Y’all Come Back Now: America’s Top 5 Friendliest Cities By Dina Gachman

Most cities are known for their traffic jams, crazy drivers, and fast-paced lifestyles. It’s hard to find time to really get to know your neighbors (does anyone bake pies or cookies for the new couple down the street anymore?), and even if you live in an apartment building with 16 other units, chances are you and your neighbors pass each other without ever getting to know one another.

That’s not to say that every person in every big city is a total jerk. But it is tough to find a city that is overwhelmingly “¦ nice. There are actually plenty of places where you will find helpful, friendly people. The five friendliest cities in the United States are a mix of Southern hospitality, Midwest charm, and West Coast cool. See what you think!



5 Charleston, South Carolina

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It’s no secret that Southern charm is, well, charming. Charleston has a slow pace coupled with a rich arts scene, history, restaurants, and sweet-as-pie people. That Southern hospitality goes a long way here. You might just find yourself saying “œY’all”and “œbless your heart”in a matter of weeks.

4 Nashville, Tennessee

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Forget the cattiness and back stabbing that is happening on the TV show “œNashville”right now (fun as it might be). This is a city that is seriously friendly. For one, it’s beautiful, and it has a rich history of music, food, and straight-up good times. If you want to mix your handshaking with great music year round, Nashville is worth checking out. There are some gorgeous neighborhoods and great outdoor activities, plus hiking and biking are just a car ride away.



3 New Orleans, Louisiana

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The Big Easy. N’Awlins. To know New Orleans is to love it. Forget the pictures of Mardi Gras that look like something out of “œGirls Gone Wild.”This city has come back stronger than ever after Hurricane Katrina, and the spirit and enthusiasm of the locals is seriously infectious. Match Southern hospitality with incredible music, delicious food, and a thriving arts culture and you have yourself one hell of a friendly city. If you want to walk into the store and hear, “œHey, welcome back!”then New Orleans is just your speed. You can just leave town during Mardi Gras if you need to.

2 Walla Walla, Washington

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How can you not smile if you live in a town called Walla Walla? The name itself is fun and happy. It’s a laid-back place where you can enjoy the outdoors, check out good restaurants, and actually get to know your neighbors. You will not find too many Manhattan-esque traffic jams or screaming matches here. It has also become somewhat of a wine town, so you can check out the different wine shops and local favorites. It might not be sunny California, but it does have that mellow West Coast feel. Plus wine!

1 Cleveland, Ohio

Image credit: Wikipedia

A great city right on Lake Erie, Cleveland comes in at number one for friendliness. You’ve heard about how nice and well-mannered Midwesterners are, right? The Midwestern ease of Cleveland makes you feel right at home, whether you’re from Manhattan or Montreal. There are plenty of charming neighborhoods with boutiques and restaurants, great sports teams, and events that bring people together. You can also sit by Lake Erie and have a glass of wine while you chat up your neighbors at the next table. Sounds pretty sweet.
Let us know your picks for sweetest U.S. cities!

Dina Gachman writes about Hollywood and celebrities for Forbes, and covers film for Red Bull USA. She has written for Splitsider, Thought Catalog, and Hello Giggles. Her comic books about Marilyn Monroe and Elizabeth Taylor are being published by Bluewater Comics.

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