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Top 20 Most Fun Places To Live In The US. Photo KnowInsiders

People crunch any variety of metrics when settling on a city to visit or live in. Some of these factors have to do with the cost of living or staying, or how easy it is to go around by foot or public transit. Other considerations might be in the architecture, culture, and history of a place. But for many people, there’s one prevailing question: Is it any fun?

Not every city offers the same degree of fun or even the same type of fun, of course, so how do you figure out where to cut loose? To find out, and because “fun” can be an elusive variable, US News and World Report has selected top most fun places to live in the US.

Let’s Explore Top 20 Most Fun Places To Live In The US, According to US News and World Report:

1.San Diego

2.San Francisco

3.Portland, Oregon

4.Seattle

5.Nashville, Tennessee

6.Charleston, South Carolina

7.Los Angeles

8.Cleveland

9.Portland, Maine

10.Santa Rosa, California

11.Raleigh and Durham, North Carolina

12.Boston

13.Phoenix

14.Chicago

15.Fort Myers, Florida

16.Honolulu

17.Denver

18.New Orleans

19.Philadelphia

20.Orlando, Florida

***

What Are Most Fun Places To Live In The US?

1.San Diego

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Photo Shutterstock

San Diego County is much more than the city of San Diego. The metropolitan area has many towns and cities that are great places to live. You can find a home in one of the suburbs that not only fills your needs but will also meet your expectations.

Right on the Pacific coastline, sunny San Diego is a partygoer's paradise. Alcohol flows liberally in the Gaslamp Quarter, which comprises virtually nothing but bars, restaurants, and music venues. Spread across Balboa Park's 1200 acres are museums, gardens, art galleries, and one of the best zoos in the world.

Looking for fun stuff to do in San Diego that’s more on land than on water? Well, you’re in luck! Attend Kaboo Del Mar, the ultimate three-day event where you can experience live music, top-notch cooking, beautiful art displays, and luxury treatment. Gather up some friends and make your way to Petco Park to enjoy a delicious ballpark frank and watch the San Diego Padres hit home runs. Hike up Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve and navigate the six trails to get ocean views high up. Indulge in Dole Whip and Hot Dog on a Stick, climb a coconut tree, or ride the famous Giant Dipper Roller Coaster at Belmont Park. Plan a trip to LEGOLAND—one of the best things to do in San Diego with kids—and design a raft to float down the lazy river, jump around in a simulated bioluminescent tide, board a submarine and explore aquatic life, or feel the wind in your hair on dinosaur roller coasters.

2.San Francisco

Entertainment and Recreation Rank: 4

Nightlife and Parties Rank: 8

Cost Rank: 177

San Francisco has its pluses and minuses, ranking among the most expensive cities. It ranks behind only Anchorage for having the highest average beer price, too. But it earns its fun award for other high scores: it's one of the cities with the most festivals, most fitness centers and most dance clubs, and second for most restaurants per capita.

3.Portland, Oregon

Entertainment and Recreation Rank: 13

Nightlife and Parties Rank: 7

Cost Rank: 117

Portland is notable for having a high number of accessible bars.

4.Seattle

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Photo Shutterstock

Entertainment and recreation rank: #10

Nightlife and parties rank: #14

Washington's city by the sea serves up some of the country's best seafood, which you can famously see "in action" at Pike Place Market. The Mariners, Sonics, and Seahawks all call this vibrant city home, as do monolithic tech companies like Amazon and Microsoft.

5.Nashville, Tennessee

Entertainment and recreation rank: #38

Nightlife and parties rank: #24

Nashville remains a vibrant haven for aspiring musicians from all walks of life. You'll also encounter a tomato-based art festival, full-scale replica of the Greek Parthenon, quality food, and all-around great vibes. “Music City” is as fun now as it ever was.

READ MORE: Top 10 Most Romantic Cities in The US For A Couple’s Getaway

6.Charleston, South Carolina

Entertainment and recreation rank: #21

Nightlife and parties rank: #76

This South Carolina port city may be chock full of history, but who needs history when there are so many terrific breweries and award-winning restaurants to choose from? Casual browsers and shopaholics alike will fall in love with Charleston City Market, where local vendors offer a range of artisanal goods. This is a city that gets more fun and popular with each passing year.

7.Los Angeles

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Photo Shutterstock

Entertainment and Recreation Rank: 8

Nightlife and Parties Rank: 12

Los Angeles is one of the cities with the most dance clubs and fitness centers per capita. The heart of the American film industry, the huge southern California city is naturally all about entertainment, and it's loaded with theme parks, museums and beaches.

8.Cleveland

Entertainment and recreation rank: #46

Nightlife and parties rank: #48

Home to four professional sports teams, Cleveland is the affordable city that just won't quit. The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame is a sure bet for a fun afternoon, as is the Cleveland Museum of Art. If there's one landmark not to be missed, it's the house from “A Christmas Story.”

9.Portland, Maine

Parks Ranking: 13

Restaurants Ranking: 21

Shopping Ranking: 15

This Northwest metro area comes in near the top of the list with consistently high scores across the board, ranking in the top 25 for each individual category that makes up the Most Fun Places to Live list: popularity (23), restaurants (21), attractions (16), parks (13), nightlife (19), concerts (11) and shopping (15). Sports is the only area where this isn't the case, as Portland has just two major league professional teams: the Portland Trail Blazers basketball and Portland Timbers soccer teams. The well-rounded activities for residents combine with a healthy job market, steadily growing population and increasingly competitive housing market in and around the Rose City.

10.Santa Rosa, California

Santa Rosa is more fun than both Chicago and New York, according to U.S. News & World Report.

The city was ranked 10th on the publication’s list of “30 Most Fun Places to Live in the U.S,” while Chicago ranked 14th and New York City was 24th.

“It’s no surprise that the heart of California wine country is one of the Most Fun Places to Live – and one of best places to find a great restaurant,” the list reads.

Santa Rosa ranked first in shopping, which considered the number of businesses per 1,000 residents and their TripAdvisor user ratings. The city came in second in the restaurant category, which took into account the number of restaurants per 1,000 people, their TripAdvisor ratings and whether they received the AAA Four or Five Diamond Award.

11.Raleigh and Durham, North Carolina

Entertainment and recreation rank: #69

Nightlife and parties rank: #27

Visitors to Raleigh, which has recently become a tech hub, will find historic hotels, scholarly institutions, killer cuisine, craft beer and exceptional art. There's never been a better time to get to know this area.

12.Boston

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Photo Shutterstock

Parks Ranking: 63

Restaurants Ranking: 32

Shopping Ranking: 53

Boston has a team for each of the five major pro sports leagues in the country – the New England Patriots for football, Boston Red Sox for baseball, Boston Bruins for hockey, Boston Celtics in basketball and the New England Revolution for soccer. The city also has a long list of attractions, including Faneuil Hall Marketplace, Bunker Hill and Boston Children's Museum, that keep residents out and about.

13.Phoenix

Entertainment and recreation rank: #53

Nightlife and parties rank: #67

Phoenix is bursting at the seams with adventure and possibility. Just beyond the city borders are an endless array of parks, springs, mountains, and rock formations. Embark on a hot-air balloon ride by day, then partake in a party bike pub crawl at night.

14.Chicago

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Photo Shutterstock

Entertainment and Recreation Rank: 7

Nightlife and Parties Rank: 6

The Windy City doesn't need mild weather to have fun. It ties with New York for most park playgrounds per capita. Pictured is ice skating at Millennium Park.

15.Fort Myers, Florida

Fort Myers is a playground for outdoor enthusiasts. The area offers miles of freshwater and saltwater channels for boating and fishing; trails for biking, hiking and paddling; and golf courses, tennis courts, swimming pools and shuffleboard courts. With its proximity to Sanibel Island and Fort Myers Beach, the area is also a gateway for shelling, snorkeling and sunbathing.

Fort Myers gets a bit quieter after sunset, with the exception of its vibrant downtown, also known as the River District. Here, night owls can hop among bars and craft breweries, take in a live show at the Arcade Theatre, or see the city’s lights from a rooftop restaurant or lounge.

16.Honolulu

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Photo Shutterstock

Entertainment and recreation rank: #6

Nightlife and parties rank: #18

Waikiki is the heart of this Hawaiian city, where hotels, bars, clubs, resorts, restaurants, and beaches converge to delightful effect. Honolulu is a place where dream vacations are made. Hike a dormant volcano by day, and sip cocktails out of a coconut hours later.

17.Denver

Parks Ranking: 40

Restaurants Ranking: 57

Shopping Ranking: 61

Denver is the fifth-best place for sports fans with all the major pro sports covered – the Colorado Rockies for baseball, Denver Broncos for football, Denver Nuggets for basketball, Colorado Avalanche for hockey and Colorado Rapids for soccer. Proximity to hiking, skiing and other outdoor activities in and near the Rocky Mountains also make Denver a popular destination for people flying in from throughout the country.

18.New Orleans

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Photo Shutterstock

Entertainment and Recreation Rank: 18

Nightlife and Parties Rank: 9

New Orleans ties for first place with Honolulu, San Francisco and Tampa for having the most festivals per capita.

19.Philadelphia

Entertainment and recreation rank: #22

Nightlife and parties rank: #19

History doesn't just survive in Philadelphia—it thrives. Besides a range of historical landmarks, the City of Brotherly Love features several of the country's best restaurants, shopping districts, and sports teams. If you've never tried a Philly cheesesteak, now's the time.

20.Orlando, Florida

Entertainment and Recreation Rank: 2

Nightlife and Parties Rank: 3

Home to more than a dozen theme parks, Orlando is another city that revolves around entertainment. The Florida city ties with San Francisco and Las Vegas for having the most dance clubs per capita. It's also one of the five cities with the most restaurants.

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