, Ohio

Cincinnati boasts a thriving arts scene and a spectacular waterfront on the Ohio River.  I visited the Queen City during a midwestern road trip with my family.  Intriguing attractions include:

Denver, Colorado

Denver is a major city with spectacular scenery.  The Denver area has 17 Bilt restaurants.  I’ve twice celebrated New Year’s Eve in the Mile-High City with a friend who’d been a reporter at the Denver Post.  Intriguing attractions include:

Have fun!

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