8 U.S. Cities With International Flair
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One of the oldest cities in the U.S., Boston was founded in 1630 by Puritan colonists from England, and to this day, its oldest neighborhoods still evoke a quaint English town. Beacon Hill, with its brick sidewalks and narrow, gaslit streets, is a prime example.
Founded in 1718 by French colonists, New Orleans boasts an intriguing blend of French and Spanish Creole architecture, particularly in the famous French Quarter. Although much of the district’s original architecture was destroyed in the Great New Orleans Fire of 1788, the newer 19th-century architecture still exudes a historic feel typically characteristic of European towns.
You can find a taste of many cultures in The City by the Bay: Stop by Chinatown (the oldest in the U.S. and the largest outside of Asia) for authentic dim sum, experience the tranquility of a Japanese tea garden at Golden Gate Park, or marvel at the Greek-inspired architecture of the Palace of Fine Arts. At every turn, the city blends a variety of influences for a feel that’s distinctly San Franciscan.
Known as Little Bavaria, Frankenmuth was settled in 1845 by immigrants from the Franconia region of Germany, and the city’s Franconian heritage is still evident today in its timber-framed buildings and covered wooden bridge, or Holz Brucke. Frankenmuth hosts several festivals throughout the year inspired by its roots, including Bavarian Fest, Oktoberfest and the World Expo of Beer.
Geographically and culturally at the crossroads of Latin America, Miami is a high-energy melting pot with world-class dining, nightlife and art scenes. The Little Havana neighborhood – where you can get authentic Cuban coffee or a hand-rolled cigar – represents the heart of the city’s iconic Cuban culture.
Santa Barbara, Calif.
For a Mediterranean vibe in America, look to the southern coast of California. With its year-long mild climate, beautiful beaches and Spanish-inspired architecture, Santa Barbara has been described as The American Riviera. The city also holds annual festivals celebrating Spanish and French culture.
Founded by Dutch settlers in 1847, this idyllic town offers a hint of the Netherlands with its fields of tulips, cobblestone sidewalks and quaint shops. Each May, Holland hosts the Tulip Time Festival, which features parades, traditional Dutch dance performances, Dutch food and, of course, thousands of beautiful tulips. The city is also home to the 250-year-old De Zwaan, the only authentic, working Dutch windmill in the U.S.
If it’s the tropical beachside retreats that call your name on House Hunters International, Hawaii is your U.S. answer. Honolulu, the state’s vibrant epicenter, has a rich, historic feel, thanks to landmarks like Iolani Palace and the Kawaiahao Church. And, of course, the city’s warm climate and world-famous beaches make living here feel like a year-round vacation.