National Geographic Traveler Tuesday unveiled its 29 "Cities on the Rise" -- based on both a unique set of metrics as well as expert picks from its editors -- naming Newport, Rhode island as its sole New England entry.
The article names Newport as a trending city, and identified it as one of the best groomed cities in America. The article also references the historic allure of Rhode Island's seventh largest city:
"Antique carriages, fine horses, and dandily dressed carriage attendants in top hats bring a rakish, raffish charm to the Weekend of Coaching, a triennial festival to be held August 16 through 19, 2018. The coaches, some dating to the early 19th century, roll through the city and stop at mansion museums, including the Vanderbilts’ lavish, cliff-top The Breakers. An apropos spot to pamper yourself before the event: the spa at the 1875 Castle Hill Inn."
To identify these rising small cities, National Geographic Traveler worked with global destination branding advisors Resonance Consultancy in developing a Small Cities Index, a survey that drew from statistics and social media mentions to determine which cities rank highest in a variety of distinctive, fun categories including green spaces, coffee shops, live music and even Instagrammable moments.
The results are in the February/March 2018 issue of National Geographic Traveler magazine, available now on newsstands and online here.
"At Traveler we're passionate about tales of urban renewal, about communities that have collaborated to improve their main streets, about smart cities that have pursued development policies that produce happiness. In this article, we report on authentic small cities that each embody a surprising superlative," says George Stone, National Geographic Traveler editor in chief. "Happy places for locals are also rewarding places for travelers. Our index of small cities on the rise is based on unconventional metrics that we think produce happiness: green spaces, coffee shops, breweries, music venues, Instagrammable moments and puppies!"
Traveler's 29 Best Small Cities in the U.S. are categorized by 10 key superlatives that influence both residents and visitors alike. Here's the 10 categories and related features the index factored in:
The results in each of these areas were then broken down by population sizes: 40,000-100,000, 100,000-200,000, and 200,000-600,000. Through Resonance Consultancy's algorithm, Traveler surfaced the cities that ranked the highest for each population size and identified "trending" cities that didn't top the list this year, but look to be climbing their way up. The Small Cities Index is based on Resonance Consultancy's World's Best Cities program, which is housed on BestCities.org and features a "Choose Your Perfect City" tool based on this data, as well as extensive city profiles on their top 100 cities.
"Every city is unique," says Resonance Consultancy President Chris Fair. "Our approach to analyzing millions of consumer-generated ratings and reviews to create indexes such as these is an innovative new approach to revealing the characteristics that differentiate one place from another. We're excited to be working with National Geographic to share this data and its insights with travelers around the world."
The 29 Best Small Cities are:
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