Traffic, car rentals, and packed public transportation don’t make for a relaxing vacation. For your next trip, choose one of these US cities that are a paradise for walkers. Pound the pavement in the concrete jungle in New York City or stroll along the water in San Francisco—some of America’s best destinations are also the most walkable.
To determine the best walkable cities in the US, we compiled data from Walk Score. Walk Score measures destination walkability by analyzing hundreds of walking routes and awarding points based on the distance to amenities.
Walk Scores of 90-100 are awarded to destinations deemed “Walker’s Paradise” where daily errands don’t require a car. Scores of 70-89 are given to “Very Walkable” places where most errands can be accomplished without a car.
1. San Francisco, California (Walk Score: 89)
Don’t let San Francisco’s hilly terrain deter you—it’s the most walkable city in the US. Climb up high for incredible views of the bay, meander through the city’s many public parks, and definitely don’t miss a chance to walk across the famous Golden Gate Bridge.
Most Walkable Neighborhoods: Chinatown, Tenderloin, and Polk Gulch.
Best Walkable Hotel: Hotel Emblem San Francisco
2. New York, New York (Walk Score: 88)
Since less than half of New York City residents own a car, it’s no surprise that The Big Apple is the second most walkable city in America. The city block grid design makes it easy to find your way without getting lost (or being glued to your smartphone) and you’ll find endless choices for breaks to refuel on every block.
Most Walkable Neighborhoods: Little Italy, NoLita, and Bowery.
Best Walkable Hotel: Equinox Hotel New York
3. Boston, Massachusetts (Walk Score: 83)
Simply get lost along the charming streets of Boston, or add a little more purpose—and history—to your walk on the city’s famous Freedom Trail. Follow the line on the pavement for 2.5-miles and you can take a self-guided tour of Boston’s best neighborhoods and attractions. Or, download the Freedom Trail app to learn some of the city’s history while you walk.
Most Walkable Neighborhoods: Beacon Hill, Chinatown, and North End.
Best Walkable Hotel: Boston Park Plaza
4. Miami, Florida (Walk Score: 77)
Avoid Miami traffic and explore this lively city on foot instead. Soak up the sun while you stroll along the 7-mile Miami Beach Boardwalk, or eat your way through the Calle Ocho neighborhood on a walking restaurant crawl while being serenaded by live music.
Most Walkable Neighborhoods: Downtown, Wynwood-Edgewater, and Little Havana.
Best Walkable Hotel: 1 Hotel South Beach
5. Chicago, Illinois (Walk Score: 77)
While the Windy City is at its most walkable in the spring, summer, and fall, you can still get around by foot even on the coldest winter days thanks to Chicago’s Pedway. The Pedway is the city’s system of underground tunnels and overhead bridges that connect more than 40 blocks in downtown Chicago.
Most Walkable Neighborhoods: East Ukrainian Village, Wicker Park, and Near North Side.
Best Walkable Hotel: Sofitel Chicago Magnificent Mile
6. Washington, D.C. (Walk Score: 77)
The best way to see Washington, DC’s monuments is by foot. Start at the National Mall and work your way from the Washington Monument down to the Lincoln Memorial. The city’s diverse neighborhoods are all extremely walkable, but if you prefer a more peaceful walk, head to Rock Creek Park, an urban oasis with plenty of walking trails to explore.
Most Walkable Neighborhoods: U-Street, Dupont Circle, and Mount Vernon Square.
Best Walkable Hotel: Kimpton Hotel Monaco Washington DC
7. Oakland, California (Walk Score: 75)
Located just across the bay from San Francisco, Oakland is almost as walkable as its neighbor—and offers a cheaper, less touristy vacation experience. Stay in Oakland’s downtown area for easy access to galleries, restaurants, and bars.
Most Walkable Neighborhoods: Downtown, Koreatown-Northgate, and Fruitvale Station.
Best Walkable Hotel: Oakland Marriott City Center
8. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (Walk Score: 75)
WIth all of the unique regional cuisine that Philadelphia has to offer (like cheesesteaks, hoagies, and water ice), you’ll be grateful for the city’s high walk score and the chance to walk off your indulgences. In addition to a vibrant downtown area, Philadelphia also has more than 10,000 acres of public green space to relax in.
Most Walkable Neighborhoods: Rittenhouse Square, Washington Square West, and Avenue of the Arts South.
Best Walkable Hotel: The Notary Hotel
9. Seattle, Washington (Walk Score: 74)
With three stunning national parks in its backyard, Seattle is a hiker’s paradise. Get in some warm up walks around the city, exploring the lively Pike Place Market and the Space Needle. When your energy starts to flag, you can find an amazing cup of locally brewed coffee practically everywhere you turn in the city.
Most Walkable Neighborhoods: Downtown, International District, and Belltown.
Best Walkable Hotel: The Charter Hotel
10. Long Beach, California (Walk Score: 73)
If you like long walks along the beach, you’ll be in luck in Long Beach, where there is a 3.1 mile boardwalk built for strolling. Just steps off the beach, the coastal city has a charming downtown where you can walk between restaurants and oceanfront bars.
Most Walkable Neighborhoods: Franklin School, Saint Mary, and Downtown.
Best Walkable Hotel: Hotel Maya
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