40 American Towns You Haven't Heard of But Should Visit ASAP

Hit the roads less traveled.

creede, colorado

When it comes to your vacation, most people seek out places they've seen on TV or have heard about from friends and family. Fair enough. Now, let us introduce you to 40 unsung hot spots. These unheard-of towns across the U.S. might not have made it onto your bucket list yet, but believe us, they deserve a spot.

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Damariscotta, Maine

located on the salty Damariscotta River will have you wondering why river towns aren't more popular. The shores are lined with oyster shells that historians say are from Native American gatherings 2,500 years ago. Cool, no?

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Galena, Illinois

The historic charm of six-block Main Street will make you feel like you took a time machine to a different decade. After you conquer downtown, must-see attractions include the Old Market House and the Historical Society and Museum.

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Pella, Iowa

Even though is quaint and quiet during the majority of the year, it totally transforms in May for the annual Tulip Time Festival. To honor their dutch culture, they transform the streets into the Netherlands and host an epic parade.

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Welch, West Virginia

used to be all about coal mining, but today it's rich in history thanks to the Kimball War Memorial. We recommend grabbing a bite and sitting next to the Elkhorn Creek that flows through the town and into the Tug Fort.

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Wolfeboro, New Hampshire

motto is "The Oldest Summer Resort in America," and its prime location on Lake Winnipesaukee proves why. People from all over New Hampshire, Boston and even Hollywood (Drew Barrymore once visited!) vacation here during warm summer months.

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Corning, New York

Wineries and breweries: check. Panoramic views of a gorgeous lake: check. Restaurants filled with top-notch food: check. offers something for everyone and has become a favorite for destination weddings.

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Keene, New Hampshire

Even though is a must-visit destination, the countryside and lakes are the real treasures in this town. Make sure you take a tour of the covered bridges and hike up Mount Monadnock during your stay.

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Ferndale, California

It makes sense why population of 1,372 people all live within one square mile when you see how lovely it is downtown. It's known as the "Cream City" for its well-preserved Victorian storefronts and homes and will let you escape the daily grind.

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Franklin, Tennessee

About 21 miles south of Nashville is a much quieter that still offers tons of culture. Wind your way through antique shops and restaurants, then catch a live show at one of their award-winning venues, like The Franklin Theatre.

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Healdsburg, California

town is a lesser-known destination for wine tasting, but no less gorgeous. If you've had your fill of pinot, there's still plenty to do, including hiking, biking and even canoeing.

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Lanesboro, Minnesota

Known as the bed and breakfast capital of Minnesota, (the population is just 754!) offers relaxation for couples and outdoor adventures for families in the bluffs of the Root River Valley.

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Little Compton, Rhode Island

originally belonged to the Sakonnet tribe, but today it's known as Rhode Island's secret coast. It's a favorite place for locals to escape to the beach, take in local artwork or grab a lobster roll.

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Woods Hole, Massachusetts

On Cape Cod is that was once a pass-through destination for Martha's Vineyard ferry travelers. Now it holds its own thanks to a waterfront filled with restaurants and shopping.

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Marietta, Ohio

Back in the 1700s, when was settled, it was named in honor of Marie Antoinette. Today, it's a historic riverboat town that's ideal for families who seek out vacations full of outdoor adventures.

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Cedar Key, Florida
Cedar Key, Florida

is less about the hustle and bustle and more about small town living. Proof: The restaurant- and buffet-filled streets of the mile-long historic district are filled with bicycles instead of cars.

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grand haven, michigan
Grand Haven, Michigan

Located on the Eastern shore of Lake Michigan and the mouth of the Grand River is , which offers wine tasting, sand dune riding and an annual Coast Guard Festival at the end of every summer.

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frederick, MD
Frederick, Maryland

Less than one hour from Washington, D.C. and Baltimore is that's surrounded by mountains, wineries and orchards. Downtown has even been designated as the Arts & Entertainment District, where you can find live music, dancing, you name it.

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Shelburne Farms, Vermont
Shelburne, Vermont

Along the shores of Lake Champlain is that's most famous for Shelburne Farms, a series of barns where people can milk cows and watch cheesemakers make cheddars.

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Damascus, Virginia
Damascus, Virginia

Nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia is (we're talking a population of 814 people) that is known as "Trail Town." Hikers and bikers seek it out since it's at the cross roads of some of the most beautiful trails in the state.

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Fredericksburg, Texas
Fredericksburg, Texas

has surprising German roots and old-time residents even refer to it as Fritztown. But the Magic Mile (a shopping scene with more than 150 stores) and some of the best wine tasting in Texas are what keeps the tourists coming back.

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Gallup, New Mexico
Gallup, New Mexico

There's a reason is known as the Indian jewelry capital of the world: It's rich in Native American culture and the destination embraces it across the board. Another pro tip? The High Desert Trail System is an amazing way to take in the sights by foot.

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Paia, Hawaii
Paia, Hawaii

is known for offering one of the few remaining traditional island experiences — in fact, it kind of feels like a time warp. The one-stoplight town is vibrant, colorful and offers authentic cuisine.

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Hood River, Oregon
Hood River, Oregon

During any time of year, along the Columbia River offers outdoor activities for adventure seekers, including skiing, wind surfing and mountain biking. After a day outside, you can explore one of the three microbreweries located downtown.

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Sitka, Alaska
Sitka, Alaska

Even though is hard to get to (it's only accessible by air or sea!), once you arrive you'll be pleasantly surprised by how unique it is. It's nestled amongst a spruce and hemlock rain forest and sea life. Go on a tour to spot humpback whales.

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Natchitoches, Louisiana
Natchitoches, Louisiana

History buffs, you're going to want to visit , which is the oldest permanent settlement in the Louisiana Purchase. Today, you can wander around the 33-block district or try one of their famous meat pies.

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Berlin, Maryland
Berlin, Maryland

If you need proof that is Hollywood-approved, both Runaway Bride and Tuck Everlasting were filmed here. And it's not surprising why: Strolling the streets and visiting the antique shops instantly make you forget what year it is. (In a good way.)

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Ste. Genevieve, Missouri
Ste. Genevieve, Missouri

Not all American wine is made in California: (it was founded by French Canadian colonists) is home to several vineyards, along with its historic cornerstone church that goes by the town's name.

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Davis, Oklahoma
Davis, Oklahoma

There's a reason  is a favorite swimming hole for locals: It's home to an impressive 77-foot tall waterfall that you can swim underneath. After taking a dip, explore the rock castle that was built into the hillside nearby.

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Jim Thorpe, Pennsylvania
Jim Thorpe, Pennsylvania

Those rolling hills? That charming architecture? There's a reason is known as the "Switzerland of Pennsylvania." Come here if you want to try your hand at white water rafting or hike the day away, then roam the quaint town afterward.

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Capitola, CA
Capitola, California

is a quiet surf destination for some, a trendy place to shop and eat for others and a place where you can fish off of the wharf if you fit somewhere in between.

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