17 Best Small Towns in the USA for a Romantic Trip

Who says you have to leave the country in order to have a great honeymoon? Our list of the best small towns in the USA for a romantic trip will inspire you to stay stateside for your next romantic getaway.

Best Small Towns in the USA for a Romantic Trip

Visit the best small towns in the USA with our list of suggestions.

Are you looking for the best small towns in the USA? One of the best parts about traveling is exploring local towns, and there are so many throughout the United States. From beachside towns in Oregon to history-filled areas in New England, there are all sorts of places just waiting for you to explore. 

17 Best Small Towns in the USA

1. Grand Marais, Minnesota

Looking for a lake getaway? Grand Marais is a perfect destination, sitting beautifully on the stunning North Shore of Minnesota.

It is nestled on the shoreline of Lake Superior and offers couples a sense of adventure and relaxation. Start by checking out the many local shops and grabbing a bite to eat at the restaurants. A local favorite is The Fisherman’s Daughter, and be sure to order the shrimp and chips basket.

Then, head out for some hiking and exploring the North Shore, which is home to 8 different state parks. Some of the best hiking trails are in Grand Marais, and the Superior Hiking Trail connects to town. Oberg Mountain is a favorite US hike around Grand Marais.

The rest of the North Shore is also a fabulous place to explore. Lutsen offers a great ski resort, and Silver Bay is home to Tettegouche State Park, a local favorite. Exploring the area around Canal Park in Duluth is also a must.

Grand Marais Minnesota Lighthouse

What is the best small town in the USA? Grand Marais is a candidate for sure.

2. Stowe, Vermont

Tucked into the base of Mount Mansfield in the Green Mountains of Vermont is the small town of Stowe. Known best for being a picturesque location for fall foliage, Stowe is also popular during other times of the year.

Many travelers plan a stop in Stowe during a visit to New England because of its cozy feel. From skiing in the winter to hiking in the summer, Stowe has become a year-round destination.

With dozens of boutiques and restaurants to enjoy, a visit to Stowe is enjoyable, even for people who do not want to adventure outdoors. There are also many adorable bed and breakfasts nearby for you to rest your head. Overall, Stowe gives quintessential small-town USA vibes.

Stowe Vermont Best Small Towns in USA

One of the best small towns in US to visit is Stowe, Vermont.

3. Solvang, California

Located not far from the bustling Los Angeles, the small village of Solvang is a must-see during a visit to California.

This small town is known as the ‘Danish Capital of America,’ and the entire town looks like a small Danish village. From the large windmill in Downtown Solvang to the endless Danish bakeries, you’ll feel like you’ve been transported straight to Europe.

As you walk the streets, wander into the local boutiques and shops. Be sure to try a treat or two from the bakeries. You’ll also find restaurants serving traditional European foods. Prioritize stopping by Brekkies by Chomp—it is so delicious!

Solvang is also situated in wine country. The nearby Santa Ynez Valley of California houses over 100 wineries. So, if you’re a fan of wine, be sure to save some time for a wine tasting or two.

Solvang California in the USA

One of the best small towns in America USA today is definitely Solvang.

4. Leavenworth, Washington

If you’re looking for another way to feel like you’re visiting Europe, then head to the small town of Leavenworth in Washington state. This adorable town lies at the base of mountains in Washington’s Cascade range and has incredible views in all directions. It’s also decorated to look like a Bavarian villa.

Everywhere you look, you’ll see German restaurants, Bavarian charm, and stunning views. It is the perfect destination for outdoor lovers with lots of nature-centric activities.

In the winter months, Leavenworth transforms into the most beautiful Christmas village. Twinkling lights are strung everywhere, horse-drawn carriages go down the street, and you can find lots of Christmas treats. 

If you have any extra time, take the Colchuck Lake hike. It’s stunning and not too far from Leavenworth. It’s beautiful any time of year.

Leavenworth Washington USA

Leavenworth is one of the best small towns in America for outdoor lovers.

5. Breckenridge, Colorado

For skiers and snowboarders, Breckenridge, Colorado, is one of the best small towns in the USA on this list. It’s set right in the Rocky Mountains and is home to one of the best ski resorts in the state.

Just a short drive from town, you’ll find the legendary Breckenridge Ski Resort, which features nearly 200 runs, 3,000 acres of skiable terrain, and five peaks to soar down.

After the mountain closes, Breckenridge, lovingly known as Breck to locals, has a lively aprés scene to enjoy the rest of your night. Be sure to stop at Mountain Top Cookie Shop. You won’t regret it because they have the best cookies around.

For those not looking for adventure, wander through the charming town. Right from Main Street, there are plenty of shops to stop into, restaurants to eat at, and views to enjoy.

Breckenridge Colorado for Skiers in the US

As one of the best small towns in the US, Breckenridge caters to couples who love snow.

6. Stillwater, Minnesota

The adorable town of Stillwater sits along the banks of the St. Croix River and is one of Minnesota’s best small towns. As you walk along Main Street, you’ll find dozens of shops and local places to eat, many of them with outdoor patios. Just a street away, there is a walking path that lines the river.

A large steel bridge crosses the river, which is one of the few remaining lift bridges in Minnesota. Walk across the bridge and cross right into Wisconsin. If you see one of the riverboats crossing during your visit, head out onto the bridge as it passes because it’s such a fun experience to see them pass underneath. You can even book a trip on a riverboat.

Stillwater is one of the best places for a romantic getaway in Minnesota, and many couples find respite in enjoying the peacefulness of the adorable small town.

Small Town USA Stillwater Minnesota

In a hunt for the best small towns across America, Stillwater is a perfect stop.

7. Bar Harbor, Maine

As the gateway into Acadia National Park, Bar Harbor has become one of the best small towns in the USA. It’s located along the beautiful shore of the Atlantic Ocean, and visitors are treated to a charming, laid-back feel during a visit.

Bar Harbor does get quite busy since Acadia is one of the country’s most visited national parks. But that’s for good reason! Be sure to visit the park during a stay in Bar Harbor.

Wander along the main streets, select adorable gifts to take home, and then grab a bite to eat at a local restaurant. Many of them serve one of Maine’s most famous foods—a lobster roll.

Bar Harbor and Acadia National Park are well known for their phenomenal sunrises, so plan to get up early one day of your visit to Maine. It’s the perfect way to spend a day touring this small town in the USA.

Romantic Trip to Bar Harbor Maine

Bar Harbor in Maine is one of the best little beach towns in the US.

8. Whitefish, Montana

If you’re planning a visit to the Crown of the Continent, otherwise known as Glacier National Park, you’ll likely spend some time in Whitefish. This quaint town is one of the park’s gateways and features some of the most beautiful views of Montana’s Rocky Mountains.

Of course, one of the best ways to spend time in Whitefish is to visit Glacier, even if it’s just a scenic drive down to Sun Road.

But if you aren’t a hiker or have already visited the park, check out Whitefish’s shopping and restaurants. Or experience all that there is to do at Whitefish Mountain Resort, including their alpine slide. Whether you and your partner are adventurous souls or are just looking to relax, Whitefish has something for you.

Whitefish Montana in Winter

Whitefish is one of the best small towns in the USA for Christmas if you want guaranteed snow.

9. Moab, Utah

There are many small towns outside national parks that are worthy of a visit, and Moab is one of the best. If you want to combine a park visit with exploring a cute town, it may be the place for a romantic trip for the two of you.

Moab is located right outside Arches National Park, one of Utah’s Mighty Five parks. While in Moab, you can easily explore Arches and Canyonlands. It’s the perfect place for a couple who loves nature and adventure

The small town of Moab has several museums to explore, including the Moab Giants Dinosaur Museum. You can also visit the small shops to find souvenirs from your visit to Utah.

There are also a variety of restaurants. Many of them have great views of the large red rocks surrounding Moab, Canyonlands, and Arches National Park.

Moab Utah Best Small Towns in United States of America

Of course, Moab makes the list of the best small towns in America for its red rocks and adventurous activities for newlyweds.

10. Houghton, Michigan

Known as the Gateway to the Keweenaw Peninsula in Michigan, Houghton is the perfect place for honeymooners seeking a quiet getaway to explore the outdoors. Michigan’s Upper Peninsula is far overlooked when it comes to travel, but it shouldn’t be.

Houghton is perfect for all seasons, being home to hundreds of miles of snowmobile trails, plenty of places to go hiking, and the departure point for trips to Isle Royale National Park. If you have the extra time, I would highly recommend heading to Isle Royale, where you will see moose, which makes it worth the trip.

Go for a bike ride along the waterfront of the Portage Canal, or grab a drink and a bite to eat at the local breweries. Then, wander around Shelden Avenue for shopping and delicious treats and to experience the historical area where mining once took place.

While Houghton isn’t the first thought that people have when it comes to the best small towns in the USA, it’s one to consider.

Houghton Michigan Small Town USA

Searching for the best small towns across America? Consider going to Houghton to explore.

11. Astoria, Oregon

One of Oregon’s most adorable towns is Astoria, located at the very northwestern tip of the state. Astoria is best known as a hot spot for movie filming, with The Goonies being the most notable film filmed here.

You can start your visit with a tour around town, searching for The Goonies filming locations. You can find some of the characters’ houses or the old jail, which is at the Oregon Film Museum.

Astoria is also where the Columbia River dumps into the Pacific Ocean, and you can see this from the top of the Astoria Column. The climb is tough (164 steps!), but the views are great. You can also visit Ecola State Park and take in the amazing vantage points.

Astoria also has an adorable downtown area where you’ll find restaurants and local shops to wander into. If you have extra time, take a short trip down to Seaside and Cannon Beach, which are two other popular spots on the Oregon Coast.

Coastal Astoria Oregon USA

Astoria is one of the best small coastal towns in the US for newlyweds to visit.

12. Salem, Massachusetts

Most well known for being the home of the Salem Witch Trials, Salem, Massachusetts, is a must-visit for history lovers, especially during the Halloween season.

Walking Salem’s Heritage Trail is one of the best ways to experience the history of the small town fully. Along the trail, you’ll see historical destinations like the Salem Witch Trials Memorial and Old Burying Point Cemetary.

Along the trail, you can also find other historical features, including the House of the Seven Gables and the Salem Maritime National Historic Site. They are all worth seeing. For those less interested in the town’s history, there are many small shops, coffeehouses, and restaurants in Salem to explore.

During Halloween, there are haunted houses, ghost tours, and so much more for Halloween-loving couples.

Best Small Towns in USA Salem Massachusetts

Salem is easily one of the best small country towns in the US, especially in the fall season.

13. Medora, North Dakota

North Dakota is typically overlooked when it comes to romantic trips, but the very western side of the state is quite beautiful. Medora is a small town situated right outside of Theodore Roosevelt National Park.

This park, named after our 26th president, is unique from many others. With one step into the park, you’ll be surprised at the beauty of North Dakota. If you enjoy hiking, head to Buck Hill. It’s a short hike, but it has some of the most stunning views of the Badlands area.

There are dozens of small shops and restaurants in Medora. If you enjoy performances, see the popular theater show Medora Musical, which is a must-see during your visit.

While Medora does get busier in the summer, it’s less crowded than many of these other USA small towns. So, if you’re looking for somewhere to escape the crowds, this is the perfect opportunity for a romantic getaway.

Medora North Dakota Aerial View

What’s the best small town in America? It’s up to you to choose!

14. Deadwood, South Dakota

Situated in what’s known as the ‘Wild, Wild West,’ a visit to Deadwood, South Dakota, is the perfect way to learn about the history of this unique time period.

The historic town is conveniently located within a short distance of other popular attractions, such as Mount Rushmore, Custer State Park, and Badlands National Park, which make great day trips from Deadwood.

But while exploring the town itself, walk through Old Town and dip into the many shops. Grab a bite to eat at the restaurants, including Saloon No. 10, which is where the famous Wild Bill of the Old West was shot. This unique part of history is an interesting one to see!

Honeymoon in Deadwood South Dakota

Deadwood may not be the number 1 best small town in America, but it sure is worth a visit!

15. Bayfield, Wisconsin

Situated right on Lake Superior’s shoreline in Wisconsin, the small town of Bayfield is an adorable small town in the US that provides some of the most beautiful views in the Midwest.

A trip to Bayfield will fill your entire visit with fun times. Start by exploring the lake’s shoreline to admire the views of the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore. If you have enough time, take a trip out to the Apostle Islands via kayak. Madeline Island, in particular, is the most popular.

After visiting the islands, spend time exploring Bayfield. This city has a great downtown area featuring local shops that offer one-of-a-kind gifts. Plus, there are tons of restaurants and breweries to stop into and enjoy a drink and bite to eat.

Along the Bayfield Peninsula, you’ll also find miles of hiking trails and plenty of pristine sandy beaches to walk along. 

Bayfield Wisconsin Shoreline View

Some of the best affordable small towns in the US are spread throughout the continent.

16. Anna Maria Island, Florida

The small town of Anna Maria Island is found just a short distance from Tampa. Additionally, it is one of the best beach towns in Florida to escape the Tampa Bay crowds.

Firstly, spend some time on the beach, since there are several of them. From just relaxing on the beach to paddleboarding or even taking a tour to try deep-sea fishing, there are all sorts of ways to enjoy the ocean.

The Historic Bridge Pier is a must-see while visiting Anna Maria Island. The area also has all sorts of beachside boutiques, local restaurants, a farmers market, and more. There are so many great ways to spend time on Anna Maria Island, even if you’re looking for a way to spend time beyond the beach.

Honeymoon in USA Anna Maria Island Florida Beachline

Some of the best small towns in the USA are along the beach, like Anna Maria Island in Florida.

17. Seaside, Oregon

Located just a short distance from Portland along the Pacific Ocean coastline, Seaside is one of Oregon’s best small towns. It lies just between Astoria and Cannon Beach, two other great towns to add to your ‘must-see’ list.

While on Seaside, explore the ocean by visiting Seaside Beach. Walking the Promenade is one of the best ways to see the city. You’ll have the chance to spot wildlife, such as migrating whales and harbor seals.

Seaside is also home to an aquarium, plenty of hiking trails, delicious restaurants, and many local shops. For lunch, grab a Pronto Pup down by the beach. They’re quick and easy, and they’re one of my favorite foods in Seaside.

It’s an adorable town with a beachy feel that is perfect for some time exploring the Pacific Northwest.

Seaside Oregon Coast

FAQ About the Best Small Towns in the USA

What is the nicest small town in America?

There are many charming small towns in America that are worth exploring. Each town has its own unique charm and appeal, making it difficult to pinpoint just one as the “nicest” or “best.” From the picturesque streets of Cape Cod to the historic architecture of Savannah, there are countless options to choose from for a romantic vacation.

What is the best small town to live in?

Ultimately, it depends on personal preferences and priorities. Some may prioritize access to outdoor activities and natural beauty, while others may value a strong sense of community and cultural amenities. Factors such as cost of living, quality of schools, and job opportunities also play a significant role in determining the best small town to settle down in.

What is the prettiest town in the United States?

Whether it’s the colorful houses of Charleston, the quaint streets of Carmel-by-the-Sea, or the scenic views of Sedona, beauty is truly in the eye of the beholder. Each town offers its own unique blend of natural landscapes, architectural beauty, and cultural attractions that make it stand out as a picturesque destination worth visiting.

Save our list of the best small towns in the USA!

If you’re looking for the perfect small town in the USA for your vacation, there are so many options to choose from.

From adorable main streets with local restaurants and boutiques to towns at the bottom of a mountainside, there’s a reason why couples love visiting lesser-known areas of the United States.

Best Small Towns in the USA for HoneymoonBest Small Towns in the USA

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