Save money on airfare and reduce your carbon emissions by exploring some of the most walkable cities in the US. . We'll give you an overview of the 10 most walkable cities in the US.
1. New York City, NY
Iconic, edgy, and larger than life, New York City is the jewel in the crown when it comes to city getaways. Manhattan and greater New York City are home to the largest rapid transit system in the US, which allows you to experience a range of funky neighborhoods conveniently without your own set of wheels. Central Park is a must when exploring NYC on foot, or you may simply decide to lose yourself in the busy streets of Manhattan. Alternatively, you should consider some of the many excellent walking tours on offer that will give you a local insight into the city’s deeply cultural make-up and enthralling history.
Recommended Neighborhoods: Bowery, Flatiron District & Little Italy.
Walking can be a great way of reducing stress and anxiety. Find out more here: Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction: Living in the Present
2. Most Walkable Cities in the US: San Francisco, CA
A little more stamina will definitely be a bonus when it comes to exploring San Francisco on foot. Yes, the hiking trails in the surrounding hills can be arduous at times, but the views of the bay are always worth the extra effort. After your hillside hike, you will no doubt be hungry, so hitting up the vibrant streets of Chinatown is perfect for that well-earned appetite. Be sure to add a stroll across the Golden Gate Bridge to your walking ‘to-do’ list and wander through the lush green spaces of Lands End or the Presidio.
Recommended Neighborhoods: Tenderloin, Chinatown & Downtown-Union Square.
3. Chicago, IL
With a spectacular skyline, Lake Michigan beaches, and eclectic neighborhoods, The Windy City is easily one of the most walkable cities in the US. An ever-popular tourist destination and much like NYC, Chicago’s transit system makes getting around on foot a breeze. This is particularly useful in the spring and summer months when the city really comes alive with a flurry of food, music, and comedy festivals. The wealth of museums and culinary delights on offer are truly world-class and the meandering pedestrian trails bordering the lake and river are rich with spectacular waterfront vistas.
Recommended Neighborhoods: Ukrainian Village, Near North Side & West Loop.
4. Seattle, WA
Next on the list of most walkable cities in the US is Seattle. Seattle offers a vibrant downtown district and more outdoorsy pursuits on the city outskirts for those who enjoy a good hiking challenge. Dominating the skyline is the famous Space Needle, which is ideally viewed from nearby Kerry Park where you can also see the towering peak of Mt. Rainier rising in the distance. The city center is very walkable and offers easy access to the Chihuly Garden and Glass Museum, the Pacific Science Center, and the Museum of Pop Culture. Another great explore on foot is along the waterfront; take a leisurely stroll around the colorful Pike Place Markets for a bite to eat.
Recommended Neighborhoods: International District, Downtown & Belltown.
5. Most Walkable Cities in the US: Boston, MA
Much smaller than its bigger and brasher counterparts, Boston is the perfect example of how sometimes good things come in small packages. The entire downtown district can be covered quickly almost entirely by walking. With its atmospheric cobblestone streets and lush parklands dating back to the colonial era, visitors will get a tantalizing glimpse into a bygone era. Boston’s famous Freedom Trail is a 3.7-mile-long path that passes by 16 locations significant to the history of the US, making it an absolute must for any armchair historian.
Recommended Neighborhoods: North End, Bay Village & Beacon Hill.
6. Philadelphia, PA
Much like Boston, Philadelphia puts you in touch with iconic American history, perfectly encapsulated by a visit to see the Liberty Bell. Philly is extremely walkable and outdoor-friendly, allowing you to explore the first US city to be placed on the UNESCO World Heritage List without the need for heavy transport. Chowing down cheesesteaks and hoagies is a local highlight, but you can burn the extra calories off by wandering through some of the historic districts and 10,000 acres of public green space that are spread throughout the city.
Recommended Neighborhoods: Rittenhouse Square, Avenue of the Arts South & City Center.
7. Oakland, CA
Sometimes unfairly overlooked thanks to its more flashy cousin, San Francisco, Oakland is the perfect Bay Area alternative offering many of the same experiences without the hefty pricetag. With a vibrant and bustling waterfront and picturesque neighborhoods, Oakland offers plenty for the tourist who likes to explore on foot. Be sure to drop by the iconic Grand Lake Theatre and check out Jack London Square. Accessible by public transit, those wishing to commune with nature should consider a trip to the nearby Reinhardt Redwood Regional Park.
Recommended Neighborhoods: Koreatown-Northgate, Downtown & Temescal.
8. Walkable Cities in the US: Washington, D.C.
Most tourists would agree that the best place to start exploring Washington, D.C. on foot is at the imposing National Mall, which runs from the U.S. Capitol Building to the Lincoln Memorial. This area alone has enough attractions to keep you busy for days, but the city has plenty of other surprises up its sleeve. The gorgeous cobblestone sidewalks of Georgetown are a real highlight and those after a touch of local culture will love Dupont Circle with its eclectic selection of galleries and retail outlets. The Potomac River is also a great addition to any walking itinerary thanks to the wealth of trails and sidewalks that weave their way along its banks.
Recommended Neighborhoods: Dupont Circle, U-Street, Mount Vernon Square.
9. Miami, FL
Whether you are looking to relax by the beach, explore the local street art or dive into the bustling culture Little Havana, Miami offers a host of great experiences easily accessible on foot from the downtown area. Miami has some of the best art deco architecture in the world making it a photography paradise and its colorful neighborhoods offer an eclectic mix of international and local cuisine. The locals are famously friendly and after a long day of walking, nothing beats a stroll around Calle Ocho to enjoy those spectacular Miami sunsets.
Recommended Neighborhoods: Wynwood-Edgewater, Little Havana & Downtown.
10. Most Walkable US Cities: Long Beach, CA
Long Beach is a welcome counterpoint to nearby Los Angeles because, unlike L.A., Long Beach doesn’t require a car to explore the local attractions. Offering a laid-back coastal vibe, the city has an inviting downtown area that is best explored on foot. Some of the best seafood restaurants in California can be found in Long Beach and for those looking for a touch of history should make sure to visit the RMS Queen Mary, a retired British ocean liner built in the 1930s that now serves as a spectacular hotel and museum.
Recommended Neighborhoods: Downtown, St. Mary & Franklin School.
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