The 50 best cities to live in the US in 2019

Jon Bilous/ShutterstockResidents of Alexandria, Virginia, love the city’s quaint atmosphere, according to Niche.
  • Niche recently released its list of the best cities to live in America in 2019.
  • To create its ranking, the site looks at key factors like local schools and housing trends, as well as thousands of community reviews.
  • According to Niche, Arlington, Virginia, is the number one best city to live in this year.
  • Ann Arbor, Michigan, and Berkeley, California round out the top three spots on Niche’s list.
  • Several towns in Texas and California are among the US‘ top 50 most livable cities, according to Niche.

Niche has released its annual list of the best cities to live in America.

To create its ranking, the site researches neighbourhoods in the US, looking at several key factors including the quality of local schools, housing trends, employment statistics, crime rates, access to amenities, and more. Niche also takes into account thousands of reviews from residents in areas across the country.

Below, check out the 50 most livable cities of 2019 and why residents love living there, according to Niche.

You can read more about Niche’s methodology for ranking cities here.


50. Portland, Oregon

Kevin Bermingham/ShutterstockA view of Portland with Mount Hood in the distance.

According to Niche, Portland is known for its laid-back, friendly residents; proximity to beautiful mountains and the Pacific Ocean; and rich arts and culture scene.


49. Salt Lake City, Utah

photo.ua/ShutterstockThe historic Temple Square in downtown Salt Lake City.

Niche also lists Salt Lake City as one of the country’s healthiest cities, as well as one of the best cities for outdoor activities in the US.


48. Denton, Texas

Jo Hunter/ShutterstockThe Courthouse-on-the-Square Museum in Denton.

Located just outside of Dallas, Denton offers residents a suburban feel and lots of bars and parks to frequent, according to Niche.


47. Boise, Idaho

Charles Knowles/ShutterstockIdaho’s State Capitol Building in Boise.

According to Niche, the capital of Idaho is known for its kind residents, scenic location, sustainability, and affordability.


46. Pasadena, California

Mark Breck/ShutterstockPasadena City Hall is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Known as the home of the Norton Simon Museum, the Rose Bowl, and the characters of CBS’ “Big Bang Theory,” Pasadena is an urban oasis located just northeast of Los Angeles proper.


45. San Diego, California

Sean Pavone/ShutterstockThe historic Gaslamp Quarter in downtown San Diego.

From its beautiful beaches to its world-renowned zoo, San Diego, California, is a slice of paradise located just miles north of Mexico.


44. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Sean Pavone/ShutterstockA view of Pittsburgh’s skyline and the Duquesne Incline.

Known as the Steel City, Pittsburgh is known for its competitive sports franchises, good food, and roughly 450 bridges.


43. St. Paul, Minnesota

KARI K/ShutterstockThe Sunken Garden at Como Park Zoo & Conservatory in St. Paul.

With its plethora of bars, restaurants, parks, and coffee shops,St. Paul, Minnesota, has become a popular landing spot amongst young professionals and families.


42. Huntsville, Alabama

Rob Hainer/ShutterstockA view of downtown Huntsville from Big Spring Park.

Niche users describe Huntsville as family-friendly and diverse, with bustling shopping and arts centres.

The city is also home to NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center – which designed the rockets used by the Apollo Program in the ’60s and ’70s – and booming defence, aerospace, and engineering industries.


41. Gainesville, Florida

Bryan Pollard/ShutterstockThe Heavener Football Complex at the University of Florida.

Gainesville residents say the city is great foroutdoor enthusiasts, thanks to its proximity to beaches, natural springs, and wildlife preserves.


40. Lexington, Kentucky

aceshot1/ShutterstockA farmer’s market in downtown Lexington.

Often called the “horse capital of the world,” Lexington is home to numerous horse farms, in addition to thriving local businesses, a booming job market, and the University of Kentucky.


39. Tampa, Florida

Bonnie Fink/ShutterstockA view of Tampa’s skyline and harbour.

In addition to being one of the best cities to live in in America, Tampa, Florida, is also one of the most diverse cities in the country and one of the best in which to retire, according to Niche.


38. Charleston, South Carolina

f11photo/ShutterstockBuildings in the historic downtown area of Charleston.

According to Niche, Charleston has something for everyone whether you’re a history buff, outdoor enthusiast, foodie, or young professional.


37. Irving, Texas

Trong Nguyen/ShutterstockThe Mandalay Canal at Las Colinas, an entertainment hub in Irving.

Located just outside of Dallas, Irving, Texas, boasts suburban charm with front-row access to the big city.


36. Tempe, Arizona

Tim Roberts Photography/ShutterstockAn aerial view of Tempe Town Lake.

Residents of Tempe, Arizona, describe their city as an ideal college town, complete with late-night eateries, shopping areas, and cultural excursions.


35. Charlotte, North Carolina

Jon Bilous/ShutterstockThe lake at Marshall Park in Charlotte.

As North Carolina’s most populous city, Charlotte is burgeoning with new jobs, restaurants, parks, and things to do.


34. Fort Collins, Colorado

marekuliasz/ShutterstockAn aerial view of downtown Fort Collins.

Like in many other areas in Colorado, residents of Fort Collins face no shortage of options in terms of outdoor recreational activities. Add that to Fort Collins’ college town feel and you’ll begin to understand the city’s widespread appeal.


33. Washington, DC

Anton_Ivanov/ShutterstockA colourful street in Washington, DC.

Unsurprisingly, the nation’s capital is full of fantastic museums, world-famous monuments, and beautiful parks for residents to enjoy. Plus, the city’s food and entertainment scene ranks amongst the best in the nation as well.


32. Lincoln, Nebraska

Katherine Welles/ShutterstockThe Nebraska State Capitol Building in downtown Lincoln.

The capital of Nebraska stands out thanks to its small-town feel, public facilities, and growing job market.


31. Omaha, Nebraska

Paul Brady Photography/ShutterstockA view of Omaha’s skyline from the Heartland of America Park.

Residents will tell you that Omaha, Nebraska, is the perfect respite for those who seek the excitement and entertainment of a city without the hustle and bustle of the country’s most populous destinations.


30. Scottsdale, Arizona

Cre8 design/ShutterstockThe Bronze Horse Fountain by Bob Parks in Scottsdale.

Scottsdale residents say they love the city’s culturally diverse food scene, abundance of parks and hiking trails, and proximity to metro areas like Phoenix, Arizona.


29. College Station, Texas

Tricia Daniel/ShutterstockKyle Field football stadium on the campus of Texas A&M University.

Home of Texas A&M, College Station, Texas, is a quintessential college town where game days are electric and food and entertainment abound.


28. Santa Clara, California

Mariusz S. Jurgielewicz/ShutterstockMission Santa Clara de Asís in Santa Clara.

Located at the southern tip of the San Francisco Bay, Santa Clara offers residents access to the big city with the charm and familiarity of a large town.


27. Torrance, California

trekandshoot/ShutterstockAn aerial view of Torrance Beach.

Torrance, California, sits on the coast directly south of Los Angeles. Residents have access to all of the perks of the big city while also living within a 10-minute drive of stunning beaches, luxury shopping malls, and a diverse variety of restaurants.


26. Columbia, Missouri

Ken Wolter/ShutterstockMemorial Union Tower on the University of Missouri’s campus.

Home to the University of Missouri, Columbia is a charming college town that has a bustling food scene, great public schools, and an excellent public transportation system.


25. Alexandria, Virginia

Jon Bilous/ShutterstockHouses in Old Town, a neighbourhood in Alexandria.

Alexandria, Virginia, is a popular DC suburb that has grown into a city of its own. Residents love the city’s quaint atmosphere and location, according to Niche.


24. Minneapolis, Minnesota

Checubus/ShutterstockThe Spoonbridge and Cherry statue at the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden.

As one half of Minnesota’s twin cities, Minneapolis offers residents two different metropolises for the price of one. Residents say it’s a green, beautiful city with lots to offer anyone looking for Midwestern charm, according to Niche.


23. Sandy Springs, Georgia

Rob Hainer/ShutterstockThe entrance of the Sandy Springs Performing Arts Center.

Part of the Atlanta metro area, Sandy Springs is a safe neighbourhood with good schools and friendly residents, according to Niche.


22. Rochester, Minnesota

Jacob Boomsma/ShutterstockAn aerial view of Rochester.

Rochester residents say the town offers citywide bike and pedestrian trails, world-class healthcare at the Mayo Clinic, great schools, and safe neighbourhoods.


21. Carlsbad, California

tamara321/ShutterstockThe Flower Fields at Carlsbad Ranch.

A quaint, suburban town, Carlsbad, California, sits between Los Angeles and San Diego. With local shops and eateries and gorgeous beaches to boot, residents love living in this seaside oasis,per Niche.


20. Austin, Texas

f11photo/ShutterstockThe skyline of downtown Austin.

Texas’s capital city has a “cool factor” unmatched by the state’s other population centres. With tons of parks, cultural excursions, and quality restaurants, Austin has finally landed on people’s radars around the country in recent years.


19. Round Rock, Texas

Roschetzky Photography/ShutterstockAn aerial view of homes in Round Rock.

A suburb of Austin, Round Rock, Texas, is a great place to live for growing families, according to reviews on Niche.


18. Boulder, Colorado

randy andy/ShutterstockPearl Street Mall is located in downtown Boulder.

Nestled in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, Boulder is known for its breathtaking views, outdoor offerings, and young, laid-back residents.


17. Sunnyvale, California

Sundry Photography/ShutterstockThe entrance to Historic Murphy Avenue in downtown Sunnyvale.

Yet another Bay Area town on this list, Sunnyvale, California, sets itself apart from the pack with its weekly farmer’s markets, funky restaurants and stores, and overall small-town feel,per Niche.


16. Madison, Wisconsin

Suzanne Tucker/ShutterstockA view of downtown Madison.

According to US News & World Report, Madison has thriving healthcare, information technology, and manufacturing industries. The city also offers ample opportunities to explore the outdoors, try new foods, and frequent local businesses.


15. San Francisco, California

f11photo/ShutterstockSan Francisco’s famous Lombard Street.

San Francisco, California, is home to a bustling nightlife, top-rated restaurants, one of the country’s most impressive theatre districts, and all of the other perks that come with a major metropolis.


14. Seattle, Washington

emperorcosar/ShutterstockA view of downtown Seattle and Mount Rainier in the background.

Residents of Seattle, Washington, love the city’s beautiful scenery and “small-town, big-city” feel, according to Niche.


13. Raleigh, North Carolina

Sean Pavone/ShutterstockSkyscrapers in Raleigh’s skyline.

Raleigh residents say the city has highly-rated public schools; numerous restaurants, coffee shops, and parks; and ample job opportunities.


12. Richardson, Texas

Trong Nguyen/ShutterstockThe city hosts the Richardson Corporate Challenge, held annually in late August through early October.

According to Niche, Richardson, Texas, is a family-friendly suburb of Dallas with beautiful parks and highly-rated schools.


11. Irvine, California

LunaseeStudios/ShutterstockThe Palm Court Arts Complex in Irvine’s Orange County Great Park.

Home to top-tier school districts, high-quality restaurants, and tree-lined streets, Irvine, California is one of Southern California’s best towns, per Niche.


10. Bellevue, Washington

mandritoiu/ShutterstockDowntown Bellevue with mountain peaks in the distance.

Not only is Bellevue picturesque, but it’s also diverse, clean, and safe, according to Niche. Young families can take advantage of the city’s great public schools and parks while millennials will enjoy the nightlife, food, and shopping centres.


9. Cambridge, Massachusetts

Songquan Deng/ShutterstockAn aerial view of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s campus.

Cambridge is home to two of the world’s most prestigious universities: Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

The quaint city is also known for its booming startup scene, educated and diverse community, and focus on clean, healthy living.


8. Columbia, Maryland

KhanIM/ShutterstockFall foliage in Columbia.

Columbia residents say the city is quiet, family-oriented, and safe, but it’s also close to major metro areas like Baltimore and Washington, DC.


7. Overland Park, Kansas

EQRoy/ShutterstockThe Prairiefire entertainment complex in Overland Park.

Overland Park offers excellent schools, safe neighbourhoods, and affordable amenities, according to Niche.

Residents also love the city’s proximity to major metro areas like Kansas City, Missouri, where they can visit museums, attend concerts, enjoy the nightlife, and more.


6. Naperville, Illinois

Joe Hendrickson/ShutterstockThe Riverwalk in downtown Naperville is often called the city’s ‘crown jewel.’

A suburb of Chicago, Naperville tops Niche’s lists of the best cities to raise a family and the cities with the best public schools in America.


5. Plano, Texas

Valerie Johnson/ShutterstockThe Interurban Railway Museum in Plano.

One of many Dallas suburbs to make Niche’s list, Plano, Texas, is a safe, diverse city filled with well-regarded restaurants, bilingual schools, and plenty of things to do for families.


4. The Woodlands, Texas

thierry dehove/ShutterstockAn aerial view of mansions in The Woodlands.

Located near the Houston metro area, The Woodlands is an award-winning master-planned community. Niche lists the lush town as the second-best city to raise a family and the third-best city to buy a house in the US.


3. Berkeley, California

Sundry Photography/ShutterstockA residential neighbourhood in Berkeley.

Berkeley is known for its excellent public schools, family-friendliness, and diversity. It’s also the number one healthiest place to live in America, according to Niche.


2. Ann Arbor, Michigan

Ken Wolter/ShutterstockBurton Memorial Tower at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.

Home to the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor has a reputation for being a vibrant college town but the city also has much to offer in terms of food, music, art, and the outdoors.


1. Arlington, Virginia

Jon Bilous/ShutterstockA photo of Freedom Park in Rosslyn, a city in Arlington County.

Located across the Potomac River from Washington, DC, Arlington County is a great choice for young professionals who prefer a quick commute over a more crowded city. The area has several diverse neighbourhoods with excellent schools, food, and shopping, according to Niche.

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