The best underrated cities in the world

One of the most exciting things about traveling is that you never know exactly what you’re going to find, which can lead to some very pleasant surprises. So editor u/EvilDan69 asked: “What city did you go to it really surprised youHere are some little-known destinations that have delighted travelers.


“Bologna, Italy. IMO, it’s arguably the best foodie city in the best foodie country in the world. I’ll never forget the tortellini al brodo, tagliatelle al ragù and panna cotta I ate there I also loved walking up to Madone di San Luca and seeing the amazing view from the top.”


“Seville, Spain. What a city! It has amazing food, energy and culture. It’s one of the few places I loved so much that I would consider having a second home .”


“Antwerp, Belgium. I loved the history there, all the museums and the awesome architecture. It also had great restaurants and a great cafe and bar scene.”


“Chicago. I’m from Canada and have been to many cities in the United States, but Chicago really surprised me. If you’ve never been there, make sure you go someday! People were fantastic, the food was epic, and our architectural boat tour was great. We walked over 15 miles to all the different sites we wanted to see. To our surprise, Jazzfest was going on for free in Chicago, so it was amazing. “It was a real treat. And I checked the Cubs game at Wrigley Field off my to-do list one night, it was an amazing experience.”


“Inverness, Scotland. It was the most perfect location on a great trip through the UK. It was such a quiet and lovely place with wonderful views. We found some fun pubs where we enjoyed the live music and our Airbnb had a great view. I would stay there again anytime.”


“Santa Fe, New Mexico. There is always something interesting going on, so you can wander around endlessly exploring the live music in the plaza, art fairs, and so many museums, galleries, and restaurants. Plus , everything is within walking distance. It’s not a party town but if you like art and relaxation, there is no better place. As a bonus, there is decent skiing and incredible hiking near.”


“Stellenbosch, South Africa. This is the wine region of South Africa, located about an hour’s drive from Cape Town. The vineyards were superb (my favorite was Delaire Graff Estate) and the whole place was stunningly beautiful, with majestic views of the Cape mountains, lush green gardens, and a great overall vibe!


“Phnom Penh, the capital of Cambodia, really surprised me. I heard bad things so I was suspicious, but it turned out to be a fascinating city full of interesting things to see and do. I highly recommend renting a moped to explore the incredible scenery outside of town.”


“Vienna, Austria. I didn’t have very high expectations but the city was just beautiful (much nicer than Paris, IMHO). It had great cafes and museums, beautiful architecture and the metro was probably the cleanest I’ve seen in Europe, plus during the summer there was a free art festival with opera, street food and beer.


“Orvieto, Italy. I stopped here for convenience as it was halfway between Rome and Florence, and I was blown away by everything: the cathedral, the views from the city walls (the city is stands on top of a cliff), the friendly people and the ancient Etruscan underground passages.”


“Banff in Alberta, Canada. The visit made me feel like I was inside a snow globe. It was even more beautiful than the pictures made it out to be and I will be going back often. “


“Dingle, Ireland was so much more than I expected. There were so many cute shops and colorful doors to admire all around the town. The whole peninsula was beautiful and they had a great food festival .”


“Beirut, Lebanon. As someone who grew up in and around New York, it was the first city to have that same palpable energy when you walk the streets. It was also home to amazing food and beautiful people.”


“Kyoto. The whole city felt like a beautiful garden. The vibe was so chill and the food was out of this world. I loved the little waterways, historic buildings and all the greenery.”


“Tallinn, Estonia. I visited during part of a longer trip to Latvia. Tallinn has a wonderful old town with the gates of a castle and it’s so beautiful to walk around. You have the feeling like you’ve traveled back in time.”


“Krakow, Poland. I was there to visit Auschwitz but was blown away by the city. Auschwitz leaves you with a really heavy and depressing feeling, but seeing the rest of Krakow helps ease those emotions and makes the experience more light. I particularly liked the amazing central square.”


“Istanbul, Turkey surprised me in the best possible way. My time there started off rough: I was scammed, stuck in a torrential storm and our hotel booking got mixed up .But from the second day my experience was great.There are so many things to see like Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque, Topkapi Palace, Catacombs and Galata Tower, and so many things to do like a Bosphorus cruise at sunset, Taksim for nightlife and shopping, and the many bazaars. The Turkish food was absolutely amazing and I loved shopping in the bazaars. (The shop owners were very friendly and almost always offered tea or a yogurt to drink just to stop by.)”


“Mexico City. I was told it was dangerous and ‘nothing special’, but my experience was completely different. The city was absolutely beautiful, so vibrant and fun. The people were some of the friendliest people I’ve ever had. met and all The food was amazing.It remains one of my favorite cities to this day.


Budapest, Hungary. This city stole my heart. I didn’t spend enough time there and I can’t wait to go back. The view of the parliament building at night from the Danube will blow your mind.”


“Savannah, Georgia. This is without a doubt one of my favorite places in the United States. I love the charming southern vibe, the look of the city, the history, the restaurants, and the parks. “


“I was blown away by Ljubljana, Slovenia. Visiting there made me feel like I was in a fairy tale world. It’s beautiful. I went by train as part of a Interrail trip and I wasn’t expecting too much, but it was small, comfortable, and beautiful!”


“Lagos, Portugal. We didn’t know where to go in the south, so we decided to stay in a different city each day. Lagos was our second stop, but we actually decided to cancel our plans and move there the rest of our time. The sea was amazing and so was the view. We took a boat trip to the Bengali cave, which is not walkable. We also enjoyed some really delicious food. I plan to go back already.


“Traverse City, Michigan. It’s such a cool place. It’s got cherry orchards, vineyards, beautiful water, and plenty of water sports. And it’s a short drive to Sleeping Bear Dunes and Fishtown.”


“Bordeaux, France is truly fantastic. The food, weather and wine are amazing; plus it’s a much cheaper and friendlier alternative to Paris. In fact, all of France’s ‘second cities’ m pleasantly surprised.”


“Udaipur, India. It is a small, old city with so much to offer. The city is quite green and full of small lakes. Most of the older parts of the city are within walking distance and the narrow winding lanes are so much fun to explore.. The weather is generally very comfortable and the City Palace is a fascinating maze with intricate carvings and hidden gardens.”


“George Town, the capital of the Malaysian island of Penang. It was amazing: such a great mix of cultures, architecture and street art. The arty vibe permeates every aspect of life there .I highly recommend to visit.”


“Busan, South Korea (and the whole country, really). It’s this weird juxtaposition of ancient and supermodern, and it’s all both chaotic and incredibly organized. I don’t know how it works but it works. ..and apparently much better than other big cities.The scenery, food and people were fantastic.


“Salzburg, Austria. I knew it was famous for its Baroque architecture and castles, but wow. It was by far the most beautiful place I have ever visited between the snow capped Alps, a crystal clear river, small alleys hidden gems and Romanesque buildings adorned with steep Gothic bell towers and Baroque domes, plus there is so much history as Austria was at the epicenter of history, art and culture European.”


“Oaxaca, Mexico is an amazing walkable city with perfect weather, interesting and delicious food, nice people and so much history like the ruins of Monte Albán. If you go there make sure you stay in a central part of the city near the Zócalo or the Church of Santo Domingo.”


“Kyiv. I didn’t expect much from Ukraine but I loved it there. I was particularly blown away by the food. I tried a lot of different restaurants, both very affordable and high upscale, and the quality of the food was consistently excellent.”


“Halifax, Nova Scotia. It has all the feel of a big city, but it’s all wrapped up in a nice, quaint little resort by the sea.”

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