Thanksgiving Travel Weather

Norfolk, Charlottesville among top charming cities in American South

RICHMOND, Va. — Norfolk and Charlottesville were among the 15 cities mentioned in CNN’s top charming cities in the American South list.

“There’s more to America’s Southern states than cities such as Nashville, Austin and New Orleans,” the CNN article begins. “In fact, in recent years, so-called ‘second-tier’ cities in the South have witnessed a massive boom in hotels, restaurants and micro-everythings.”

Norfolk ranked #4 on the list.

“Norfolk is home to a surprisingly dynamic vegan scene (our guess is it has something to do with animal rights group PETA being headquartered here). And even if you’re not into plant-based eating, do yourself a favor and try the vegan breakfast burrito at Yorgo’s Bageldashery,” CNN suggested. “At night, book it to A.W. Shucks, a raw bar hangout for locals, or enjoy a formal experience at Todd Jurich’s Bistro that has all the perks of an upscale restaurant (stellar service, interesting menu, fun people watching) with none of the pretension.”

Charlottesville came in at #7.

“There are two types of people who come to Charlottesville: Dave Matthews Band superfans and everyone else. If you’re in the former group, you’re likely making your pilgrimage to Miller’s, where Matthews himself once tended bar, to Matthews’ own scenic Blenheim Vineyards and to the Pink Warehouse where the band played its first official gig,” the CNN article stated. ” If you’re everyone else, swap Dave stalking for visiting a presidential home like Thomas Jefferson’s estate, Monticello, or Highland, the former digs of James Monroe. Burn off all the eating at Shenandoah National Park, where you can snake your way through quiet wooded hollows and marvel at cascading waterfalls on the same hike. Pack lunch and set up an impromptu picnic within the 200,000 protected acres, alongside songbirds, deer and more wildlife creatures.”

While Richmond did not make this list, our city did make Travel + Leisure’s Best Places to Travel in 2016 — which is nice.

Here is the full list of CNN’s 15 charming cities in the American South you may have overlooked:

  1. San Antonio, Texas
  2. Birmingham, Alabama
  3. Greensboro, North Carolina
  4. Norfolk, Virginia
  5. Knoxville, Tennessee
  6. Louisville, Kentucky
  7. Charlottesville, Virginia
  8. Gulf Shores, Alabama
  9. Wilmington, North Carolina
  10. Gulfport, Mississippi
  11. Winston-Salem, North Carolina
  12. Fayetteville, Arkansas
  13. Panama City Beach, Florida
  14. Breaux Bridge, Louisiana
  15. Greenville, South Carolina