The Best Tiny Towns in Every State

The bright lights and swinging night life of the big city is fine for some, but others will appreciate the subtle pleasures of small town living. Here are some of the best small towns in America, whether you're looking to visit or settle down and start a new life.

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  1. Mooresville, Alabama | Population: 59

    Mooresville alabama

    Mooresville is a tiny town packed with history—in fact the entire town is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Visitors are transported to a 19th century village as they tour the historic landmarks, like the Brick Church, and Stagecoach Inn and Tavern, which all 59 of the residents work to preserve. Even the town's post office is worth a look—it's one of the oldest operating post offices in the United States and contains furnishings that date back to before the Civil War.


    Related: The Biggest Home Trends from the Decade You Were Born

    flickr.com via Jimmy Emerson, DVM

  2. Talkeetna, Alaska | Population: 876

    Talkeetna alaska

    Talkeetna, Alaska is a tiny town with exceptional views, thanks to its location at the base of Mt. McKinley (Denali), the tallest mountain on North America. Tourists visit the remote village to take advantage of its nature-centric outdoor activities, which include riverboat tours, fishing, camping, flightseeing, rafting, and ziplining. About 876 people reside in Talkeetna, and its central downtown area with quaint buildings is a National Historic Site. Located about 2.5 driving hours from Anchorage, Talkeetna is off the beaten path, but the wonderful natural sights are worth the trek.


    Related: The 22 Weirdest Town Names Ever Put on the Map

    flickr.com via Tony Cyphert

  3. Bisbee, Arizona | Population: 5,575

    Tiny town bisbee arizona

    Located in the Mule Mountains of Arizona, Bisbee began in the late 1800s as a mining community whose members’ livelihoods centered around the area’s copper and precious metals. Visitors today can relive the town’s rich history through its world-famous Queen Mine Tour which takes participants underground in hard hats, headlamps, yellow slickers. Sights above ground in the “Sky Islands” region of southeastern Arizona offer plenty nature and culture to explore. For example, this small town (population 5,575) draws visitors from around the world for yearly events like Bisbee 1000 The Great Stair Climb which scales nine flights of staircases—more than 1,000 steps—overlooking scenic Old Bisbee.

    istockphoto.com

  4. Eureka Springs, Arkansas | Population: 2,083

    Tiny town eureka springs arkansas

    Whether you’re biking across the country or eager to escape in mountainous terrain, Eureka Springs is a small-town destination deserving of your attention. Settled between lush forests in the Ozark mountains, this town—once the fourth largest in Arkansas and now recognized on the National Register of Historic Places—combines natural beauty with awe-inspiring Victorian architecture and the creative works of more than 400 neighborhood artists. As you take in the sights, be sure to dedicate an afternoon to the legendary springs below the Historic District, which have been revered as rejuvenating, even miraculous.


    Related: 18 Victorian Homes We Love

    flickr.com via Alfredo Carrillo

  5. Carmel-by-the-Sea, California | Population: 3,876

    Carmel california

    Perched on a bluff overlooking white-sand beaches, Carmel-by-the-Sea stands out not only for its stunning coastal beauty, but also for its laid-back, luxurious downtown, distinguished by old-fashioned alleyways and architectural flourishes straight out of a children's fairytale. Given that we're talking about California, it's perhaps no surprise that several notable celebrities rank among the town's residents. In fact, Carmel has been luring actors, painters, and artists of all kinds since the 1906 earthquake first compelled San Francisco city-dwellers down the rugged California coastline in search of new possibilities.



    Related: 14 Surprising Small Towns That Hollywood Celebrities Call Home

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  6. Silverton, Colorado | Population: 630

    Tiny town silverton colorado

    Out in the San Juan Mountains stands Silverton, the last mining camp in the country. Established in 1874 on land once populated by the Southern Ute tribe, this small town was settled after the Civil War by numerous miners digging up deposits of gold and silver from along the Animas river as well as workers of the steam railroads. By the time wives and families moved out here, town life was divided into two sections: one of saloons, dance halls, gambling, and prostitution, and another more “family-friendly” neighborhood plotted with churches. Low demand for mining caused operations to close in the early 1990s and the town to shrink from more than 2,000 people in its hey day to merely 630, but visitors can still come tour this history-rich stop by car or railway.


    Related: The Best U.S. Cities for a Summer Staycation

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  7. Mystic, Connecticut | Population: 4,205

    Mystic connecticut

    Plenty of places in Connecticut offer glimpses of early America. But Mystic stands out as the only town in the state where, against a background of small-town New England charm, you can exhaust yourself exploring the rich maritime history of the Long Island Sound. Don’t miss the historic vessels and living-history village at Mystic Seaport, the beluga whales at Mystic Aquarium, or the family-owned restaurant Mystic Pizza, made famous by a 1980s Hollywood film starring Julia Roberts.


    Related: 7 Fictional Towns You Can Visit in Real Life

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  8. Lewes, Delaware | Population: 2,940

    Lewes delaware

    For as long as America has been a country, Lewes has been sitting beside the Delaware Bay, right at the point where the bay joins the Atlantic. That means "The First Town in The First State” appeals as much to beachgoers as it does to history buffs. Yes, there are white-sand beaches with calm, kid-friendly waters, not to mention fine seafood restaurants and classic shore attractions like pier fishing. But for many, the real fun comes in exploring the redbrick shop buildings in the town center and the charming old cedar-shingled homes that hug the walkable side streets.



    Related: 10 U.S. Towns That Are Older Than America

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  9. Apalachicola, Florida | Population: 2,328

    Apalachicola florida

    Before the highways and high-rise beach hotels, countless small coastal communities dotted the coast of The Panhandle. However, today, Apalachicola endures as one the precious few places where you can still get a taste of Old Florida—“taste” being the operative word. Fishermen still pull delicious oysters and shrimp from Apalachicola Bay, and each November, the town hosts the Florida Seafood Festival, by far the most exciting local event in this deliciously sleepy, one-stoplight town. 



    Related: Check In: 10 Offbeat Hotels Worth a Special Trip

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  10. Helen, Georgia | Population: 540

    Helen georgia

    The year was 1969, and Helen, Georgia, once a thriving lumber town, had fallen into decline. Jobs were scarce and the desolated main street did little to attract the attention of new investors and residents. Just when things were at their bleakest, three local businessmen hatched a scheme to renovate the business district to inject new energy into the town. They called on a local artist who recast the town in a new alpine light and within months many of the old buildings had new German-inspired facades that began to inspire the imagination of tourists. Almost 50 years later, Helen is the third most visited town in the state of Georgia, and yet this little piece of Bavaria in Appalachia is home to little more than 500 residents.


    Related: 9 Towns That'll Pay You to Move There

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  11. Haleiwa, Oahu, Hawaii | Population: 3,970

    Tiny town haleiwa oahu hawaii

    Out on the third largest island in Hawaii, Oahu, the small town of Haleiwa welcomes visitors and locals alike to find respite in its sandy pristine beaches and its laid-back vibes. The North Shore’s wide range of waves—from small and gentle in the summer to big and glassy in the winter—makes it an especially attractive spot to surf year-round. Once you’ve reached your fill of surfing, snorkeling, kayaking, and camping, you’re only a short drive from a 20-minute tour of the Dole Plantation, the Kahuku Motocross Track, and the 1,800-acre Waimea Valley Park.

    istockphoto.com

  12. Ketchum, Idaho | Population: 2,728

    Tiny town ketchum idaho

    As happens with many small towns, Ketchum’s population has ebbed and flowed with its changing identity. Though first established within a booming mining district in 1880, the mountain town’s inhabitants switched from miners to shepherds—and it became the largest sheep shipping station in the country—some 30 years after the price of silver declined. Its current claim to fame, though, connects to the opening of a world-class ski resort. When the Sun Valley ("America’s First Destination Ski Resort") opened its doors, Ketchum gained in popularity once more as a resort town where everyone including big names like Ernest Hemingway came for escape. It also serves as the entryway to any number of outdoor recreational activities, including camping, hiking, mountain biking, snowshoeing, and ice skating on the 756,000 acres of Sawtooth National Recreation Area.

    istockphoto.com

  13. Makanda, Illinois | Population: 547

    Makanda il

    Sitting at the foot of Giant City State Park and surrounded by the Shawnee Hills in Southern Illinois, scenic Makanda is a popular destination for artists and nature lovers. The old railroad town was originally a hub for shipping produce to Chicago, but many citizens moved away when advancements in transportation limited job prospects. The town experienced a resurgence in the 1970s and 80s when student artists from Southern Illinois University were drawn to the town for its affordability. Today, Makanda is known for its art scene and continues to attract outsiders thanks to its eco-friendly resort, the Makanda Inn.

    flickr.com via Roland Klose

  14. New Harmony, Indiana | Population: 763

    New harmony indiana

    New Harmony is the result of not just one, but two attempts at creating a utopian society. Established by Johann Georg Rapp, the leader of separatists from the German Lutheran Church called the Harmonie Society, the town was originally called Harmony. The religious group achieved economic success, but after ten years they wanted to relocate and sold it to Robert Owen, who had his own plan for a utopian community. He renamed it New Harmony and focused on education and personal wealth. While neither achieved utopian success, the town today appeals to residents and tourists for its unique atmosphere that blends the past with the future.

    wikimedia.org via Timothy K Hamilton Creativity+ Photography

  15. Fairfield, Iowa | Population: 9,892

    Fairfield

    In southeastern Iowa, a little city called Fairfield is growing in size and stature. The town of less than 10,000 has long been perhaps the largest hub for transcendental meditation practitioners and many of the local buildings are constructed in accordance with the principles of Maharishi Vedic architecture. Today Fairfield continues to be a small center of innovation with 150 nonprofits, 400 start-up companies backed by $200 million in venture capital, and an aggressive plan to make the city a model of sustainability by 2020.

    flickr.com via websterwebfoot

  16. Lindsborg, Kansas | Population: 3,383

    Lindsborg

    In the heart of Kansas, Lindsborg stands as a reminder of the surge of Swedish immigrants who arrived in the state in the mid-1800s. Also called Little Sweden, this tiny city is home to Bethany College, a small Lutheran liberal arts college, as well as an art museum, quaint inns and bed-and-breakfasts, and several gift shops where dala horses of all sizes are on offer. Domestic tourists who want to experience a taste of Sweden without flying across an ocean can enjoy Swedish food, dancing, and entertainment at Svensk Hyllningsfest, a biennial festival Lindsborg residents put on to honor their beginnings as an immigrant town.

    flickr.com via chrism70

  17. Augusta, Kentucky | Population: 1,163

    Augusta ky

    Identified as one of the top eleven places to experience Kentucky's cultural heritage, Augusta gives visitors a reason to visit the area around the Ohio River. Once responsible for a major portion of America’s wine production, today, it's recreational areas, parks, and the O’Neil Riverwalk that make the town truly memorable, affording residents and tourists a relaxing waterfront view.

    wikimedia.org via Augustaky

  18. St. Francisville, Louisiana | Population: 1,700

    St francisville louisiana

    In the heyday of the antebellum South, when farms dotted the surrounding countryside, St. Francisville played a vital role in the region, culturally and commercially, in part thanks to its being on the Mississippi River. Now, more than 150 years after the Civil War, St. Francisville serves as a popular jumping-off point for tourists visiting any of the half dozen or so plantation museums located conveniently nearby. Most can be reached by car in a half hour or less, often along routes that take you through majestic, tree-canopied lanes that meander through the bayous.



    Related: The 19 Most Photographed Homes in America

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  19. Camden, Maine | Population: 4,850

    Camden maine

    Where the mountains of Maine meet the sea, there you'll find Camden, a tiny northeastern town that lures wealthy urbanites to the shore each summer. Long home to the Penobscot Abenaki Indians, who called it Megunticook, an Algonquian word meaning "great swells of the sea," the area was later settled by the English, who established it as a manufacturing city and shipyard. Today you'll find yachting enthusiasts in place of ship builders, especially during the summer months when the town's population triples.

    istockphoto.com

  20. St. Michaels, Maryland | Population: 1,029

    St michaels maryland

    The self-proclaimed "Heart & Soul of the Chesapeake Bay”, St Michaels epitomizes the laid-back gentility of Maryland's Eastern Shore. On the postcard-worthy main street, visitors take their pick of historic inns, fine restaurants, and upscale boutiques, while on the back streets, the well-preserved homes of long-ago merchants and mariners remind you St. Michaels originally prospered as a fishing and shipbuilding hub. Across the water, easily accessible via ferry, there's Oxford—an even tinier time warp of a town well worth a half-day jaunt.

    istockphoto.com

  21. Rockport, Massachusetts | Population: 6,952

    Rockport

    Located about 40 miles from Boston, the small town of Rockport, Massachusetts, has plenty of picturesque beaches, historic lighthouses, and oceanside parks—all of which capture the nautical charm of New England. Rockport became a leading supplier of granite after its founding in 1690. Over the years, it morphed into a suburban tourist destination with a thriving community of fisherman and artists, who find inspiration in the town’s beautiful harbor and boulder-strewn beaches. Rockport’s 7,000 residents search for whales in the bay, pursue the galleries and shops along Main Street, and hike scenic trails in the surrounding area.

    istockphoto.com

  22. Saugatuck, Michigan | Population: 963

    Saugatuck

    Saugatuck brings a small slice of seaside charm to Western Michigan. Located along Lake Michigan, it was dubbed one of the best small coastal towns in America by USA Today in 2016, thanks to its beautiful beaches, charming Victorian-inspired downtown area, and outdoor activities. Visitors usually stay in one of the town’s many bed-and-breakfasts, and they spend their days perusing art galleries, dining at cafes, walking along the harbor, and checking out the Saugatuck Dunes State Park. About 1,000 people live in Saugatuck year round.

    istockphoto.com

  23. Grand Marais, Minnesota | Population: 1,341

    Grand marais

    Break out the oars and dust off your dragon boat (you have one, right?) and head to the shores of Lake Superior this summer to compete in Grand Marais's Dragon Boat Festival. The annual event, which benefits nonprofits, is just one of the reasons tourists flock to this little city in the Land of Ten Thousand Lakes. The town is also a destination for makers and is home to the Grand Marais Art Colony and the North House Folk School, which specializes in the instruction of traditional northern crafts, from blacksmithing to wooden spoon carving. 

    wikipedia.org

  24. Holly Springs, Mississippi | Population: 7,574

    Tiny town holly springs mississippi

    After the original Chickasaw Indians were relocated from the land that would become Holly Springs, rich soil and a burgeoning cotton industry turned the settlement into a trading center off of the Mississippi Central Railroad for nearby plantations. Though the town’s prime location for exchange and storage of supplies led much of it to be torched by the North during the Civil War, visitors can still tour what remains and was rebuilt: the lush gardens, 100-some-year-old churches, and beautiful antebellum architecture, many of which offer tours and testament to the town’s history.

    flickr.com via JR P

  25. Ste. Genevieve, Missouri | Population: 4,472

    Ste genevieve mo

    The oldest town in Missouri, Ste. Genevieve has done a remarkable job preserving its rich and charming history. The small town was founded by French Canadians in the early 1700s, and many of its French Creole-style structures still stand today. Visitors can see first-hand the poteaux sur solle ("posts-on-sill") buildings, like the U.S. National Historic Landmark Louis Bolduc House, and its narrow streets and gardens. While Ste. Genevieve has managed to hold onto its historic ambiance, the town also lures visitors with its excellent restaurants and wineries.

    wikimedia.org via Andrew Balet

  26. Whitefish, Montana | Population: 6,357

    Whitefish montana

    Whitefish sprang up at the base of Big Mountain (the highest peak in the state) when the railroad and timber industries took off back in the early 1900s. The latter business activity actually lent Whitefish its original name—Stumptown. Today, the frontier atmosphere and jaw-dropping Rocky Mountain beauty combine to lure ever-increasing numbers of visitors, especially during ski season. That said, from hiking to horseback riding to whitewater rafting, there’s plenty to do in Whitefish even during the quieter (and substantially cheaper) off-season.



    Related: 7 Great Places to Bunk at America's National Parks

    istockphoto.com

  27. Chadron, Nebraska | Population: 5,724

    Chadron nebraska

    In the old days, life on the Great Plains was no carnival! In Chadron, especially, an old fur trading town, days were long and work was hard. Today, however, the town offers a truly exciting trip back in time at the annual Fur Trade Days festival, recognized as one of the best events by Nebraska's Department of Tourism. Boat racing, tomahawk throws, archery competitions, rodeo, and a buffalo chip throwing championship (yes, really!), plus a traders' market full of artisan-crafted goods make this an affair to remember.

    istockphoto.com

  28. Genoa, Nevada | Population: 939

    Tiny town genoa nevada

    This tiny Nevada town 25 minutes east of Lake Tahoe and an hour south of Reno is steeped in history. For one, its biggest natural attraction, Mormon Station Memorial State Park, stands in the location of the first permanent trading post to commemorate the state’s settlement in 1851. Schedule your trip for the first weekend in September and you can complement the abundance of traditional outdoor recreation options—hiking, biking, golfing, fishing, bird-watching, and more—with a side of sweet tradition. Since its start in 1919 as a homemade candy sale and dinner-dance for residents, the annual Candy Dance Arts and Crafts Faire has grown into a much larger affair that attracts artisans and shoppers from all over Nevada.

    istockphoto.com

  29. Harrisville, New Hampshire | Population: 961

    Tiny town harrisville new hampshire

    Nestled off Route 101 among the hills beneath Mount Monadnock and 10 neighboring lakes and ponds, Harrisville offers the perfect rural setting for what is the best preserved industrial community from the 19th century. In the short drive from one side of town to the other, visitors will see a brick and granite mill and a charming village to match, complete with traditional general store and seasonal farmers’ market. While agricultural work and active farms persist here, the town’s tiny population also includes working artists and pioneers of more digital-age trades who embrace the escape from most modernities outside of work hours.

    istockphoto.com

  30. Cape May, New Jersey | Population: 3,535

    Cape may nj

    Tiny Cape May has made a big name for itself amongst beachgoers thanks to its pristine shores and picturesque buildings. If locals or visitors aren’t on the beach, they’re biking around town or shopping at the mom-and-pop shops (big chains are outlawed). However, “The Nation’s Oldest Seashore Resort” almost never was—it was nearly destroyed by a fire in 1878. Plucky residents rebuilt the town, and constructed many famous Victorian buildings—the second biggest collection in the United States after San Francisco.

    flickr.com via mbtrama

  31. Taos, New Mexico | Population: 5,740

    Taos new mexico

    Not far from Taos Pueblo, the oldest continuously inhabited community in the United States, you'll find its modern cousin, Taos. This small town, which is older than America itself and traces its roots to the Spanish invasion of the nearby Pueblo villages, has produced a thriving community of artists. Although Taos is home to no more than 6,000 residents, the town boasts as many as three art museums and more than 80 galleries, as well as performing arts groups and music schools.  

    istockphoto.com

  32. Skaneateles, New York | Population: 7,254

    Skaneateles

    In the heart of Central New York lies the Finger Lakes, which are 11 long and narrow lakes that attract tourists with their beautiful scenery and abundant wineries. Along one of these bodies of water, Lake Skaneateles, lies a scenic small town that shares the same name. About 7,200 live in the village, which has a quaint downtown area with boutique shops and restaurants. Skaneateles draws local tourists with its grand river views, boat excursion, nearby vineyards, and festivals.

    flickr.com via joenevill

  33. Beaufort, North Carolina | Population: 4,195

    Beaufort north carolina

    Soak up the charm of Beaufort by slowly strolling around its national historic district—a remarkable, must-see collection of quintessentially Southern homes, each seemingly framed by picture-perfect mossy oaks. In the evening, head down to the waterfront to dine on the lively boardwalk, where you can watch the sun set over the North Carolina Low Country—a region that occupies a unique middle ground between the gentility of Charlestown and the beach bum vibe of the Outer Banks.

    Flickr.com via suttonls

  34. Medora, North Dakota | Population: 132

    Medora nd

    Situated in the Badlands, Medora has established itself as a popular destination despite having fewer than 200 residents. Visitors flock to Medora to visit outdoor attractions, like the Theodore Roosevelt National Park and the Bully Pulpit Golf Course, to take in the sights and sounds of the American Frontier. Perhaps its most notable and unique event is the town’s annual Medora Musical. Every summer from June through early September, the town hosts a professionally produced musical celebrating President Theodore Roosevelt’s sojourn in the region. Regardless of its size, Medora has certainly earned its nickname as "North Dakota’s #1 Vacation Destination."

    wikimedia.org via Michael Holley

  35. Yellow Springs, Ohio | Population: 3,526

    Yellow springs

    In 1825, the founders of Yellow Springs, Ohio intended to turn it into a utopian community. Although the plans never came to fruition, the town still stands out in the Midwestern state—mostly because of its eclectic style and cultural diversity. Yellow Springs houses about 3,500 residents throughout its friendly neighborhoods. In the thriving downtown area, you’ll find fun-loving street performers, locally-owned shops, unique restaurants, and colorful performance venues, which show off the town’s rich cultural scene. The surrounding area has many biking and hiking trails, as well as farms that supply food to the local markets.

    flickr.com via JR P

  36. Medicine Park, Oklahoma | Population: 430

    Medicine park ok

    Before Medicine Park was officially even a town, people from neighboring Lawton headed to its creek to stay cool during the summer months. It wasn't until 1908 that Oklahoma Senator Elmer Thomas founded the town with the vision of making it the state’s first planned resort community. After a successful start that earned it the moniker “Jewel of the West,” the town took a hit during the Great Depression and World War II. Thanks to modern revitalization efforts and its proximity to Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge, the resort community has experienced a resurgence. The close-knit community hosts five annual musical festivals, which keeps the visitors pouring in and locals hard at work.


    Related: The 10 Best American Towns for a Romantic Getaway

    flickr.com via Larry Smith

  37. Hood River, Oregon | Population: 7,476

    Mount hood oregon

    You’d wouldn’t necessarily expect to find a wind- and kite-surfing mecca in the state of Oregon, in the shadow of snowcapped Mount Hood. But thrill-seekers from all around the world visit the area to take part in water sports that depend on the winds always barreling through Columbia River Gorge. Though an ideal base for exploring all the nearby orchards, vineyards, and hiking trails, this tiny (but not too tiny) historic lumber town offers plenty of its own delights too—Victorian and Craftsman Bungalow architecture, for instance, along with an array of shops, restaurants, and breweries.

    istockphoto.com

  38. Wellsboro, Pennsylvania | Population: 3,290

    Tiny town wellsboro pennsylvania

    This tiny town boasts one big attraction: Pine Creek Gorge—called the “Pennsylvania Grand Canyon”—is a 6-million-year-old land feature shaped by the melting prehistoric ice glaciers. Recent recognition in publications like National Geographic and Sports Illustrated have drawn locals and visitors from all over to the small town to enjoy hundreds of miles of hiking and biking here as well as any other of Pennsylvania’s free state parks. Should you pull yourself away from exploring the natural terrain, you’ll find plenty of Americana charm on a stroll or trolley ride in Wellsboro’s downtown area, past a family-owned department store (the last in the country!), restored 1930s movie theatre, and even an old fashioned dining car all stand lined and illuminated by original Victorian gas lights.


    Related: The 12 Most Infamous Goofs in Architecture History

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  39. Jamestown, Rhode Island | Population: 5,405

    Jamestown

    A few short miles from bustling Newport, Jamestown is a peaceful seaside town on Conanicut Island with about 5,400 residents. Jamestown mixes its residential community with a resort atmosphere, and it houses many local shops, restaurants, historic properties, and farms. Until the 20th century, people could only visit Jamestown by taking a ferry, but now the Jamestown Verrazzano Bridge and the Claiborne Pell Newport Bridge connect the island to the mainland.

    istockphoto.com

  40. Georgetown, South Carolina | Population: 9,054

    Georgetown

    Founded in 1729, the waterfront community of Georgetown is the third oldest city in South Carolina. The oak-lined downtown area is filled with locally owned shopping and dining venues, and residents find plenty of opportunity for fishing and boating. If you’re visiting the seaport, don’t miss out on the town’s fascinating history, which begins before the Revolutionary War. Just over 9,000 people live in the small town today, and more than 50 locations are on the National Register of Historic Places.

    istockphoto.com

  41. Keystone, South Dakota | Population: 344

    Keystone south dakota

    You may not have heard of this little town of less than 350, but if you're planning a road trip to one of America's most iconic monuments, chances are you'll drive through its winding streets or rent a room in one of its many lodges and resorts. Located a short drive from Mount Rushmore, this former mining town has successfully pivoted to become a desirable destination for tourists, while maintaining its small town charm.

    istockphoto.com

  42. Bell Buckle, Tennessee | Population: 512

    Bell buckle tn

    If you have a sweet tooth, you’ll want to visit Bell Buckle, Tennessee. This small town, located between Nashville and Chattanooga, hosts a RC-Moon Pie Festival every summer on the third Saturday in June. The festival celebrates the South’s original fast food—an ice-cold RC Cola and MoonPie. If consuming sugary food and drinks isn’t your taste, the town is also known for its preserved Victorian homes and antiques scene.

    flickr.com via Brent Moore

  43. Marfa, Texas | Population: 1,800

    Marfa texas

    Situated in the high desert of Western Texas, Marfa may seem like an unlikely destination for art enthusiasts. In fact, the small town is well-known for its Minimalist art scene and the Open House weekend put on by the Chianti Foundation, which lures thousands of art appreciators from around the world. The city's other big claim to fame is the Marfa lights, a ghostly phenomenon where floating lights seem to move, split, merge and disappear over the surrounding desert. While there may be a perfectly scientific explanation for the lights, that doesn't stop some from considering it to be a paranormal experience.

    istockphoto.com

  44. Moab, Utah | Population: 5,235

    Moab utah

    For those seeking adventure, look to Moab, Utah. The desert town attracts visitors year-round due to being home of two of the Mighty Five National Parks. Nature lovers can take in the red-rock landscapes of the Arches National Park and Canyonlands National Park while in Moab. From mountain biking on the trails to kayaking in the Colorado River, almost every outdoor recreational activity imaginable is offered in the southwestern resort town.


    Related: Living Remotely: 12 Stunning Homes in the Middle of Nowhere

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  45. Woodstock, Vermont | Population: 3,050

    Woodstock vermont

    This tiny town of 3,000 is a paradise for any historic home lover. Pristine Georgian, Federal, and Greek Revival style homes border the town square, and a yearly Harvest Weekend appeals to residents' sense of history with a husking bee and barn dance. Despite its proud roots, Woodstock is by no means stuck in the past; the community provides free Wi-Fi that covers almost every inch of the village. 

    istockphoto.com

  46. Lexington, Virginia | Population: 7,311

    Lexington

    Lexington, Virginia, is a small town with a big history. During the Civil War, the Virginia Military Institute, the oldest state-supported military school in the country, was raided by a Union general. Today, history buffs enjoy the places such as the Stonewall Jackson House, Lee Chapel, and Stonewall Jackson Memorial Cemetery. In fact, Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson are both buried in the small town. Lexington, which has about 7,000 residents, is also home to Washington and Lee University, as well as a bustling downtown area.

    istockphoto.com

  47. Friday Harbor, Washington | Population: 2,306

    Friday harbor

    Located on the shore of San Juan Island, which is situated between Washington State and the Canadian Vancouver Island, Friday Harbor is a charming seaport with about 2,100 residents. After reaching the city via ferry, visitors can walk to the family-friendly downtown area for shopping and dining. Popular local activities revolve around whale watching, boating, and kayaking.

    flickr.com via Ellen Macdonald

  48. Harpers Ferry, West Virginia | Population: 293

    Harpers ferry west virginia

    The first thing you notice about Harper’s Ferry: It’s dramatically sited on a plateau that pokes into the confluence of two rivers, the Potomac and Shenandoah. From the center of town, you can see hills rising up on almost all sides, and from the edge, peer down into rushing water. It’s no coincidence that the Appalachian Trail passes directly through the town, much of which operates as an open-air museum run by the National Park Service. Many exhibits explore the history of the town, including its fascinating role in events both before and during the Civil War.



    Related: 18 American Towns Every Old-House Lover Needs to See

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  49. Mineral Point, Wisconsin | Population: 2,487

    Tiny town mineral point wisconsin

    The fact that many of the stone buildings in Mineral Point are older than the state itself simply reinforces the town slogan, “where Wisconsin began.” Carefully restored during a preservationist movement in the 1960s and '70s, its architecture—not to mention its host of museums like the Pendarvis or the Mineral Point Railroad Depot—has helped turn what once was the center of early Wisconsin government into a time capsule from the early 1800s. Whether you’re a guest in a charming bed-and-breakfast or a patron to an art gallery housed in a restored building, you'll have ample opportunity to take in the prevalent limestone building style brought over with settlers from Cornwall, England, who arrived to mine lead.


    Related: 20 Beautiful Homes Hiding in America's Most Affordable Cities

    istockphoto.com

  50. Centennial, Wyoming | Population: 270

    Centennial

    If you’re searching for a sleepy small town steeped in beauty, look no further than Centennial, Wyoming. The quaint village got its start in the late 1800s, when miners moved to the area after discovering gold on Centennial Mountain. Nowadays, only a few hundred people live in Centennial, which also has a history museum, lodges, and a handful of restaurants and bars amidst picturesque mountain views.

    flickr.com via Scott Dexter

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