9 Best Cities in the U.S for Outdoors-Loving People

by Julia on November 11, 2019

If you live in the United States and love the great outdoors, then you live in one of the best countries in the world for outdoor adventures. The U.S is blessed with millions of acres of forests and parks, and there are so many cities that are situated close to the great outdoors. Many of them have state and national parks within a short driving distance.

Let’s take a look at the nine best cities in America for those who love to commune with nature when they get a chance.

  1. San Francisco, California – The City by the Bay offers excellent scope for outdoor activities, on both land and water. There’s the Pacific Ocean beckoning for swimming, boating, speedboating, fishing, etc. and the hills around the city attract hikers and mountain bikers. The Golden Gate Park, spread over 1,000 acres has a zoo, botanical gardens, other smaller parks and even a golf course. At the northwest edge of the city is a special place, Land’s End, where you may go to inhale the sea’s breeze mixed with the scent of cypresses and wild flowers.

  2. Aurora, Colorado – If you’re idea of enjoying the outdoors is to be where the mountain air fills your lungs and the sun’s rays filter through pine and fir trees, then you’ll love it in Aurora, Colorado. The city has more than 8,000 acres of open land. Water reservoirs, dams, hiking trails, and 113 parks to explore…there’s enough and more to do in each season to last a lifetime. The Cherry Creek State Park is one place where you can have your fill of hiking, camping, boating, and also enjoying with your dog in leash-free parks.

  3. Orange, California – With five state parks and 43 beaches in the vicinity, Orange, with its fruity, evocative name is a great city to live in if you love to get away from city life as often as you can. There’s hiking, biking, and horse-riding to be experienced in the nearby Santiago Oaks Regional Park that is spread over 350 acres. Parasailing, whale watching, sportfishing, swimming, or just jogging along the coastline, Orange has enough to offer to the intrepid outdoors lover.

  4. Salem, Oregon – The capital of Oregon offers 26 state parks to explore and three beaches to enjoy in. The Silver Falls State Park, spread over 9,000 acres, is the largest in the state and one of the most spectacular in America. If you love hiking and waterfalls, then this is the place to visit. The Minto-Brown Island Park covering 900 acres is a bird lover’s paradise, and a great place to explore over many one-day outings. The Ankeny National Wildlife Refuge is spread over nearly 2,800 acres. It’s the place to be to observe the state’s wildlife that lives in wetland habitats and also in oak and birch forests.

  5. Boston, Massachusetts – Residents of Boston have access to more than 100 beaches and more than 40 state parks. Each season brings with it a choice in outdoor activities. Boston Common, the city’s beloved park, covers 44 acres and has the distinction of being the oldest public park in the country. Spring, autumn, and summer seasons are the best to enjoy nature in all its glory in and around Boston. 281 acres of the Arnold Arboretum offer all the exercise for body and mind that energetic folks desire. The arboretum is more than 150 years old and is home to flora from all over the world. You can walk trails, splash in streams, and just lose yourself in nature. Charles River for canoeing and Boston Harbor Islands for explorations are just two of the many other outdoor spaces around the city.

  6. Bellevue, Washington – Trails, parks, botanical gardens, and more comprise the open spaces available in this beautiful city in the state of Washington. Marymoor Park is spread over 640 acres and lets you enjoy birdwatching in the area around Lake Sammamish, play baseball, hike trails, or just have a picnic outdoors on a glorious summer day. Mercer Slough Nature Park is home to the last remaining wetlands habitats in Washington. Its located in the center of the city. Bird lovers, joggers, and hikers have 172 acres of woods to discover in the Lake Hills Greenbelt area.

  7. Salt Lake City, Utah – Salt Lake City in Utah is bounded by the Wasatch Mountains in the east and the Oquirrh Range in the west. The outdoors in and around Salt Lake City are glorious in their diversity and vastness. The gardens of Temple Square, bang in the center of the town, come to life during the summer season when flowers and shrubs are in bloom. Liberty Park, where the paths are shaded by mulberry, cottonwood, and other trees, is 80-acres of beautiful, historic space and listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Enjoy scenic drives to Big Cottonwood Canyon, Mirror Lake and other such spots where the cares of civilization can just melt away. There is no dearth of hiking trails here; head to Mount Olympus, Bell’s Canyon, Bonneville Shoreline, and other places.

  8. Glendale, Arizona – If you love the outdoors, you’ll love it in Glendale. There are 40 miles of hiking trails around the city and the scenery changes hues with the seasons. The beauty of Arizona’s desert landscape can be experienced at the Thunderbird Conservation Park, which is located in the Hedgpeth Hills. You can enjoy hiking, horseback riding, mountain biking and other adventure activities here. Enjoy bicycling in many of the designated paths in the Grand Canal Linear Park, Sahuaro Ranch Park, Skunk Creek Linear Park, and other parks.

  9. Jersey City, New Jersey – Jersey City may be a heavily populated metropolis, but the denizens of this city need only to head to the many well-maintained parks for their dose of outdoor activities. Liberty State Park and Lincoln Park are just two of the many. The piers of New Jersey are unique in that they are an easy escape from the bustle of the city. Yachting, sailing, fishing in the waters off the city or enjoying any of the many recreational activities at Pershing Field, you won’t run out of choices.

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