With the help of Atlanta’s penchant for Southern comfort food, along with its lovely historic buildings, the city was voted one of the most charming cities in America by Travel+Leisure readers.
The magazine's “America’s Most Charming Cities” list is part of the comprehensive “America’s Favorite Cities” survey in which 50,000 readers analyzed 38 different cities and then voted on how they fared across several rankings, including interesting architecture, friendly atmosphere, walkable streets and more.
Several reader rankings were combined to assess the 20 most charming cities in America.
Atlanta, which came in at No. 16, was praised for its “historic charm and buzz-worthy cool,” as well as its dedication to Southern comfort food — especially when it comes to sweet-potato biscuits.
Readers love Atlanta for deftly walking the line between historic charm and buzz-worthy cool. You’ll find both at the Swan House in Buckhead's Atlanta History Center: you can chat with costumed character guides at the 1920s mansion’s Open House tours—or, you can take its Capitol Tour, and see how the house was used in the film The Hunger Games. The Georgia hub also worked its way into readers’ hearts by way of their stomachs, ranking at No. 2 for Southern-comfort diners: At Buckhead’s old-style Highland Bakery, for instance, you can tuck into both sweet-potato pancakes and sweet-potato biscuits. Another heartwarming touch: at downtown’s Mary Mac’s Tea Room, the hostess still offers free back rubs at your table.
According to Travel+Leisure’s Katrina Brown Hunt, many winners had one thing in common: old neighborhoods that found new life.
Atlanta’s popular venue Ponce City Market is one such example. The marketplace’s building, formerly a Sears, Roebuck and Co. retail store, used to be a vital landmark in Atlanta’s Old Fourth Ward.
Atlanta is among delightful company such as Nashville, Tennessee; Boston, Massachusetts; Portland, Oregon; New Orleans, Louisiana and Charleston, South Carolina.
- Charleston, South Carolina
- New Orleans, Louisiana
- Providence, Rhode Island
- Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota
- Washington, D.C.
- Portland, Oregon
- Boston, Massachusetts
- Chicago, Illinois
- Kansas City, Missouri
- New York, New York
- San Francisco, California
- Houston, Texas
- Nashville, Tennessee
- Albuquerque, New Mexico
- Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
- Cleveland, Ohio
- Seattle, Washington
- Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
- Baltimore, Maryland
Though readers deemed the metro one of the most charming cities in the country, its locals, unfortunately, didn’t win over their hearts. In fact, Atlanta was placed on the magazine’s least attractive cities list.