The South's Best Cities 2017
1. Charleston, South Carolina
2. Savannah, Georgia
Like a time capsule of historic architecture and city planning, Savannah's old-school exterior belies its status as a progressive art, design, and culinary hub.
3. New Orleans, Louisiana
A global cultural capital, home to some of the country's best restaurants and an incomparable music scene, the Big Easy beautifully blends new and old like no place else.
4. Nashville, Tennessee
Music City is booming, and not just in its fabled recording studios. From downtown development to an influx of newcomers calling the city home, Nashville is as hot as its chicken.
5. Asheville, North Carolina
Known as Beer City, USA, Asheville has seen a recent burst of acclaimed farm-to-table restaurants complementing its brewery scene.
6. Atlanta, Georgia
Atlanta's open-arms approach to diversity—from industry and food to design and music—has made it one of the most vibrant cities in the country and worthy of its nickname, Hotlanta.
The South's Best City: Charleston, S.C.
Charleston is having a moment. Again. Nearly 400 years after a group of enterprising colonists settled the jewel of the Lowcountry, the Holy City continues to cast its spell on visitors far and wide.
7. Austin, Texas
Musicians might still head to America's live-music capital in hopes of hitting it big, but now so do those looking to launch start-ups and workin the tech industry.
8. Raleigh/Durham, North Carolina
Once in the shadow of its sister city, Durham has become a formidable cultural counterpart to Raleigh.
9. Richmond, Virginia
Off-the-radar Richmond has the South paying attention. The beautifully restored Quirk Hotel, an unconventional music scene, and restaurants that are redefining Appalachian cooking have made us all take notice.
10. Birmingham, Alabama
A new generation of Birmingham residents have committed themselves to putting the magic back in their city, and it has never been more visible than now—especially downtown, where a sprawling park, a new food hall, apartment buildings, cocktail bars, and creative start-ups coalesce.