The Most Beloved City in America: Ranking the Top Choice

Choose the city you think is the most beloved!

Author: Gregor Krambs
Updated on Feb 18, 2024 05:29
Welcome to StrawPoll's quest to discover the most beloved city in America! From the bustling streets of New York City to the golden coast of California, each city offers its own unique charm and allure. But which city truly captures the hearts of locals and visitors alike? We've gathered thousands of votes and opinions to create the ultimate ranking of America's most cherished cities. Now, it's your turn to weigh in! Cast your vote for your favorite city, or suggest a hidden gem that deserves some recognition. Dive into our interactive ranking and uncover the stories and secrets behind each beloved city, and let's celebrate the diverse beauty and culture that makes America so extraordinary.

What Is the Most Beloved City in America?

  1. 1
    New York City
    Fred Hsu on en.wikipedia · CC BY-SA 4.0
    With its iconic landmarks, diverse neighborhoods, and endless entertainment options, New York City has captured the hearts of millions of visitors and residents alike. It is a city that never sleeps, and there is always something new to discover.
    New York City is one of the most iconic and vibrant cities in the world. It is located in the state of New York, United States, and is often referred to as NYC or simply New York. The city is renowned for its rich history, diverse culture, bustling atmosphere, and countless landmarks and attractions. It serves as a global hub for finance, media, fashion, art, and entertainment, making it a major center of influence and innovation.
    • Population: Approximately 8.4 million as of 2021
    • Area: Approximately 468.9 square miles (1,214 square kilometers)
    • Boroughs: Consists of five boroughs: Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, The Bronx, and Staten Island
    • Landmarks: Iconic landmarks include the Statue of Liberty, Times Square, Central Park, Empire State Building, and Brooklyn Bridge
    • Cultural Institutions: Home to world-renowned museums like the Metropolitan Museum of Art (the Met) and Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
    New York City in other rankings
  2. 2

    San Francisco

    Juan Bautista de Anza
    Known for its stunning scenery, cultural diversity, and progressive values, San Francisco is a beloved destination for travelers and locals. The Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz Island, and Fisherman's Wharf are just a few of its famous attractions.
    San Francisco is a major city in California known for its iconic landmarks, diverse culture, and vibrant atmosphere. It is situated on a hilly peninsula surrounded by the Pacific Ocean and the San Francisco Bay. San Francisco is famous for its stunning Golden Gate Bridge, cable cars that traverse the city's steep streets, and historic Alcatraz Island. The city is also renowned for its vibrant arts and music scene, as well as its thriving tech industry.
    • Population: Approximately 883,305
    • Area: Approximately 46.87 square miles
    • Year Founded: 1776
    • Average Annual Temperature: Around 61°F (16°C)
    • Famous Landmarks: Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz Island, Lombard Street
    San Francisco in other rankings
  3. 3
    The Windy City is famous for its architecture, deep-dish pizza, and blues music. Visitors love exploring its many museums, such as the Art Institute of Chicago and the Field Museum, while locals enjoy the city's bustling neighborhoods and lakefront parks.
    Chicago is a vibrant and cosmopolitan city located in the state of Illinois. It is known for its breathtaking architecture, diverse culture, and stunning skyline. With its beautiful lakefront and numerous parks, Chicago offers a unique blend of natural beauty and urban charm. The city is famous for its deep-dish pizza, blues music, and passionate sports fans. Chicago is a melting pot of different ethnicities, creating a rich tapestry of cultural experiences. Renowned for its iconic landmarks such as Millennium Park, Navy Pier, and The Art Institute of Chicago, the city provides endless opportunities for exploration and entertainment. Whether you're strolling along the Magnificent Mile, taking an architecture boat tour along the Chicago River, or catching a show in the renowned theater district, Chicago promises an unforgettable experience for visitors and residents alike.
    • Population: 2.7 million (city proper)
    • Area: 606.1 square kilometers
    • Foundation: August 12, 1833
    • Tallest Building: Willis Tower (formerly Sears Tower)
    • Number of Parks: Over 570 parks in the city
  4. 4
    As the capital of Hawaii, Honolulu is a tropical paradise with world-famous beaches, lush landscapes, and rich cultural heritage. It is a popular destination for surfers, hikers, and history buffs alike.
    Honolulu is the capital city of Hawaii and is widely regarded as one of the most beautiful cities in the world. It is located on the island of Oahu and offers a perfect blend of natural beauty, vibrant city life, and cultural experiences. The city is known for its stunning beaches, crystal-clear waters, majestic mountains, and lush landscapes. Honolulu also boasts a rich history and is home to iconic landmarks and attractions such as Pearl Harbor and Diamond Head.
    • Location: Located on the island of Oahu, Hawaii
    • Population: Approximately 350,000 residents
    • Size: Total area of 177.2 square kilometers
    • Tourism: Welcomes millions of visitors annually
    • Weather: Tropical climate with warm temperatures throughout the year
  5. 5
    With its historic architecture, charming streets, and Southern hospitality, Charleston is a beloved destination for travelers seeking a taste of the Old South. Its many museums, art galleries, and restaurants offer something for everyone.
    Charleston is a picturesque city located in South Carolina, known for its rich history and captivating beauty. It exudes a unique blend of Southern charm and coastal elegance. The city is characterized by its well-preserved architecture, cobblestone streets, and scenic waterfront views.
    • Historic District: Charleston's Historic District showcases an array of beautifully preserved buildings that date back to the 18th century.
    • Rainbow Row: Rainbow Row features a series of 13 colorful Georgian rowhouses, making it one of the city's most iconic landmarks.
    • Magnolia Plantation and Gardens: This sprawling plantation offers magnificent gardens with blooming flowers and century-old oak trees.
    • Fort Sumter: Fort Sumter is a historic fort situated in Charleston Harbor, notable for being where the first shots of the American Civil War were fired.
    • Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge: This impressive cable-stayed bridge spans the Cooper River and offers breathtaking views of the city skyline.
  6. 6
    Known for its vibrant music scene, Cajun cuisine, and Mardi Gras celebrations, New Orleans is a beloved destination for travelers seeking a good time. The French Quarter, Bourbon Street, and Jackson Square are just a few of its must-visit attractions.
    New Orleans is a vibrant city located in the southeastern part of the United States. Known for its rich history, unique culture, and lively atmosphere, it is often referred to as the 'Big Easy' or the 'Crescent City'. The city is situated along the Mississippi River and is famous for its jazz music, Mardi Gras celebrations, and delicious Creole and Cajun cuisine.
    • Population: 391,006 (as of 2020)
    • Area: 169.42 square miles
    • Nickname: 'The Big Easy', 'Crescent City'
    • Famous Landmarks: French Quarter, Jackson Square, St. Louis Cemetery, Garden District, Bourbon Street
    • Ethnic Diversity: African American, Cajun, Creole, French, Vietnamese
  7. 7
    With its moss-draped oak trees, historic homes, and scenic riverfront, Savannah is a beloved destination for travelers seeking Southern charm. Its many museums, art galleries, and restaurants offer a taste of the city's rich cultural heritage.
    Savannah is a captivating city located in the state of Georgia in the United States. It is renowned for its remarkable beauty, with its historic charm, lush greenery, and picturesque landscapes. This city seamlessly merges Southern grace with modern vibrance, making it a destination that appeals to visitors from all walks of life.
    • Historic District: Savannah's Historic District is a designated National Historic Landmark, featuring over 20 city squares, each surrounded by gorgeous homes and oak-lined streets.
    • Forsyth Park: Forsyth Park is a stunning urban green space with a magnificent fountain, walking paths, and expansive lawns, providing a peaceful retreat within the city.
    • River Street: River Street is a bustling cobblestoned street lined with attractive boutiques, galleries, restaurants, and bars, offering beautiful views of the Savannah River.
    • Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD): SCAD is a prestigious art and design university that has greatly influenced the city's creative atmosphere.
    • Garden Squares: The city is adorned with numerous garden squares, such as Chippewa Square and Lafayette Square, providing serene oases amidst the city's hustle and bustle.
  8. 8
    Known for its craft beer, farm-to-table cuisine, and quirky culture, Portland is a beloved destination for travelers seeking a taste of the Pacific Northwest. Its many parks, museums, and galleries offer something for everyone.
    Portland, also known as the City of Roses, is a vibrant and eclectic city located in the state of Oregon in the Pacific Northwest of the United States. It is known for its unique blend of natural beauty, progressive culture, and a thriving arts and music scene.
    • Population: Approximately 654,741 (as of 2019)
    • Nicknames: The City of Roses, Stumptown, PDX
    • Climate: Mild year-round with moderate precipitation. Summers are warm and dry, while winters are cool and wet.
    • Geography: Situated at the confluence of the Willamette and Columbia Rivers, surrounded by lush forests and scenic mountains.
    • Green Initiatives: Renowned for its environmentally conscious practices and sustainability efforts.
  9. 9
    With its thriving music scene, delicious food, and laid-back vibe, Austin is a beloved destination for travelers seeking a taste of Texas. Its many festivals, such as South by Southwest and Austin City Limits, draw visitors from around the world.
    Austin is the capital city of Texas, known for its vibrant and eclectic atmosphere. It is located on the banks of the Colorado River and offers a beautiful blend of natural landscapes and urban amenities. The city is home to a diverse population and is often referred to as the 'Live Music Capital of the World' due to its thriving music scene. With a combination of stunning architecture, lush green spaces, and a wealth of cultural attractions, Austin has become a popular destination for both locals and tourists alike.
    • Population: Approximately 978,908 residents
    • Area: Approximately 322.48 square miles
    • Climate: Subtropical
    • Landmarks: Texas State Capitol, Lady Bird Lake, Barton Springs Pool, Mount Bonnell
    • Food Scene: Famous for Tex-Mex cuisine, food trucks, and craft breweries
  10. 10
    San Diego
    Nehrams2020 · CC BY-SA 3.0

    San Diego

    Kumeyaay people
    With its sunny weather, beautiful beaches, and world-famous zoo, San Diego is a beloved destination for travelers seeking a taste of Southern California. Its many museums, parks, and attractions offer something for everyone.
    San Diego is a vibrant coastal city located in Southern California. It is known for its stunning beaches, year-round mild climate, and a diverse culture. The city offers a mix of modern amenities, historic landmarks, and natural beauty. With a population of approximately 1.4 million, San Diego is the second-largest city in California and the eighth-largest city in the United States. It boasts a thriving economy, with major industries including defense, tourism, and healthcare.
    • Population: Approximately 1.4 million
    • Location: Southern California
    • Climate: Year-round mild climate
    • Beaches: Stunning coastal beaches
    • Culture: Diverse cultural heritage
    San Diego in other rankings

Missing your favorite city?


Ranking factors for beloved city

  1. Affordability
    The cost of living in a city, including housing, transportation, utilities, and general expenses, is important for residents and visitors alike.
  2. Employment opportunities
    A city with a strong job market and diverse industries will attract more people due to the potential for stable income and career growth.
  3. Quality of education
    Access to high-quality primary, secondary, and higher education institutions is essential for families and individuals looking to develop skills and increase their earning potential.
  4. Safety
    A low crime rate and a sense of security are priorities for residents when choosing a place to live.
  5. Healthcare facilities
    Access to quality healthcare facilities and specialist medical care is vital for the wellbeing of residents.
  6. Infrastructure
    Efficient and reliable public transportation, well-maintained roads, and other essential infrastructure play a crucial role in people's overall satisfaction with their city.
  7. Cultural attractions and entertainment
    Access to museums, theaters, music venues, and diverse dining options can make a significant difference in how much residents and visitors enjoy a city.
  8. Parks and recreational facilities
    Green spaces, parks, and recreational facilities contribute to a higher quality of life for residents and visitors.
  9. Climate and air quality
    Cities with pleasant climates and good air quality generally have happier residents and visitors.
  10. Community engagement and friendliness
    A strong sense of community, welcoming locals, and opportunities for social interaction can make a city beloved by its residents.

About this ranking

This is a community-based ranking of the most beloved city in America. We do our best to provide fair voting, but it is not intended to be exhaustive. So if you notice something or city is missing, feel free to help improve the ranking!


  • 152 votes
  • 10 ranked items

Voting Rules

A participant may cast an up or down vote for each city once every 24 hours. The rank of each city is then calculated from the weighted sum of all up and down votes.

More information on most beloved city in america

When it comes to the most beloved cities in America, opinions can vary greatly. However, there are certain cities that consistently rank high on lists of favorite destinations. From the bustling streets of New York City to the laid-back vibe of San Francisco, there is no shortage of amazing cities to explore in the United States. Each city offers its own unique culture, history, and attractions, making it difficult to choose just one as the most beloved. Factors such as weather, food, nightlife, and scenery all play a role in determining a city's popularity. Whether it's the iconic landmarks of Washington D.C. or the southern charm of Charleston, there's something for everyone in America's most beloved cities.

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