I’m a huge fan of walking when traveling. Not only does it burn calories and provide exercise on what otherwise might be a lazy affair, but it also allows one to see a city from the eyes of a local. If it’s the choice between public transportation and walking, I’m all for walking (well, of course, if it’s just not possible or too far away).
The article points out several cities that are the most walkable in the US (in order):
- Washington DC
- New York
- San Fransisco
I’m surprised at several on the list, to be honest. The first 3 are sort of “obvious” to me, but Cleveland? I don’t really find Cleveland to be an enjoyable city to begin with, and without much of a shopping center, or entertainment district, I can’t see it as too walkable. I’m surprised more western cities didn’t make the cut, although I can understand that with a city like Los Angeles being so large, it’s just not possible to walk. A city like Santa Barbara is just too small to compete with the giants, so I guess the list is realistic for what it is.
Living so close to Washington DC, I can appreciate how great it is to walk there. It’s SUCH a walkable city, and for anyone visiting the area, walking is a welcome respite to all of the heavy traffic one can find just getting in. You can walk from Georgetown to the Mall, to Union Station, to Embassy Row. Sure, there’s a hefty amount of steps and mileage in between, but as long as you have your sneakers on, and a willing attitude, it is the way to get around. The Metro can be crowded, and even with tons of cars on the road, it still seems to be a manageable experience getting from point A to point B. I find DC to also be one of the “cleanest” cities on the East Cost. Sure, it’s a city and has it’s trash, homeless and the like, but all in all, I find it reasonably clean. Perhaps that’s because the federal government is there, and I can imagine operations in place to make the area look as nice as possible. Whatever the reason, I think the city is walkable, and clean, making for an even bigger reason to tie those laces and step out the door, vs. stepping on the gas.
The article would have been even more interesting had it also covered European cities, too.
What do you think? What cities do you find are the most walkable?
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